Thursday, February 22, 2007

Presidents, Pligrims and Plymouth

Since it was a holiday on Monday, I didn't have work and my friend (and fellow history-enthusiast) Ben didn't have school. What a great chance to check out some history! Ben and I have been slowly working our way through the area's great historical sites (I'll post some pictures soon from some of our other adventures) and so after much deliberation about where to go and what to see we finally decided on Plymouth. I'd never been, so Ben acted as tour guide. It was a ton of fun, the only draw back to the day was that it was freaking freezing!! Like zero degrees! But it was still fun to learn about Plymouth and the Pilgrims. Check out what we were up to until my camera died:

We first headed up to "Burial Hill" where we saw some of the oldest Puritan graves in New England and the site of the first fort. As you can see from all the pictures, the day was beautiful, sunny, no clouds, which, of course, made it freezing. The wind was blowing a lot too, and being so close to the water, didn't help. But it does make for some beautiful pictures!
Ben poses by the "point-of-interest" sign, the First Fort, built in 1621 sat on the top of this hill, which is now a cemetery.

This is the grave of William Bradford, Governor of Plymouth Colony! He arrived on the Mayflower. Crazy!

Gorgeous view from the top of the hill (which is probably why they built the first fort here, great views).

This was a really interesting grave stone in the cemetery, check out the awesome skull and crossbones!

We then headed down to the water to see Plymouth Rock, but on the way went through this beautiful park which had a little stream with lots of bridges and a memorial to the Pilgrim Women. We saw some ducks and swans too.

Here is Plymouth Rock! OK, so I have to confess, so many people told me that it was really anti-climatic seeing the rock that I was expecting something even smaller, so I was pleasantly surprised when I could actually identify which rock it was! You can see they engraved the date 1620 on the rock. Also, an interesting tid-bit we learned later: during the revolution in 1775, the patriots wanted to move the rock to the town square as a symbol of liberty, but while trying to move it, they broke the rock in half, so now, it's smaller than it used to be. Kinda sad huh?

This is the building they put over the rock, so you can see it, plus it makes it seem more important and imposing than it really is. Isn't that what history's all about?

Here's a recreation of the Mayflower, frozen into the Harbor. We didn't get to go on, but it was a lot smaller than you would think. I can't imagine being stuck on a boat like that for so long!

I snapped this picture right before my batteries on my camera died. Ben climbed out onto some ice chunks that were floating in front of the Mayflower. Luckily he didn't go in, cause you can bet I wouldn't be jumping in after him to save him all too quick!! Brrrr!

After seeing all that, we were pretty much frozen solid, like the ice on the ocean, so we decided to head up to the museum. We stopped in some of the cute little shops along the way, then spent a good amount of time at the museum, which was pretty good for such a small town. I'd really like to help them out with their book displays though. They didn't have them resting in the most "conservation friendly" way ever... I'm such a book nerd.

After the museum, it was off for some lunch and then back to Boston! We took the scenic route back and saw all the quaint little old houses and towns along the coast. Seriously, if I can love Boston even in -5 degree weather, you know I've found a great place...

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