A milestone for the park–10,000 at History at Sunset


From Hennessy:

Update Saturday morning:  We had 127 visitors turn out on the beach at Aquia Landing last night. It was a beautiful evening, and, with my back to the water, I was competing against a couple of bald eagles feeding in the Potomac behind me. One very interesting thing emerged: a local resident produced pictures, taken several years ago at an uncommonly low tide, that clearly shows hundreds of the pilings that supported the Union docks at Aquia. We will post the photos as soon as we get them. Fascinating stuff.

A bit off topic, but worth noting:  tonight at 7 at Aquia Landing we will have our 10,000th visitor to our History at Sunset programs over the years (a nifty prize package awaits the lucky 10,000th).  This is our ninth year (ten programs per year, with sixteen in one insane year–an idea we dropped in exhaustion), and tonight is our 95th program (more than 60 of them original). Aquia Landing is by far the most far-flung, remote place we have ever done, so it will be interesting how many make the long and winding journey (along the former route of the RF&P) to the landing.

While we enjoy doing the programs, we also learn a lot in their preparation. My work on Aquia has turned up or solved a few mysteries or conundrums, and they’ll be good for a few posts on here in the coming weeks (the place has an intensely interesting history). I almost always start my preparation for these programs by creating a map, and I share here the map I have done for this one. The green “P” with an arrow marks the location and perspective of key photographs.

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3 thoughts on “A milestone for the park–10,000 at History at Sunset

  1. John, This website and the History at sunset programs are awesome additions to the historical stockpile present in this area. While many of the NPS exhibits are getting revamped, much of it is older than I am. Thank you making the discoveries the staff is making accessible to us. I don’t know how many people agree with me, but I think there is a large group of people who would be interested in our local history if they knew that you guys deal with more than troop movements.

    I really enjoy that you have being research into Roebling, Haupt, Wright, etc. The work that was done rebuilding what the armies destroyed is quite amazing.

    • Thanks very much Karl. I think it’s safe to say that History at Sunset and the blogs have been great fun to do (wonderful injections of real history into our otherwise governmental workdays), and certainly worthwhile, given the public’s response. Thanks for coming out.

  2. Was curious if you plan on presenting this particular program regarding Aquia Landing again? As a member of Co I, 47th Virginia (The Stafford Guards), I’d like to potentially provide a tour to other members of our unit as we have an interest in this small piece of Stafford and Civil War history.

    Respectfully,
    Brent Reidenbach
    Co I, 47th Virginia (The Stafford Guards

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