I arrived in Boston yesterday for the Conference on Faith and History with my colleague Miles Mullin. We’ve been enjoying some great fellowship together since we’re roommates at the Peabody Marriott. Today, Miles checked out the Freedom Trail, and I went north into Maine and New Hampshire to see New England.
I was not disappointed.
I was struck by the diverse beauty of the places I saw, and of course, I was immersed in early American history. But why should I describe my trip today in words, when I can just show you?
Here is a picture I took in Wells, Maine. I was looking out over the north Atlantic, and thought to myself, “I wonder if some of that water washing on the shore was ever in contact with the wreck of the Titanic.” I’m weird like that, I know.
This is from a campground on Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire.
I took a short hike to the top of Locke Hill overlooking the lake. Beautiful and enormous hemlocks on this hill. Stunning. The hemlocks I knew and loved in Virginia are all dead.
This was taken on top of Locke Hill over Lake Winnipesaukee. It looks like a dreary day, but to me, after living in Houston, Texas for a year, it was paradisaical.
This was taken in front of the New Hampshire State House in Concord. The famous Massachusetts Senator Daniel Webster was born in Franklin, New Hampshire. The gold dome was striking against the gray sky.
Inside St. Paul’s Church in Concord, next door to the State House. St. Paul’s started as St. Thomas’ Chapel in 1818. This building was originally constructed in the 1930s, and the exterior is original. The interior was destroyed by fire in 1984, and was rebuilt to closely resemble the original.
The New Hampshire State House from the grounds of St. Paul’s.
Col. Edward Cross was a first rate field commander, leading the 5th New Hampshire in the battles of Seven Pines, the Seven Days, Antietam, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, and Gettysburg. He was killed on the second day of Gettysburg in the Wheatfield. His body is buried in the city cemetery.
John Stark as a young man served in Roger’s Rangers during the French and Indian War, and during the Revolution, served with great distinction. His unit stopped the British attempt to flank the Americans on Breed’s Hill. He was also present with Washington at the battles of Trenton and Princeton in late 1776. He operated against British Gen. John Burgoyne’s rear guard prior to the battle of Saratoga, contributing to the key American victory by eliminating 400 or so British troops from service against the Americans. He served as judge in the court martial of Maj. John Andre, who facilitated the transition of Benedict Arnold from the Continental to the British Army. After the war, he retired from military service, returning to his farm in Derryfield. The state motto, “Live free, or die” is attributed to Stark.
Stark’s statue in the grounds of the State House, adjacent to that of Daniel Webster.
I could not have asked for a better day out in New England–except that it might have lasted a week, rather than a day.