As we were driving home on Sunday we took the time to stop in Vicksburg, Mississippi. There is a great Civil War Memorial there. I thought it would be a great place to stop for lunch and get out of the car for 30 minutes or so, well that turned into 2 plus hours.
When the Union won this city it was a turning point because it divided the Confederate states.
I have ready books and seen some other battlefields but it is so different when you actually stand on the ground where men and boys gave their lives fighting for their home, families and beliefs.
It was just big open fields with mounds or dirt to protect them. There was a sign that described the different types of cannonballs used and what damage they could do. War is ugly, brutal, primal even and yet it is essential- there was a war in heaven even.
In the upper R hand corner the kids are looking over a battlefield. 3 of the smaller ones show the kids standing near or above a tunnel that was dug through a hill so the Union could better attack the Confederates. The large monument with my family standing at the top has the names of so many soldiers listed on the inside.
This is an ironclad (ironsides) ship used in the battle named the USS Cairo. It was sunk and then it was pulled out of the Mississippi and partially restored so that the original shape and size could be appreciated. The iron was all original. In the museum next to it they had dishes, bottles, clothes, weapons and other things that were pulled up with it. There was a video that explained how a torpedo (not like we use today) was used to sink it. Fascinating!
There is a national cemetery there and it was so peaceful, even reverent. It was started during the Civil War and was not closed until 1961. There are 17,000 Civil War soldiers buried there and 75% are unknown. This made me cry. My heard ached for those men whose names may not be found until the Savior comes again and so there temple work can not be done. There is some great information if you want to go here.
It was a fabulous stop on our long drive home. Peter and I have decided we will head east again someday and visit more Civil War sites and some plantations.
These final pictures are of some of the silliness that took place during our stay with the Wood's. For that many people in a smaller space it was amazing how well it went. Ryker was champ at sharing his toys. We look forward to visiting the Wood family wherever they end up in a few months.