Thursday, November 29, 2012

Ida M. Tarbell

IdaMTarbellPACrawford County, PA

Marker Text: Noted oil historian, biographer of Lincoln, journalist, lived in this house about six years. She was graduated from the Titusville High School in 1875.

Location: At 324 East Main Street (PA Route 27), Titusville, PA. Erected by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission in 1954.

  "Muckrakers" was the name that Theodore Roosevelt gave journalists of the early part of the 20th century who exposed abuses in American business and government. Ida Tarbell, one of the original muckrakers, was able to help shut down the Standard Oil Company monopoly that had hampered her father's efforts in the oil industry in Pennsylvania. Standard Oil founder John D. Rockefeller, irked by her stinging éxpose, dubbed her "Miss Tarbarrel."

At the time I took the photo in 2009, the Tarbell home was being restored.  Click any photo to enlarge.

  Ida Minerva Tarbell was born in a log cabin on a farm in Erie County, Pennsylvania, on Nov. 5, 1857. Her parents were Franklin S. Tarbell and Esther Ann McCullough Tarbell. When oil was discovered in Pennsylvania, Ida's father became the first manufacturer of wooden oil tanks after oil was discovered not far from this home in Titusville, PA. The Tarbell family first moved to Rouseville, a village on Oil Creek south of Titusville and later to this house in Titusville.

  Ida was still very young when the family moved to Rouseville to take advantage of Pennsylvania's budding oil industry. In school, Ida became fascinated by her science classes. At Titusville conditions were better for the girl, who was sent to good schools and graduated from Titusville High School and later to Allegheny College in Meadville, PA, located west of Titusville in the same county. At Allegheny College she majored in biology, where she received the A. B. degree in 1880, the only woman to graduate in a class of forty and then earned the M. A. degree in 1883.

  After graduation Miss Tarbell taught school for some time at Poland, Ohio, but she was not in her element and found little to challenge her there. She was asked to do some work for The Chautauquan. Eventually she became managing editor of the publication and stayed for eight years.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Civil War/Confederate Cemetery

The Civil War marker in Lewisburg, WV - Greenbrier CountyGreenbrier County, WV

Marker Text: (The Civil War) The Greenbrier area was predominately Southern in its sympathies, and furnished some 3000 men for the army of the Confederacy. It was occupied repeatedly by one or the other of the opposing armies throughout the War.

Confederate Cemetery marker in Lewisburg, WV - Greenbrier County(Reverse side – Confederate Cemetery) On the hill, 400 yards west, in a common grave shaped like a cross, lie unclaimed bodies of ninety-five Confederate soldiers, casualties of the area, including those of the Battle of Droop Mountain and the Battle of Lewisburg.

Location: On U.S. Route 60 (westbound) off of W. Washington St. on Courtney Drive in New River Library Park, Lewisburg, WV, grouped with another marker called “Lewisburg.”  Erected by the West Virginia Historic Commission in 1963.

"The town was filled to overflowing with sick and dying men. Every public building in the place was converted to their service. The pews were taken up in the lecture room of the (Old Stone) church, and its aisles filled with double rows of cots. The Academy, the Masonic Hall, the hotels, offices, and private dwellings were filled to overflowing." - Rose W. Fry

The Civil War/ Confederate Cemtery marker in Library Park, Lewisburg, WV  Confederate General Robert E. Lee, with Wise and Floyd, had been in the Kanawha Valley during 1861. Now in 1862, Federal troops forces held this region in what is now West Virginia, which as rich in salt, a prized commodity during the Civil War. In 1862 the South was anxious to regain the valley, and the North wanted to carry the war across the mountains into central Virginia. Lewisburg, WV was in the middle of these military goals.

Path to entrance to the Confederate Cemetery, Lewisburg, WV

Path to entry to cemetery from the parking lot. Two markers are in front of the fence.  Click any photo to enlarge.

  Early in June, 1861, Confederate General Henry A. Wise passed down the Kanawha Valley and General Floyd was also sent into this region. In September, 1861, Gen. Robert E. Lee with 10,000 men marched down from the northwest through Lewisburg and on to Sewell Mountain to encounter Gen. Rosecrans' force under Gen. Cox, who had command in the Valley. When winter set in, the Union troops withdrew and Gen. Lee's troops also departed. Many of Lee's wounded were nursed in Lewisburg.

  Though armies on both sides passed through Lewisburg throughout the Civil War, on May 23, 1862, the citizens of Lewisburg would not be spared the horrors of war on their doorsteps during and after the Battle of Lewisburg. Lewisburg citizens would pass on for generations stories of the day the battle was fought in the streets of the town.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Hatfield and McCoy Markers on HMdb

Devil Anse Hatfield grave marker in Logan County, WV  I have taken thousands of photographs of historical markers in several states over the years.  I have enough photos to keep me busy posting on my own blog for the next several years.  Therefore, I also contribute photos to the Historical Markers Database, which is a web site dedicated to collecting photos and information about all the historic markers in the United States and other countries using volunteers throughout the U.S.

  Each week their web site highlights a particular historica marker of interest.  This week they highlighted the “Hatfield Cemetery” marker which I contributed photographs as well as posting the Hatfield and McCoy markers on my blog here.  The “Hatfield Cemetery” marker is the second most visited marker viewed on their web site this year with over 14,000 views.  The number of views both on their web site and my blog is due in large part to the History Channel’s series on the feud.  I also contributed all of the markers related to the Hatfield and McCoy feud appearing on the Historical Marker Database so far.

  You can check out the markers, I posted there by following the above link or you can check out my posts by following the links related to categories for “Hatfield and McCoy Feud” on the right of my blog posts.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Jackson's March to Fredericksburg

Jackson's March To Fredericksburg, marker JE-1, Madison Co. VAMadison County, VA
Marker No. JE-1

Marker Text: Stonewall Jackson, on his march from Winchester to Fredericksburg, preceding the battle of Fredericksburg, camped here, November 26, 1862.

Location: At the intersection of Business U.S. Route 29 (North Main Street) and Virginia Route 231 (Old Blue Ridge Turnpike), north of Madison, VA. Erected by the Conservation & Development Commission in 1929.

  On November 24, 1862, 150 years ago, Confederate General Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson's Second corps of about 25,000 men began their march to cross the Blue Ridge Mountains using Fisher's Gap within the bounds of present day Shenandoah National Park on the way to Fredericksburg. By the evening of November 26, Jackson's Army had reached this point north of Madison, VA and about 6.5 miles south of the previous camp location where a previous marker was covered yesterday is located.

Jackson's March To Fredericksburg, marker JE-1, at intersection with Routes 29 & 231, Madison, VA

In photo Route 231 is on the left traveling north and Business Route 29 is on the right looking northbound. Going north on Route 231 would take you to the site of yesterday's marker. Click any photo to enlarge.

  According to sources, it took Jackson's army four days to move over the Blue Ridge Mountains with all their men and equipment. Based on this information, only a part of Jackson's army would have camped here, while other parts of the army was camping at yesterday's location and while still others were camped at a location on the west side of the mountain.

  Once all of the army had moved over the mountains, then their rate of travel to Fredericksburg would have increased considerably. Stonewall Jackson's army arrived at Lee's headquarters on November 29 and his divisions were deployed to prevent Gen. Ambrose Burnside from crossing downstream from Fredericksburg.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

A Camp of Stonewall Jackson's

A Camp of Stonewall Jackson's, Madison County, VA Marker JE-15Madison County, VA
Marker No. JE-15

Marker Text: Just to the north, on the night of November 25, 1862, Stonewall Jackson, with his corps, camped. He was on his way to join Lee at Fredericksburg.

Location:  On Route 670 (Old Blue Ridge Turnpike) just south of County Route 649 (Quaker Run Road), one mile north of Criglersville, VA. Erected by the Conservation & Development Commission in 1930.

“Near the top, as we were marching, there was a rock, and looking back and down the road, we could see six lines of our army; in one place infantry, in another artillery, in another ambulances and wagons. Some seemed to be coming towards us, some going to the right, some to the left, and some going away from us. They were all, however, climbing the winding mountain road, and following us.” - quote by Private John H. Worsham of the 21st Virginia Infantry who later wrote of the armies crossing through Fisher's Gap.

A Camp of Stonewall Jackson's, on Route 670, Madison Co. VA Marker JE-15

Photo taken looking north on Route 670. Mountain that Jackson’s army traveled over is in the background to the right.  Click any photo to enlarge.

  Throughout Virginia, a person will discover almost countless numbers of historical markers related in some way to Confederate General Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson. Many of the markers relate to U.S. Civil War engagements and battles which he and his troops participated. Some markers, like today, simply mention that his army camped at a particular location exactly 150 years ago, while others may simply indicate that his army crossed the road.

  Stonewall Jackson's army had crossed the Blue Ridge Mountains, several times during the Civil War from the Shenandoah Valley to the Piedmont region of Virginia. Crossing the Blue Ridge Mountains, even using the variety of gaps that existed was not easy for an individual, but to do it with a whole army of 25,000 troops and equipment must have been an amazing accomplishment.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Fredericksburg Campaign

Fredericksburg Campaign, Fauquier County, VA Marker C-55Fauquier County, VA
Marker No. C-55

Marker Text: Because he had moved too slowly to attack Gen. Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia, Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan was relieved of his command of the Army of the Potomac by President Abraham Lincoln. McClellan was replaced by Maj. Gen. Ambrose E. Burnside. Determined to act boldly, Burnside reorganized his army and marched it to Fredericksburg, where he planned to strike south around Lee's right flank toward Richmond. Delays in crossing the Rappahannock River enabled Lee to confront Burnside there, then defeat him in a bloody battle on 13 Dec. 1862 - a battle neither general had intended to fight.

Location: At the intersection of U.S. Route 29 (Lee Highway) and County Route 605 (Colonial Road/Dumfries Road), on the west side of Lee Highway north of Warrenton, VA. Grouped with marker C-9 (McClellan's Farewell). Erected by the Department of Historic Resources in 1997.

  Today's marker is grouped with a related marker at the same location called “McClellan's Farewell,” subject of an earlier post this month. As one commander of the Army of the Potomac says farewell to the army, the same location begins the military plans of the new commander, Maj. Gen. Ambrose E. Burnside. Burnside wants to demonstrate to President Abraham Lincoln that he was chosen a capable general, unfortunately as the Battle of Fredericksburg unfolds this would prove false.

Fredericksburg Campaign, on Route 29 north of Warrenton, VA Marker C-55

Photo taken looking north on U.S. Route 29.  Click any photo to enlarge.

  In November 1862, President Abraham Lincoln needed to demonstrate the success of the Union war effort before the public lost confidence in his administration. Confederate armies had been on the move earlier in the fall, invading Kentucky and Maryland, and although each had been turned back, the Confederate armies remained intact and capable of further action. Lincoln urged Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant to advance against the Confederate stronghold of Vicksburg, Mississippi. Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan had stopped Confederate General Robert E. Lee at the Battle of Antietam in Maryland, but had not been able to destroy Lee's army, nor did he pursue Lee back into Virginia aggressively enough for Lincoln.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Daniel Boone

Daniel Boone marker, Kanawha County, WV (Click any photo to enlarge)Kanawha County, WV

Marker Text: Across the Great Kanawha River, lived Daniel Boone, the noted frontiersman, from about 1788 to 1795. He represented Kanawha County in the Virginia Assembly, 1791; was Lieut. Col. of Virginia militia during Indian wars.

Location: On U.S. Route 60, in Daniel Boone Park, east of Charleston, WV. I have photographed the marker twice, the second time the marker had been refurbished and moved further west of its original location in the park. Erected by the West Virginia Department of Culture and History in 1979. This marker is located near the prior post of the “Craik-Patton House” within the same park.

  Another stone memorial marker is located across the park road from the state marker, notice the dates on each marker do not match.

Daniel Boone stone monument in the Daniel Boone ParkDaniel Boone
The Western Virginia
Pioneer 1788-1799
1789 Lt. Col. Of Kanawha Militia
An Organizer of Kanawha County
1791 Delegate to Virginia Assembly
His Cabin was Across the River
from Cave in Cliff Above
He hunted Deer and Made Salt
From a Spring at the Water's Edge
Erected by Kanawha Valley Chapter Daughters of American Revolution

  After you travel around and take photos of a couple of thousand historical markers, you begin to see some trends develop, particularly in regard to specific individuals. One such individual is Daniel Boone. Daniel Boone was one of those bigger than life American frontiersmen and his name appears on many historical markers related to early American history. For example, he is mentioned in yesterdays marker in Kentucky in references to Boone's Road and Boonesborough, KY. and in a prior post called, “Lincoln's Virginia Ancestors.” Daniel Boone traveled a great deal for a person of this period in history and markers throughout several states record those specific moments in his life and our nation.

  Today's marker is simply titled, “Daniel Boone” and I have found about sixty markers with his name in the title of the marker and about 80 or more containing his name in the text. These numbers are probably a conservative estimate and there are most likely many more. In researching some markers I have discovered that Daniel Boone was apart of the underlying story, but he was not mentioned in the marker text itself.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Wilderness Road/Logan’s Station

Wilderness Road, Marker 2177 (Side 1) Stanford, KY (Click any photo to enlarge)Lincoln County, KY
Marker Number 2177

Marker Text: Benjamin Logan left Boone’s Road, April 15, 1775, following trace that became the final segment of “Wilderness Road.” Logan’s path ran along an obscure trail from this area to Harrodsburg, then to Falls of the Ohio. The intersection of the trails became known as Hazel Patch, a junction 8 miles north of present-day London, Ky.

Logan's Station, Marker 2177 (Side 2) Stanford, KY (Click any photo to enlarge)(Reverse side) Logan’s Station established May 1, 1775. Also known as St. Asaph, the fort quickly became an important frontier settlement. In May 1775, residents sent representatives to Boonesborough to assist in the formation of the proprietary government of Transylvania. Logan’s Fort later became the town of Stanford.

Location: On Main Street, U.S. Route 150, at intersection with Lancaster Street at northwest corner of the Lincoln County Courthouse in Stanford, KY. Presented by the Lincoln Co. Historical Soc. and erected by the Kentucky Historical Society, Kentucky Department of Highways in 2005.

Wilderness Road marker in front of the Lincoln Co. Courthouse, Stanford, KY

Marker is at the corner of the location of the Lincoln Co. Courthouse in the background.  Logan Station text on opposite side.  Click any photo to enlarge.

  As you read historical road markers, you come to realize that most communities exist today due to factors related to transportation or defense. The site selection of a community was decided based on an early road, canal, railroad, river or need for defense. Today's marker addresses two of those factors, the Wilderness Road which helped in the settlement of Kentucky and one of the forts for protection along that road.

  With the Appalachian Mountains reaching roughly north and south formed a natural barrier making travel east–west difficult. Settlers from Pennsylvania tended to migrate south along the Great Wagon Road through the Great Appalachian Valley and Shenandoah Valley. Daniel Boone was from Pennsylvania and migrated south with his family along this road.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe marker Q-29, Charlottesville, VA (Click any photo to enlarge)Marker No. Q-29
Albemarle County, VA

Marker Text:  Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849) – writer, poet, and critic – was born in Boston, Mass. Orphaned at a young age, Poe was raised by John and Frances Allan of Richmond. He attended schools in England and Richmond before enrolling at the University of Virginia on 14 Feb. 1826 for one term, living in No. 13 West Range. He took classes in the Ancient and Modern Languages. While at the university, Poe accumulated debts that John Allan refused to pay. Poe left the university and briefly returned to Richmond, before moving to Boston in Mar. 1827. Some of his best-known writings include the Raven, Annabel Lee, and the Tell-Tale Heart. He also edited the Southern Literary Messenger in Richmond from 1835 to 1837. Poe died in Baltimore, Md.

Location: On McCormick Road, next to Poe Alley on the campus of the University of Virginia. Erected by the Department of Historic Resources in 2003.

“Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before.” - Edgar Allan Poe

  When I stop to look and photograph an historical markers, I am always surprised by the things I learn I never knew. While in Charlottesville for a doctor's appointment I drove through the University of Virginia campus and found this marker about Edgar Allan Poe. I had not realized he had lived in Virginia and went to school here for a short time.

Edgar Allan Poe marker Q-29, on campus of University of Virginia.

Poe’s room is in the building to the right of the marker.  Click any photo to enlarge.

  The marker is located in front of the place where Poe resided. Poe's room was Number Thirteen, West Range, and is now used as a memorial to him. I did not realize this at the time or I would have taken a photo of the room as well, but links to photos of the room are below.

  Poe entered as a student on St. Valentine's Day, February 14, 1826 while the second session at the University was already under way. The university had only began to accept students for classes in 1825 though the university was formally founded in 1819. Thomas Jefferson, the university's founder and whose home Monticello overlooked the university was still alive when Poe arrived. Poe mentions in one of his letters to John Allan from the university that the Rotunda was yet unfinished, and that books had just been removed to the library. According to some accounts I had read, Poe did get to meet Jefferson and on one occasion had lunch with Jefferson and other students.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Lewisburg Battle

Lewisburg Battle marker, Greenbrier County, WV (Click any photo to enlarge)Greenbrier County, WV

Marker Text: Confederate troops under Gen. Henry Heth here, May 23, 1862, were repulsed in attack upon division of Col. Geo. Crook's brigade. The Old Stone Church was used as a hospital. In his retreat, Heth burned bridge over Greenbrier at Caldwell.

Location: On U.S. Route 60 (eastbound) at corner of Lee and Washington streets; in front of General Lewis Hotel.

"Of all the battlefields that I have studied, I know of none quite so dramatic as Lewisburg (where the battle was), fought in a mountain town, before breakfast, and combining rifle shooting, artillery fire, infantry charges, and cavalry, all in a sleeping little city whose inhabitants awoke to hear the cannon boom and the rifles speak, and who had no time to do anything in the way of escape until it was all over." Quote by Andrew Price, local historian.

  The Battle of Lewisburg occurred on the same day as the Battle of Front Royal, VA on May 23, 1862. The Battle of Lewisburg, a Union victory, occurred as Union troops under the command of Col. George Crook maneuvered from Western Virginia toward Tennessee in the spring of 1862. Union Gen. John C. Frémont, commander of the Mountain Department for the U.S. Army, planned to concentrate his forces in Monterey, Virginia, and then move southwest until he reached the Virginia & Tennessee Railroad near Christiansburg. There, Frémont was to connect with troops under the command of Union Gen. Jacob D. Cox, but Frémont was detained further north in the Shenandoah Valley due to the Valley Campaign of Confederate Gen. Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson in the spring of 1862.

Lewisburg Battle marker, in front of Gen. Lewis Hotel, (Click any photo to enlarge)

The marker is located in front of the General Lewis Hotel in the background and most of the battle occurred at this location.  Click any photo to enlarge.

  Gen. Cox, unaware that Frémont’s troops would not arrive as planned continued with his plans. Three of Cox's four brigades occupied Princeton, VA (now in West Virginia), a town that had been lost to Confederate forces earlier in May 1862, his fourth brigade, under the command of Col. George Crook, moved to Lewisburg. From his position Crook and his 1,600 men were within supporting distance of the troops located in Princeton, but also unknowingly vulnerable to attack from Confederate Brig. Gen. Henry Heth's 2,200 men.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Searight's Tollhouse

SearightsTollhousePAFayette County, PA

Marker Text: Erected by Pennsylvania, in 1835, to collect tolls on the National Road.
Administered by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.

Location: On the site Searight's Tollhouse on U.S. Route 40 (National Pike) between Lacy Road & Dearth/Canistra Roads, 5 miles Northwest of Uniontown, PA between Uniontown and Brownsville, PA.

SearightsTollhousePA3Toll House
Fayette County, PA

Marker Text: One of the six original toll houses on the Cumberland or National Road. It was built by the State after the road was turned over to it by the U.S. in 1835. The road was completed through this section in 1817-18.

Location: On the U.S. Route 40 (National Road), near Dearth/Canistra Roads, five miles northwest of Uniontown, PA. Erected by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission in 1947.

  Today's post is covers two related markers referring to the same old toll house on the old National Pike or Road. The two markers are only about 150 yards from each other. I wonder why the standard state historical marker is not located at the site of the toll house rather than further south.


State marker is east of the toll house which can be seen in the distance on the left.  Photo taken looking west on U.S. Route 40.  Click any photo to enlarge.

  I have taken photos of three existing toll houses on the old National Road. Each toll house is similar in design, but each made from different materials, one in Maryland (which I posted earlier) is wood frame structure. Another in Petersburg, PA (Addison) is made with hand cut limestone. Today's toll house is build of brick. Older photos of Searight's Tollhouse can be found at this link.

  Searight's Tollhouse received its name from its location near the village of Searights, named for its most prominent citizen, William Searight. Searight was one of the wealthiest men in the region of Fayette County, PA during the first half of the nineteenth century. Searight used his political connections to land the position of Commissioner of the Cumberland Road (National Road) for the state of Pennsylvania in 1842.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Birthplace of Lt. Presley Neville O'Bannon, USMC

FF6BirthplaceLtPresleyNevilleOBannonUSMCVAMarker No. FF-6
Fauquier County, VA

Marker Text: Just north stood the home of William and Ann (Neville) O'Bannon, where their son, Lt. Presley Neville O'Bannon, was born about 1776. O'Bannon, a Marine, was the first American to command U.S. forces on foreign soil and the first to raise the American flag over a fortress in the Old World. His success at the Battle of Derne, Tripoli (present day Libya), on 27 Apr. 1805, ended a four-year war against the Tripoli pirates, and inspired the phrase "to the shores of Tripoli" in the Marine Corps Hymn. He settled in Kentucky about 1807, served in its legislature, and died in 1850.

Location: On County Route F-185 (Grove Lane), One mile west of Marshall, northwest of Interstate 66, Exit 27 on the north side of the road. Erected by the Department of Historic Resources in 1996.

  Today is the 237th Anniversary of the founding of the U.S. Marine Corps. The United States Marine Corps abounds with tradition and history. An important aspect of this history and tradition revolves around Presley Neville O'Bannon. Over two hundred years ago, O'Bannon, a Virginian born in Fauquier County in 1776, became the first American to raise the United States' flag over foreign soil on April 27, 1805 during the Barbary Wars.


Photo taken looking west on Co. Route F-185, just north of exit 27 from Interstate 66.  Click any photo to enlarge.

  Presley Neville O'Bannon was named for his cousin, who had been an American officer in the Revolutionary War, served as the aide-de-camp to General Marquis de Lafayette and married to the daughter of General Daniel Morgan.

  In Tripoli (now Libya) and the Barbary Coast "pirates" had raided shipping in the Mediterranean Seas for years, exacting tribute in return for not attacking ships of a given nation, or seizing ships and sailors and selling them into slavery. Before American Independence, American ships had enjoyed the protection of the British Navy, but after independence, America was forced to pay tribute to avoid pirates, it was determined that it was less costly to pay the tribute then to respond with military action.

Friday, November 9, 2012

William Holmes McGuffey

WilliamHolmesMcGuffeyKYBourbon County, KY
Marker Number 178

Marker Text: Born September 23, 1800 - Died May 4, 1873. Famous for his eclectic readers which introduced thousands of children to the treasures of literature. At this site he taught from 1823 to 1826 before joining the faculty of Miami University.

Location: On High Street, Paris, KY across from the Duncan Tavern. Erected by the Kentucky Department of Highways.

  McGuffey Readers played an important role in American history. Most prominent post-Civil War and turn-of-the-Century American figures credited their initial success in learning to the Readers, which provided a guide to what was occurring in the public school movement and in American culture during the 19th century.


This marker is a little different that it rests next to the wall of a building on High Street, Paris, KY across from Duncan Tavern.  Click any photo to enlarge.

  The McGuffey Readers reflect William H. McGuffey's personal philosophies, as well as his rough and tumble early years as a frontier schoolteacher. McGuffey's Readers were more than mere textbooks, they helped frame the country's morals and tastes, and shaped the American character. They approached learning by using the natural curiosity of children; emphasized work and an independent spirit; encouraged an allegiance to country, and an understanding of the importance of religious values. The Readers were filled with stories of strength, character, goodness and truth. The books presented a variety of contrasting viewpoints on many issues and topics, and drew moral conclusions about lying, stealing, cheating, poverty, teasing, alcohol, overeating, skipping school and foul language. The books taught children to seek an education and continue to learn throughout their lives.

  The original author of the Readers, which would continue to carry his name during later revisions even after his death, William Holmes McGuffey, was born September 23, 1800, near Claysville, Pennsylvania. His parents then moved to Youngstown, Ohio with in 1802. McGuffey's family had emigrated to America from Scotland in 1774, and brought with them strong Presbyterian-Calvinist opinions and a belief in education. Educating the young mind and preaching the gospel were McGuffey's passions. He had a remarkable ability to memorize, and could commit to memory entire books of the Bible.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

McClellan's Farewell

C9McClellansFarewellVAMarker No. C-9
Fauquier County, VA

Marker Text: After President Abraham Lincoln relieved Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan of command of the Army of the Potomac on 7 Nov. 1862, the general composed a farewell order. It was read to the army by divisions on 10 Nov. when the new commander, Maj. Gen. Ambrose E. Burnside, held a grand review of the army about half a mile north of here. Both Burnside and McClellan attended, and the three-mile-long line of soldiers cheered McClellan heartily, many weeping. This closed McClellan's military career. He returned home to Trenton, N.J., and ran unsuccessfully against Lincoln on the Democratic Party ticket in 1864.

Location: At the intersection of U.S. Route 29 (Lee Highway) and County Route 605 (Colonial Road/Dumfries Road), on the west side of Lee Highway north of Warrenton, VA. Grouped with marker C-55 (Fredericksburg Campaign). Erected by the Department of Historic Resources in 1997.

  Yesterday's marker told the story about Rectortown, where General George B. McClellan received the orders that he was being replaced as the commander of the Army of the Potomac. Because Gen. McClellan was essentially the “father” of the Army of the Potomac, relieving him of duty was not a simple affair. He stayed on several days with the Army before finally heading home. One can trace the activities through the historical markers in Fauquier County, VA.


Photo taken looking north on U.S. Route 29.  McClellan gave his farewell address about 1/2 mile north of the marker and troops lined this road into Warrenton, VA.

  As the historian James McPherson noted, “Nothing in McClellan’s tenure of command became him like the leaving of it.” Rejecting calls that he resist the order and march instead on Washington, McClellan urged the army to support Burnside, as one contemporary described as having “ten times as much heart as he has head”.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

McClellan Relieved From Command

FF8McClellanRelievedFromCommandVA1Marker No. FF-8
Fauquier County, VA

Marker Text: At Rectortown, four miles north, General George B. McClellan received the order relieving him from command of the Army of the Potomac, November 7, 1862. As Burnside, his successor, was present, McClellan immediately turned over the command to him.

Location: On Virginia Route 55 (East Main Street – John Marshall Highway) in Marshall at the intersection with Virginia Route 710 (Rectortown Road) in the lawn next to a drive-in bank. Erected by the Virginia Conservation Commission in 1942.


Photo taken looking west on Route 55 in Marshall, VA. Click any photo to enlarge.

  I have not posted for a couple months due to other responsibilities and projects needing my attention. Being in the middle of the 150th Anniversary of many U.S. Civil War events and battles, I naturally have hundreds of historical marker related to the Civil War. With other projects I have been doing and the number of markers I could have posted, I discovered I was not enjoying myself and I photograph markers and post them here because I enjoyed it. So I needed a break.

  Today's post marker tells the story of Union General George B. McClellan being relieved of his command over the Army of the Potomac. On Oct. 26, 1862, almost six weeks after Confederate General Lee had retreated from Antietam, General McClellan ordered the Army of the Potomac to cross into Northern Virginia, a process that took nine days. Abraham Lincoln was not pleased with General McClellan following the Battle of Antietam when he failed to pursue General Lee's Confederate Army as it returned to Virginia. McClellan had yet to do anything to dispel Lincoln’s sense that he was unwilling to take the fight to the enemy.