Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Vicksburg National Military Park - Tuesday, September 23

After a beautiful southern style breakfast at our B&B (peppered eggs, cheese grits, biscuit, and fruit) we were off to the first stop of the day, the Vicksburg National Military Park.  Before we left the Anchuca Mansion, we took a tour of the place that started with a film they made a few years ago, narrated by a woman who was actually born in the house.  It's a beautiful place, to be sure, and I could do an entire post on the different types of formal draperies in the place.  I just kept thinking, "I'm so glad I don't have to dust all of this stuff." It must take someone FOREVER to get that all done, there's so much stuff in here.
The ceiling medallions like the one in the center of this picture are original to the house (1830) and are made of marble dust and horse hair.  Amazing artistry.
 One of the main rooms upstairs that they use for a B&B.  Luckily it was free so we could see it.
 Original tea set from the first owners.
 Someone is an English Monarchy collector - all cups and dishes from England, including the current prince William and his wife (the 4th cup over on the middle row).
 An example of the fussy draperies here - each room is different.
We think this might be an early Chinese checkers game. Pretty marbles.

Next we were off to the military park.  First, let me warn you that this is not a little place.  You will need to break this into morning and afternoon, since it took us over 6.5 hours to see the whole thing.  We were yearning for a sandwich at about 2 pm, but decided to just tough it out and plan on an early dinner.  But wow, it's so worth your time!  This one started with a film in the welcome area, and then you are free to drive through the rest of the park at your leisure.  At first we were stopping at each area, but soon it just became too much! There are thousands of monuments to each state that had a part in the siege of Vicksburg, and a stop at each skirmish that took place.
 Lots and lots of cannons and monuments!
 More cannons

 An example of the elaborate monuments you will find in the part.  Most are dedicated to the soldiers from each of the states that fought here, both Union and Confederate.
 Blue plaques are Union, red plaques are Confederate points of where each group either advanced or fell.
 One of the most elaborate monuments...whew!
The national civil war cemetery, where over 17,000 union troops are buried, of which 13,000 are unknown.  The small blocks that are shorter are all unknown soldiers.  This is the saddest thing.  Most were so, so young.
 The restored union gunboat, the USS Cairo, exhibit is near the cemetery.  They pulled this boat up from the Yazoo River in the 1960's and have semi-restored it for display. 
 The Texas monument was the final stop of our day in the park.  I was EXHAUSTED!!!
 After a brief stop back at our digs (to take off my clunky shoes!) we went off in search of an early dinner.  We chose Rusty's Riverfront Grill (so they used to be riverfront, but when the Mississippi changed route, it left this area of the river high and dry).  We started with their famous fried green tomatoes, which were delicious, and then I had the blacked red fish with crab sauce.  Very good.  John had crab cakes, and then a big slice of coconut pie.  Oh, and I had 2 glasses of wine!  That helped me forget my aching feet! ha!
Fried green tomatoes with crab sauce

  I took about 150 pictures today, but that's way too many to share here.  There really was so much to do and see today, we were overwhelmed.  Time for some rest!

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