Our adventures actually started before we reached Winchester. We left early in the morning and took a back road from our home. It took us through Front Royal, where we found a farmer's market in the town square.
|The town center farmer's market at Front Royal|
|Dinosaur Land! How could we pass it up?|
Winchester is where Route 11 enters Virginia. The road is also known as the Valley Turnpike, and has its origins as a wagon route. The city stands at the mouth of the Shenadoah Valley, and was of major strategic value during the Civil War. The rich farmlands of the Valley were called the "Breadbasket of the Confederacy." Union troops were sent to capture and destroy that breadbasket, opposed by the out-numbered and under-equipped confederates lead by Stonewall Jackson. The hit-and-run tactics of Jackson tied up the larger Union force and ranged up and down the Valley. There are historic road markers about every two miles ( or so it seems) marking some skirmish or battle of the Valley Campaign.
|One of the many unique|
structures in Old Town.
Apples and Rebels
Throughout the city, large apples had been set up for public art. I've seen similar projects elsewhere -- the concept is that different artists decorate the shapes, making them simultaneously uniform and unique. Sort of like variations on a theme. The oddest one I thought featured different portraits of people important to Winchester.
As you can see in the photo below, there's Stonewall Jackson. I remarked on the odd placement on Facebook, and someone pedantically explained that Stuart encamped in Winchester. True, but I stick by my original thought. When I think of Winchester, I think of apples. When I think of apples, I don't think of Stonewall Jackson.
|Winchester = apples = Stonewall Jackson ?!|