The Eastern Seaboard Episodes: A Step Back in Time

Williamsburg

Isn’t Google awesome to retrace your steps?  I once caught somebody lying through their teeth using Google location history!

What better way to depart Washington D.C., than a three-hour drive south while dead tired to “historic” Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia.  How do I know it’s historic?  Because every six feet the Virginia Tourism Department wanted to remind me that I was on the sacred grounds of Williamsburg.  Not to go all Five Man Electrical Band, but literally there were signs everywhere to inform you that you were in “historic” Williamsburg.  Miss Madison was auditioning for a role in the zombie apocalypse, and I had devised a pulley system to keep my eyes open, but we got there safe and sound.  We even slept like babies that night in our kick ass posh condo/suite at the Historic Powhatan Inn.

Quick shout out to Diamond Resorts and The Historic Powhatan Inn in association with Hotels.com (sounds like a prize fight) for offering up a two-night stay at a price Walmart shoppers would be envious of.  Seriously, I’ve paid three times as much for lodging and there was probably a good chance I had to break up a shirts and skins pick-up basketball game between cockroaches and bedbugs.  Not a problem with the mighty Powhatan.  Nine hundred square feet of uber poshness, friendly staff, and a weird guy that sunbathed both mornings we were there.  Since this place doubles as an elderly community/time share resort, not sure if he had is eye on Ethyl at the weekly Bridge game or what.  In case you are wondering, Powhatan refers to the Native Americans that once roamed the land the area.  Ever heard of Pocahontas?

Powhatan Resort collage

In the middle is the original Manor House, not pictured is me sliding down the bannister.

Day one of the Virginia leg of Skipah’s Travelling Road Show took us to none other than Colonial Williamsburg and the re-created Revolutionary City.  Since Miss Madison is a teacher, we got in for a fraction of the cost and proceeded to walk another 15 miles that day taking in a little history back before  the Revolutionary War when Eastern Virginia still pled allegiance to the Brits.  The same Brits that 200 plus years later would give us the Spice Girls coincidentally.  This place was like a gigantic Locust Grove that Miss Madison and I took the kids to visit last fall, although not nearly as cheap!

The weather was a perfect 70 degrees and sunny, the only bad thing about being there in March is I didn’t get to work on my botany degree because most of the plant life wasn’t in bloom yet.  With that being said let’s take a quick history lesson Skipah style!

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The trees are just to die for this time of year!

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OMG, Sloane would go nuts if she saw this!

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If you have ever heard of “Rockefeller money” this would be the son of that dynasty.

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Time to stamp Skipah’s own brand of “revisionist” history on this place!

First stop was the original governor’s mansion, most of the possessions were authentic but the mansion itself was pretty much a restored version.  We learned how British dudes in wigs and knickers showed off their manliness at lavish ballroom parties, and in turn how the women reciprocated.  Amazing how this “picking up chicks” phenomena worked back then.  You could look like a mutant water buffalo, but if you had a nice calf muscle you suddenly became George Clooney.

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Picture quality sucks, but she really did have me at hello months ago.  Thankfully all my walking has built up my calf muscles!

Also per the time period, the head honcho of Williamsburg wanted everyone who entered his residence to know what a badass he perceived himself to be.  There were more weapons scattered around the mansion than a Texas gun show.  Apparently this little tactic of intimidation worked when a local Indian chief or town commoner would stop in to pay a visit.  The guide/historian for this little leg of the tour had a cheeky British accent that I would describe as the old South meets Leeds.  At least his uniform looked good!

Governors House

Everybody needs a porcelain lined fireplace right?

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I think gun control was the last thing on their mind back then.

After perusing the town a little bit, our next stop was the Bruton Parish Church.  This place is literally older than our country itself.  Names of all the famous people that have worshipped here are adorned on the pews and the caretaker was full of information.  To this day, it is still an active Episcopal church in the southeastern Virginia and well worth a visit.  I had to chuckle at the fact they pretty much beg you for a small donation to view it.  I’m not opposed to a little charity, but it has an active 2,000 member delegation and holds four services every Sunday to accommodate the rather large parish.  I’m assuming they hold that many services because I can’t imagine this place holding more than 250 people without breaking numerous Virginia fire codes.  I’m pretty sure not just any John and Jane Doe are attending church there, and I’m pretty confident the church’s coffers would make Bill Gates scratch his head in envy!

PicMonkey Collage-church

Don’t agree with the donation shake down, but history is history and well worth the visit!

The highlight for me was visiting the original (recreated, for some reason the damn thing kept burning down) Capitol building of the Williamsburg colony.  The guide/historian for this juncture was super informative and delivered it in a way that kept everyone interested.  I learned of the genius that was Thomas Jefferson (more to come on him a future post #foreshadowing), and, history scholar, check the Virginia Declaration of Rights…sounds eerily similar to the Declaration of Independence!  Personally I think Jefferson knew the Brits were going to bombard us with Earl Grey tea and Russell Brand movies in the future and was looking out for his fellow countrymen!

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That is Latin for “Fifth realm of England” more or less.  Cocky Brits!

Even better was hearing the history of how lopsided court could be.  Nobody could afford lawyers back then (or today), but if you got caught stealing a pig or fornicating with sheep you could opt for death or a branding.  Call it a get out of jail free card because if you were on trial again with your new age (for the times) tattoo they weren’t so nice the second time.  I say lopsided because the courtroom was made up of exactly one person that understood law at the time and he (presumably) was the clerk!  The judges then knew about as much about law as I do on how to operate an airplane!

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The Colonial courtroom of Williamsburg, only guy that had a clue sat at the table with the green felt!

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Nobody fornicated with any sheep to the best of my knowledge while I was in Williamsburg.

Overall I would say Williamsburg is worth a visit if you are in the area.  Part of it is straight hokeyness, but seeing how our country operated before we told the Brits to pound sand was quite fascinating.  If you love history, definitely put this on your bucket list.  Here are some other highlights from the day.

Again scroll down to the bottom if pictures turn you off quicker than seeing Donald Trump naked.

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Williamsburg has quite the classy Walmart, and they sell Cheerwine!

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The Grid Iron Beefsteak is code for “cheeseburger”, it was still delicious!

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Miss Madison took this picture, why she took a picture of the James Craig Jeweller store front I have no idea!

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#BestRootBeerEver

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Not a part of The Revolutionary War obviously, but still another “chill” moment.

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Who doesn’t like pictures of windmills?

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I was posing in my full Brit gear for her, or I was told to shut up and go get her a drink.  Only two people know!

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This little bushy tailed rat was fearless!  

About it for tonight, the NCAA tournament is firing back up this evening, and I’ve got to prepare for part two of
the “historic” (hell even I’m stuck on this word now) Virginia triangle blog post coming up. I had a blast
in Williamsburg, however, out of the whole trip by far the lamest day for me. Stay tuned for the next
entry in The Eastern Seaboard Episodes!

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23 Comments

  1. Pingback: The Retro Weekend

  2. Pingback: The Eastern Seaboard Episodes: Monticello and Memories

  3. It looks like an interesting place to visit. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to start exercising those calf muscles.

  4. Sounds like a really interesting visit – I love visiting places of historical interest. (By the way, re Jefferson’s concerns about Earl Grey & Russell Brand – I think we Brits knew you were going to bombard us with Mountain Dew & Kevin Costner films in the future & decided we weren’t that fussed about keeping you! ;))

  5. Wonderful photos. Looks like a great experience.

  6. Miss Madison and you were allowed alone in that historic place? Haven’t the founders read the book the Scarlet Letter? Two unmarried people sleeping alone together in a room was deeply frowned on back in those days!
    I agree with the gentleman that there is absolutely NO such thing as a classy Walmart!

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  8. Great pictures. Sounds like y’all had a wonderful time!

  9. Awesome pictures!

    Ps … we aren’t proud of Russel Brand!

  10. No such thing as a classy Walmart! Pretty cool tour though, now we need to see that pic of you in costume!

  11. Love Cheerwine! Spent lots of time in the Carolina’s, and it’s a staple there.

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