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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Summer 2007 was a real ride! My wife killed her Kia Rio in a parking lot flood earlier this summer. Although, financially this was a hit we could ill afford I am not that sad to see that POS go as I had real fear someone I loved would die in the car if there was a wreck.

GRADUATION JUNE 2007. END OF ONE ACADEMIC YEAR. BEGINING OF A NEW ACADEMIC YEAR. THE CLASS OF 2007 WAS MEMORABLE AND I WILL MISS THEM.





After fighting much of the summer with the insurance company we finally came to an agreement on a pay-off but these cars do not retain their value so we didn't get much. We are looking for a cheap used Mini-Van to that we can afford with the pittance we got.

I went back and forth to Central Florida several times on family business and was able to hit a bunch of antique stores and gun shops. I drew a blank on guns but was able to add about 50 more pipes to my collection.

My friend, Alan, tipped me off to an estate collection of guns being sold off locally and we were able to relive the estate of several pieces that may come in handy as trading fodder later on. I ended up with a Savage 69RXL riot shotgun circa 1986, a Franchi 48AL circa 1968, a Ruger 10/22 circa 1985, 600 rounds of .30 US carbine ammo, a number of old firearms related books. Later, I was able to purchase, from Alan two shotguns he had picked up from this same estate sale; a Mossberg 5500 and a Mossberg 500, that I intend to give away to friends.

In early August we headed out to vacation before I had to report back to school. We rented a car and headed up into the Appalachians. My wife wanted to do some of the Bourbon tour and I wanted to see the Patton museum again so we headed to Kentucky. Maker's Mark was, as usual, fantastic. As is my usual habit I wanted to pick up a few pieces at the Fenton Art Glass Annual tent sale in West Virginia. The place had a weird feeling to it, very depressive. We picked up more than we usually buy because I noticed they were selling off the "samples" that are used by their quality control folks. I took two home but was puzzled by why they would sell such pieces. I later fond out that Fenton is closing after 102 years of production. To say I am angry and depressed about this news is putting it mild. There are rumors they might move production overseas or just fade away. I am not sure which would be worse.

OUTSIDE THE PATTON MUSEUM


INSIDE PATTON MUSEUM. THIS SHOWS A SECTIONED GERMAN TIGER II TANK. THIS IS ONE OF TWO IN THE WORLD AND THE ONLY ONE OUTSIDE OF EUROPE



THE COLT SINGLE ACTION ARMY TYPE P OWNED AND CARRIED BY GENERAL GEORGE S. PATTON FROM THE MEXICAN BORDER CAMPAIGN OF 1916 UNTIL HIS DEATH IN DECEMBER 1945


ON THE FENTON GLASS COMPANY FACTORY FLOOR. THE CRAFTSMEN WORKING MOLTEN GLASS. DAYS AFTER THESE PHOTOS WERE TAKEN ALL THESE MEN WERE OUT OF WORK.




THE LAST FENTON TENT SALE


My daughter, oddly, had said over and over that she wanted to return to Gettysburg to walk the battlefield. We headed that way but were able to hit the Fiesta Ware and Hall China factory seconds stores where we packed the rented car to the gills with their products. We lost a lot of our dishes in Wilma and have been eating off the last of them for some time. It is nice to have new dishes.

A CRAPPY PHOTO OF MYSELF TAKEN BY MY DAUGHTER IN THE FIESTA WARE OUTLET ROOM. HEY SHE IS LEARNING PHOTOGRAPHY!


DAMNED TWO-LANE OPEN DECK SUSPENSION BRIDGE ACROSS THE OHIO RIVER IN EAST LIVERPOOL, OHIO. SCARY AS ALL HELL AND TO MAKE MATTERS WORSE THIS WAS TAKEN THE DAY AFTER THE BRIDGE COLLAPSE IN MINNESOTA.


As we arrived at our hotel, in Chambersburg, PA, we noticed how dry and hot it was. Still, not anything like South Florida heat. We walked the battlefield for a few days focusing our walks on areas I had not really explored well before like The Angle and Devil's Den. Later, my wife and daughter went horse back riding out onto the battleground while I occupied myself walking from the Virginia Monument over to the High Water Mark. The walk back was weird and strangely emotional for me. I came back with tears in my eyes. That is a first for me.

THE TRUE MEANING OF CLASSROOMS WITHOUT WALLS. HERE MY DAUGHTER IS EXPLAINING TO ME THE WHAT HAPPENED IN THIS AREA. SHE IS SAYING TO ME,"..YOU ARE LOOKING AT THE STONE WALL AND ARE STANDING ON THE HIGH-WATER-MARK OF THE CONFEDERACY..." I TAUGHT HER THIS THE SUMMER OF 2006 WHEN WE WERE LAST THERE. SHE WAS 8 AT THE TIME SHE WAS TAUGHT THIS. SHE RETAINED IT ALL YEAR AND WAS ABLE TO EXPLAIN JUST WHAT HAPPENED AT THIS SPOT TO ME, IN DETAIL, A YEAR LATER. WHEN DADDY IS A HISTORIAN I GUESS SOME THINGS SINK IN!



TWENTIETH MAINE REGIMENTAL MONUMENT ON LITTLE ROUND TOP. THE UNION WAS SAVED RIGHT HERE AT THIS SPOT. WE OWE A LOT TO THESE MEN. THE FLAG WAS PLACED BY MY DAUGHTER.


DEVILS DEN


CURRENT BATTLEFIELD SCENES OF SERENITY WERE ONCE DRENCHED IN THE BLOOD AND HORROR. MANY HUNDREDS OF GOOD MEN SACRIFICED THEIR LIVES IN AND AROUND THIS BARN FOR SOUTHERN RIGHTS AND FOR THE UNION.


WE PICNICKED ON THE BATTLEFIELD. THIS IS VERY CLOSE TO THE MIDDLE OF THE USA LINE RIGHT NEXT TO WHAT LEE CALLED "THE COPSE OF TREES"


FROM THE CENTER OF THE CSA LINE, WHERE PICKETS MEN HEADED OUT ACROSS THE FIELD TOWARD THE COPSE OF TREES TOWARD THE MIDDLE OF THE USA LINE. THIS SHOWS LITTLE AND BIG ROUND TOPS OBLIQUELY OFF IN THE DISTANCE TOWARD THE RIGHT OF THE USA CENTER.


WALKING ACROSS THE BATTLFIELD FROM THE CSA CENTER TO THE USA CENTER I GOT THE EXTEMELY STRONG URGE TO GET DOWN INTO THE GRASS TO TAKE COVER. THIS WAS TAKEN DURING ONE OF THOSE URGES. LET NO MAN TELL YOU THIS PLACE IS NOT CREEPY. IT IS.


We explored the area around York, Lancaster, Harrisburg, Hershey, Addamstown, etc before heading south to enjoy the Southern Appalachians of TN/NC. All this time I really spied very few guns for sale. I did see a nice French Mle 1892 Lebel revolver for sale north of Knoxville for $200 that I should have taken. I did pick up a nice Danish Madsen bayonet, an M1917 rifle bayonet and a German dress bayonet on this trip with all being found either in Ohio or Pennsylvania.

THE ANGEL WOLFE USED AS THE INSPIRATION FOR HIS BOOK, LOOK HOMEWARD ANGEL. LOCATED OUTSIDE HENDERSONVILLE, NC



HIKING IN GREAT SMOKEY NATIONAL PARK


SOME DAYS THE SMOKIES CAN HAVE AN ALMOST GOTHIC FEELING LIKE SOMETHING OUT OF A MARY SHELLEY NOVEL




WILD BLUEBERRIES IN THE HIGH MOUNTAINS


MINGUS MILL


We swam in rivers, hiked in Great Smokey National Park and generally had a good old time. With almost no time left before we had to report back to school, we drove home, to arrive back in Homestead the Sunday morning before work. I was applying for a 90% grant to go back to grad school and had scheduled in that Monday to do the paperwork....that was also the deadline for the grant paperwork. As we drove up to the house, at 0300 the first thing I noticed was that the lights we had left on were out. I entered, guns drawn to find our power had been cut two weeks before. We have still not gotten an answer why this was done...bills paid, no power issues, etc. Nothing was missing but the refrigerator was leaking a brown fluid that smelled rank. We retreated to the in-laws to catch some sleep in their AC after the 1000 mile drive home that day. The next day I finished my applications for grad school and the grant. We tried to clean the fridge but damn that was an impossibility. Rotting flesh; two weeks old, is a smell that cannot be cleaned off. We ended up pitching the fridge. We looked for a good used one but found none that we would be happy with so we spent what little we had left on a used one at the Sears Outlet Store....$875.

We are now back to work. I am teaching a full academic schedule, as usual, with no planning period and 6 straight classes. My students seem pleasant enough so I cannot complain, but it is still early and the pumpkin still has much shine left on it. We are sweating out another hurricane season and I cannot help but remember that 24 August was the 15th year since Andrew. I could have done without the pain-in-the butt of losing the car and coming home to a house that smelled like a Khymer Rouge death camp but I remind myself of how much worse my luck could have been. I'm just a little less upset and just a little more accepting of what comes my way; good bad or ugly, as I get older.

In general, an interesting summer
 

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That story was great the first time that I read it, But the pictures really add a lot of detail to the story. Thanks for sharing your trip with us.
 

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Michael:

I always enjoy your posts. Nice job again.
 

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That story was great the first time that I read it, But the pictures really add a lot of detail to the story. Thanks for sharing your trip with us.
+1. That was great! I need to go to Civil War/ WNA battlefields someday.

Poot
 

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Somehow, the battles of the Revolution and the Civil War don't seem as real untill you can see and walk the actual locations. Always time and money well spent, especially if you have kids in school.
 

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Looks like a great time! I really need to get to a Civil War battlefield sometime soon. Thanks for sharing your summer with us.
 

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Fantastic trip and great pictures. Thanks for sharing ! :)

I have a relative whose name is listed on the 20th Maine Monument. My wife and I are heading back to Gettsburg at the beginning of next month. It's one of my favorite places ! :D

regards....roger
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for all the compliments. To update that story a little bit. I did get admitted to graduate school. As well, I did receive the US Department of Education Teaching American History Grant. This is a pretty prestigious award as very few are granted. We formed a cohort of 25 teachers earlier this academic year. Classes started and I am back at Florida International University, the public University in Miami.

We are currently down to 17 teachers left in the cohort with only about two months into the three year program. We are studying the political, economic and social preconditions of the US revolution. This is an area that I have been weak in my studies and I am glad for this opportunity to obtain this knowledge. I spend much of my time these days reading 18th century British legislation and colonial American correspondence. I am also finding a new respect and love for the Father's of our country. We owe them so much and they sadly seem to have been lost in the glimmering shadows of the last two centuries. Reading their words and feeling the anger of their spirits upwelling inside of me makes me even more determined than ever to insure their revolution shall not die.
 

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Your trip brought back memmories of my only trip to Gettysburg. The number of monuments there was about 5 per acre! I used to live in Louisville Ky before I moved to Florida. The battlefields were a lot closer up there.
Thanks
dg13
 

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Great read and an excellent journey for the family.

I wish I still had my 245 SE for your family now that you all are Kialess.
If you remember, I got rid of my "baby" three years ago and tried to tempt you into purchasing it so it would go to a good home where it would be loved and cared for.

Instead it went to my brother-in-law....you told me he'd trash it and you were right.

This is what he did to it last month. The photo's show it the day I delivered to him in pristine condition and its present condition. He sent me these photo's without warning me. :mad: He ran right into the back of a truck while merging onto the interstate. In true Volvo fashion no one was hurt and none of the mechanicals were damaged with the exception that it cracked the windshield washer tank. He got more money from his insurance than I charged him three years ago........I think he owes me the balance. ;)

Also, next time you pass through the Bluegrass you've got to let people know. :)
 

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Very interesting , thank you.
 

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Mike I enjoy the heck out of your writing and I Thank God that there are still teachers like you out there! I have spent many years going to Gettysburg and camping and entertaining visitors on Little Roundtop at the behest of the National Park Service. I am proud to say our unit the 2nd US Sharpshooters, Company C has been in existance almost 30 years now and was one of the first invited in Gettysburg, Antitum, and quite a few other parks in this country as invited history enturpretors. We are proud of the education this service gives us as we too learn from talking to visitors. There are quite a few well educated quides in Gettysburg and I always encourage people to avail themselves of this service through the visitors center as it is money well spent! If you ever make that trip again or any others of you out there make the trip let me know and usually we have members up on Little Rountop, Pitsers Woods, or by the Pennsylvania Monument at least once a month. Always stop by the visitors ceter and they can tell where these programs are and how to get there too. Thanks for sharing your vacation with us and I wish you continued success with your studies! Bill
 

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Sounds like a cool trip. I'd love to tour the Patton museum!! I am also sorry to here about the Fenton Glass. We toured their factory one year and my wife collects their items. In fact tonight I purchased a lamp on an auction site just because of this thread when I read they were closing.
 

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Very nice. Thank you for sharing. My dad was a teacher, so every summer we would pack up and go on a road trip to various states (I have been in 46/50), particularly the ones with Civil War sites. Sometimes we would just go to North Carolina when my dad was in summer camp. (Marines, MAS Cherry Point). No matter the state, though, we always learned some history along the way. Those "lessons" have stayed with me to this day.
 

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Civil War

I have family who were in the war between the states,4 brothers ,3 from West Point the fourth from the navel acmd.All killed in the war,being from old Va.they were in the service of C.S.A.
A Unit from Knoxville joined Lee,s Army and fought at Gettsburg and other battles,if i remember there were appox. 5200 who departed here and under 100 came home.
 
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