|Colony into Commonwealth
|READ AND DISCUSS
Sometimes, a person's letters can tell us what he or she thinks about an important subject. This is true of our friends and relatives as well as of historical figures like George Mason.
In 1778, Mason wrote a letter to a friend in Great Britain. The friend was probably Mr. Brent, a young man from a planter family in Virginia. Mr. Brent may have been in Great Britain to go to school. Wealthy young men from the Colonies often went to Great Britain to study in the 18th century. This was true even at the time of the American Revolution!
1. Read Mason's letter which has been rewritten in modern language. Discuss: What important ideas does Mason express to Mr. Brent?
2. Take on the role of Mr. Brent from Virginia. In his letter, Mason wrote that a government must believe in the rights of the people. Do you agree with Mason? Can a government exist when
it does not believe in the rights of its citizens? As Mr. Brent, each student tape-records a response to Mr. Mason. When everyone has finished recording, listen to the tape as a class.
October 2, 1778
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