Friday, August 21, 2009

Virginia Scenic Highway Five


George and I celebrated our wedding anniversary in June of 2007 by taking a nine day trip through Tennessee, North Carolina and Virginia. We drove both going and coming on the Blue Ridge Parkway. During the nine days, we took in 11 new waterfalls, visited Williamsburg, Jamestown, Yorktown, Petersburg, Appomattox Courthouse, Charlottesville and Lexington. We experienced history first-hand. It was an awesome trip!!!! Today I want to share the part of our trip on Virginia Scenic Highway Five.

When we left Jamestown, we headed toward Petersburg driving along the James River on Scenic Highway 5. There are many plantations located on that route--so we want to go back sometime and visit more of them. On this day we visited the Westover Episcopal Church and the Shirley Plantation. This was Robert E. Lee’s mother’s childhood home. His mother was Ann Hill Carter and his father was “Lighthorse Harry” Lee.

The picture above is Westover Parish. Westover Parish was established about 1613. They moved to this location about 1730. Below are more pictures.




After the Civil War, this church was restored in 1867--and still is an active parish. George is standing at the front door.




The inside is so gorgeous. Several Presidents have worshipped here. I love visiting old churches out in the country. There was nobody around --yet everything was open.




Being a music person, I was so fascinated with the organ. GORGEOUS!




Outside was a beautiful and BIG Magnolia tree. I wanted to take this TREE home.. Don’t think there was room in Mrs. P!!!!??? ha




The Shirley Plantation is America’s OLDEST Plantation (1613).




The present mansion was completed in 1738 and is largely in its original state. Ann Hill Carter, mother of Robert E. Lee, was born and raised at Shirley.





Looking at Shirley from the ‘river side’; It is located on the banks of the James River. The entire drive along the St. James River was gorgeous. There were several plantations similar to this one, along that route.





In Colonial times, the James River was the primary means of transportation.





The grounds at Shirley were GORGEOUS. There are 800 acres, and 4 superb outbuildings.





This big willow oak tree is over 300 yrs. old!




Although we loved seeing the outside, being inside Shirley was even more incredible. Pictures were not allowed inside---so you'll just have to visualize it!!!

It was a wonderful day on that vacation, and if you ever get to eastern Virginia, be sure and check out the plantations along Virginia Scenic Highway Five.

Hugs,

51 comments:

Kirigalpoththa said...

Very nice little church!

Kamana said...

very nice! i love that i am able to see parts of your country through your lovely blog.

Mildred said...

We loved seeing the Shirley Plantation with my parents years ago. The scenery around there is so pretty. Thanks for sharing about the church too.

Your EG Tour Guide said...

Nice to see all that land open for the public to enjoy. The plantation goes way, way back for our side of the world, doesn't it. 1613! WOW!

Small City Scenes said...

shots. Love the Church and the grounds of the Plantation. 300 yr. old tree. Neat.
The west coast is so young compared to the east. No buildings from the 16 or 17 hundreds here. MB

Arkansas Patti said...

Ah, the grand life of the elite. And to think that tree saw it all. Loved the views.
Thanks for the tour.

T said...

What a lovely trip!

I love magnolias.....my mom has a HUGE one in her yard. I tried to get a picture of it, but didn't have my wide angle lens - and the regular one just didn't do it justice!

marmee said...

what a lovely trip to celebrate your special day. loved seeing the old church outside and in. you look like a little girl sitting on that organ...so excited. i love seeing old churches and their cemetaries. so much history.
love your tribute post about your big brother...i am happy you have had each other so many years.

Jamie and Randy said...

I declare you two travel the most of anyone I’ve ever seen!--Randy

susan said...

Shirley I "rambled" over here from Elaine's blog and am so glad I did! I love sharing your trip and pictures! Now, if you could just share with me how you get a husband to leisurely drive and sight see :)! I love the church's "new" location! Enjoyed my visit!

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Betsy: Neat walk back through time with great photos.

Beth said...

What a wonderful anniversary trip, Betsy! I am in awe of those magnificent old trees. I think I'd make the trip to Shirley Plantation just to see those! Thanks for the tour of Scenic Highway Five.

Snap said...

Betsy, you and George take wonderful trips! I love getting in the car and just *going* ... see where we end up. Haven't done that in a long time. Maybe along Virginia Scenic Highway Five!

Busy Bee Suz said...

This looks like my kind of driving trip. I love that you actually remember so many facts about the places you have visited. ;)

Deb Murphree/Alabama Politics said...

Hey Betsy, I thought I posted this earlier, but I didn't see it show up...I said, "next time you go to Virginia, take me!"...also..we should meet in Big Stone Gap, next year, if you happen to go that way. I always try to go back and visit my biological mother in VA, and visit BSG also. Let me know :)

Susie said...

Betsy I bet that was a wonderful trip. Sounds like you guys had a great time. I enjoy hearing about past history.

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Harriet said...

You have wonderful pictures to remember you trip. I love the Magnolia!!!

Robin's New Song said...

We camped along the James river years ago, but never got to see some of these sights. What wonderful history we have. So glad that you take the time to share it with us!

Hugs :)
Robin

SmilingSally said...

My new home location is loaded with Southern Magnolia trees. They're planted in front yards! I shudder to think of the day those trees will have to be remove because they've grown so much. Yes, they are spectacular, but they grow up BIG!

Thoughtfully blended hearts said...

I enjoyed your tour and loved that old church...No modern architecture could ever live up to something like that...

Becky
Living and loving an intense life

Diane said...

That is one HUGE tree!

Connie said...

You and George travel to some really neat places. Love the pics!!

Kay said...

I have always wanted to visit this part of our beautiful country. I have never evern been across the Mississippi. The farthest I've every been from California was to Arkansas.

Kay

Becca's Dirt said...

I love visiting places like that with so much history. I always imagine what it must have been like during those days - the women dressed elegantly waiting for the coming out parties to begin.

By the way I am planning my trip to Serenity Falls. Can't wait.

Adrienne in Ohio said...

Thanks for the tour, Betsy. I'll have to put that on my list of places to visit if I ever get over that way again. That willow oak tree is amazing!

Roses and Lilacs said...

Good morning Betsy. I really enjoyed your post. I would love to visit the old plantations in that area. I've researched my genealogy for years and someday home to visit the sites where my ancestors settled. My Woodson ancestors settled along the James at the Flowerdew Hundred settlement.

Beautiful old church.
Marnie

Betty said...

You two are such a cute couple and you are enjoying life I think it is great I love your blog. When I lived in NC I didn't get to see much. Now I can see it in your blog. Thank you. I hope I get some really good pictures on my sail today.
Hugs Betty

Ebie said...

Beautiful and romantic memories in your photographs!

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

This certainly looks lovely.I can imagine how the mansion looked inside.In years past homes were furnished and decorated in a more elaborate style.
Blessings,Ruth

Tricia said...

Beautiful photos & great historical information!

God bless you & George!

Have a wonderful weekend

Shelley said...

These were very nice photos and I'm glad you shared the history. I would've loved to have seen the inside of that Shirley house - wow!
Do you have any special trips planned this fall?
Hugs,
Shelley

Carol @ TheWritersPorch said...

Betsy, what a wonderful tour and history lesson to boot!! Thank you!
xoxo :)

Leedra said...

It is so nice to travel the country. It is the best way to learn the history of our great country. Jimmy and I don't travel as much as we used to.

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Joy said...

Oh I want to go all these places. That church is beautiful.

Joy

Tina said...

So many vacations...so many wonderful pictures..Betsy. This trip looked like it was a lot of fun!!

mountain.mama said...

Wow, I lived in Charlottesville Virginia for 6 years and never visited the plantations. Oh to be young and stupid again!

The Incredible Woody said...

Vol Fan and I took a very similar trip several years ago - even taking Highway 5! It was wonderful. I could spend weeks exploring that area of the country!

PS - Were you in Tullahoma today? I saw someone in a Prius that looked very much like you:)

Sunny said...

So interesting and pretty. Some of the trees are amazing! It's always fun to read of your travels.
Sunny :)

Cicero Sings said...

Beautiful spot ... loved the pictures and the commentary.

Daisy said...

What fun to see all those historic sites, Betsy. I love the church and the big old trees too!

Diane AZ said...

Wow, super trip along Virginia Scenic Highway Five. The church and organ are beautiful. Interesting history at Shirley Plantation sure goes way back and I love the old trees!

Cheryl /Ashton said...

I so enjoyed the lovely scenery and places you visited on your anniversary trip. My husband was stationed in VA and said it was a nice place to live. I was amazed by the 300 year old tree!

Robert V. Sobczak said...

Looks like you hit the weather perfect ... (or do you take the sun with you ???) Great photos and adventure as usual, Betsy.

Patty said...

Oh Besty I wish I had known you were in this area, I would have loved to meet you. I am only a few minutes from Jamestown.
I have been to the church and to Shirley and love going there. Did you get a chance to go to Berkley Plantation? It is even more beautiful if you can believe that.
I was there a few weeks ago and keep promising to do a post on it (I will soon).
Anyway I am glad you had a good time. Next time you come to the Williamsburg area pleae email me ahead..
Hugs

flyingstars said...

beautifully captured shots....that was a lovely tour...wishing you & your partner all the very best in your life!

Judy AKA Sunny said...

So beautiful and peaceful :)

Mary said...

Sounds like a great trip. I don't tend to absorb the details as I visit historic places, but I absorb it visually. I like seeing all kinds of stuff. That church is great and the big old trees.

Marge said...

What lovely pictures! I felt like I was there! It sure looked like you enjoyed yourselves. I loved the pic of the Willow Oak and the interior of the church. Thanks for sharing!

Marge said...

What lovely pictures! I felt like I was there! It sure looked like you enjoyed yourselves. I loved the pic of the Willow Oak and the interior of the church. Thanks for sharing!

Rose said...

I love the simple elegance of that church...it is just beautiful. The tree is massive! I would have enjoyed being there so much.

A Brit in Tennessee said...

Spectacular architecture, the church is so beautiful.
What an interesting trip that must have been, you show us some wonderful places, and I thank you for that !