Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Day Two in Winchester, Virginia

There is probably no way that I can completely write about all the historic buildings of Winchester in even several postings.  I will just mention several significant buildings before moving on to what we saw Monday while touring around the town.  In the main historic area we also saw the house/headquarters of Stonewall Jackson.  He also spent some time at the Taylor Hotel, built in 1848.  Union Generals Banks, Sigel,  and Sheridan also used the hotel a headquarters during the war.  We had time Sunday to tour one building, which was the Patsy Cline house.  She was a country music singer who lived from 1932 and died in 1963in a plane crash.  She was then at the peak of her singing career.  From 1948 to 1957 her home was on 608 S.Kent Street.  This is where Patsy lived when she won the Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scout Competition, she signed her first recording contract, and debuted on the Grand Ole Opry.
The house may look big, but when Patsy, her mom and brother and sister lived there it just had two rooms on the first story; a living room and one other room where the family cooked, ate and bathed.  A kitchen and bathroom were added later.  The house was at one time a log cabin, built 10 years before the Civil War.  In the living room part of a wall has been exposed to show the logs underneath.  On Monday we drove to the oldest home in Winchester, called "Abram's Delight".
The original log house on this estate was built by Abraham Hollingsworth in 1728.  The current 1754 house was built by Abraham's son Isaac. On this site Abraham claimed he had everything he wanted, which was fertile land and an ample water supply.  He found "delight" in what he owned.  Until the mid 20th century the springs on this land met the water needs of Winchester.
 From this site we drove to Mount Hebron Cemetery, to find the Lutheran church ruins.
Pictured above are the ruins of the first stone Lutheran church built by the German Lutheran population of  Winchester.  The cornerstone was laid in 1764 and the church burned down in 1854.  However, the cemetery continued to expand into what it is today.  Grace Lutheran has maintained a garden around the ruins.  In the cemetery we also found the grave of General Daniel Morgan.
We learned more about General Morgan at the old stone Presbyterian Church where he once was a member.  The church is pictured beyond his statue, which sits on the church grounds.  The words below him are: "Fought everywhere,beaten nowhere".  He fought in many Revolutionary War battles and in 1878 further served his country in the House of Representatives.  The old stone church has its own interesting story to tell.  It was built in 1780, served both as a Presbyterian as well as a Baptist Church.  It also has been used as a Federal Troop stable, a public school for African American children, and a National Guard armory.  Needless to say, we enjoyed our stay in Winchester very much- the history here is fantastic.

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