Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Learn the Address

I'm a day late with this post, but I just heard about this project today. Filmmaker Ken Burns has challenged all Americans to commit the Gettysburg Address to memory. It's a celebration of the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address. You can even go to Learn the Address and upload a video of yourself reciting or reading the Address.

My favorite thing is the mash-up of all of our living presidents and some celebrities reciting the address.

I grew up in the days when rote learning was the standard. I can still recite many of the things I learned in school. I know the Preamble to the Constitution, the Midnight Ride of Paul Revere, the Concord Hymn, Hiawatha, the books of the Bible, and a few others. But I can only remember about half of the Gettysburg Address.

I'm making a pledge right now. I will memorize the entire Gettysburg Address and post it on the web site. Will you take the pledge too?

And, while we're at it, how about we ask all athletes who represent the USA at the Olympics to memorize the words to The Star Spangled Banner. I don't think that's unreasonable.


  1. What a great idea. I read once that Rose Kennedy asked her grands to memorize a poem every year for her birthday present. Caroline eventually collected a book of poems for children.

  2. I hope you are able to do it! It is a noble task and you're right -- everyone should know The Star Spangled Banner! Grampy and I are both fans of Stephen Cobert and he posted a version that was wonderful, too! Thanks for sharing.