Richmond in the Civil War

20150805_134234

We both retired in June of 2014, but that doesn’t mean we’re done working! Debbie still does a little consulting, and that necessitated a trip to Richmond for a meeting. Normally, it’s an hour and a half from Chesapeake, and a trip Debbie has made many times. This time, however, we were in Abingdon, which is five hours away.  So we both decided to make the drive and even spend the night.

The day of the Debbie’s, meeting, I decided to revisit the Civil War in Richmond. The best place to do that is at the Tredegar Iron Works.20150805_104716

It has an interesting take on how the Civil War affected the people of Richmond. Having grown up in Virginia, I am well aware of the many battlefields scattered throughout the state. But this museum personalizes the war a bit more.

A recent statue commemorating President Lincoln and his son's visit to Richmond days after its fall.

A recent statue commemorating President Lincoln and his son’s visit to Richmond days after its fall.

The first floor orients you to where the factory is in relation to the city. On the second floor, you can watch a very interesting video telling how the war was fought around the Confederacy’s capital.

Also on that floor are a couple of halls that tell different stories. I especially liked the one about how the war affected the Richmonders still in the city. I hadn’t realized that within Richmond, there were federal, state (it was still the capital of Virginia) and local interests, often at odds with each other.

The third floor tells oral stories of various people and what life was like in the city. All very interesting and unique.

Outside of what's left of the Ironworks.

Outside of what’s left of the Ironworks.

Outside is interesting, too.  You can see a lot of machinery still on the grounds and get a clear understanding of what they did. Tredegar was around from before the war until the early 20th century, so there are lots of stories to tell.

 

 

But, as they say, wait…there’s more. The iron works is across the street from a terrific park that runs alongside the James River.  There’s plenty to look at as you walk along. You can also rent bikes or kayaks.

A view of the James from the park walkway

A view of the James from the park walkway

Plenty of activity in the river on a warm summer day

Plenty of activity on the river on a warm summer day

 

 

 

 

 

If you have the time, I would suggest a walk to Belle’s Island. It was home to a notorious prisoner of war camp during the Civil War, and then served as an industrial site for years afterward.

A walkway over the James gets you to Belle's Island

A walkway over the James gets you to Belle’s Island

The site of the prisoner of war camp

The site of the prisoner of war camp

 

 

 

 

 

So if you’re in Richmond and want a different take on some Civil War history, Tredegar is a great place to check out.

This entry was posted in Central Virginia, General, Richmond and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s