Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Monday 24 November, 2014

Many of the trees look so lovely when they change colour! It has been a strange season this year...winter chills coming much earlier than normal. The states are due for their third winter storm in the last two weeks. Buffalo New York had over 2 metres  of snow in a few days.

Today we are in Vicksburg, settled by the French in 1719. Many of its citizens were wiped out by Yellow Fever in 1819. 
We stopped at the Old Depot Museum, where they had a video and diorama about the Civil War (siege of Vicksburg) and many model trains, boats and houses. The museum has the worlds largest collection of ship models.

We then walked to the Anchuca (Happy home) Mansion which was an antebellum home. An antebellum home was built before the Civil War...this one in 1819.

We also stopped at the Coca Cola Museum as Vicksburg was where Coco Cola was developed by a man named Pemberton, in his backyard! It was named by the bookkeeper, Robinson, who designed the script. Pemberton died and left the business to Chandler who felt advertising was the key to selling. Coca cola sold at the soda fountain for 5cents a glass. It was first bottled in 1894 in the below machine.

Rob then went to the Old Court House Museum while I went to the doll museum. Was an amazing display of dolls of all years since the 1800's!
The levy built to protect the city has a wonderful series of 32 murals that depict the history of the city. Amazing that there was no graffiti on them nor in any part of the city for that matter. Each mural had a plaque explaining the artwork.
In the afternoon we took the optional tour "On the Front Lines of the Civil War". It was an excellent way to learn about the Civil War. We started with a video and then hopped on busses to tour the National Military Park, a 16 mile road that travels through the 1300 markers and monuments that mark important victories or milestones. We saw the Confederate and Union lines...they were so close together (less than a mile apart). The Civil War was between the Northern and Southert States over the issue of slavery. The South wanted slavery and was ready to form the Southern Union of states, while the Noth wanted to free the slaves. Over 700,000 men died during the 4 year war, a real tragedy. Only the Unionists killed in the Battle were allowed to be buried in the Military Park. 17,000 are buried but only 4,000 were ever identified. The Confederate men were buried in town ... About 28,000 of them. Such a sad loss to the communities.The Battle of Vicksburg, won by the Unionists was key to shaping the country.
This was a view of one area of the battlefield.
Illinois built this monument in memorial of the 36,000 men from this state that fought and died in the Civil War at Vicksburg.
The Cairo was an iron clad gun boat that sunk in 12 minutes but all the men were rescued.
The boat was ready to leave Vicksburg but had to lower the stacks to go under the bridge. Was that amazing to watch!

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