|Links to Days
Aug 21: NJ -- Princeton
Aug 22: PA -- Philadelphia
Aug 23: DE -- Stanton
Aug 24: MD -- Havre de Grace
Aug 25: MD -- Baltimore
Aug 26: MD -- Annapolis
Aug 27: VA -- Mount Vernon
August 21 -- from Princeton NJ
This was a 47 mile bicycle pedal to Philadelphia PA and Independence Hall, where the Declaration of Independence was signed. Then a side pedal of 54 miles to Valley Forge and back. We passed the midpoint of the tour as Sal pedaled 95 miles to push his total mileage since Newport to more than 400.
|Then we entered Pennsylvania, where, at Sal's suggestion, Jeff drove straight to Valley Forge National Historical Park rather than try to follow him through the narrow, congested streets of central Philadelphia. The next scheduled activity was not until 2:30 PM, so Jeff had time to buy a few books in the gift shop and take a self-guided driving tour of the park.
|Mandel shared the story of the monument, the first in a national park to commemorate patriots of African descent who served in the Revolutionary War. Three different images represent the societal roles of Colonial Blacks and their purpose in joining the struggle for independence - free men who volunteered to fight, slaves who received freedom as payment for their service, and slaves who served as soldier substitutes for their masters or attended them on the battlefield, only to return to their previous condition of servitude after the war. Sal noted the importance of sharing with the general public these unfamiliar stories of the war.
August 22 -- from Philadelphia PA
The day began with heavy rain from Hurricane Henri, but the downpour had abated and the sky was clearing by the time Sal and Jeff returned to Independence Hall in Philadelphia for the formal start of today's 36-mile ride.
|Sal then bicycled to the Hale-Byrnes House in Stanton DE. Here in 1777, shortly before the nearby Battle of Cooch's Bridge, Lafayette (then an aide de camp to General Washington) had his 19th birthday. Behind the house former W3R®-US Chair Kim Burdick hosted a dinner for 30 people.
August 23 -- from Stanton DE
This was to be be a 35-mile bicycle pedal to Elkton MD and a 1.5 mile kayak paddle across the mouth of the Susquehanna River where it empties into Chesapeake Bay, ending at Havre de Grace MD and Rochambeau Square. However ...
BAD NEWS! Jeff reported, "Our U-Haul was stolen overnight, along with everything in it --- the kayak, both bicycles, tools, tire pumps, spare wheels, other spare parts, three boxes of W3R T-shirts, a box of Sal's book, food, receipts, proclamations and business cards, among other things. In other words, anything we had not brought into the hotel with us last night was gone.
"Fortunately, our computers, clothes and paperwork –- the items that mattered most -- were in the hotel, thank God. The police told us that ours was one of three U-Hauls stolen in the area overnight, most likely for parts and scrap metal while the contents were fenced to pawn shops.
"Determined to continue with the Tour, Sal called Kim Burdick (thank you for giving up your morning to help us), who drove us
August 24 -- from Havre de Grace MD
This was a 39-mile bicycle pedal to Baltimore MD.
Meet some of the men who helped win the American Revolution:
August 25 -- from Baltimore MD
Jeff drove Sal back to Baltimore to start today's 38-mile cycling trek at the Washington Monument.
|August 26 -- from Annapolis MD
August 27 -- from Mount Vernon VA
This was an 81-mile bicycle pedal to Hanover VA and the Hanover Tavern. Sal returned to Mount Vernon for the formal start of today's trek through continuing heat and humidity.