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Thanksgiving Virginia 2007
(Click on the images for a larger version.)
amtrak breakfast
We woke up hungry on our overnite train back to DC, so we had some mediocre train food.
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We didn't arrive for a few more hours, so I took a nap.

While Ilaria
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realized that her arms aren't long enough
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to take a picture of her and me sleeping on her lap.
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So she gave up and took them
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We arrived at Union Station in DC
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and picked up a snazzy little SUV rental car.
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Our original plan for the trip had us visiting many Civil War sites. But we didn't consider the distance between each of the battlefields and museums well, and in the end with were left with only a day-and-a-half to see a few Civil War sites in Virginia.

Our first stop was the Fredericksburg Battlefield.
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The battle was a lopsided victory for General Lee. Confederate casualties were half those of the Union despite the Union having 25% more troops.
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Here's one of the remaining houses that was in the middle of the battlefield;
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the people that lived in the house evacuated before the battle, but their house was left with lots of bullet holes.
battle of fredericksburg sunken road
A large reason for the lopsided victory was this sunken road. Lee's army was protected behind this wall at the sunken road, and the Yankees charging them were sitting-ducks.
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There was also a hill behind the sunken road that provided a perfect spot
battle of fredericksburg artillery
for the Confederates to set up their artillery.
downtown fredericksburg
After checking out the battlefield, we went to see downtown Fredericksburg,
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which was ready for Christmas.

We then drove south until we got tired and
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stopped at a hotel in a suburb outside Richmond.
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Since most of our trips are to cities, Ilaria and I were surprised to find out see how large a hotel room you get in the suburbs for only 50 bucks.
waffle house richmond
The next morning Ilaria tried Waffle House for the first time.
Museum of the Confederacy
Our main stop for the day was the Museum of the Confederacy in Richmond, VA.
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The museum is the largest museum devoted to the confederacy.
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It not only has standard artifacts like bullets, guns, and shells, but also
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has gear from the top dogs
Nathan Bedford Forrest binoculars
like these binoculars that belonged to Nathan Bedford Forrest.
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Adjacent to the main museum is the former White House of the Confederacy where Jefferson Davis lived with his family.
confederate flag
The main thing I learned on the trip was that I didn't really know what the real confederate flag looked like. There were actually three different national flags for the confederacy.

The first one looked too similar to the Union flag. This is the second national flag that was used for most of the war. The third national confederate flag was very similar to this one.

If you take the little red flag design in the top left of this flag and "stretch it out" it looks like what I always thought was the Confederate flag, which is actually the most popular confederate battle flag used during the civil war.
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Due to massive amounts of construction around the museum, we had to park at the parking deck of the nearby hospital, where I saw an elevator design I'd never seen before.
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You have two buttons. The extend button opens the door longer so that handicapped people can get in without the doors closing in on them.
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Richmond was also the home to Edgar Allen Poe,
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but we didn't have enough time to tour his house.
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We drove around to see some of the nice architectural features of Richmond
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and then it was back to Dulles Airport and back to Boston.