Hope everyone enjoyed their holiday! Bill and I spent Christmas outside of Philadelphia with my family, but to get here we first had to traverse nearly the entire state of Pennsylvania from Pittsburgh to Philly. We figured rather than rushing across, we’d break apart the 6 hour trip and detour to a National Park, much like we first introduced you to during our road trip to Cincinnati, and again when showing you our shadowbox frame with a few of our favorite (duplicate) stamp pages.
There were two parks that we were considering, but ultimately, after some pretty windy roads in the middle of the woods, we ended up at Hopewell Furnace.
Hopewell Furnace was an old iron furnace back in colonial times through the 1880’s when modernization and new materials made the operation at Hopewell unable to compete.
The site is the nation’s most well preserved iron furnace from the era, and back in that day it took a whole town of people, black and white, to keep it running. Even the women had important roles.
This particular furnace cast the canons for the union troops in the Civil War, and before that even cast the cannon balls used at the Battle at Yorktown.
The site was its own town with apartments for workers to rent as well as a store for supplies.
You could, of course, buy your own hopewell furnace in the store. (For show that is…)
And of course they had their own livestock!
This guy’s name was Max – that’s for Maximillion. He was the friendliest of the lot.
Today it stands as a pastoral park, and still includes what the workers called ‘The Big House’, or the master’s quarters.
Of course the home was decorated for the holidays, and even included a few gifts too! (Check out the butcher’s paper wrapping!)
After our adventure through the park, we collected our stamps and were on our way.
Not a bad stop for such a long trip!
We’ll be back later this week with a Christmas recap – let’s just say it was a very DIY/B&B Christmas for sure!
Check out the first National Park trips we’ve shared with you!