Thursday, November 08, 2012

Thursday Thirteen

On Saturday in the county seat, Fincastle, VA, there was a big to-do that was over 200 years in the making.

The county and the federal government installed at the Botetourt County Courthouse a special NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) disk commemorating the Lewis and Clark expedition. It is the second such disk in the state: the first is at Monticello.

Why install this in Fincastle? A very good question. Some believe that the Lewis and Clark expedition actually started in Fincastle, not St. Louis. However, the real reason belongs to the ladies: William Clark's wife, Julia aka Judith Hancock, was a Fincastle gal. He knew her before he and Meriwether Lewis set out on their historic trek across the fledgling nation, and named the Judith River in Montana after her. Clark's second wife also came from this area (but nothing was named after her as she came after the expedition).

The Lewis and Clark expedition, for those who may not know, was commissioned by Thomas Jefferson. It was the first transcontinental venture and the men kept detailed journals of plants, wildlife, and people they met along the way. The journals are still studied today by enthusiasts of history. But knowledge was not the goal: economic and commercial growth was. They were seeking the most viable route to the Pacific.

Anyway, here are 13 photos from the hour-long event, which was full of pomp and dignity as befits a ceremony of this import.

The Botetourt County Courthouse before the festivities begin.

VMI Cadets played bagpipes and bugle.

Folks stood around and chatted prior to the ceremonies. The man in the foreground is a county supervisor.

 The pastor and the judge take a look at paperwork prepared for the day.

The box hiding the NOAA disk.

Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts took part in the ceremony.

The historic sign noting when the county courthouse burned in 1970. My husband's father helped put out the fire.

County supervisor and a Roanoke news reporter.

Heads bowed as the color guard enters the area.
The judge says a few words.
The Scouts lift the box for the big reveal.

The special NOAA disk. It has important geological information embedded in it.

Folks standing around looking at the disk as the ceremonies end.

It was a beautiful day and there were about 200 people there.

Thursday Thirteen is played by lots of people; there is a list here. I've been playing for a while and this is my 267th time to do a list of 13 on a Thursday.


  1. How cool is that. I'm putting it on my list of things to see when my husband and I come out to visit his cousin who promised to show us her favorite sights in Virginia. Maybe this is one of hers too. Thanks.

  2. It's cool. Wonder how much the disk cost.

  3. Definitely an expedition worth commemorating and being proud of!

  4. Sounds great and I'm sorry I missed it. On the other hand I did go to the Grand Opening Ceremony for the Gazebo in Buchanan! Priorities, don't ya know!

  5. Pretty cool - looks like you had nice weather and a good turnout for the event.

  6. It looked like a gorgeous day and a happy event, all around. Congratulations! :)

  7. Fascinating. Lewis and Clark are pretty big stuff out this way. They took a few detours while in Montana, so we have all kinds of Lewis and Clark trail scenic byways and overlooks and such and the occasional ceremony. Never seen bagpipes at one, though.

  8. Great photos. I especially loved how you captured the gloriously blue cloudless sky. Days like this are so much nicer when the weather cooperates!

  9. Cool photos. Looks like it was a great day. Thanks for including me.

  10. Great photos. Looks like it was a great time. Happy T-13.

  11. I've heard of Lewis and Clark expedition somewhere in those history articles. It was wonderful to find out more of them through your post and photos. Thank you.


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