The Journeys of NostraSeamus – 4/11/2009

I covered 49 miles this week, for a total of 344.5 miles from Harpers Ferry. This week’s journey took me through Parkersburg, West Virginia, situated on the banks of the Ohio River. Parkersburg is named after Alexander Parker, who was granted land in the area for his service in the American Revolution. A couple miles from Parkersburg, on the Ohio River, is Blennerhassett Island State Park. The island, partially owned by Harman Blennerhassett, allegedly served as a staging area for Aaron Burr’s scheme to carve out an empire for himself by conquering part of the newly acquired Louisiana Purchase and Mexico. Burr, a Revolutionary War hero, U.S. Senator, New York assemblyman and Attorney General and the third Vice-President of the United States, was acquitted of charges of treason that arose from the scheme. Before going on trial for treason, Burr gained notoriety by killing Alexander Hamilton in a duel.
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The Journeys of NostraSeamus – 4/4/2009


Since I posted two weeks ago, I’ve logged 83 miles for a total of 295 since “leaving” Harpers Ferry on 2/9/2009. I didn’t post last week because I’m having a little difficulty with the application I use to map my route. Gmaps-Pedometer seems to be a good app for plotting routes of up to a hundred miles or so, but it has gotten a little squirrelly with anything longer than that. I popped some more memory into my computer last week, which seems to help.
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The Journeys of NostraSeamus – 3/21/2009

I’m late posting this week. Twas quite a busy weekend and I’ve got a lot going on at work. No matter…last week was a pretty good week.

Forty-one miles this week, 222 from Harpers Ferry and squarely in the middle of West Virginia coal country. You know you’re in coal country when you’re passing through towns with names like Aggregates.

My journey this weeks ends in the oddly named burg of Jr. That’s what it says on the map: Jr. Junior, West Virginia was originally named Row Town. United States Senator Henry G. Davis (who as a young man was in charge of the Baltimore and Ohio railroad terminal in the one of the aforementioned Tri-Towns: Piedmont), founded the Junior Coal Company in honor of his son. Henry G. Davis Jr. drowned off the coast of Africa in 1897 and the elder Davis requested that Row Town be renamed in his son’s honor.

The photo below of Jr looks old. I’d wager that it looks very much the same today as it does in the picture:

I’m down to 229 pounds today. Most of the week’s walking was in very lousy weather. Today broke cold, in the twenties, but brilliant. I did eleven miles and enjoyed every minute of it. I was crossing the bridge over the Potomac River when the sun broke over the mountains. There was a light blanket of mist on the river, which moved along with the water. The effect was beautiful. I couple years back I lived in a sub-division. It was too small to get a good walk in, so I had to actually drive to another sub-division if I wanted to stretch my legs.

I am very lucky to live where I live. I’ve plodded over the same ground for a month and a half now and it never really gets tedious.

The Journeys of NostraSeamus – 3/14/2009

Forty-one miles this week, which puts me 181 miles from Harpers Ferry since 2/9/2009. I’m definitely in the sticks now, entering the Monongahela National Forest from the north. I’ve tried to research little towns like Redhouse, MD and Silver Lake, WV I’ve passed along the way, but the pickings are rather slim. The Forest was established in 1911 in order to protect the natural resources of the area following massive logging operations in east coast forests in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
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The Journeys of NostraSeamus – 3/7/2009

Thirty-eight miles this week puts me 140 miles from home. During the week I’ve passed through places near and dear to my heart because I’ve passed through Keyser, West Virginia, where Cupcake was born. Then I crossed the Potomac into Maryland and walked the five miles to the Tri-Towns: Luke and Westernport, Maryland and Piedmont, West Virginia. Luke was named for William Luke, an innovator in the manufacture of paper and founder, in 1888, of the West Virginia Pulp and Paper Company (Westvaco). The company, now known as the NewPage Corporation, has for over a century been the economic backbone of the Tri-Town area. Wallace Blackburn, sire of my Cupcake, was an employee at Westvaco.
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The Journeys of NostraSeamus – 2/28/2009

The Prophecies of NostraSeamus

As of today, I’ve walked 92 miles. On my journey, this has me exiting the West Virginia Panhandle and trekking deep into “Wrong Turn” territory. During the week, I passed through Slanesville, West Virginia. Since its founding in the late 18th century, the town has been known as Cross Roads, Slains Cross Roads, Slanes Cross Roads, Slainsville and Dog Town. Apparently, the founders of the town, the Slains, were fond of pooches and had many of them. 1991’s National Teacher of the Year recipient, Rae Ellen McKee, taught at Slanesville Elementary School.
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The Journeys of NostraSeamus – 2/21/2009

This week’s walking has taken me 59 miles from home. One will notice a lot of north/south travel along this route. This is the only route one can take to get over Cacapon Mountain, which runs sixteen miles from Bloomery, WV to the Potomac. The mountain is part of the Appalachian chain of mountains and is one of the ridges that makes straighforward east to west travel in this part of the country difficult.
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The Journeys Of NostraSeamus – 2/14/2009

The end of a week of walking and I feel pretty good. When I woke up the second day, 2/10, I had a bad case of shin splints and my back was killing me. I managed to tough it out. Yesterday I suffered absolutely no discomfort. Taking advantage of the weekend, I slept in a bit and got started well after dawn. I enjoy walking in the dark as it allows my imagination to run wild a bit. Walking in Harpers Ferry in the early morning, though, is really special. As I was descending the service road, I saw a couple deer crossing. I made my way to where they had disappeared into the woods and discovered them about ten yards off the road nudging the ground, looking for goodies. There were two plain old house cats walking around underfoot. Unfortunately I spooked the whole crew and they took off. Toward the end of the road is a pond. Its man-made, but there are obviously healthy beavers afoot. I saw a lot of pointed stumps and trees which looked half way eaten through.
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