The Harpers Ferry Bandstand, ready for the 4th of July
The land we call Harpers Ferry, West Virginia is a focal point of nature, gathering force and resources at the confluence of the Shenandoah and Potomac Rivers. Harpers Ferry is also one of the most significant of all our special places, important as both inspiration for and site of some of the most pivotal movements and moments in our nation’s history.
That’s not why apc9296 and I went to Harpers Ferry on the eve of our nation’s birthday celebration. As Virginia geocachers we were looking forward to finding our first West Virginia geocaches; Harpers Ferry extended itself into our part of Virginia and beckoned us to come on across, so we did. Once there we each found more geocaches than either of us had ever found in a day and in doing so we discovered many historic and beautiful places in Jefferson County, West Virginia.
I found virtual geocache GC184C, “Well of Decay,” earlier this afternoon. I had to make an unexpected trip down through Manassas Battlefield Park, a place I’d driven through hundreds and hundreds of times over the last three and a half years. “Well of Decay” asks you to stop and consider just a bit of the history and sacrifices made made on and around ground zero.
2011 marks the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War. As a relatively new geocacher I’ve now found a pastime that compelled me to do something I should have done long ago — appreciate this battlefield for what it is, sacred and hallowed ground.