“A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots” -Marcus Garvey
Last Summer, I had the pleasure of visiting one of the most renowned historical sites in Virginia. Williamsburg, Virginia is a small city rich in history. From America’s founding, Williamsburg has been particularly recognized for its history in the American Revolution.
The area of Williamsburg is centered around the College of William and Mary. The college is the second oldest in the United States and has taught Thomas Jefferson and James Monroe.
Pictured below is the oldest building at the college. The Wren building has survived numerous fires over the past two centuries. Today, the building stands proudly for visitors and students.
The House of Burgesses is another prominent site in Williamsburg, Virginia. Residing at the end of the main village, the House of Burgesses serves as a reminder of the early governing and planning that took place during the founding of the United States.
While residing in Williamsburg, I was incredibly impressed by how dedicated members of the community were when it came to preserving its history. From reenactments to theater productions, the people of Williamsburg were entrenched in its past and compelled to educate others on the importance of remembering the events that had unfolded here.
Overall, my favorite part of visiting Williamsburg were the humble residents. The people living in this city take immense pride in its past. It was an honor to get to know such gregarious and intelligent individuals. Without a community dedicated to preserving their past, it is impossible to educate others on the lessons it has to offer.
“Never interrupt someone doing what you said couldn’t be done.” -Amelia Earhart
One of my favorite things to do centers on traveling with those I love. This is why my favorite Washington D.C. memory includes visiting the National Air and Space museum with my mother and step-father.
My step-father has worked for over 30 years as an employee for American Airlines. Because of this, he is extremely passionate about planes and learning more about their history and usage. Since we were in the Capitol, we made the decision to visit the most prestigious museum in America for aeronautics!
The museum was beautiful. The tour we took was one of the most educational experiences we had in the Capitol. We explored different spaceships and learned about how the shape and designs of different types of planes have transformed throughout history.
The story of Amelia Earhart has always sparked my interest. The mysterious story of her disappearance has stunned Americans for decades. A design of the plane she embarked on her journey with is pictured above.
However, my favorite plane was the original one that the Wright brothers designed. Pictured below, the Wright brothers were the first inventors of a plane that was able to travel. By seeing this plane, I became amazed by how far we have truly come.
Needless to say, my step-father was inspired by the museum and has already discussed with us how excited he is to return. If you are ever in Washington D.C., I highly recommend paying it a visit!
“Educate and inform the whole mass of the people. They are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty.” -Thomas Jefferson
Although I am a traveler at heart, I usually prefer to steer away from driving. I have always been the most comfortable traveling by plane. Because of this, I was hesitant about how enjoyable driving across Michigan would be.
I took an internship this summer in Michigan, which involved traveling across the entire state to gain support for a new initiative for next year’s ballot. However, the thought of hours in a vehicle made me cringe.
This is why I was incredibly surprise by how much I enjoyed moving across Northern Michigan with my group of interns. The wildness was beautiful. It was as if we were traveling across land that had barely been touched!
Because of how rural this region of Michigan is, many of the roads we traveled on were dirt paths. Although I am used to driving on highways in the city of Tampa, I quickly fell in love with the wilderness that engulfed us as we embarked on our journey.
Gorgeous trees surrounded our path. The sky remained blue and cloudless. While traveling across this area of Northern Michigan, I suddenly remembered Robert Frost’s “The Road Less Traveled” poem.
Although the driving was full of beautiful scenery, my favorite part was stopping near the lake for lunch. For our meal, we ate along the shining water near McKinley, Michigan. The lakes in Michigan are gorgeous and added to the incredible day we were having.
After eating lunch, we arrived at our destination and rested to begin working again the next day. Although I dreaded heading into this journey, I will never forget this traveling experience. Although we may dread some things in life, the world has a way of surprising us in the best way. I am thankful to have been able to see such a beautiful area!
“We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal. That they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights.” -Thomas Jefferson
There are few places I enjoy visiting more than our nation’s Capitol. So when I found out that I was accepted to attend a youth-oriented political conference, I was thrilled to say the least!
I had only been to Washington D.C. two times before this conference. Although I have always known that I am set on entering a career in politics, I am still younger and limited in how much I can travel as a full-time student.
To put it simply, this week was all I could have hoped for. I had the opportunity to connect with exceptional people and listen to incredible speakers. Most importantly, I was able to visit the landmarks and historical places I study about all of the time!
The Washington Monument (pictured above) is a beautiful sight. Because I visited the city at night, I was able to see it shine throughout the entire district.
This is another picture of the gorgeous Washington Monument. Taken from the Word War II Memorial, its reflection gleams across the pond and other landmarks.
Another place I have always enjoyed is the Lincoln Memorial. Because Abraham Lincoln is my favorite president and figure in American history, I am constantly inspired by how it honors his dedication and commitment to preserving the Union.
Even at night, families still walked the hundreds of steps up to the Lincoln Memorial. It is clear that Lincoln will forever be remembered for his sacrifice hundreds of years ago.
As always, it was a pleasure to travel the streets of Washington D.C. once again. I am always inspired by the history and patriotism that radiates from this city.
So…when can I return?
“Humanity has won its battle. Liberty now has a county.” -Marquis de Lafayette
The Fourth of July has always been one of my favorite holidays. As someone who is in love with American history, I constantly find myself excited for the fireworks and immense patriotism that fills the day.
However, this Independence Day was not centered on cookouts with my family. Instead, I found myself in Mackinac, Michigan for an internship that I had taken on for this month.
Nevertheless, I was far from disappointed. The beauty and historical significance of Mackinac Island is truly admirable.
To get to the island, the group I was interning with had to take a ferry. This allowed us to glimpse historical lighthouses and gorgeous scenery from the boat.
After reaching the island, I was impressed with how well the residents took pride in the history and unique quality of the land. Cozy bookstores and shops filled the island and welcomed guests. These adorable stores sold antiques and small gifts. It took everything in me not to buy every souvenir I came across.
Above all, I fell in love with how people on the island traveled. Whether it was by bike or horse-and-buggy, entering Mackinac immediately made me feel as if I had gone back in time!
Yet, what would a holiday be without sweet treats to celebrate with? Thankfully, the locals on Mackinac island pride themselves on the delicious fudge shops that compete for the best deserts!
(P.S. Murdick’s won within our group.)
Last but not least, the fireworks were incredible. The show was by the water, which allowed us to view the fireworks over the lake we traveled on earlier. It was a glorious sight and a terrific day!