Peevish Pen

Ruminations on reading, writing, rural living, retirement, aging—and sometimes cats. And maybe a border collie or other critters.

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Location: Rural Virginia, United States

I'm an elderly retired teacher who writes. Among my books are Ferradiddledumday (Appalachian version of the Rumpelstiltskin story), Stuck (middle grade paranormal novel), Patches on the Same Quilt (novel set in Franklin County, VA), Them That Go (an Appalachian novel), Miracle of the Concrete Jesus & Other Stories, and several Kindle ebooks.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Another Interesting Day

Yesterday was another interesting day. During the late morning and early afternoon, the Lake Writers did a book signing at the General Store in Westlake.

Sally Roseveare, Pam Hain, Marion Higgins, Jim Morrison, me, Suzan Decker

While there, I met a friend from high school who's now a freelance writer and who might join Lake Writers. I also "edited" (remember, I'm not really an editor) a picture book manuscript from someone who'd like to join Lake Writers if she didn't have to work during our meeting times. And Sally, Marion, and I judged some Reflections Contest manuscripts for one of the Bedford Schools. I even signed some books!

Yesterday evening, I went on the Franklin County Historical Society's Ghost Tour. Even though this is the fifth annual one, I'd never attended before. While I waited to board the bus, I went across the street and explored the Tanyard Cemetery, the oldest cemetery in town. Graves date back to the 1700s. some are in disrepair.

One of the people buried there (a son of Robert Hill) was killed by an Indian who shot the arrow from nearby Bald Knob and left the scalped body for his family to find. The Hills buried their kinsman where he lay. I'm not sure if there is a marker for his grave or not. Robert Hill's grave is well-marked, though.

After we'd boarded a vintage bus (if 1991 is truly vintage) I was glad I had already read the Salmons' Franklin County Virginia 1786-1986. Many of the "ghosts" told about events from county history. Joey Stanley, our guide and a former 8th grade English student of mine from Stonewall Jackson Junior High (He still owes me a book report!) gave some background on ghosts. He mentioned that orbs are the light from people who have died but haven't wanted to leave yet. He said some orbs are sometimes seen in the area. Of course, he couldn't guarantee we'd see any.

One of the first "ghosts" to board the bus was a former librarian, said to haunt what used to the old library.

Further down Main Street was the former location of the overall factory where a girl who'd died in the fire told us about how some jumped from the third floor windows, but she fainted and thus burned.

Look at the girl's heel. See anything odd?

Another stop was at the old iron master's house, "The Farm" off Scuffling Hill Road and near where the old Washington Ironworks used to be. Former owner Peter Saunders reportedly haunts the house.

The Farm, haunted by Peter Saunders. Now owned by Dr. Amos.

We made several other stops, and learned about hangings, bandits, and a drowning, among other tidbits of local history.

And, at the last stop—High Street Cemetery, I snapped a few pictures. Most were unremarkable. Except this one.

The small bright light in the background is real.
But I can't explain the small orb at the horizon or the large orb in the left.

Maybe a ghost or two showed up for the tour after all.


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Anonymous Farrar Richardson said...

Hello Becky,

I'm pleased to see you are keeping up your contact with Avenel and Miss Lettie's ghost.

Please give my best to June Goode, and to Laetetia the next time you see or otherwise perceive them.

I am recovering from writer's block, and will soon dare a new post on my blog, which should draw wide interest from Civil War History buffs (just about everyone).

10:37 AM  
Blogger CountryDew said...

Ooh, I think you've got the spirit, Becky! Great shot.

12:27 PM  
Blogger Kristine said...

Becky, I enjoy learning a bit of the local history by reading your blog!

4:51 PM  
Blogger Amy said...

Oh Becky, that sounds like too much fun! I love the orbs shot, they must enjoy having their picture taken - Too bad Amy H. couldn't have joined you. She would just love that!

6:19 PM  

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