On this day, 236 years ago, Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence. In all 56 individuals, two of them future Presidents (John Adams and Thomas Jefferson), signed that document. Some of the signatures didn’t come until years later. And because of the courage of those “Founding Fathers”, the greatest country in the world was born.
The love of this great country is something that we can share with Walt Disney:
“Actually, if you could see close in my eyes, the American flag is waving in both of them and up my spine is glowing this red, white, and blue stripe.” – Walt Disney
Walt’s love for the United States of America, is evident even inside The Magic Kingdom.
Starting as you pass into Liberty Square from Cinderella Castle in the central hub, you cross a bridge that was inspired by the Old North Bridge. The Old North Bridge is the site of one of first battles for American Independence, the Battle of Concord.
As you continue through Liberty Square, you will pass by a large oak tree. The Liberty Tree, was transplanted and moved to Walt Disney World. The 130 year old tree weighed 38 tons at the time, and had a root ball about 18 ft x 16 ft x 4 ft deep. The tree symbolizes the original liberty tree in Boston, Mass that was the gathering spot for a group of individuals called the “Sons of Liberty”. Hanging in the branches of the Liberty Tree, you will notice 13 lanterns, one for each of the original colonies.
Next to the Liberty Tree is a replica of the Liberty Bell. In fact, it is the only replica to be cast from the mold from the original Liberty Bell.
Across the walkway from the Liberty Tree, you will find the Hall of Presidents. The Hall of Presidents, a 22-minute show inside the hall features audio-animatronics versions of each of the 44 Presidents of the United Sates. Well actually, only 43 of them since Grover Cleveland served two separate terms as President (22 & 24). Throughout the show, you will see each of the Presidents gesture, sway, sit, stand, and in some cases speak. The show is well worth your time.
If you look closely in the windows of the Hall of President, you will see two glowing lanterns. These lanterns are meant to represent the beacons that Paul Revere watched for as he made his famous ride announcing the coming of the British army.
“In America, we are guaranteed these freedoms. It is the constitutional privilege of every American to become cultured or to grow up like Donald Duck.” – Walt Disney
As you spend some time in Liberty Square, some of the other things you may take note of:
- The shutters on the buildings hang crooked – During the Revolutionary War, Britain was still sending supplies to the colony, but obviously would not send them ammunition. What they did provide, however, was shutters…with metal hinges. Resourceful Independence fighters stripped the hinges from the shutters and melted them down to make musket balls. They replaced the metal hinges with leather straps. As time went on the leather stretched out, causing the shutters to hang crooked.
- To keep up with the themes, since during Colonial times there was no indoor plumbing, you will find no bathrooms in Liberty Square. This is sort of a technicality, however. There are two restaurants in Liberty Square, Columbia Harbour House, and Liberty Tree Tavern. Although each of these restaurants have bathrooms, they are technically across the line into the next “land” in the Magic Kingdom, so don’t physically sit within the borders of Liberty Square.
There are a couple of other hidden gems in Liberty Square, that I won’t tell you about, you will have to discover them for yourself. (If you really want to know, I’ll tell you if you ask nicely 🙂 ).
I’ll end with one more quote from Walt:
“Tomorrow will be better as long as America keeps alive the ideals of freedom and a better life.” – Walt Disney
If you would like to hear more about Liberty Square, the Magic Kingdom, or Disney in general, drop me a line. I’d love to hear from you.
(If you are interested, I’ve also included several links for you to check out).
Happy Independence Day!!