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Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia

Been to someplace of historical interest? Planning a trip? Have a question? Post here!
G. Alvin Simons
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Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia

Post by G. Alvin Simons » Sat October 30th, 2010, 9:35 pm

I have just returned from a week at Colonial Williamsburg. Anyone interested in 18th Century American history need look no further than here to begin your hands-on research. If your interest is in the English founding of America, Jamestown is about 7 miles away. How about touring where the American colonies won their independence? Yorktown lies about 12 miles away. I've made numerous trips to these places over the past 20 years or so and have learned something and enjoyed myself every time. I'm not sure that 1 week is ample enough time to see and do everything there is in the "Historic Triangle."

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Misfit
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Post by Misfit » Sat October 30th, 2010, 10:51 pm

Oh, I'd love to go. The Two Nerdy History Girls blog talks about it all the time (with pics)
At home with a good book and the cat...
...is the only place I want to be

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LoveHistory
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Post by LoveHistory » Sat October 30th, 2010, 11:02 pm

Williamsburg is one of my dream trips.

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Michy
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Post by Michy » Sat October 30th, 2010, 11:06 pm

Definitely want to go. Monticello, also -- when I was in DC this past spring they had some cool posters for Monticello, some sort of grand re-opening or something. And I would like to go back to Mt. Vernon and spend more time. And of course, I could go back to DC many, many more times......

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Don't Forget the University of Virginia Campus

Post by G. Alvin Simons » Sat October 30th, 2010, 11:57 pm

Michy, when you make the trip to Monticello you HAVE to see the campus of the University of Virginia, too. I've been to both places in the fall & I can't begin to describe how beautiful it was. Students give free campus tours on the weekend & the architecture is incredible. Jefferson designed the original buildings & his imprint is all over the Charlottesville area. For all of the authors in the crowd, the school has maintained the room that some economically-challenged dropout by the name of Poe lived in while he attended the school. I'm reminded that it's such an honor to live in these unheated, no bath or toilet rooms that Ralph Sampson delayed collecting NBA millions because he had earned the right to stay in one as a senior.

Alvin

PS: I seem to have FINALLY struck a nerve with the group! :D

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Michy
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Post by Michy » Sun October 31st, 2010, 3:21 am

[quote=""G. Alvin Simons""]Michy, when you make the trip to Monticello you HAVE to see the campus of the University of Virginia, too. [/quote] Thanks for the tip. I have several times heard a Jefferson scholar say that Jefferson was quite proud of his involvement in founding the UofV. It seems he was prouder of that than of being president, since he had it inscribed on his tombstone and purposely did not have President of the United States on his tombstone.
PS: I seem to have FINALLY struck a nerve with the group! :D
What? :confused:

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Post by LoveHistory » Sun October 31st, 2010, 3:47 pm

Yes, most definitely. Must see Mount Vernon and Monticello, and U of V.

What about William and Mary? That's where Jefferson went to school, you know. Oldest university in the States, I think.

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What About William & Mary

Post by G. Alvin Simons » Sun October 31st, 2010, 6:35 pm

Jefferson did attend college there & it's also located in Williamsburg. Fact is, the main street through the center of the historic area is called Duke of Gloucester Street & runs from the campus of William & Mary to the recreated House of Burgesses. Harvard was founded earler, 1636, while W&M comes in second, 1693. There's one beautiful building at W&M called the Wren Building named after Sir Christopher Wren which was actually the first building that John Rockefeller donated money to restore. This is the oldest building in continuous use by a college in the U.S.
The University of Virginia & Monticello are unsurpassed destinations for anyone wanting to see & appreciate the architectural genius of Jefferson. Just to stroll through Monticello & see many of the interests & innovations that Jefferson held or created is inspiring. One of the stories that I find most interesting about his character came from a slave who was called into Jefferson's private area one day & saw books lying all over the floor. Jefferson was moving back & forth among them. Jefferson was a book collector extraordinaire, acquiring over 6400 volumes. In fact, Jefferson donated his library to Congress to replace the books destroyed by the British when they burned Washington in 1814.

Alvin

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princess garnet
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Post by princess garnet » Sun October 31st, 2010, 6:59 pm

My parents and I went to Williamsburg years ago--I was in early grade school. Busch Gardens isn't too far away either. In high school, I went back again to Busch Gardens on a trip with the French Club for the day.

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Michy
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Post by Michy » Sun October 31st, 2010, 10:17 pm

[quote=""G. Alvin Simons""] In fact, Jefferson donated his library to Congress to replace the books destroyed by the British when they burned Washington in 1814.

Alvin[/quote]

They have a special room for his collection at the Library of Congress - dim lighting, glass shelves, very cool. About 2/3 of his books were destroyed by a fire at the LofC (can't recall when). They have worked diligently ever since to replace them. It's neat how they have them marked with bookmarks -- one color denotes books from Jefferson's original collection, another color denotes books that have replaced those lost in the fire, and they have "false fronts" to mark the place for those books they are still seeking replacements for. You can actually "check out" one of Jefferson's books if you want to! (I didn't). I think you have to wear gloves and a library curator stands over your shoulder.

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