Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Day 44 Southern VA.Civil War & Trip Summary

We had such great weather for our trip until we got back east and then had a couple days of rain and the last night at Cobb Island, we put on long pants and sweatshirts when we were outside after supper.
It was drizzling when we left Cobb Island and crossed the Potomac River Bridge on US 301.Wanda doesn't like high bridges so I couldn't get her to take any pictures of it as we crossed.

The power plant is right along the highway and the river,

The 32nd state counting Wash. DC. We had plans to drive into NJ when we were in Delaware but after we didn't do the Mason-Dixon line hike, we decided we didn't need to spend the hour to drive to Jersey. We've both been there and we can count DC as a state. ( my students think it is)
We didn't spend much time at George's Birthplace. The only things that are original are the family graveyard and the foundations of some of the original houses.

We looked at the small visitor center with some artifacts dug up on the property and a few exhibits and got our NPS Stamps & postcards.

I've taken Wanda to a number of Civil War sites in the last few years and she's been reading many books from my CW library so we followed the battlefield trail of the 7 Days battles of 1862. We stopped at 5 visitor centers as part of the Richmond Nat'l Battlefield.

Cold Harbor was the site of one of the battles of 1862 but is best known for the slaughter of Union troops in 1864 where Grant sent his soldiers

against entrenched Confederate troops and lost 7,000 in less than an hour.

The lines of trenches are remarkably well preserved. Most of these were dug by hand, literally. The troops used tin cups, plates, canteen halves - anything to move dirt for protection.

The Glendale/Malvern Hill VC is the Admin. Building of the National Cemetery.

Wanda questioned why there are no national cemeteries for the southern troops. The ranger told her that most were removed to local cemeteries like Hollywood or Oakwood in Richmond.

Malvern Hill was the last battle of the Seven Days. The Confederate troops attacked up the hill into one of the largest assemblies of massed cannons in the war. " A splendid field of fire" as one of the Union Generals put it.

I had not been to Chimborazo before, site of the largest Confederate hospital in the war.

The scale was enormous, the bakery produced something like 10,000 loaves of bread per week.

The exhibits showed a variety medical stuff : the surgeons instruments & uniforms and ghoulish things like pictures and

descriptions amputations.

For about 3 miles we drove along Battlefield Park Rd. which had a number of small forts and long lines of trenches very well preserved.

Fort Harrison was one of the larger earthen forts that had been built to defend Richmond.

a pretty neat little Visitor Center

The fort covers about the size of a football field

and the earthen walls are still about 15' high.
Tredegar Iron Works is in downtown Richmond along the James River and a few of the original buildings are used by the NPS and a privately owned Civil War museum.
Before and during the war it produced a wide variety of products; cannons, iron plate, & ammunition, etc

The foundry used water power from turbines to power the machinery

like this huge stamp mill.

This was a new plaza and statue since the last time I was here.

Back in North Carolina after 45 days & 12,513 miles. We got home at 9 pm, right on schedule.
The final total was 12,706.3 miles

215 NPS Passport stamps

33 tunnels

Highest elevation 12,183 ft. Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mt. NP, CO.

We crossed the Continental Divide 6 times

Hottest -110 degrees Valley of Fire SP, NV

Coldest 27 degrees- Alpine Visitor Center, 11, 796' Rocky Mt. NP, CO

Furtherest South : Tucson, AZ ,

West: Las Vegas, NV( even though we did get into CA),

North : Welcome to Manitoba sign at International Peace Garden

East: Philadelphia, PA .

Best Day: Wanda - Grand Canyon - she took the best pictures there

JR- Day 15: Cedar Breaks, Red Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Utah with a close 2nd

Day 13 Valley of Fire SP, NV

Scariest drive: Trail Ridge Road, Rocky MT. NP - road work at 12,000'-single lane gravel road with rain, snow & fog and of course no guard rails .

Most Unique Roadside Attraction - Enchanted Highway, ND

Most Unusual Gas Station- Hollow MT., Hanksville, UT

Best Small Town we wish we had more time to drive around and most unique school team mascot- Belfry, WY
See the "Best & Worst" page at the top of the Blog for the rest...

1 comment:

  1. Hi Wanda & Chay R, I came accross your travel blog by accident today and spent quite some time reading and looking at the pictures. We have been to some of those places, and it was great to see them again here. Thanks for sharing. When is your next trip? You were totally missing out on California!!