Monday, July 30, 2012

On Top of Old Smoky . . .

Here are some of the photos Dudeboy took while he was at Camp Quest of the Smoky Mountains located at the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont.

 Rattlesnake along the trail.  Dudeboy also saw a bear.

The rest of the photos were taken after we picked him up from camp.  We went up to Clingmans Dome and then hiked out to Andrews Bald.
 Clingmans Dome

 Clingmans Dome

 Andrews Bald

 Andrews Bald

At the end of the week . . .

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Smoky Mountains

This past weekend Dr. J and I took Dudeboy to Camp Quest at the Smoky Mountains located at the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont.  He has his camera and hopefully he will have a lot to report back on when he returns next weekend.  While we were there, we decided to stay overnight and take a couple of hikes.  Upper Meigs Falls is shown above.  

 The very popular Abrams Falls in the Cades Cove area.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Ed Bearss and Robert Penn Warren

Yesterday, we traveled to Clarksville, Tn. to see Ed Bearss give a talk about the relationship between Grant and Thomas.  Along the way, we stopped by Guthrie, Ky. to see the birthplace of Robert Penn Warren . . . our nation's first poet laureate.

Alas, due to our late start we were unable to tour the inside.  Which is o.k., for Dudeboy and I need to catch up on our reading of Warren, so we can get a better feel for the place.  Also in Guthrie, was one of the neatest castle houses I have ever seen.  As we were taxed for time I did not take photos, but here is a link so you can see this amazing house.  I'll have to find out more about this place before our return trip.

Now all of our collection Ed Bearss books have been signed.  I was beginning to think I would never get to see Bearss talk in person, but this year we have seen him twice!  The man is amazing.  He has an encyclopedic knowledge of the Civil War.  
If you happen to get a chance to see Bearss in person be sure to do so, even if your interest in the Civil War is rudimentary.  I daresay he is one of the best speakers I have encountered.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Sam Davis & Private Doggie Dogg

This afternoon Uncle John joined Dudeboy and me as we traveled south to Smyrna, Tn.  Our first stop was the Sam Davis Home and Museum.  A Nathan Hale of the Confederacy, Sam Davis was hanged as a spy rather than revealing his contact.  Mythology abounds in his story.

"If I had a thousand lives to live, I would give them all rather than betray a friend or the confidence of my informer."

However, the real reason for this trip was a rendezvous with "Private Doggie Dogg" who has retired from reenacting and was looking to unload his gear at a "screaming-hot deal."  So, now Dudeboy is a happy camper with much gear to grow into . . . 1853 3 band Enfield rifle, bayonet and scabbard36 caliber Navy Arms pistol with holster (needs some work), leathers - cap box, cartridge box, belt and shoulder sling, haversacks, fork, knife, plate, mucket, canteen, ground cloths, poncho, brogans, kepis, an Army Of Tennessee Confederate uniform and a Federal uniform with great coat . . . and other stuff I can't think of!    

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Marshmallow Crickets and Gypsum Flowers

Yesterday Dudeboy and I were lucky enough to join several geologists (KGS) on a special 4-hour tour of Mammoth Cave lead by the Research Director of the Mammoth Cave International Center for Science and Learning . . . In other-words, we got to visit a few passages that are not normally open to the public (above photo), and we got a mega-dose of the geology of the cave itself.

 Gypsum flowers . . .

 A "marshmallow cricket" . . . death by fungus.

 A non-marshmallow cave cricket.

 The snowball room.