Monday, November 28, 2022

Today we got to shop for the fun stuff!

What are your gas prices?

We want to thank Lane Southern Orchard in Fort Valley, GA for being our Harvest Host tonight. Before darkness came there were 3 fifth-wheels and a van joining us. We have repeated stays at only two Harvest Hosts, one being at a winery in Hershey PA and the other here at Lane Southern Orchard.

Not something you want to spend your money on that's for sure! Our current toilet has a built-in water valve that just won't quit leaking. Pat has tried everything and since the valve can't be replaced this was the next step. It's nice to belong to the Thor Diesel Group and the Palazzo group on Facebook because you can get a lot of help. In this case most with our problem ended up giving up and buying a new one too.

We left Brunswick today on a trip to the Atlanta area. A nice drive with some southern sites.

Cotton fields

We missed seeing the trees change this year,  or did we? As we left Brunswick we saw a few pretty trees. Interestingly enough,  considering we were going mostly west and not north, that by the time we got to Lanes Southern Orchard the trees were bare. Maybe different kinds of trees or the pretty ones were that color all year?

Logging trucks

The pecan trees near Fort Valley, GA were bare.

A lot of people were out in the rockers this afternoon enjoying peach shakes, peach cobbler (my choice), fried peach pies (Pat's choice), etc. They have other fruits and pecans too but peaches are the big one.
Where are the Piepers now? Fort Valley, GA

Saturday, November 26, 2022

"Somehow my soul seems suddenly free, From the weighing of fate and the sad discussion of sin, By the length and the breadth and the sweep of the marshes of Glynn." -- Sidney Lanier, "The Marshes of Glynn"

This model of the Liberty Ship was located in Memorial Park in Brunswick, Georgia.

All 2,779 Liberty Ships built between 1941 and 1945 at 18 shipyards were identical and were both cargo and troop carriers in WWII. The J. A. Jones Construction Co. operated one of the plants on the waterfront in Brunswick. Between 1943 and 1945, with a workforce of 16,000 men and women, they produced up to 99 of these steel vessels (usually 4 per month), 477' long and weighing 3,500 tons, for the Merchant Marines.

I found two possible explanations for their name. A sign at the WWII Memorial in Memorial Park in Brunswick said the reputation of the ships in keeping vital supply lines open earned them the name Liberty Ships. The National Park Website said the first ship built on Sept. 27, 1941 was named after Patrick Henry, the Revoltutionary War Patriot who had famously declared, "Give me liberty, or give me death," and that's how they became known as Liberty Ships.

It seemed odd that the scale model of the ship was across town at the WWII memorial.

Liberty Ship Park was located between the Sindney Lanier Bridge and the former Brunswick shipyard. 

The Sidney Lanier Bridge in Brunswick was opened in 2003, replacing a bridge of the same name built in 1956. Georgia's tallest cable stayed bridge stretches 7,779 feet across the Brunswick river and is 480' at its highest point. The previous Bridge, of the same name, was a vertical-lift bridge which had been struck by a ship in 1972 and again in 1987. In the 1972 collision several cars fell into the water killing 10 people. 

Both bridges were named for the Georgian poet, Sidney Lanier, who wrote "The Marshes of Glynn," about the beautiful salt marshes in Coastal Georgia. "The Marshes of Glynn" by Sidney Lanier

The Glynn County board said that 18 people have committed suicide on the bridge since 2003. We noticed suicide prevention hotline numbers posted on the bridge, and the board said it is considering other action to help with this problem. 

The original version of the Longest Yard was filmed on the first bridge. The raising of the lift span was used to help Burt Reynolds escape the police. 

A mosaic located in Liberty Park.

The Sidney Lanier Bridge, with a small section on the right from the original bridge gave a great view of the bridge and river.

The former Brunswick Shipyards

We thought these nearby buildings may have been part of the shipyards?
Where are the Piepers now? Brunswick, GA

Thursday, November 24, 2022

Well I'm not a pinball wizard but I had SO MUCH FUN!

A quiet Thanksgiving for us in Georgia, and yes, it was shorts weather. We hope you had a great day!

I felt like a kid in a candy store Wednesday, I didn't know where to go next! $10 let you play for an hour at the Pinball Palace. The games required no coins or tokens, you could play as many as you wanted in that hour. For our long wait in line he gave us 2 hours. Wrist bands were colored and had your end time on them but I have no idea how they kept track. With school out it was pretty busy. Two large rooms and several smaller rooms were FILLED WITH PINBALL MACHINES. One small room had video games. I can't thank Pat enough for going with me because I know it wasn't his thing. I could have stayed all day but thinking of Pat we left after an hour and a half.

I played a lot of different games but my favorites were Star Trek, Roller Coaster, and Pirates of the Carribean.

Made 2002, 2,500 produced

Many of the games gave the year they were made and/or how many of the games were produced.  Magnetron was made in 1974. 

For my 50th birthday I recieved a 1975 Gottlieb Spin Out, my pride and joy. I played it a lot.

Visitors to the Pinball Palace were from all over the world.

One day we stopped for a short nature walk in Brunswick.

A sugarberry tree characterized by its "warty" bark.

Marsh grass

Eastern Red Cedar

Once again a view of the St. Simons Island Lighthouse.

Looking out at the marsh far out to the left is St. Simons Island and to the right Jekyll Island.

Haven't seen a Prickly Pear for a while.

A nesting platform for Osprey, no takers though.

Cabbage Palm

We concluded Thanksgiving with a game of Trekking The National Parks. I actually won, but barely.
Where are the Piepers now? Brunswick, GA

Wednesday, November 23, 2022

"You may choose to look the other way but you can never say again that you did not know." -- William Willberforce, British politician, philanthropist, and leader of the movement to abolish slave trade

Monday morning started out so beautiful. By noon it was near 60° with a projected high of 64° and SUNNY! By mid-afternoon the sun was gone, the wind had picked up, and it was feeling colder.  

We got a late start but at least we got a start. Pat found a gas station restaurant that had good reviews. I had eaten breakfast late so he picked the dish and I had a little of his and I ordered some hushpuppies. It was good.

Next stop was Fort George Historic area, closed Mondays; Sanibel Island, closed Mondays; Hof-Wyl-Broadfield Plantation, closed Mondays; Butler Plantation, apparently just plain closed, but it wasn't gated and we could at least see the plantation.

The former Butler Island Rice Plantation was located on the Altamaha River. It was originally owned by Major Pierce Butler who at one point owned 505 slaves. Tragicly, in 1859, it was known for the largest slave auction ever recorded in U.S. history, over 430 slaves including men, women, and children were auctioned off to pay debts. It was known as the Weeping Time for the grief and sorrow of the many families torn apart. It was farmed for other crops until the 1940's. 

In recent years, vacant and headed towards becoming a distillery, a local group stepped up to save it and restore the house into a museum. While that effort seems to have been somewhat successful there appears to be a divide with the state and the house is currently closed to the public. 

Rice Mill Chimneys. Like these, most are square.

The current house was built in 1927 by Col. T. L. Huston, co-owner of the  N. Y. Yankees.

Tuesday was basicly a repeat of Monday, except we met with success. Hofwyl-Broadfield Plantation State Historical Site was open. We had watched the video and almost decided to forgo this stop. So glad we didn't. We had 50 minutes to kill before our 11:00 tour of the inside of the house. We decided to skip the movie we had already seen and walked around the plantation.

Once a thriving rice plantation on the Altamaha River, the Howyl-Broadfield plantation was purchased in 1806 by William Brailsforth. The land was passed down to further generations. Ophelia Dent, a great-great granddaughter of William, and the last descendent, died in 1973. She willed the estate to the state with two conditions, that it remain exactly as it was, the house and it's furnishings that were owned by the family for 5 generations, and no trailer parks.

Rice was produced steadily until the Civil War. It included over 7,300 acres and 357 slaves at that time. George Dent (Ophelia's grandfather) and her 15 year old uncle James left to serve in the Confederate Army while the remaining family moved to a refugee settlement nearby for safety. After the Civil War they continued to grow rice but large sections of the estate were sold to pay taxes. With several weather events and slaves having been freed, rice plantations suffered. James Dent took over management of the plantation in the 1880's but their wealth was gone. Rice continued to be the crop until 1913 when James died. His son Gratz established a dairy operation with his two sisters, Miriam and Ophelia. They raised the cows, milked them, bottled and delivered the milk. Gratz was the only one of the three to marry and none had any children. When they ceased operating the dairy in 1942 the plantation was out of debt.

The original plantation house that burned in 1858.

Ophelia and Miriam loved Live Oaks.

Rice mill ruins

Marsh area where rice was grown.

There was a path into the wet marsh but this sign was enough to convince me to go no further. 

Below is a close-up of the Spanish moss that is most often found on Live Oaks and Bald Cypress, both of which provide the nutrients it needs. Given the right conditions it will grow just about anywhere. It isn't really moss but a flowering plant related to pineapples. Basicly, it just needs a place to hang. It's not parasitic and does not harm the trees. At one time it was harvested and ginned commercially for a variety of uses.  

This was the "overseers house" built in 1851 and became the plantation house after the 1858 fire. The last room on the right of the house was the original main kitchen. The room in front of that was the smaller summer kitchen. Both were kept away from the main part of the house to prevent fires from spreading.

1970 Olds Cutlass, Ophelias last car

This Sago Palm dates to the 1870s or 1880s.

Slave's commissary 

This is an audio of the Gullah-Guchie Ring Shout, a religious ritual. The small building on the right is the quarters of the house slaves.

Milking barn on the left, bottling house on the right.

Silo foundation used during the dairy years

We had to ask about the trailers on the property since Ophelia didn't want any trailer parks, but they are basicly work-campers.

Our guide Mark gave us a great, hour-long tour. This was the parlor.

We all had a good laugh here. We weren't suppose to touch anything of course, but not so the tour guides. Mark picked up many things,  including a partial bottle of wine, to show us that it was original to the house and part of the label fell off. Note to self: contact Georgia Historical Society and let them know NO ONE should be touching artifacts. 

Ophelia had her bedroom on the first floor.

Confederate Army hat

In the 1930's one of the 4 upstairs bedrooms was turned into a bathroom and a small bedroom used as an infirmary.

The sisters were fond of dogs and had lots of reading material on them. Literature related, they were good friends with Margaret Mitchell, author of Gone With the Wind.

A writing desk

A small trundle bed for a slave was kept in the master bedroom for times when someone was ill and might need assistance during the night.

The bed posts were decorated with rice plant designs.

The "modern" kitchen. 

Where are the Piepers now? Brunswick, Ga