Posted by: norstarnewengland | March 4, 2010

Walking around Williamsburg, VA

Place: Williamsburg, VA – Williamsburg proved to be an incredible experience. We had walked around Colonial Williamsburg as well as the campus of William and Mary College, plus walking around the fringes of the colonial area that allowed us to see a little more of the modern Williamsburg.

There are too many waymarks to list here. To get more of the waymarks, from one of these waymarks listed below, then click on the link, Nearest Waymarks. Here are some highlights of my experience there:

The Establishment and Evolution of Williamsburg

Colonial Williamsburg is a mixture of reproduction and actual colonial era buildings that gave us the contextual historical experience, with tour guides, performers and servers who provided us with the human experience. This waymark that is based on the American Guide Series book for Virginia relates the evolution of Colonial Williamsburg, and the evolution of how we regard and preserve our past, and how inclusive we are in what we preserve.

Changes in Preservation of Buildings Over the Years:

The following waymarks talk about changes made to the preserved structures over the years:
Sir John and Peyton Randolph House
Governor’s Palace

Public Magazine

The Stories that the Museum won’t Tell: Hauntings
We went on a ghost tour of Williamsburg. I am ‘open’ on the idea of whether ghosts/spirits/energy can remain on the earth, but it was neat to hear of other stories that we would not have otherwise learned about. We were actually fortunate to have learned about this tour. Colonial Williamsburg had two tours, one a tour of places that might be haunted and another that had actors come out as ghosts and tell their lives. The first one was cancelled, but the hotel person told us about the private group that was so much better. So, we waited at the bookstore on the edge of Colonial Williamsburg. It was like some secret society meeting! But it was worth it to hear all the stories. My favorite was the story of the Indian College at Brafferton Hall in the College of William and Mary. It reminded me of the one established at Harvard College that had similarly unsuccessful results. Another stop was the Randolph house where, later, we revisited both during the day and night, and could only say that we were unconvinced of the claims that paranormal activity happened all the time there.

Testing Boundaries

The first day’s ‘Revolutionary City’ program ended, where they act out scenes to depict the lives of people during the Revolutionary War period, at a little aftr 5:00 pm, and the museum part was closing. We had reservations at 6:00 pm for one of the inns, so we had some time. I said that I wanted to see two Virginia Historical Markers down the road, only ‘a half mile down’ (the experienced waymarkers know where I’m going with this one, I’m sure). She agreed, but was pretty skeptical that we were going to make it. We walked down the road. It was straight down the road and in plain view – and, naturally, they hadn’t been waymarked yet, so it was a golden opportunity for a new category. So, we walked on in the nice mild, day with the sun low, giving the air a golden tint. As we turn a wide corner, Polaris says to walk on without her because time is getting short. So, I put on the afterburners and strode forth. I noted at one point that I passed a city limit and a county limit sign. Not too long afterward, I did find my signs, right where they ought to have been. But I had to work fast, because the time was very tight – and my batteries were low so I had to make the pictures count. Obviously, I made my goal, because here is one of them. I came back and rejoined Polaris, and both of us walked briskly to the inn. We made it about 4 minutes after our reservation. So once again, I managed to squeek by. I consider myself fortunate at having evaded the ‘I told you so’ one more time. But, I’m not going to test that boundary again (fingers crossed).

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