I remember back in seventh or eighth grade, whichever one it is when we study North Carolina history, hearing about the battle at Moore’s Creek. What I remembered was that a regiment (I don’t know or really care of that’s technically the correct classification of troops) of Loyalist troops was on the march and a regiment of Patriot troops sabotaged a bridge and ambushed them. It’s something that has always stuck with me.
Here’s a Wikipedia article that tells you all about it better than I could. I linked it directly to the section on the battle itself, but there’s a lot of other good information in there about what led up to it, why it was important, and the impact it had on the Revolutionary War.
There’s a sign for the battlefield when you’re driving down 40 to Wilmington not too far from town, and I’ve been meaning to go for years. I’ve been wanting to take Milly out on some field trips every week, but between friends of hers stopping by, weather, and my workload, it just hasn’t happened. I was going to take her to Moore’s Creek yesterday, but it rained really hard in the morning and the forecast showed scattered storms throughout the day (though most of the rest of the day was just fine), so I packed up some drinks and snacks into my Duke cooler/backpack and we headed off this morning.
It was about a 30-minute drive, which wasn’t bad. Milly and I played Hangman for a bit and chatted on the way up. Once we got there we went through the visitor center/museum. Unfortunately, they weren’t playing the video that tells all about it, but there were markers along the trail that told the story.
While we were in the museum part we saw some of the weapons used in the battle. I explained to Milly how arduous a process it was to load muskets, so while we were out on the trail she was pretending to load some for me so I could shoot and defend us.
The famous bridge at the park is a reconstruction, though they tried to build it as it would have looked back 240 years ago. There was also a marker that mentioned that bridges back then only lasted ten years or so. Anyway, when we got to the bridge I told Milly to imagine hundreds of men standing right where we were getting ready to charge across. When we got to the earthworks on the other side, I told her to imagine hundreds of men running up the path screaming and brandishing broadswords like the one we saw in the museum.
There was actually a group, a large family I think, who were on a guided tour. They were walking out up the path while we were behind the earthworks and Milly started to pretend to shoot at them. I told her it wasn’t polite to pretend to shoot people you don’t know.
There were several monuments and memorials that we stopped to read, as well as a path through a forest that was supposed to show you what it was like to get pine wood and tar, which was an important thing back then. We had to hurry through that part because there were a lot of mosquitos and other irritating flying insects.
I hope she remembers it all well. I know that what she liked best was that a fox crossed our path, which was pretty cool, and she saw a mosquito with an injured wing that she got on her hand and helped onto a blade of grass. Still, she was able to tell me all the main points of the place on our ride back.
I tried to spend a bit of time with her around doing work tasks when we got back. I met up with her Nana at Amanda’s house. Amanda’s out of town helping Jason’s brother move. She asked Milly a few days ago if she wanted to go too, but most of their time was going to be spent packing and moving, so Milly opted out and will be with Amanda’s parents for the weekend. Karen always has a lot of fun learning stuff to do, and Milly later texted me on her iPad to tell me she saw some of the new baby deer that Karen had spotted there.
I chatted with Karen for a few minutes when we met up, which was nice. She showed me some of the art she’s been doing and when I told her where I’d taken Milly today she told me about a relatively recently-found suspected location of the Lost Colony.
That was mostly it for the day. I got a lot of work done when I got back home. Tristen and I watched an epside of Preacher, but Tristen fell asleep on the couch and missed a good half or so of it, which was a dramatic role reversal for us.