Thursday, May 23, 2013

Travel Day, 200th Post, and More

Thanks for your input on our posts from the Outer Banks. We were stunned and appalled at all the over-development, for the record, but there is still much beauty to be enjoyed. We got tired of something we didn't expect: the impatient, wanna get there yesterday drivers! It's an ISLAND, people! Have you never heard of "island time?" Apparently not. There were some areas far worse than others, of course, but that was strange and frustrating. Still, we enjoyed our stay, and we will be back, maybe as early as next May. I will be posting more from Roanoke Island, as promised, and our experience at the Wright Memorial. For now, enjoy these pics from travel day:

 Last night's moon over the beach at Kill Devil Hills!
 A rainy, empty morning this morning
 Awwww...don't be sad, little laughing buddy...we'll be back!
 On our way to Hickory to see the family, we took an intentional detour to historic Edenton, which was the first capital of Colonial North Carolina and is famous for many reasons. I know it best as the town in which Harriet Jacobs came of age. I recommend you look up her story, if you don't know it already. Unfortunately, the homes of leading actors in Harriet's story are gone.

However, St. Paul's Episcopal Church still stands. Her master, Dr. Norcom, was a communicant there, and Harriet's children were baptized there, as her great-grandmother, a free black woman, was a member.

Records pertaining to Harriet were filed at the historic Chowan County Courthouse

 Among other intriguing houses is the Barker House, reputedly the location of the famous Edenton Tea Party of October 25, 1774, generally regarded as among the first known instances of overt political activity by women in the American Colonies.

 The house was relocated to this lovely site on Edenton Bay in 1952.

These cannon were commissioned by Benjamin Franklin and shipped to Edenton in 1778 for its defense. There was also some fear of a British raid on Edenton 200 years ago during the War of 1812.

 There is some Confederate history here, of course...the county supplied a number of troops...but it is more famous for its Colonial, Revolutionary, and Early Republic history, being the birthplace of such noted leaders as Joseph Hewes, signer of the Declaration, Hugh Williamson, signer of the U.S. Constitution, and James Iredell, justice on the very first SCOTUS.

Still, we had the obligatory Civil War field pieces.

 East Water Street boasts some interesting houses
 And I liked the 1892 Ziegler House, which is home to the Historic Edenton Visitor's Center, across the street from St. Paul's

Still, Edenton Bay was what I fancied most
I loved these trees in the bay! It was by water that Harriet ultimately made her escape. She was smuggled onboard ship, where the captain had agreed to give her safe transport to Philadelphia. Once there, she made connections with Pennsylvania abolitionists who helped her complete her escape.

After the Civil War, the textile industry gave Edenton new purpose, and though we didn't have time to see it all, there are sites associated with the mill and the surrounding village.

And of course, the town maintained its connection to water, if no longer as a center of trade

Time stands fairly still in Edenton today. People treasure their architectural heritage and their political history, as they should. We would like to have heard more about Harriet Jacobs, but there was a nice interpretive panel in the Visitor's Center and some good info in the brochures we picked up.

Some 425 miles later, we arrived at my father's house in time to give him a Wright Memorial t-shirt and a hug for his birthday. This is his family's "Mother's Day" rose, as it generally blooms by Mother's Day. It was a little slow this year, but is so very gorgeous now, and a poignant reminder of the women who are no longer with us. It is good to visit with our families. Who knows...maybe I'll post pics of sheep.


The Bug said...

It was a good day :)

Karen said...

Thanks for the tour! I don't know anything (other than what you have shared) about Harriet, but she sounds fascinating. I'll definitely read more!

Lowandslow said...

Outstanding narrative. Edenton seems like a history lover's paradise.


Linda said...

Your pictures are so clear and focused. The whole piece reads as if it was a tourist's historical introduction. Thank you for sharing some of the architecture and gingerbread trim details. You have to love people who know how to build with wood. It's an art, for sure. Enjoy your family visit and Happy Birthday Dad.

Jayne said...

What wonderful history in a magical place. :c)