Sunday, July 31, 2022

2022 PA DE MD: Philadelphia

Traveling on from Valley Forge, we headed to the place where the writing all happened.  It is now collected under the heading of Independence National Historical Park.

Independence Hall:

This was the old State Court.  Note how the set up:  judge seats, lawyers tables - are similar to our modern courts:

If you know your American paintings, you will recognize following room:  it is the room that the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were signed in.  

All but one piece of the furniture is period correct but not original.  The one piece that is original is the chair you see at the front, where Washington sat.

This is the Syng inkstand, used to sign the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution.  Along with the George Washington Chair, Independence Hall itself, and the Constitution, it is one of the few original surviving items.

Just across the courtyard from Independence Hall is the original Congressional Chamber:

And Senate:

Just off the Senate chambers are pictures of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette:

Government offices in the building.  I believe the second one was the Library of Congress. It has expanded a bit...

The Liberty Bell:

Just down the street was Benjamin Franklin's grave:

And Betsy Ross' house and grave.

 I have to admit, I surprisingly enjoyed this visit.  It was good to be at the place where it all happened.  Inspiring, one might say.

Saturday, July 30, 2022

2022 PA DE MD: Valley Forge

Valley Forge is one of the great founding myths of Amercia, where a rag tag Continental Army was foraged into an Army from 1777-1778.  The name "Valley Forge" is actually because, at one point, there was a forge here.  In 1777-1778, this was the fourth largest city in the American colonies.  One surprising thing (to me, at least) was how close it was to Philadelphia.

Period Weapons - Always a point of interest to me:

A redoubt, facing towards the Southeast:

These cabins are representative of those that the Continental Army sheltered in during that Winter:

Arch to commemorate the generals and soldiers of the War;

A statue of Washington:

The Potts house, Washington's headquarters:

Washington really sat here:

This stair and handrail is from the Revolutionary War.  I am and Washington touched the same rail:

A  statue honoring Baron Von Steuben, the Prussian noble who forged the Continental Army:

The Washington Cathedral.  Built to honor Washington, it is an operating church.

Notice that the characters above the choir are military figures, not saints:


Friday, July 29, 2022