Thursday, August 30, 2012

Southern Travel: Day 3

                I am always amazed at how well my children keep me busy distracting me from my chores and writing. The last two weeks have been a whirlwind getting my oldest into an apartment in a town 120 miles from where I live after his coming back from military training and my middle child set for his senior year of football after being back only a couple of days from his military training.  The daughter also has started a brand new school.  Wow, busy, busy, busy.  With a quiet house, I can now sit down and do a little work, so, back to the Southern Travel with day three.
                We packed up and left the hotel room.  Both of us were tired and a little grumpy after a ton of touring and staying up late meeting some really nice guys from the United Kingdom.  After a little breakfast, we jumped on the interstate headed to Florida.  My husband, though trying at times as we all are, is fun to travel with.  He saw a sign with Scarlet O’Hara on the big billboard and asked if I wanted to go to the museum.  Ah, yes! Our detour took us about twenty miles out of our way to the Road to Tara Museum in Jonesboro, Georgia.  Just a small little depot with a ton of items from the movie, I loved it.  I took a ton of pictures of the dresses which I believe where only replicas, but I adored them just the same.  I also took pictures of Margaret Michener pictures along with the house she based the book after and all the Hollywood pictures.  I also went shopping in the gift store.  After a year, I have finally figured out how I am going to decorate my craft room.  I bought four black and white prints and a key ring holder wall mount.  Jerry actually bought a cookbook all about grits.  Yum.  There were also some cool artifacts at the museum.

A Sherman Necktie: Gen Sherman disabled the railroads by
heating the iron and twisting it.


A bail of cotton.


Once on the road again, the drive to our next destination seemed to take forever.  After being disappointed at the pecan grove (the store was closed until October), we finally pulled into Andersonville Prison.  Before going to Georgia, I read the book Andersonville Journey, very powerful.  In some respects, the author prepared me for the visit.  Seeing the cemetery didn’t overwhelm me of which I am thankful.  The prison area though gave me pause.  Twenty-six acres is huge.  I couldn’t get over the enormity of the land mass and realizing every inch of it was filled with Union soldiers living off of practically nothing but small amounts of corn, occasional pork, and dirty water.  As typical, I took a lot of photos, but they don’t do the area any justice.  How do you capture the past, especially an atrocious past, in a picture with beautiful green grass on a beautiful sunny day?  Here are a few that may shed a little light on the area.

The North Gate
This is where the prisoners would enter the prison.

Providence Springs:  Sight where lightning struck
giving the prisons much needed fresh water when
the spring revealed itself.

The wall of the prison is where the Stockade
sign stands.  A railing stood where the
deadline sign stands.  If the prisoners
crossed the deadline, they were shot.


Civilians (women too) would climb up the
guard tower to take a look at the prisoners.
I can't imagine climbing up the ladder
in a dress.
                Some figures connected to Andersonville, captured the best and worst of our nation.  Some of the Union soldiers took to stealing and beating their fellow comrades.  Five of them were convicted of these crimes and murder.  They were sentenced to hang.  I find it quite fitting they were not buried among the other soldiers who died in the prison by other causes.

Raiders Graves set apart from the rest.
                Dorence Atwater lived in the prison and worked with the lists of dead.  He went through many trials defended the list both before and after the war.  Due to him and Clara Barton, they were able to rebury the dead and make a beautiful resting place for the souls lost at Andersonville Prison. 

The last numbered marker
I could find.  This is about how
many men died in about one
year at Andersonville.
This is the only marker to have a
dove carved on top.  There is
no record why this is the only one.
                The trip from the prison to Columbus really did take forever.  We were both very tired and couldn’t find a place for lunch.  Once we finally reached our final destination, we checked into our new hotel and went to an early dinner.  As the day came to a close, we walked along the Chattahoochee River and across the bridge to Alabama.  My thoughts went to the next day when I would finally get to see my son.
                Blessings to you all.

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