Forgot your password?

We just sent you an email, containing instructions for how to reset your password.

Sign in

  • latin
    out of many one
    a 1776 US Congressional decision
    Adams, Franklin, Jefferson
    from 13 states one nation

    E pluribus unum
    first census of 1790 shows 4 million Europeans
    (English, German, Irish, Scottish, Dutch & French)
    agreed to a republic & money with a logo

    annuit coeptis novus ordo seclorum
    which in Latin meant: too big for our britches
    but we’ll grow up eventually (meaning:
    we’re taking Europe’s best ideas
    but doing it right (meaning:
    turning them into dollars)

    Annuit coeptis
    mostly pioneers & sailors
    they stuck to the coast
    facing east as long as they could
    slowly (they saw it coming)
    population pushed west to the river

    Novus ordo seclorum
    in 1800 being united was a big deal
    the earth belonged to Europe
    America a fledgling frontier
    original 13 became 16 states
    (plus vast inhabited but “untouched” territories to the NW)
    the United States of America
    population 5 million

    Remember Florida is still Spanish & eastern Louisiana still French
    Spanish-held Mexico was three times its size
    staying united meant survival
    unum against all takers
    America versus everybody

    Not having friends is a price bullies pay
    on behalf of clever bankrolls
    too rich to fight for themselves

    In 1846 ceaseless wheels of new & improved
    required more wars of freedom &
    on its way to a shining Pacific
    swept vast tracts of Mexico under its rug.
    Mexico whose conquistador ancestors
    had taught no fondness for aboriginals
    accepted the novus ordo seclorum

    Annuit coeptis
    in 1807 slavery got outlawed but it took 54 years
    & another war about freedom to embrace it.
    American Civil War wasn’t about freedom.
    1861 was an adolescent new nation sticking together at all costs

    Lincoln knew that divided the dream would fail.
    That the greatest delusion so far believed
    a democratic republic & pursuit of happiness
    had to be given the chance to succeed

    Dreams can be costly & for four years
    teenagers went missing into fratricide to prove it.
    That the flag was still there.

    Novus ordo seclorum
    in 1879 America celebrated its centennial in Philadelphia
    city of brotherly love.
    The civilized world tipped its hat &
    France presented the gift of the Statue of Liberty
    to 38 states & 46 million Americans

    Annuit coeptis
    later that year
    (as though it were a frontier dream across an ocean)
    in Nebraska Montana & South Dakota
    those best ideas that Europe had to offer
    (perfected with endless armies & weapons of compliance)
    expropriated ancestral lands of the Lakhota Nations of the Black Hills
    in the name of bureaucratic impatience and the god it trusts

    Footnote: inconveniently situated at the edge of America-the-runaway-train
    Lakhota indigenous were decimated by expedience
    addendum to endangered species lists

    Novus ordo seclorum
    no forest just trees
    • Share

    Connected stories:


Collections let you gather your favorite stories into shareable groups.

To collect stories, please become a Citizen.

    Copy and paste this embed code into your web page:

    px wide
    px tall
    Send this story to a friend:
    Would you like to send another?

      To retell stories, please .

        Sprouting stories lets you respond with a story of your own — like telling stories ’round a campfire.

        To sprout stories, please .

            Better browser, please.

            To view Cowbird, please use the latest version of Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Opera, or Internet Explorer.