John Adams

Reflections on freedom

Reflections on freedom

On the eve of Independence Day, Lara Templin read from the Declaration of Independence, her voice ringing across the lawn of Yorktown Victory Center.

A small crowd gathered around, attendees of the center's two-day Liberty Celebration that Templin largely put together. Some stepped up to the microphone to read a few sentences, but Templin picked up where they left off.

Templin knows the document well – better than most, in fact. She's worked at Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation for 17 years.

The words never seem to lose their power.

"It wasn't just a declaration of war," she said. "It was: this is why….As good people, we have to tell you why....