|Overcast and cloudy, but no forecast of rain so we decided to visit the town of Somerset about 22 miles away. I remembered a movie with Jodie Foster and Richard Gere by the same name as the town. A neat story about a man who returns from the Civil War to his wife, but he is really someone else. It has a nice happy ending.
We reached the town just as the Summer Festival was ending and we waited for the last of the parade to go by. Love a small town parade. I was so glad the weather cooperated for the kids who were marching by twirling their batons. Very nice, and so cute with their enthusiasm.
A little history of Somerset: “Somerset was a central stage for the Whiskey Rebellion of 1794. Several rebellion leaders, including Harmon Husband, lived in Somerset. The federal militia sent to put down the rebellion worked from its headquarters in the nearby town of Berlin. The Whiskey Rebellion was the first severe test of the federal authority under the newly adopted U.S. Constitution and under President George Washington.” Also, “Somerset County has been known as the “high point” of Pennsylvania since its founding in 1795. At 3,213 feet, Mt. Davis stands as the state’s highest elevation and is appreciated by thousands of campers, hunters, and visitors each year.”
The courthouse was the highlight of the visit. It takes up almost the whole block in its splendor. The front has a statue of a Union Soldier from the Civil War. On each side of this stature lists the men and women of each major battle and how they died, whether killed on the field or died of disease. Gettysburg, Appomattox, Wilderness and Antietam. I was surprised at how many had died of disease. In some cases it was almost equal. Along the front of the building were memorials to the people of Somerset who lost their lives in other wars. By the side of the entrance were two trees, and each tree had a small flag attached to metal symbols of each war, as well. It was quite beautiful with that old style architecture we are seeing on many old courthouses.
There was a small cemetery down the road called the Ankeny Cemetery which was surrounded by lovely homes that honored the people who died in the 1800’s. The headstones with flags were the men who served in the Revolutionary War.
The town had that old architecture that has not changed in all these years. I love the older Victorian type houses and probably said to John “look at that one” at least a dozen times. We walked around the town so I did get some pictures.
We then drove to down the road where we found a beautiful covered bridge called Trostletown built in 1883. According to the sign, there are 65 of them in Somerset County. We would have liked to have seen them all, but we were lucky and were able to see another one called the Glessner Bridge, originally built in 1881 but restored in 1998. Oh, yes, I remember the book and movie “Bridges of Madison County” and looking at these beautiful bridges reminded me of how much I enjoyed both.
We drove through so many towns, villages and boroughs that I lost track of some of their names. On the drive we passed one of the largest wrecked car lots I have ever seen in the town of Sloystown. It was huge and covered the street area, then down a gully and up a hill. Here we are driving through beautiful countryside with homes and farms and then this right smack dab in the middle of a painting.
Our destination was Shanksville, Pa. where the National Monument of United Flight 93 from 09/11/2001 crashed.
Quote for the day: >“Never take a wife till thou hast a house (and a fire) to put her in. “
Benjamin Franklin Hmmmm, wonder what he meant?