Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Arrived at Winter Ranch in Alamo, Texas

We arrived at Winter Ranch in Alamo, Texas today and will be staying for five months. We moved into our new lot, No. 501. I was worried that Lee might have a problem pulling onto our site because we have this awning that comes out from our storage shed and when we finished parking, we were within 6" or less from it. However, he did a fantastic job and just stuck close to the other side of the driveway. I wanted to close my eyes when I pulled out the door slide but it was perfection so all is good.

We spent the day moving stuff back and forth between the camper and the shed. We want to sell the washer and dryer that is in the shed and buy a refrigerator so we'll be watching to see if anyone sells one around the park. Hopefully, we can sell the washer/dryer soon so we'll have some room.

It feels good to be home because that is what it feels like among the people in the park. I heard one woman say that they used to be in Assisted Living and they hated it. They just pulled out and came down here. She says it is better than any Assisted Living facility and if they need help they have it here.

We won't be adding as many entries in this Trip Blog since we will be staying here for five months.  We are kept pretty busy here at Winter Ranch with all the activites and such.  If you want to see what we are up to, you can check out the Winter Ranch Activities Blog at Winter Ranch Activities Blog.  We are the Blog Coordinators for the park.  We will post any of our activities that we do that are outside of Winter Ranch.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Civil Rights Memorial

Our final stop in Montgomery was at the Civil Rights Memorial. This is a memorial to 40 persons who died in the struggle for equal rights in the US.  It is sponsored by the Southern Poverty Law Center. The 40 memorialized died between the 1954 Supreme Court Brown vs. Board of Education decision and the 1968 assassination of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 

The monument was designed by Maya Lin, the designer of the Viet Nam Memorial in Washington, D.C. The design was inspired by Dr. King’s famous paraphrase, “we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream. ...” from his I Have A Dream speech.

Civil Rights Memorial
The fountain lists the names of the  40 persons who died in the struggle for equal rights in the US between the 1954 Supreme Court Brown vs. Board of Education decision and the 1968 assassination of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 

Path to the Civil Rights Memorial Center
 The Southern Poverty Law Center is in the background. 
Building that Houses the Civil Right Memorial

On one wall each of the 40 people who died have their picture displayed and their story is told.  If you ever want to be clued into the inhumanity of mankind, this center will fill you in.  I got the same feeling here as I did when I visited the Holocaust Museum in Washington, DC.   The horror that is inflicted because some people think they are better than other people is just is unbelievable and something that never fails to astound me.  I pray that some day this senseless violence and hatred ends.

When we left the Civil Rights Memorial and drove past a home firebombed in 1956 when Rev. King and his family lived there before heading back to our campsite in southwestern Montgomery.

Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church

Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church
This church dates from 1877 and has served the African American community since 1887 when it hosted the first registration of black students for Alabama State University. This church has figured prominently in the Civil Rights Movement as Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was its pastor from 1954 to 1960. Dr. King organized the Montgomery Bus Boycott in the basement of this church.

Being in this humble small church brought to mind the bible verse from Matthew 23:12 ""And whoever exalts himself shall be humbled; and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted."  Rev. Martin Luther King certainly has a prominent place in heaven for the work that he did here on earth.


Some of the stained glass windows

When we left the Civil Rights Memorial we drove past a home firebombed in 1956 when Rev. King and his family lived there before heading back to our campsite in southwestern Montgomery.

Alabama State Capitol

Next was the Alabama State Capitol which is right across the street from the First Confederate White House. The current capitol building also served temporarily as the first political capital of the Confederate States of America in 1861 before it was moved to Richmond, VA. The building is basically Greek Revival in style and has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1960 because of its role in Confederate history. The building is the second Alabama capitol built on this location the first one having burned only two years after its completion.

Front of the Capitol Building
Back of the Capitol

"Duty Called"

Confederate Memorial

Old Supreme Court Library (1885-1940)

Old Supreme Court Chambers

Memorial for Fallen Alabama Heroes

Bust of Lureen Burns Wallace - Governor of Alabama 1967-68
Spiral Staircase at one of the entrances
 This is one of the cantilevered spiral staircases 
designed by Horace King.

Old House Chamber

Interior of the Dome

Main floor of the Rotunda

One of eight murals around the rotunda

Another mural in the rotunda

We spent about an hour taking a self-guided tour of the building which no longer serves as the meeting place of either house of the legislature. The legislature has been meeting in the Alabama State House across the street since 1985. The Capitol houses the governor’s office and numerous other executive offices.

First Confederate White House

The second stop on our tour of Montgomery was at the house designated as the Executive Residence by the provisional Confederate Congress in 1861. It served as the official home of President Jefferson Davis until the Confederate Capital was moved to Richmond, VA later that year. The house was built by William Sayre and was originally located at Bibb and Lee Streets. It was moved to its present location across the street from the south side of the state capitol building in 1921.

President Jefferson Davis

The Italianate style home was built in 1835 and is completely furnished with original period pieces from the 1850s and 1860s. Many personal items of President and Mrs. Davis are in the house as well as authentic furnishings of the period. 

It is a Confederate house museum which tells three stories: 1) What happened during the spring of 1861 when a government was formed from few resources except cotton and courage. 2) The story of Jefferson Davis, a renowned American patriot long before The War, and his family. 3) The story of the preservation of the House.