Friday, December 18, 2009

Paul Revere and Exam Week

We like to save exam week for special projects. The building is empty of students for several hours and we can truly concentrate rather than multi-task! This year we spent time with our archivist, Laurie DiModica, and the school's original seal fashioned by Paul Revere. We knew that the seal had been used for Trustee business and were curious as to what was on it and any symbolism.
We initially bought sealing wax that was made from a 300 year old formula, thinking historical accuracy. But as we burned it, the soot and ash smeared the image we were trying to see. So, we went 20th century and chose sealing wax designed for a glue gun. The image was clearer. We all made an imprint for how often do we get a chance to be hands-on with history?
Laurie did some reasearch into the Trustee minutes and found in a meeting on November 22, 1786 (handwritten by John Quincy Adams):
"Voted, that a vote of the Trust passed the 7th of April 1786 for procuring a seal and directing the devise of it be, and the same is hereby annulled--and further voted, that the Treasurer [Micajah Sawyer Esq.] be, and he hereby is directed to procure a seal for and at the expenc
e of the Trust of about the size of an English Half Crown; and that the devise of it, be the figure of Apollo holding out a laurel, with this label from his mouth, "Detur Digniori," and a number of pupils looking at the laurel. With these words round the margin Sigillum Academiae Demmerianae 1763."

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