Posts Tagged ‘civil war’

3,654 Americans Dead, One Day (Day 81, Part 2)

October 9th, 2009 2 comments

No, they didn’t die on Day 81 of my trip. This trip is not that powerful or deadly. OTOH, the intensity of death per day at Antietam relative to size of the USA+CSA was 15,000 times the intensity of Iraq (I wrote about this once). Of course, Iraq is no Korea. Oh well. It’s a pretty battlefield. Antietam, I mean. Had to drive back into Maryland to get there, but it was worth it, I think. Nice skies, grain, fences, and a whole lot of dead people.

Civil War. It was a battle in the Civil War (the Battle of Antietam, sometimes referred to as Battle of Sharpsburg) and a fairly important one I understand. Somehow this sort-of win made Lincoln feel good about issuing the Emancipation Proclamation, freeing all the slaves except for those living in states that Lincoln was actually president of at the time. Well, basically.

antietam_ny-monumentThis is the New York monument at the battlefield. I like the idea that the three people on the right are monks going to their, I dunno, holy obelisk. Makes it seem more like an Anton Corbijn-directed Depeche Mode video. If only it were in black-and-white.

antietam_fence-roadWatching the approaching Yankees from the Rebel position.

antietam_connecticut-monumentI think this was the Connecticut monument. The guy on it looks like he’s 12. It’s situated alongside Bloody Lane, a sunken road that was sort of advantageous for the Southerners to be in until it wasn’t.

antietam_bloody-laneBloody Lane.

antietam_golden-grainPaved road, not bloody.

antietam_cloudsClouds, plus one of those fences they always set up around Civil War battlefields.

So I thought it was kind of a pretty battlefield. Nice clouds, for example. It makes you kind of sad to stand there and think about it. I mean, that’s a lot of dead guys. And then I remember that my relatives left the country 15 years before the Civil War to see if they could get a better deal in Mexico. So that makes it only as sad as a horrible, bloody civil war happening in someone else’s country. Someone else’s country that had recently annexed you. It’s slightly mitigating is what I’m getting at.


My Morning, Harpers Ferry (Day 81)

October 9th, 2009 1 comment

I used to love doing headlines. That seems like a long time ago. Now? I’m all about second paragraphs.

[Paragraph Redacted]

I dunno. Something about the Civil War, big armory, company town, Confederates making sure it was destroyed all the time, John Brown, railroads, a trans-continental canal, lots of floods, then someone deciding to move the town somewhere so that it wouldn’t keep getting destroyed all the time. Oh well.

harpers-ferry_main-streetMain Street.

harpers-ferry_raised-trackRaised railroad tracks. No, really! They run between Main Street and the river. I think Shenandoah (River). Eventually they cross the Potomac (eventually = a few hundred yards later).

harpers-ferry_catholic-churchThe scaffolding around the church tower adds a uniquely European touch to the scene.

harpers-ferry_ped-bridgeBridges have interesting lines.

harpers-ferry_episcopal-churchEpiscopal church.

harpers-ferry_episcopal-cloudEpiscopal cloud.

It was a nice half-day place. Had lunch at one of the taverns or whatever in the non Parks Service part of town: pulled pork sandwich. Was pretty good, but hilariously overpriced. I also ordered (tap) water.

Also of note: the drive from my campsite in Western Maryland (nice showers!) to Harpers Ferry marks the last time I’ll use my GPS. Garmin’s not very good at giving directions. She dropped me off in the middle of a country road in Maryland and told me it was the Harpers Ferry Visitors Center in West Virginia. Essentially. Probably not as dangerous as the time she dragged me up into the maze of unmarked logging roads in pursuit of Mt. St. Helens, but still. Also probably not as bad as when she told me the speed limit was 70 when it was, in fact, 25. Or the multiple times she’s told me to enter the freeway via the offramp. Plus she’s so smug about it. But anyway. Hopefully REI will still take it back. I still have the box, I think. Moral: don’t buy Garmin.


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