Here's a bunch of completely true, and not in anyway exaggerated or simplified, commonly held American historical facts that are referenced to in Day of the Tentacle for us non-Americans.
A little background: During your time playing Day of the Tentacle, you'll meet some founding fathers of the United States; George Washington (soon to become the first President, no less), Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and John Hancock. They've already declared Independence from Europe, but now they're trying to write a Constitution for their new country.
And don't forget: Part two!
Thanks to the awesome people at the Double Fine forums for helping out with this list!
...and the Cherry Tree
A six year old George Washington was given a hatchet to play with (hey, it was the 1700s, things were different back then), and it became one of his prized possessions. He would enthusiastically hack at just about anything he could get his hands on, but usually his mother's pea-sticks.
One morning, however, he got a little bit carried away with his hacking, and, while nobody was watching, chopped down a beautiful young English CHERRY TREE in his family's back garden.
As it turns out, the tree was a particular favourite of his Dad's, and he was extremely upset when he saw what had happened to it. He was trying to discover what had befallen his favourite source of free cherrys, when George wandered by with his hatchet in hand.
"George," said his father, "do you know who killed that beautiful little cherry tree in the garden?"
George realised he'd done something very but bad and was in serious trouble, but braced himself for punishment and told the truth: "I can't tell a lie, Pa ; you know I can't tell a lie. I did cut it with my hatchet!”
His Dad was so surprised and impressed with his son's honesty in the face of inevitable punishment that he immediately forgave him. "A son's honesty is worth more than a thousand trees!", he said, and gave him a big hug.
Key takeaway: George Washington likes cutting down cherry trees.
...and Valley ForgeLater in his career George Washington commander of the US Army, and things weren't looking good. The British had just taken control of Philadelphia, and were close to victory. Washington's troops were so close to collapse that he had no choice but to retreat to Valley Forge in the hope of getting them some much needed supplies and rest. Unfortunately they found anything but.
Congress had been unable to get supplies through, so his men suffered an incredibly harsh winter at Valley Forge without clothes, blankets, or appropriate food.
Washington refused to give up, however, and forced his men to stick together through the cold, hard winter, despite the terrible conditions. If he hadn't, it's considered that it might have been the end of the Revolutionary War.
Key takeaway: George Washington can handle a bit of cold weather
...and his wooden teethGeorge Washington had false teeth... made from wood. Yes, really.
Thomas JeffersonHey, it's that guy from Nickel!
...and his massive signature
John Hanock's signature on the Declaration of Independence (and other documents) is always so damned big.
Remember: All of the information here is completely true and in no way a simplified or exaggerated version of history.
Read part two now!