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"Dont Tread on Me": Barn Door
by David Grant

"We hold these truths to be self-evident: That all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." – The Declaration of Independence

Coiled and ready to strike; defiant, proud and patriotic―the "'Don’t Tread on Me': Barn Door" is American Folk Art at its finest. Thomas Jefferson’s faith in the practicality and wisdom of the American farmer was far greater than his belief in politicians maintaining the same virtues (the man certainly knew what he was talking about). A full 40 pounds lighter than the original work of art, this canvas needs to be touched to confirm it is not an actual piece of wood.

The bold rattlesnake design was championed by Ben Franklin as a symbol for the emerging nation. In November 1775, volunteers for the newly formed Marines paraded through Philadelphia with yellow painted drums emblazoned with a coiled fierce rattlesnake and the motto, “Dont Tread On Me”.

The flag itself came into being when The Continental Congress’ Christopher Gadsden presented the Navy’s first commander-in-chief, Esek Hopkins, the flag to fly as his distinctive personal standard. Both the Navy and the Marine Corps would adopt it as their first flags.

The detail of the carving, the grain and the texture of the "'Don't Tread on Me': Barn Door" canvas is incredible. Attractive, patriotic and unique: this is not simply a work of art but a symbol of our values and character.














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