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By Elizabeth Amstutz


It was a breezy summer evening in Philadelphia. My family and I were eating dinner. It was very quiet until Dad spoke up. “I want to tell you something very important. I have decided to fight the British in the War. I am going to leave tomorrow.” I was shocked that he was going to fight. I was also worried about him. When I looked over at Mom’s expression she looked worried too. When I went to bed that night I pictured Dad wearing his uniform, looking very proud. It was Tuesday morning and Dad was getting ready to leave. We all said goodbye to dad and wished him good luck. I watched as he slowly walked outside. He looked at all of us and gave us a small wave. We all waved back and smiled. I watched him walk down the road until he disappeared over the hill. Mom came over to me and whispered into my ear, “Your going to have to help the family even more.” I leaned in close to her ear and with a soft and confident voice whispered back, “I know.” It’s been a week since Dad left. It was hard work to do all my work alone. I had to take care of the of the animals and harvest some of the plants from the field. Tom, my five year old brother, helped me with my chores too. He would help bring in baskets of food from the field. Our lives were very different because Dad wasn’t there. I missed having him work with me outside in the field. Dinners were now more quiet than usual without him. We all missed him very much.


One day in fall we received a letter from Dad. Mom read the letter to Tom and I. The letter talked about all the small battles he won. He even got to see George Washington! His letter made the colonists seem so heroic and brave. I felt very proud of him. I said to Mom eagerly that I wanted to write back to him as soon as possible. She said that tomorrow she would write him a letter with some of Tom and I thoughts in it. I nodded in agreement. Tomorrow Mom called Tom and I into the house. She asked us if there was anything we would want to say to Dad. I told her to write that I missed having him work on the farm with me and it has been hard taking care of the animals all by myself. Tom said to write that he loved and missed him very much. Mom wrote the letter sent it to Dad.

On a summer evening Mom, Tom and I were eating dinner. All of a sudden we heard the door creek a little. We all looked at the door as it opened. In the doorway stood a figure wearing a uniform. It was Dad! “It’s good to be home,” he exclaimed. All of us rushed up to him. We were all very excited that he was home. “Tell us what happened.” Mom said. Dad told us about all the battles he fought in and how he suffered at Valley Forge. I thought all of his stories were fantastic! He explained how the colonists won and how happy everyone was. I loved all of his stories but most of all I was glad he was home.

John and the War  

John goes to war.

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