A Pledge of Allegiance History

There are a number of right wing websites publishing odes to the Pledge of Allegiance on this July 4th Holiday.

While many people know that Francis Scott Key wrote the Star Spangled Banner, few know who wrote the Pledge.

It was Francis Bellamy; he is buried in my hometown of Rome, NY and while not born there,was educated there and considered it home. 

Rome is historically significant for several other reasons.  Ft. Stanwix in Rome was the first place the Stars and Stripes flew in the face of the enemy.  The Battle of Oriskany, within the borders of Rome, was one of the bloodiest battles of the Revolutionary War.  The first shovel of dirt for the Erie Canal, which opened travel to the West (which was Buffalo at the time), was turned in Rome (and “We’ll make Rome before 6 O’Clock, 15 Miles on the Erie Canal” was a lyric from a song we all had to sing in elementary school).  Rome was the site of the first commerical cheese factory in the US, home to the largest bicentennial project in America in 1976 with the reconstruction of Ft. Stanwix, and is home to Northeast NORAD, the first to detect something amiss in the skies on 9/11/2001.

So, we had to learn a lot about history that happened pretty much in our own backyard.  Here’s a short history of the Pledge.  Prior to World War II, children used a “Bellamy Salute” with the right hand extended up and forward with palms down facing the flag.  That salute was dropped for obvious reasons (not for the singing of “Springtime for Hilter”). 

 

 Enjoy the following. 

The Pledge of Allegiance
A Short History

by Dr. John W. Baer

Copyright 1992 by Dr. John W. Baer

 

 

 

 

 

Francis Bellamy (1855 – 1931), a Baptist minister, wrote the original Pledge in August 1892. He was a Christian Socialist. In his Pledge, he is expressing the ideas of his first cousin, Edward Bellamy, author of the American socialist utopian novels, Looking Backward (1888) and Equality (1897).
Francis Bellamy in his sermons and lectures and Edward Bellamy in his novels and articles described in detail how the middle class could create a planned economy with political, social and economic equality for all. The government would run a peace time economy similar to our present military industrial complex.   

The Pledge was published in the September 8th issue of The Youth’s Companion, the leading family magazine and the Reader’s Digest of its day. Its owner and editor, Daniel Ford, had hired Francis in 1891 as his assistant when Francis was pressured into leaving his baptist church in Boston because of his socialist sermons. As a member of his congregation, Ford had enjoyed Francis’s sermons. Ford later founded the liberal and often controversial Ford Hall Forum, located in downtown Boston.

In 1892 Francis Bellamy was also a chairman of a committee of state superintendents of education in the National Education Association. As its chairman, he prepared the program for the public schools’ quadricentennial celebration for Columbus Day in 1892. He structured this public school program around a flag raising ceremony and a flag salute – his ‘Pledge of Allegiance.’

His original Pledge read as follows: ‘I pledge allegiance to my Flag and (to*) the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.’ He considered placing the word, ‘equality,’ in his Pledge, but knew that the state superintendents of education on his committee were against equality for women and African Americans. [ * ‘to’ added in October, 1892. ]

Dr. Mortimer Adler, American philosopher and last living founder of the Great Books program at Saint John’s College, has analyzed these ideas in his book, The Six Great Ideas. He argues that the three great ideas of the American political tradition are ‘equality, liberty and justice for all.’ ‘Justice’ mediates between the often conflicting goals of ‘liberty’ and ‘equality.’

In 1923 and 1924 the National Flag Conference, under the ‘leadership of the American Legion and the Daughters of the American Revolution, changed the Pledge’s words, ‘my Flag,’ to ‘the Flag of the United States of America.’ Bellamy disliked this change, but his protest was ignored.

In 1954, Congress after a campaign by the Knights of Columbus, added the words, ‘under God,’ to the Pledge. The Pledge was now both a patriotic oath and a public prayer.

Bellamy’s granddaughter said he also would have resented this second change. He had been pressured into leaving his church in 1891 because of his socialist sermons. In his retirement in Florida, he stopped attending church because he disliked the racial bigotry he found there.

What follows is Bellamy’s own account of some of the thoughts that went through his mind in August, 1892, as he picked the words of his Pledge:

It began as an intensive communing with salient points of our national history, from the Declaration of Independence onwards; with the makings of the Constitution…with the meaning of the Civil War; with the aspiration of the people…

The true reason for allegiance to the Flag is the ‘republic for which it stands.’ …And what does that vast thing, the Republic mean? It is the concise political word for the Nation – the One Nation which the Civil War was fought to prove. To make that One Nation idea clear, we must specify that it is indivisible, as Webster and Lincoln used to repeat in their great speeches. And its future?

Just here arose the temptation of the historic slogan of the French Revolution which meant so much to Jefferson and his friends, ‘Liberty, equality, fraternity.’ No, that would be too fanciful, too many thousands of years off in realization. But we as a nation do stand square on the doctrine of liberty and justice for all…

If the Pledge’s historical pattern repeats, its words will be modified during this decade. Below are two possible changes.

Some prolife advocates recite the following slightly revised Pledge: ‘I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all, born and unborn.’

A few liberals recite a slightly revised version of Bellamy’s original Pledge: ‘I pledge allegiance to my Flag, and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with equality, liberty and justice for all.’

  1 comment for “A Pledge of Allegiance History

  1. July 5, 2007 at 5:07 am

    Yours is an interesting post. Thanks for the thoughts. Many people do not know that the Pledge of Allegiance WAS the origin of the notorious salute of the National Socialist German Workers’ Party.

    Pledge of Allegiance pictures http://rexcurry.net/pledge-allegiance-pledge-allegiance.jpg and Swastikas pictures http://rexcurry.net/swastika3clear.jpg expose shocking secrets about American history.

    Socialists in the USA originated the Nazi salute, robotic group-chanting to flags, Nazism, flag fetishism, and the modern swastika as “S” symbolism for “Socialism.” http://rexcurry.net/pledge2.html

    Much of that history is the history of the Pledge Of Allegiance.

    Those historical facts explain the enormous size and scope of government today, and the USA’s growing police state. They are reasons for massive reductions in government, taxation, spending and socialism.

    The “Nazi salute” is more accurately called the “American salute” as it was created and popularized by national socialists in the USA. It was the early salute of the Pledge of Allegiance. The Pledge was written by Francis Bellamy. http://rexcurry.net/pledgetragedy.html Francis Bellamy was cousin and cohort of Edward Bellamy. http://rexcurry.net/pledgebackward.html Edward Bellamy and Francis Bellamy were self-proclaimed socialists in the Nationalism movement and they promoted military socialism.

    They wanted the government to take over education and use it to spread their worship of government. When the government granted their wish, the government’s schools imposed segregation by law and taught racism as official policy. The official racism and segregation was a bad example three decades before the National Socialist German Workers Party, and decades afterward.

    The Pledge was mandated by law in government schools for three decades before, and through, the creation of the National Socialist German Workers’ Party. http://rexcurry.net/bellamy-edward-karl-marx.html

    see photo of Pledge of Allegiance http://rexcurry.net/USA-pledge-of-allegiance-rexcurrydotnet.jpg Pledge of Allegiance.

    Many people do not know that the term “Nazi” means “National Socialist German Workers’ Party.” Members of the horrid group did not call themselves Nazis. In that sense, there was no Nazi Party. They also did not call themselves Fascists. They called themselves socialists, just as their name indicates.

    The historian Dr. Rex Curry showed that the early Pledge Of Allegiance did not use an ancient Roman salute, and that the ‘ancient Roman salute’ myth came from the Pledge Of Allegiance. The discoveries have been reviewed and verified on wikipedia http://rexcurry.net/roman-salute-metropolitan-museum-of-art.html

    The original pledge was anti libertarian and began with a military salute that then stretched out toward the flag. In actual use, the second part of the gesture was performed with a straight arm and palm down by children casually performing the forced ritual chanting. Due to the way that both gestures were used sequentially in the pledge, the military salute led to the Nazi salute. The Nazi salute is an extended military salute via the USA’s Pledge Of Allegiance.

    Media coverage about the discoveries continues to grow http://rexcurry.net/audio-rex-curry-podcast-radio.html

    Fan mail for work exposing the Pledge’s poisonous pedigree is at http://rexcurry.net/pledge_heart.html

    And listen at http://odeo.com/audio/1747108/view

    The Pledge’s early salute caused quite a Fuhrer/furor. The dogma behind the Pledge was the same dogma that led to the socialist Wholecost (of which the Holocaust was a part): 62 million slaughtered under the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics; 49 million under the Peoples’ Republic of China; 21 million under the National Socialist German Workers’ Party. It was the worst slaughter of humanity ever.

    People were persecuted (beatings, lynchings, etc) for refusing to perform robotic chanting to the national flag at the same time in government schools in the USA and Germany (to the American flag, and to the German swastika flag).

    American socialists (e.g. Edward Bellamy and Francis Bellamy teamed with the Theosophical Society and Freemasons) bear some blame for altering the notorious symbol used as overlapping S-letters for “socialism” under the National Socialist German Workers Party.
    http://rexcurry.net/swastika3clear.jpg

    The same symbol was used by the Theosophical Society during the time when the Bellamys, Freemasons and the Theosophical Society worked together to promote socialism.
    http://rexcurry.net/book1a1contents-swastika.html

    They also originated and helped to spread the stiff arm salute via the Pledge of Allegiance at their meetings.

    As German socialism’s notorious flag symbol, the swastika was deliberately turned 45 degrees to the horizontal and always oriented in the S-direction. Similar alphabetic symbolism is still visible as Volkswagen logos. http://rexcurry.net/swastika-audi-logo.JPG

    The bizarre acts in the USA began as early as 1875 and continued through the creation of the National Socialist German Workers’ Party (German Nazis or NSGWP). American soldiers used the swastika symbol in WWI (against Germany) and the symbol was used by the American military during WWII. http://rexcurry.net/45th-infantry-division-swastika-sooner-soldiers.html

    The NSGWP had clear roots in National Socialism promoted by socialists in the USA. Amazing graphic images that prove the point are at http://rexcurry.net/theosophy-madame-blavatsky-theosophical-society.html

    The USA is still the worst example in the world of bizarre laws that require robotic chanting to a national flag in government schools (socialist schools) every day for 12 years. It has changed generations of Americans from libertarians to authoritarians. The government bamboozled individuals into believing that collective robotic chanting in government schools daily is a beautiful expression of freedom. http://rexcurry.net/book1a1contents-pledge.html

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