The 003 Blog (Fall 2006)

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Ready for the Field Trip

Tomorrow, we will go on a field trip to Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, so today we learned a little about this tiny restored town. We read a short reading about the history of Harpers Ferry. It was founded by Robert Harper; he was a millwright and had a ferry boat which took people across the river and back. Later, the United States arsenal (armory) was located there, and there was a lot of industry. In particular, weapons were manufactured there, using the water power from the Shenandoah and Potomac Rivers, which converge at Harpers Ferry).

The abolitionist John Brown took over the arsenal in 1859. He was captured and hanged for this crime. During the Civil War (1861-65), Harpers Ferry fell under the control of both the Union and Confederate armies at different times, and both armies burned its factories. It never recovered economically from this destruction, which was followed by devastating floods in the late 1800s.

Today, Harpers Ferry has been restored so that many of the buildings look as they did in the 19th century, and it has become a National Park. We are hoping that the weather will be nice so that we can make the most of this opportunity to visit it.

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