We’re small but we’re an oddly independent little state. Take Caesar Rodney…
Oh, you don’t know who that is? Or you do, but only as a character in the musical 1776 who doesn’t even have a singing part? Ah.
Caesar Rodney was fiercely opposed to the British crown and served as Brigadier General of Delaware’s little militia. But it’s his famous ride in 1776 for which he’s best remembered.
It was a dark and stormy night. Really, it was. Caesar was in Dover doing the Brigadier General thing even though, at this point, his health was already suffering. (It’s believed he eventually died from cancer – hard to say at this late date.) On this night, he received a message that the Congress was deadlocked. His delegation needed him to break the vote. What were they voting on? The Declaration of Independence. Caesar rode seventy miles through the thunderstorm that night and arrived just in time to break the deadlock “in boots and spurs” they say.
He was a brave, stubborn little man. No one better to represent our strange little state.
I’ve lived here all my life and though much of my work is fantasy and science fiction, in which the settings are not even on Earth, I did set one story in my little Delaware – in Wilmington where I could include places I’ve walked, river scenes I’ve sketched. Canines, Crosshairs and Corpses is the story of the newly divorced god Hades and his attempt to set up a private investigation firm on the Brandywine. It’s heart-wrenchingly personal, setting fiction where you live. Even fantasy edges closer to reality.
Take a walk with me along the Brandywine. I guarantee you, Caesar walked there, too.
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