Eclectic, quirky, and sometimes edgy…this is how things look from my front porch.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Bermuda Hundred

I am blessed that my family has a sense of history.  I know how and why my great grandfather, Thomas Beausang, came to the United States from Cork, Ireland on HMS Teutonic (fortunately not the Titanic), but the same White Star Line.  I sit on my grandmother Helen's green needlepointed chair every day,  I have an inside window box in my kitchen that was my grandfather Dunn's wooden toolbox.  And I have three chairs that belonged to my second great grandfather who served in the Union Army during the Civil War. 

Second Great Grandfather Galvin was captured by Rebel troops during the Battle of Bermuda Hundred in May, 1864, escaped and walked back to his home in Connecticut.  Yesterday, completely by chance in a meandering drive to enjoy a glorious spring day, I found Bermuda Hundred, outside of the state capitol of Richmond. You can see above that it was settled in 1613.  One of the original residents was John Rolfe, Pocahontus' husband. Amazing, no?  They walked there where I walked yesterday.

It is all peace there now; no echoes of the agonies or the blood spilled as Union troops tried to get a foothold.  Well, I call them Union troops, some local historic signs refer to them as "federal raiders."

However, 140 years ago, my second great grandfather and many others fought here to preserve the Union.  I cannot imagine his terror at being captured by the enemy, so far from home.  It happened to him on that spot where my sandaled feet felt the dust of the road and the breeze from that same river bank location fanned my own face.  My spirit resonated with his, perhaps because of our shared portion of DNA or perhaps because I had heard about him for my entire life.  A descendent he never thought about in a United States he could have never dreamed possible...walking where his boots had marched.

The current homeowners of this stretch of land along the river, the Gray family, keep bees here now where once the Civil War raged and the bees buzz about, unaware.

If you look closely, you can see a red tug boat beyond the bee skeps, across the water.  I dearly love red tuggies.