I never got around to posting about all my April trips. Now that I think about it, I have one from last April I still want to do.   Over Easter weekend, we headed to Tennessee to check out some Civil War and Indian sites. The first day we drove and drove and drove some more then we stayed at a hotel. The next morning we were up and out early. The first stop was the New Echota which is Northern Ga. This was the capital of the Cherokee Nation from 1825 until 1832. It was here that the Cherokee council met, that the Cherokee Supreme Court heard cases, and that the Cherokee Phoenix newspaper was first published.  The site has rebuilt  buildings to represent each of these and the house  of Samuel Worcester, a minister and loyal friend to the Cherokee nation. The Treaty of New Echota was  signed here which was the controversial document used by the American government to justify the removal now known as the Trail of Tears.

It was here that we began to learn that  we did not care for Andrew Jackson. The US Supreme Court ruled in Worcester v. Georgia,  that Georgia did not have the right to have passed those laws to force Cherokee out of the state.  However, President Andrew Jackson refused to enforce the Supreme Court’s decision in this case. This is a great historical site. We started with the movie and small visitor center. The kids loved trying to speak Cherokee and even bought a book.  We then spent an hour or so touring the buildings outside. There was a nature trail we missed because of the weather and time. We were off to Chickamauga Battlefield.                                                                                                                  

The Chickamauga Battle was one of the few where the Confederates outnumbered the Union. The confederates had a strong victory here and slowed the advance to Atlanta.  We went on the driving touring of the battlefield. The kids earned a Junior Ranger Badge here and then we headed to Lookout Mountain photo at top of this blog entry. They earned another badge there. The view was nice when you were not looking over the city. I am a little partial to my NC mountains when you are not looking at buildings and such. The highlight of the day for me was the 150th Anniversary Luminaries at Shiloh Battlefield. There was one for each solider that died at the battle and there was just so many. The photo below is around Bloody Pond. It was said that so many died here that the pond turned red. It was very moving experience. The kids enjoyed it at first but both ended up falling asleep and missing the last half of the drive. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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We slept in this morning. I think we were up a little after eight. I am wondering if my schedule will stay shifted when I get home. I doubt it! Cobey seems to be tired and dragging a little today. He is the  one that needs his sleep. It has not phased Claire in the least except I have been awake before her a few times.

Our first stop was Lowell National Historical Park. The park is about the city of Lowell and it’s part in the shift of America from farms to industry. We started with a twenty minute introductory film about how the town became an industrial city. We then took a ninety minute canal ride that told  the history of the town and how the canal works. We went into a lock and the water rose four feet and four inches. I had never done that before so that was a neat experience. We learned about the man who saved the town from two floods after he was criticized that the floodgates where not needed.  Some tours get to tour a gatehouse so if you can do that tour I recommend it.

 

After the tour, we took a trolley to the Boott Cotton Mills Museum which is part of the National Park. They have done an excellent job making this museum interesting for kids. When you enter the museum, the kids put on an apron and clock in. They then search for the child cutouts that tells them a little information and something to try. They got to try many of the ten steps of making fabric. They also saw the machines in action. Boy, was that loud! At the end of the museum, they can mark where their clothes are made on a map. But their favorite part was building a city with homes, railroads, factories and parks.  We then walked over to the where the boarding house where the girls lived. Girls and young woman from surrounding farms were the first workers in the factories.

We walked back to the visitor center, grabbing a late lunch at Subway on the way. The kids got their Junior Ranger badges for the park and we were off to Salem. I highly recommend this national park.  There are a lot of staff in this park and everyone was friendly and helpful that we encountered. There are cost involved in the tours and museum but well worth it. It is one of our new top National Parks. You could easily spend a full day there but you know us,  you can’t keep us anywhere for long.

We were off to Salem because Claire wanted to go to The House of the Seven Gables. My friend Mary Beth recommended it and she was right. The kids loved. The tour guide did a wonderful job telling us the history of the house and about the people of that lived in the house. She also told us enough about the story written by Hawthorne to make us want to read the book.  We then had a self-guided tour of the house Hawthorne was born in which was moved to the property.

We then went down the street to the Salem Maritime National Historical Park. We had less than an hour so we did not get to take full advantage of the park so I can’t give it a fair review. The staff was very helpful and friendly. The kids were able to complete the program in less than an hour and they learned something new. They have tours of the cargo ship and custom house. I would like to go back and take those tours sometime. Salem is one place I would like to return to and spend the entire day.

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