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Fairfield, Gettysburg and Nazareth, Pennsylvania!!

We celebrated Roland's birthday in the oldest Inn in North America basked in Civil War themes then a trip to the Martin Guitar factory!!

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April 26th, 2011
Take a step back in time to the 1700's!
Roland always wanted to see the Martin guitar factory so I gave him tickets to Pennsylvania for his birthday and the bonus was he also wanted to see Gettysburg. After 9 hours through airports to get there and 20 hours of driving while there, he got to see it all and more.

    
Arrive in Pennsylvania after an hour delay with infamous Air Canada. Surprised at the numerous rivers around.
    
Bridges are us! A multitude of ancient, concrete and stone bridges everywhere. Spend the first night by Harrisburg after construction added an hour to our travels thanks to our GPS!
    
Friday arrive at the infamous Fairfield Inn. I booked the "Grumble Jones" room. He had stayed at the Inn and was famous for his quote "Give me Liberty or give me death" Has the oldest standing liquor license in North America, dating back to 1757. The town was established 150 years ago and they are celebrating this weekend!
    
The Inn has been left mostly in it's original condition. Amazing antiques everywhere. The floors all slope and creak.
    
The Inn is even on TV for a haunted historic places series.
    
It was turned into a hospital while General Lee made his retreat after the big battle in Gettysburg. They say his wagon train of wounded was 17 MILES long! That is twice the distance from Gettysburg just to get to Fairfield.
    
The Inn is ready for the reenactments and speeches for the commemoration.
    
Love the old buildings around town.
    
One of the five dining rooms at the Inn.
    
We were entertained by a magician for the evening. very funny fellow.
    
Our wonderful waiter, Geoffrey. We were seated right beside the fireplace. Our meal was exceptional. right down to the warm chocolate lava cake.
    
Owner Joan with her brother and daughter. Buglers ready to play TAPS to end the evening.
    
TAPS. Neat shot from outside the Inn looking in.
    
Joan's amazing grandmother at the Fairfield Inn. She has some very wonderful stories of days gone by in the war.
    
Roland and his new friends at the bar. They come to Fairfield every year and we even ran into them again in Gettysburg. Behind the Inn they have set up camp for the reenactments.
    
A surgeon explains how they made do for the injured. Either was a common anesthetic. They would have to pull out the arteries of the amputees and tie them together.
    
Cannons fired throughout the reenactment of the battle.

Two fatalities, one union and one confederate!

Gettysburg !!


    
I'm not a big history buff for civil war stuff. But I have to admit it was amazing to walk the battle field. Many a time the hair would stand up on the back of your neck.
Looking down at Devil's Den from Round Top.
    
Over 650,000 people lost their lives over the course of the war. The largest loss in history of any war was at the battle of Gettysburg. Something like 2,000 just the first day.
    
Looking down at Seminary ridge, where everyone says the war turned in favour to the Union after the failure of Pickett's charge up the valley.
    
Top of Big Top.
There must be at least 4,000 monuments over the 6,000 acres of the battlefield.
    
Marker on top of the monument for the soldiers from Pennsylvania.
    
We bought a CD and did a car tour of the entire battlefield and it took us over THREE hours. Very interesting to be sitting where General Lee sat, drive the ridge where Custard came through, look through the cannons fired at the rebels and feel the terror of sitting in a gully not knowing who is on the other side.

The historical society of Pennsylvania has done a marvelous job of preserving this history and presenting it in a way that even I was impressed.

Martin Guitar Factory!!


    
Off Saturday night to Nazareth, PA. Roland finally gets to see the factory of the guitars that he loves so much. (He gave me one after we only knew each other a couple of months so I would not get discourage at learning how to play. And it made all the difference)
    
Martin guitar's were established in 1833. survived the wars and prospered. this is their 1,000,000th guitar that toured the world through China and Europe.
And a tribute to my hero, Johnny Cash, Man in Black, with his signature black Martin D35.
    
Elvis Presley famous leather bound martin D28.
    
Huge guitar showing the innards. the custom shop where guitars start at $5,000 and the average is $20,000
    
I was totally amazed at how much of the work is still done by hand. The factory originally was thrilled with 100 guitars a year when it started. Now they put out an average of 200 guitars a DAY!
    
Amazing the selections of wood and how they try to match the grains. Everything is quality controlled by individual serial numbers.
    
Most of the sanding is done by robot, but all of the fine tuning is done by hand.
    
Laying in the trim is all done by hand. Along with final alignment and joining of the body and neck.