Monday, July 16, 2012

Down By The River

I had to take a drive down south in Ohio this week for work, so I decided to take advantage of being down on the Ohio River and take a few pictures while I was there.  On the border of West Virginia, along the Ohio River, is the city of Marietta.  I passed through this city a lot as a teen, traveling between my home in Northeast Ohio and our new home in Charlotte, NC....but even though I was familiar with the city as a favorite stopping point in the 8 hour car ride for lunch and a restroom break....I never knew how beautiful the town was or how much history was here!  Marietta was the first American settlement in the Northwest Territory.  George Washington explored the area as a young surveyor in 1770, and wrote of it's beauty and potential settlement.  In 1788, Washington said, "No colony in America was ever settled under such favorable auspices as that which has just commenced at the Muskingum...If I was a young man, just preparing to begin the world, or if advanced in life and had a family to make provision for, I know of no country where I should rather fix my habitation..."    In 1787, Benjamin Franklin said, "I have never seen a grander river in all my life."

The city was holding a couple events and the threat of rain diminished, giving way to a cool evening along the river with many friendly townsfolk strolling around.  Street performers playing music, craftsman and artists showcasing their was a great night to see the old buildings, the river, and stop and smell the roses in a part of my home state I had only every seen from interstate 77.

 It was awesome to stand and see the Harmar Bridge, once a covered bridge, converted for the B&O railroad, now a walking bridge, glowing in the summer night across the lazy Ohio.  I love the mix of historic architecture and nature....seeing and feeling how people came to live around and tame the grandeur of creation in period of time with far fewer conveniences and technological was pretty cool! 

 Marietta and Washington County are known for covered bridges, old barns, and rolling farmlands.  Despite more threats of summer rain, it was worth the venture out into the hills, with no GPS or cell phone reception, just to see a few of the sites before jumping on the interstate and heading home.

One of the exciting and unplanned subjects was this baby fawn bolting across a hayfield as I stood getting ready to photograph a covered bridge.  An old pickup honked as it dashed across the road, and I looked up in time to grab a series of shots....perhaps not the best but the excitement was enough to demand that I share the thrill I caught on "film".

 This is the bridge I was intending to photograph when the little fawn stole the show.   I think it would be better to capture in spring, fall, or even winter, as the summer growth covers the creek and part of the bridge.  But it was still fun to photograph and take a drive through the countryside.

Also saw a piece of American art too!
One of the iconic Mail Pouch painted barns! I live near one that is in worse shape and in a worse setting so it was fun to see this nice one and get to snag a couple shots.

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