Monday, June 16, 2008

Last Week's Storytelling Journey: Goin' Across the Mountains

I took so many photos on my trip last week, it will take me several posts to use them all. West Virginia is not known as the Mountain State for nothing--the entire state is within the Appalachian region, and each county is part of either the Blue Ridge or Allegheny chains, or in the Allegheny foothills region (such as where I live, where the mountains drift down to the Ohio River valley).

These pictures were taken as I crossed the state on US Rte 33 East; these are from Randolph and Pendleton counties.
Just outside of Elkins

Where does the road go? Taken near the line between Randolph and Pendleton counties, where the waters break: from this point on, waters flow to the Chesapeake Bay (mostly via the various branches of the Potomac River, which begins its life here).

Peeking though the hills


On a remote mountain top, Old Glory flies free

Traffic is heavy--can you tell? That's one of the reasons I take this route when I travel across West Virginia: it's a twisty trail but there is little traffic for almost the whole journey, and what traffic there is doesn't come close to interstate driving. And the views are worth the curves.

There is an old mountain song called "Going Across the Mountains." The song is about a boy who is leaving for the Civil War, but I think of that song and its simple tune every time I travel Rte 33. Here are Frank Proffitt's lyrics. Frank was a prolific ballad singer from North Carolina, and his singing was clean and clear; he usually accompanied himself on banjo. Listen to him singing part of the song here.

I’m going across the mountain, oh fare ye well
Going across the mountains, you can hear my banjo tell
Got my rations on my back my powder it is dry
Going across the mountains, Oh Chrissie don’t you cry
Going across the mountains to join the boys in blue
When this fighting’s over I’ll come back to you
Going across the mountains if I have to crawl
To give old Jeff’s men a little of my rifle ball
'Spect you’ll miss me when I’m gone, but I’m a going through
When this fighting’s over I’ll come back to you
Way before it’s good daylight of nothing happens to me
I’ll be way down yonder in old Tennessee
Going across the mountains, oh fare ye well
Going across the mountains you can hear my banjo tell
Going across the mountain, oh fare ye well
Going across the mountains, Chrissie fare ye well
Going across the mountains to join the boys in blue
When this fighting’s over I’ll come back to you.

2 comments:

Mary said...

Such beautiful country! thanks for sharing the view and your talent.

Granny Sue said...

Thank you, Mary. It is so pretty it's hard to drive because I want to see everything.

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