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Richmond Travel Blog

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Old houses at Monument Avenue

My visit at Mount Vernon had taken a lot more time than expected hence my original plan of going down to Williamsburg and have a look around there during the late afternoon did not look all that realistic any more. But I am not really ready to only drive for the rest of the day not doing anything else. Hence I need to find a stop on the way to Williamsburg. And the choice of the day is Richmond.

 

Richmond is present day the capital of Virginia and formerly the capital of the Confederate States of America during the Civil War. Driving into the central part of the city I go down the Monument Avenue.  Along the street there are a lot of monuments of the heroes from the Civil War from a southern perspective.

The capitol from down the steps
This means there are several southern generals like Lee and Stonewall Jackson on the road as well as Jefferson Davis the only president of the Confederate States. One later addition is Arthur Ashe the winner of Wimbledon. Some people have complained he has been introduced because he does not measure up to the old heroes.  Other say the main argument against him being on the road is he is black - oh my oh my.

 

As I go out looking at the beautiful old houses along the road I see how you do campaigning American style. A lady is walking down the street with a list and of names she need to visit to tell them all to go vote for Obama - I can’t help but wonder what the old generals would have thought if they knew a WOMAN would be campaigning for a BLACK candidate on the hero street of Richmond.

 

After a few more stops going down Monument Avenue I get to down town Richmond to visit the state capitol.

Heroes of Virginia, Washington, Jefferson, Mason and Henry
In front of the capitol is a big statue with some of the most famous sons of Virginia. Washington, Jefferson, Mason and Henry.  Some of the early leaders of the country just before and after the American Revolution.  Like all other places in this country there are a lot of squirrels running around on the front lawn. I got no clue what all these squirrels are living off because we don’t have nearly this many at home and this do not really look like a place which is so different to explain the difference.

 

After the visit to the capitol I want to see the old Confederate White House. But it is a bit difficult to get to - it is stocked in between a big hospital which surrounds it and to get there you need to drive through what I thought was a hospital area - which is. And then finally I find it. It is not really big and it looks pretty modest but hey I have been to the white house now I don’t need to look in DC I guess.

 

The last stop in Richmond is down at the Saint John’s Church.

The Confederate White House
I don’t really care much about the church but it is the setting of one of the most important speeches in the history of USA - if not the single most important speech ever held by an American politician. The speech of Patrick Henry at the house of the Virginia House of Burgesses on March 23 1775 was one of the deciding factors convincing the people of Virginia that they should revolt against the British.

 

The speech ended: “Is life so dear, or peace so sweat as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it Almighty God I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me LIBERTY or give me DEATH.” For all of the speech look here.

 

Apparently after hearing the speech people was shouting to arms to arms ready to go to join the fight against the British.

Words of Patrick Henry
Later Henry became the first Governor of Virginia and was one of the strongest supporters of the Bill of Rights. And oh yeah if you are wondering - Patrick Henry did own about 75 slaves.

 

After this it is time to just drive as fast as possible to Williamsburg to be ready to visit tomorrow morning to beat the weekend crowds.

yheleen says:
;) i like the fact that you always have some interesting things to say about every place you visit and you're kind of writing makes the pictures more alive ;) great sharing....
Posted on: Nov 24, 2008
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Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
The capitol from down the steps
The capitol from down the steps
Heroes of Virginia, Washington, Je…
Heroes of Virginia, Washington, J…
The Confederate White House
The Confederate White House
Words of Patrick Henry
Words of Patrick Henry
Arthur Ashe
Arthur Ashe
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Jefferson Davis monument
Jefferson Davis monument
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Old houses at Monument Avenue
Lee monument
Lee monument
Closer look at Lee monument
Closer look at Lee monument
Lee monument
Lee monument
The governors mansion Virginia
The governors mansion Virginia
The capitol building Virginia
The capitol building Virginia
House opposing the capitol
House opposing the capitol
Richmond
photo by: tj1777