Thursday, June 30, 2011

"Haym Salomon: Patriot" - Edcon Publishing



Haym Salomon will have more trouble if those British soldiers know what he is saying to the Germans.

Back in the 1700s, Poland was one of the weakest countries in Europe. Other stronger countries kept trying to take over Poland's government. A small band of Polish men tried to keep their country free, but it was no use. Poland was taken over by a new government. The brave freedom fighters were forced to leave their country or be thrown into prison.
One of these freedom fighters was a young man named Haym Salomon. Haym decided to leave Poland and come to the New World, America. He believed that America was a land of freedom.

Haym came to New York and started his own business. It made him a very rich man. Haym made many friends among the people who had come here from all parts of Europe. He was able to speak to them because he knew many languages.

After Haym had been in America a few years, life began to change. Even though the American people had their freedom, they were still ruled by the English king. When the king tried to take away some of America's freedom, many Americans feared this would lead to war. Haym knew that if war came, he would fight for freedom in his new country just as he had done in his old country. But this time, he would win.

When war did come, New York was the first city the British soldiers took over. Many Americans left New York, but Haym stayed. He gave most of the money from his business to the American government. This helped pay the soldiers and buy guns for George Washington's army. He also joined a group of Americans who had been working secretly for many years to free their country from England. These men planned attacks on British soldiers and on British ships in New York Harbor.

When the British discovered what Haym was doing, they threw him into prison. But even in prison, Haym managed to continue his fight for freedom. It happened this way. The British government needed extra soldiers to help fight the war in America. The king arranged to get them from Germany by paying the German government a lot of money. When these German soldiers arrived in America, the British officers were faced with new troubles. None of the Germans spoke or understood English. And none of the British spoke or understood German. No one could give orders, and no one could understand them.

One British officer remembered that Haym spoke German. The officer offered to let Haym out of prison if Haym would help talk to the German soldiers. Haym thought about this for a while. He really didn't want to do anything that might help the British win the war. But, on the other hand, he had no way to help the Americans if he stayed in prison. Haym also realized that by helping the British, he could learn their war plans. Then, once he was free, he could tell those plans to George Washington. So Haym decided to help the British.
As the British officer was explaining to him what to tell the Germans, Haym suddenly thought of another pfan. This new plan would put his life in danger, but if it worked, it would really help the Americans.

Haym stood up in front of a group of German soldiers and began to speak. The British officers watched him very closely, but they had no way of knowing what he was saying, for he was speaking in German. It was lucky for Haym that they didn't know!

For, instead of explaining the war plans to the Germans, Haym talked about America. He told them what it was like to live in a free country. He explained that America was fighting for its freedom. Then he offered the soldiers a chance to have their freedom, too. He showed them how they were taking chances with their lives while their government was getting all the money from England. Haym then promised the Germans that if they came over to the American side, George Washington would give them land for farms and homes. Then they would be free Americans,too.

Haym spoke so well that, at a later time, many German soldiers did run away from the British and join the American army. The British did not discover what Haym had done.

In a short time, they freed him from prison. Haym returned to his home and to his business. He helped raise money from his friends for the American army. He gave most of his own money as well. He also continued his secret work with the freedom fighters. America finally did win the war. Since that time, no country has ever tried to take away America's freedom. We can thank Haym Salomon and men like him for the freedom that every American enjoys today.

COMPREHENSION CHECK

1. Haym left Poland because ___________________ .
a. he liked to travel to other countries.
b. a new government came into power.
c. he couldn't make any money there.
d. George Washington told him to come to America.

2 Haym was able to make many friends in America because ____________________ .
a. he spoke many languages.
b. he was very rich.
c. he knew them from Europe.
d. he had fought for freedom in Poland.

3. War between America and England started because ________________ .
a. the English king wanted the Americans to return to England.
b. both countries wanted to rule Poland.
c. George Washington had a fight with the English king.
d. the English king tried to take away America's freedom.

4. The money that Haym gave to the American government was used _________________
a. to buy soldiers from Germany.
b. to build ships in New York Harbor.
c. to pay for the soldiers and buy guns.
d to send gifts to the English king.

5. The British Government got extra soldiers for their army _________
a. by using Americans who were in prison.
b. by buying them from Germany.
c. by taking over the Polish Government.
d. by forcing the Indians to fight for them.

6. When the German soldiers arrived in America, the British discovered that ________
a. the Germans couldn't shoot British guns.
b. the British soldiers didn't like German soldiers.
c. none of the German soldiers understood English.
d. the Germans really wanted the Americans to win.

7. If the British officers really knew what Haym was telling the German soldiers, they probably would have ___________________ .
a. freed Haym right away.
b. sent him back to prison.
c. given him a medal.
d. told George Washington about it.

8. Haym promised the German soldiers that George Washington would _____________
a. make them all officers in the American army.
b. give them a lot of American money.
c. give them land for farms and homes.
d. let them go home to Germany.

9. Another name for this story could be __________________ .
a. "Freedom Fighters Today."
b. "The Attack on New York Harbor."
c. "German Soldiers in America."
d. "One American's Courage."

10. This story is mainly about ____________
a. a freedom fighter who saved Poland from other countries.
b. the training of soldiers in George Washington's army.
c. A man who believed in freedom and fought for it twice.
d. the tricks that the British used to win the war in America.

Haym Salomon in Wikipedia

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