George Washington reportedly had an apparition at Valley Forge in 1777, showing him the future of the republic he was trying to liberate from Great Britain. It may be folklore, but the story has been told over and over again.
Here is the original publication of the vision from The National Tribune, Vol. 4, December 12, 1880 by the reporter, Wesley Bradshaw. Bradshaw had interviewed 95-year old Anthony Sherman on f July 4, 1859, in Independence Square, Philadelphia, PA. Mr. Sherman had been with Washington at Valley Forge in 1777 when Washington had the vision.
“I do not know whether it is owing to the anxiety of my mind or what, but this afternoon, as I was sitting at this table engaged in preparing a dispatch, something seemed to disturb me. Looking up, I beheld standing opposite a singularly beautiful female. So astonished was I, for I had given strict orders not to be disturbed, that it was some moments before I found language to inquire the purpose of her presence.
A second, a third, and even a fourth time did I repeat my question, but received no answer from my mysterious visitor, except a slight raising of her eyes. By this time I felt strange sensations spreading through me. I would have risen, but the riveted gaze of the being before me rendered volition impossible. I assayed once more to address her, but my tongue had become useless. Even thought itself had become paralyzed. A new influence, mysterious, potent, irresistible, took possession of me. All I could do was to gaze steadily, vacantly at my unknown visitant.
Gradually the surrounding atmosphere seemed filled with sensations, and grew luminous. Everything about me seemed to rarefy; the mysterious visitor herself becoming more airy and yet more distinct to my sight than before. I now began to feel as one dying, or rather to experience the sensation, which I sometimes imagined accompanies dissolution. I did not think, I did not reason, I did not move. All, alike, were impossible. I was conscious only of gazing fixedly, vacantly, at my companion.
"Presently I heard a voice saying, 'Son of the Republic, look and learn'; while at the same time my visitor extended her arm eastwardly.
I now beheld a heavy white vapor at some distance rising fold upon fold. This gradually dissipated, and I looked upon a strange scene. Before me lay spread out in one vast plane all the countries of the world: Europe, Asia, Africa, and America. I saw rolling and tossing between Europe and America, the billows of the Atlantic; and between Asia and America lay the Pacific.
'Son of the Republic,' said the mysterious voice as before, 'look and learn.'
"At that moment I beheld a dark shadowy being, like an angel, standing, or rather floating, in mid-air between Europe and America. Dipping water out of the ocean in the hollow of each hand, he sprinkled some upon America with his right hand, while with his left hand he cast some on Europe. Immediately a cloud arose from these countries, and joined in mid-ocean. For a while it remained stationary, and then it moved slowly westward, until it enveloped America in its murky folds. Sharp flashes of lightning gleamed through it at intervals; and I heard the smothered groans and cries of the American people.
A second time the angel dipped water from the ocean and sprinkled it out as before. The dark cloud was then drawn back to the ocean, in whose heaving billows it sank from view. A third time I heard the mysterious voice saying, 'Son of the Republic, look and learn.'
I cast my eyes upon America and beheld villages and towns and cities springing up, one after another, until the whole land, from the Atlantic to the Pacific, was dotted with them. Again I heard the mysterious voice say, 'Son of the Republic, the end of the century cometh. Look and learn.'
"And with this, the dark, shadowy figure turned its face southward, and from Africa I saw an ill-omened specter approach our land. It flitted slowly over every town and city of the latter. The inhabitants presently set themselves in battle array against each other. As I continued looking I saw a bright angel on whose brow rested a crown of light on which was traced the word 'Union,' place an American flag between the divided nation and say, 'Remember, ye are brethren.' Instantly, the inhabitants, casting from them their weapons, became fiends once more, and united around the National Standard.
"And again I heard the mysterious voice saying, 'Son of the Republic, look and learn.' At this, the dark, shadowy angel placed a trumpet to his mouth and blew three distinct blasts; and taking water from the ocean, he sprinkled it upon Europe, Asia, and Africa. Then my eyes beheld a fearful scene: from each of these countries arose thick, black clouds that were soon joined into one. And throughout this mass there gleamed a dark-red light, by which I saw hordes of armed men, who, moving with the cloud, arched by land and sailed by sea to America; which country was enveloped in the volume of cloud. And I dimly saw these vast armies devastate the whole country and burn the villages, towns, and cities that I beheld springing up.
"As my ears listened to the thundering of the cannon, the clashing of swords, and the shouts and cries of millions in mortal combat, I again heard the mysterious voice saying, 'Son of the Republic look and learn.' As the voice ceased, the shadowy angel, for the last time, dipped water from the ocean and sprinkled it upon America. Instantly the dark cloud rolled back, together with the armies it had brought, leaving the inhabitants of the land victorious.
"Then once more I beheld the villages, towns, and cities springing up where I had seen them before; while the bright angel, planting the azure standard he had brought in the midst of them, cried in a loud voice: 'While the stars remain and the heavens send down dew upon the earth, so long shall the Union last.' And taking from his brow the crown on which was blazoned the word 'Union' he placed it upon the Standard, while people, kneeling down, said, 'Amen!"
"The scene instantly began to fade and dissolve, and I at last saw nothing but the rising, curling vapor I had first beheld. This also disappearing, I found myself once more gazing upon the mysterious visitor who, in the same voice I had heard before, said, 'Son of the Republic, what you have seen is thus interpreted. Three great perils will come upon the Republic. The most fearful for her is the third: but the whole world united shall not prevail against her. Let every child of the Republic learn to live for his God, his land, and his Union.' With those words the vision vanished, and I started from my seat and felt that I had seen a vision; wherein had been shown me the birth, progress, and destiny of the United States."
"Such, my friends," concluded the venerable narrator, "were the words I heard from Washington's own lips; and America will do well to profit by them."
This is easily verified on The Internet, and is an excerpt from “Apocalypse: Four Horsemen Three Woes,” a free download on www.lulu.com/maurice-williams
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