Elizabeth A.S. Brooke

Crafting, traveling and everything in between.


Harvest Time at Booker T. Washington National Monument

On our trip to Smith Mountain Lake State Park, we stopped for a picnic at Booker T. Washington National Monument in Hardy, Va. It was raining, but we refused to let it keep us from our picnic! It was only a light sprinkle. đŸ™‚

We didn’t get to check the monument out, so would like to go back to check it out.

When Chris went in to quickly check out the visitor center, an interpretive guide told him about Harvest Time, an event that the monument will host on Sept. 21. It features wood working, doll and soap making, pottery, farm animals and costumed interpreters.


New Harmony, Ind.

While we were out west, we stopped at New Harmony, Ind., the site of two former utopian societies.

First, we walked down a path alongside the Wabash River. Due to ton of rain the area had gotten recently, the walk was pretty buggy. Even though we sprayed our hair, arms and legs with bug spray, we were still covered in little, black flying insects!

We did see other insects on our walk, too.

I really loved exploring the Roofless Church.

This is a statue in the middle of the Roofless Church.

There was also a labyrinth garden. My mother-in-law, Margie, and I walked around the labyrinth as Chris and his dad, Dana, waited. You’re supposed to walk around it slowly, meditating. The fountain in the park and the landscaping was beautiful.

The town’s library is the former New Harmony Workmen’s Institute. I loved the architecture of the building, but the inside was a little bit musty.

I loved the door handle, so I had Chris take a picture. đŸ™‚

The library was hosting a sale, and Dana picked up a CD or two.

Here’s some more photos from around town:

This doorway used to be part of a church. It’s now an entry into one of the town’s gardens.

A very modern building for such an old community.
This houses the visitor center and is where you can start tours.

The town was also hosting the Golden Raintree Antiques Show, so we did a little browsing, too.


Angel Mounds Historic Site, Evansville, Ind.

Not too long ago, Chris, Sidney and I headed out west to visit family. While there, of course, we made sure to visit some sites. Many of those Chris had visited often when he lived in the area, but this was my first time seeing a lot of these places.

One place Chris has wanted to take me for several years is Angel Mounds Historic Site, Evansville, Ind. Since we usually visit in December, we haven’t made it to the mounds, though it’s nearby.

I’ve been to a few Native American burial and ceremonial grounds (see Serpent Mounds and Grave Creek Mound), but never had I seen so many mounds together nor over such a large area! I now see why Chris didn’t want to take me in cooler weather. Most of our time was spent outside walking around the mound.

This post is just in time because Angel Mound’s annual Native American Days are Sept. 23-25! So, start planning your trip now.

After walking through the Interpretive Center, you walk out across a bridge to the Mounds. There you follow a mowed trail around and over the mounds. If I remember correctly, the whole trail is about a mile long.

Signs point out the various mounds and what they may have been used for.

There were also models of a stockade that would have surrounded the community and different buildings.

This is a reconstruction of what the stockade may have looked like.

After our walk, we stopped at the bridge so Chris could take photos of turtles and dragonflies. I wonder if any of the turtles or fish found the lens cap I dropped into the water. Oops!


Charles Pinckney National Historic Site, Mount Pleasant, S.C.

On our way to visit Boone Hall Plantation and Gardens, we stopped at the Charles Pinckney National Historic site, which is also located in Mount Pleasant, S.C.

This house sits on the former site of Pinckney’s home, according to info on the website.

Here you’ll find a home and foundations of former slave cabins of Charles Pinckney, a signer of the U.S. Constitution. This plantation was called Snee Farm.

Only 28 acres of the original 715-acre farm still exists. A 1/2 mile walking trail guides visitors around the house and former foundations. Interpretive signs and brochures tell about each site, giving the culture and history of the farm.

This overlooks where the farm used to be. The house is behind the photographer.

There is an easy, 1/2-mile trail around the property that includes interpretive signs pointing out foundations and other interesting sites.

This makes for a very short trip, but is a good place to get out and stretch your legs.


Boone Hall Plantation, Mount Pleasant, S.C.

On of our stops during our Charleston, S.C., trip was Boone Hall Plantation and Gardens in Mount Pleasant, S.C. It still produces vegetables and fruit, which can be picked out various Pick Your Own fields or bought at the plantation’s market on Long Point Road.

We ate lunch at the market after our visit. It’s well worth the trip!

Shot of Boone Hall.

Long driveway to the plantation.

The tour only takes you through two rooms in the home. That was a disappointment, but our guide was entertaining and knowledgeable.

I don’t remember what she’s talking about here, but our tour guide was knowledgeable and entertaining.

Afterward, we headed to the slave cabins located to the right of the home. There were artifacts and educational videos located in each cabins. The videos and artifacts focused on certain aspects of plantation and slave life: church, family, work, basket weaving, etc.

There were nine cabins with artifacts and displays.

My favorite was the presentation of Gullah culture.

The docent (I guess that’s what you call these types of guides) provided information about Gullah culture, language and songs.

I also enjoyed speaking with the woman making and selling the famous Charleston baskets.

Gorgeous Charleston baskets were sale at one of the cabins.

The flowers in the formal garden located in front of the plantation was meticulously kept and it was fun walking around the beautiful flowers.

Someone picked these flowers and displayed them on the plantation’s front porch.

Some more beautiful flowers.


Fort Moultrie, S.C.

Fort Moultrie is part of the National Park Service and is an amazing relic of our history.

I loved walking around the fort, imagining what it must have been like to work as a soldier there during the years.

The current fort was built in the 1800s. Two other forts sat on the same site prior to the current structure. Interpretive signs point to the former fort locations and tell when they were built, how they were made and how they served us during that part of our history.

The site’s history spans from a log fort built in 1776 to WWII.

I’m not big on military-related historic sites, but this is definitely a must see.

Here’s some photos from our visit:

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Exchange and Provost, Charleston, S.C.

Our last stop on Charleston’s Museum Mile was the Exchange and Provost Dungeon.

To the right is our tour guide. An animontronic figurine is to the left.

The tour provides a lot of historic info about the city, pirates, George Washington’s visit and the city’s part in the American Revolution.

Down in the dungeon, you’ll find animontronic figurines that’ll tell stories about the prison and building. On the way to Charleston, we met a couple who used to volunteer as pirates and other characters at the Exchange. Now that the museum uses mechanical storytellers, there’s no need for real people, except for the lone tour guide.

This is a well with water and fake rats located in the dungeon.
It’s supposed to show the horrid conditions prisoners had to stay in.

I think that is unfortunate because it would be neat to talk with various people about the building and its history. I’m sure providing more than one volunteer would offer a greater depth of knowledge about the building than one tour guide and prerecorded machines could provide (though our guide was very knowledgeable).

Still, this is a good stop along the Museum Mile.

– Posted using BlogPress from my iPad