Sunday, January 31, 2016

Indian Mounds and the Natchez Trace and Cementarys

The weather here has been really nice the last few days so we did some sight seeing. We started our tour with a visit to the Natchez Indian Culture Center here in town . It turned out that there are Indian Mounds right in the heart of town.

A reproduction of a typical home for the Natchez Tribe .

The smaller of the three mounds on this site.

Another view.

Standing atop of the larger of the three mounds.

Found this iron work in the Natchez City Cemetery , there were several burials from the 19th century in the plot. Both Brothers and Sisters.

The chain work went all the way around the plot.

Unlike several of the larger cities in the South. Natchez has decided to embrace it's history and has placed historical signs all over the city describing it's past.

When we visited this site some 10 years ago it sparked an interest that has us always searching for more . We now have been to all three of the largest Mounds in North America and they are just amazing . To stand at the top and look out over the vast areas that could be seen is just breath taking.

Lauren surveying the lower mound.

I was some 40 feet above Lauren on the very top of Emerald Mound.

We spent some time on the Natchez Trace this weekend and found of course some 18th century history.

This is the actual building ,not a reproduction.

And we always thought that the North East was where all the Ladies got there rights movement started.

This is all that's left of the collage , but it's still there in spirit.

You just have to cross the road and walk in their foot steps.

When we went to mount Locust the first time we were late in the day so we had to go back and find the Slave Cemetery. It's so rare to find one where they know some of the names of those who have passed . Not many as they figure there are some 50 burials here. But like so many old plots , they are lost to time.

We also made it to the Windsor Ruins . What make them unique is the cast iron head pieces .

It's amazing that they have survived all this time. Built just before the Civil War, it survived it and finally was burned by accident in 1890. It stayed in the original family until the 70's when it was given to the state of Mississippi.

We had been to this site before but this is the first time we were there during the day and with so sun to boot. You can feel the history here as this house stood here during the Civil war Battle for Windsor. Part of Grants Campaign after the fall of Vicksburg.

Cat Island , St Catherines Creek and Bayou Cocodrie NWR

As we all know that right now that the Mississippi River is a little high right now. Only a little over 50 feet above normal and this picture is on the road leading up to the Cat Island Refuge. Only thing is the Refuge is about four miles from where this picture was taken and it's under about 30 feet of water , yes the entire refuge.

The Egrets love it just the same.

One of the projects we were shown was to see about a little repair of this bridge on one of the walking trails.

So after removing the dead fall and all the leaves we determined that there is just no way to do a simple repair. Total replacement is the key here.

Our resident Armadillo is just so cute and the cats just love watching it as it moves around the RV. 

This is the house on the Refuge where the washer and dryer is. As most of the area here at St Catherine is flooded the Black Face vultures have picked this area as their new roost area. 

They were not happy when we drove up the drive.

At a quick guess we figured there were about two hundred. I just couldn't get them all in one shot.

After a little bit they started to settle back down in all the trees around the house.

There is Spanish moss in most of the trees here.

It's just beautiful , when the sun shines through it, it looks like tinsel in the trees.

Our little visitor again.

The moon coming up.

This is home for the next three months. It's a little weird being under the canopy , but it keeps the acorns from falling onto our roof. It does however also kill our cell phone signal. Verizon is not very good in the area to start out with and the canopy doesn't help.

We have so many birds here and it keeps the kitty's very busy.

Yes, they are in pairs.

The Snow Geese are moving through Bayou Cocodrie  right now.

Hard at work .

One of my favorite places

Well we had a relatively good trip from the Outer Banks to Mississippi. Only a few minor problems. The usual stuff after sitting on the ocean for 6 months. Salt and sand do raise some heck with the nuts and bolts and electrical goods but all were overcome and we made good time into Vicksburg where we like to rest for a little. The Vicksburg Battle field is one of my favorite places.

My most favorite place on the NPS unit is the Cairo.

The huge tent they have placed over her is just amazing.

This Ironclad is over two hundred feet long and is 60 feet wide .
The ship sank so fast that all the personnel belongings were still on her when they raised it. The ships bell was still in it's mount.
So many artifacts .

To stand on her deck and look out the gun ports gives me a chill each time I do it.

When you look at this side of her you can see the huge hole that the torpedo torn in her and the reason she sank so fast . The good part was her whole crew was rescued .

One of the massive steam pistons that powered her giant paddle wheel.

A section of boilers that powered the giant paddle wheel . Each boiler consumed 1 ton of coal per hour.

A look up through the pilot house. Not much protection for the pilot.

Part of the winch that would raise the anchors.

Railroad track that was used to bolster the front plating of the bow.

The steam piston on the other side of the paddle wheel.

The two rudders that were used to steer the Cairo. what was neat about her design was that the water that came off the back of the paddle was channeled through a system to flush the toilets on board that were located just behind it.

And of course the Texas Monument.