Sunday, October 24, 2010

Capitol Hill Haints

This weekend Dudeboy and some friends had an early Halloween celebration exploring the ghostly stories and history of the Capitol Hill community.

Albert's foot, which is not far from Levy's leg.

How did they get so dirty by playing in water?

"The Richard"

The perfect night for our spooktacular . . .

The wicked witch of the south (end of Louisville).

The Devil Doll

The Explorers Club

"Geronimoooo . . . "

Hopped up on candy!

Zippity do da

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Big South Fork, part 2

A newly documented arch from a lead from Keith. This is a major arch . . . the smallest part of the opening measuring about 50'.

It is located not far from Clarkrange, TN. on private property.

And the arch is significant historically as well, for there are a couple of Native American pictographs on the arch itself.

One was described as a "pot of gold" or "kettle." And then there was this one . . . a local we talked to described it as a "fox," but I think it more resembles a buffalo (the horns and hump).

This is one of my favorite arches in the BSF region . . . Clarkrange Triple. It is located on private property.

The owners have done much to clean the area up. This is a view from one of the smaller openings.

This is an arch Vic and I documented a few years ago. It is a major arch that is located in Wayne County, Kentucky.

It measures almost 70' wide.

The coloration of the rock is amazing.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Big South Fork, part 1

Smokehouse Tunnel . . . see Dudeboy for scale.

On a cliff-side by Smokehouse Tunnel.

Chimney Rock up close.

Dudeboy in the maze of rocks at Chimney Rock. He dubbed this place "Fort High Rock." It was hard to get him to leave the place. The wind was really whipping through there.

Dudeboy is actually sitting in a small undocumented arch. The big rock looming in the background is part of Chimney Rock.

This is Greenwood Cliff Tunnel. We first documented this feature several years ago.

Dudeboy at an undocumented arch near Bandy Creek.

Dudeboy is sticking his head though a hole in the lintel of the arch.

The arch is located part-way up the cliffside (Dudeboy is standing in front of it).

Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Atlanta Campaign . . . Part 2

The view from our campsite at Stone Mountain . . .

We camped at Stone Mountain. Our campsite gave us a great view of the mountain just across the lake. We got a good fire blazing. The next morning when we awoke, we rode up the sky ride to Stone Mountain. Once we were at the top, the views were super! You could see Atlanta off in the distance. On the ride you could get a clear view of the sculpture on the mountainside.

A monument to traitors . . . and a site for Klan rallies.

Dudeboy thought the the giant granite dome that makes up Stone Mountain resembled the moon . . . well, here are the craters.

Downtown Atlanta off in the distance.

The Battle for Atlanta Cyclorama.

Then we went to the Atlanta Cyclorama which we were told is the largest oil painting in the world. It’s about the Battle of Atlanta combined with a diorama to make it more realistic. There were seats in the middle of a circular room with the painting on the walls. The seats turned slowly so the audience could view the whole thing. It was originally made to be a campaign poster, but the person who was going to use it as a campaign poster died before it was completed. Then it was a part of a circus. When the circus ran out of money, the animals became Atlanta’s zoo and the painting became the Cyclorama. After the circus, the first diorama was made out of real Georgia soil, and the plants were real. This was one of the things that damaged the painting. Now the ground of the diorama is made out of fiberglass and plastic, and the painting has been restored. At the Cyclorama they had an exhibit about the Civil War, including the Texas which was the train that chased the General. If you don’t know that story click here.

The Atlanta Cyclorama is also home for the steam locomotive Texas . . . which chased down the General.

The General

We saw the actual General at our next stop. It is one of the most famous trains of the Civil War. Andrews’ raid started at Big Shanty (now Kennesaw), which is where the Southern Museum of Civil War and Locomotive History is located. It was one of the best museums because it had trains and the Civil War intertwined. We learned about the railroad in the South. For example, one of the exhibits was about Confederates guarding the railway tracks so the Union wouldn’t sabotage them. We also saw a big exhibit on the foundry located nearby where they made trains. It included unfinished trains from the foundry.

When we got home we watched the silent movie The General starring Buster Keaton. It was a good way to wrap up our Atlanta campaign.

The General was captured just out of Ringgold, Ga. (which was home to us for two years).

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Backyard Bugs . . . Scymnus Lady Beetle

This tiny guy (see last picture) is some kind of Scymnus lady beetle. There are over 270 species in this genus. Apparently, Scymnus was the name of an ancient Greek geographer.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Atlanta Campaign . . . part 1

Author's note: I am not trying to glorify my great-great-great-grandfather, but I am trying to emphasize his importance and that of the 9th KY in the Union army and the Civil War.

On Thursday we started my fall break: Merkin and I went to Atlanta to see the Dali exhibit, but because we're the Kingdom of Fife homeschool we're compelled to do a lot of other stuff. On the way to Atlanta we stopped at Chickamauga Battlefield. We went through the visitor's center. They have one of the best collections of Civil War arms, including Spencer's repeating rifles which we'll talk about later. The first thing we actually did on the battlefield was to stop at the Kentucky monument which had been vandalized along with many other monuments. In the visitor's center there was an exhibit about the vandalism of monuments. That shows you that people today have NO respect for history.

The monument for the state of Kentucky.

After that we passed several other monuments and saw a cabin where the confederate breakthrough was. It reminded Merkin of the short story by Ambrose Bierce, "Chickamauga." Then we went to the Wilder Monument where a small group of men equipped with Spencer repeating rifles held off the much larger Confederate force. The monument looked like a giant chess piece. You could climb up inside it and come out the top. There were several windows and we got great views of the battlefield.

The Wilder Monument.

Rapunzel, Rapunzel . . . let down your hair.

Then we went to Snodgrass Hill which was the very climax of the battle where George H. Thomas earned his name, "The Rock of Chickamauga." His stand here helped save the Union Army. The 9th KY was part of that stand, and we saw the simple monument to the 9th KY, marking their location.

The monument in the foreground marks the location of the 9th Kentucky on Snodgrass Hill.

Our Atlanta campaign continued to the Dali exhibit at the High Museum of Art. It was called "Dalí: The Late Work." Several of the paintings were new to me and several were old favorites. It was really neat to see them in person. It's different to see a painting in a museum instead of a book. Some of my favorites were: "The Skull of Zurbarán," "Santiago El Grande," "Fifty Abstract Paintings Which as Seen from Two Yards Change into Three Lenins Masquerading as Chinese and as Seen from Six Yards Appear as the Head of a Royal Bengal Tiger," and "Portrait of My Dead Brother." I'm really glad I got to see that exhibit because I don't remember the Dali exhibits I saw when I was a lot younger.

There was also a folk art collection that had several works I liked. One of my favorites was "A Friend in Need Is a Friend Indeed" by Henry Church Jr.

Apparently, birds have been targeting Dali . . . everyone's an art critic.