Sunday, August 19, 2007

Traveling US Rte 33 and Points Beyond

Once again we journeyed across US Route 33, the old highway that stretches across the center of West Virginia. Our destination was Tygart Lake State Park located near Grafton.

There are faster ways to get to Grafton--we could have taken Rt 50, the four-lane that was obsolete almost as soon as it was completed in the mid-70's. We could have taken interstate 77 to interstate 79 and then north or east to Grafton via several optional routes. But we selected Rte 33, taking the turn onto Rte 119N that would take us to the park through some country Larry had never seen before. I'd been there several years ago, but was more than ready to see it again.

Letter Gap, WV post office in Gilmer County, WV is now closed. One of the apparently dying communities along Rte 33
Rte 33 is a winding trail that passes through many small communities, some lost in time, some nearly dead, and others beginning to recover and rediscover their reason for being. The drive is slower than other routes, but there is little traffic, people wave at you as you pass because almost all traffic on this road is local, and the scenery is the best of rural America.

The old log barn in Calhoun County we have tried to buy from its elderly owner. No luck yet.

Albert's Chapel U. M. Church in Gilmer County, the octagon church with the cemetery where we photographed the stump gravestone and Civil War grave last week.

Weston State Hospital--to be auctioned August 29th, 2007. Lots of reported ghost sightings. Here is one that is very strange.

Courthouse in Philippi, WV--made of red sandstone, and with stained glass over every window. Absolutely beautiful.

An amazing railroad trestle along Rte 119. Still in use, I believe, because the railroad tracks we crossed along the way were in very good repair, and their shiny rails made it obvious that trains were still passing through. I loved the way this photo showed the gaps between the ties on the trestle. This website tells much about the railways in the Grafton area.

Another view of the trestle, showing the way it curved. While I was photographing this, all I heard were birds singing--so quiet.

The two-lane Philippi covered bridge, in use since before the Civil War. Union and Confederate troops used this bridge. An extensive fire in 1989 caused major repairs to be done to the bridge, which still handles daily traffic in and out of Philippi.

(Another interesting--and weird-- thing to see in Philippi-- we missed them this trip, but we'll be back! : the Philippi Mummies.

Driving through the covered bridge.

The Anna Jarvis house near Grafton. This was the birthplace of the founder of Mother's Day, and was also used briefly as headquarters by Union General George McClellan during the Civil War.

So that was the trip to Grafton. More to follow about Grafton itself, Tygart State Park and storytelling there.


Jaime said...

Your trip to Grafton definitely looks interesting. Old architecture is hard to pass up. I think its the characteristic architecture used to have that is so intriguing.

Debbie said...

Letter Gap is in Gilmer County not Calhoun County

Granny Sue said...

Thank you for the correction, Debbie. Edited!

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