Monday, October 31, 2016

Part 4 Shenandoah Valley VA to Gettysburg, PA


Day 4 began in Charlottesville, Virginia. Sorry I couldn't spend more time exploring Charlottesville. The Historic Downtown area looked interesting. I wish I had walked down to Thomas Jefferson's Academical Village at the University of Virginia.

Seeing the Albemarle Court House reminded me of  my Wray/Thurmond research. Some possible relations lived in Albemarle County.
After breakfast we headed for Shenandoah National Park for a scenic drive on the Skyline Drive. This road was mostly constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corp in the 1930's. The road follows the ridge of the Blue Ridge mountains during much of the drive. Unfortunately clouds obstructed our view of the valley below. I thought about my German Shenandoah Valley ancestors on this drive. We did drive near family areas on our way to Skyline Drive. It was particularly exciting seeing the Rockingham County sign. All  of my German ancestors lived in Rockingham County. Originally it was a part of Shenandoah County, before that Dunmore County. The Zirkle family first arrived in the area around 1755, when they first show up in land records. The Roush family first appears in local church records in the 1760s. Not sure when the Roller family first arrived in the Shenandoah Valley? Johannes Roller received a land grant in 1772, so I know he was there then.


Saw the New Market sign leaving Shenandoah National Park. Lewis Zirkle and Mary Magdalene Roush were buried in a New Market Cemetery.  

New Market where the Lewis Zirkle and wife a Mary are buried
Leaving Virginia on the way to Gettysburg Pennsylvania we passed many beautiful farms and cute towns.

We arrived in Gettysburg late in the afternoon. We toured the Gettysburg Civil War National Park Museum. We viewed the Cyclorama painting of Pickets charge. The circular painting comes to life with special effect lighting and sound effects. The painting was painted by a French artist in the 1880s.

After checking into our Gettysburg Hotel I took a tram to the downtown area. Interesting historic town. Lincoln stayed in town at the Willis house before dedicating the Gettysburg Military Cemetery, where delivered his Gettysburg address on November 19, 1863 (in November there is an annual procession commemorating the1863 processional from the town square to the cemetery). The Railway station is still standing where Lincoln's train arrived.


Willis House where Lincoln Stayed


Leaving Virginia behind I now begin thinking about my next visit, when I will concentrate on family locations and genealogy research. My last Virginia ancestor died during the Civil War. Jacob Roller died in Scott County, Virginia in 1862. All of my Virginia family lines ended up in the Midwest. Goodbye to Virginia until next year. Hello Pennsylvania.
Virginia Ancestors' locations. Fairly spread out 


No comments: