Gettysburg National Military Park Visitor Center

9/22/14 Monday in Gettysburg,PA (Gettysburg Battlefield Resort-ROD)

This was a cool, windy day. Perfect for light housekeeping and writing our blog. After lunch we went to the Gettysburg National Military Park Visitor Center for my Passport stamps and a quick look see. Since we’d been here in 2009 we really didn’t want to see many of the same things again. They’ve added a bus tour since our last visit that was recommended to us, but it was too late for that when we got there today.

First image is of cool shaped blossoms/berries I’ve never seen before.  Maybe this is beauty berry before it’s all berries.

park 1

Inside the Visitor Center we learned some interesting things about the musical instruments the musicians played in the war. If someone said they could play some instrument (like a banjo) they’d give him a fife with a “cheater” on it, so when they blew into it with the cheater (that metal piece toward the left) it would send the air through the “sweet spot.” As they learned to play the keys they’d practice blowing correctly and would remove the “cheater” as soon as they mastered that.

park 2

Notice anything strange with these trumpets?

park 3

When the musician blew into it, the sound would flow to his back. That’s because they’d put the musicians at the front of the soldiers, to inspire them. Once fighting started they ceased being musicians and helped with the wounded.

This next is a coronet that was a personal instrument probably brought to the war by it’s owner. More normally in a symphony orchestra where the players were situated under the stage, at the front of the audience. Thus the need for the music to flow up and ahead of the player.

park 4

Back at home I got concerned about our plans to travel US 15 on most of our trip tomorrow, so I walked over to a camper with a large RV like ours from Carslile, PA to ask his thoughts. He said it would be okay but it was 2 lane most of the way. No truck fuel stations, one narrow bridge. He suggested a path near Baltimore that’s not as bad as near Washington DC. John wondered why I was not wanting to go via US 15. It’s because there aren’t any rest areas nor truck fuel stops. Well, when we researched the Baltimore route, even though it was on Interstate roads there were no rest areas or truck stops there either! We’ll see what he decides tomorrow. I hope he chooses I-81 even if it will take about an hour more time.


About Patricia Elser

I've always loved the loose, flowing, transparent look of watercolors, of Chinese paintings and their calligraphy, but alas, no watercolor classes were available when I was in school, so that interest remained buried until my children were grown. Even then, I was afraid that I couldn't really paint, so upon my sister's advice, I actually started to take classes. I signed up for every class available, determined to learn no matter how afraid I was. I came upon a teacher, Stan Miller, who inspired me, who opened the door to success in watercolor. I love to look at beautiful images. I want to capture them forever. All my life, photography was how I gathered images of the beauty I saw. Thanks to all that photography, I enjoy composing pictures, especially up close. Watercolors allow me to add more of me in their translation of that beauty. My paintings reflect my love for music and dance, with their rhythm and flow. I am fascinated by the play of light, so it appears in my pictures as drama for they are filled with darks and lights. Maybe it's the challenge, maybe it's the beauty, but now, when a work comes together, it fills my soul.
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