Friday, May 9, 2014

2014-9 Augusta Georgia


Modoc South Carolina continued:

Augusta Georgia

Campground:  See previous report.

So you ask, what does Modoc mean?  Well I had to ask the volunteers at the front gate and this is what they told me.  The local postmaster (in the really small post office in Modoc) said the town got it’s name this way.  They only had one doctor in the whole area and one day a black man said, we need Mo Docs (more doctors) in his thick southern accent.  Sounding more like MoDoc, they ended up naming the area just that.

What’s in the local news you ask?  

Well there was a robbery in a small Georgia town over at the Waffle House.  The robber used a pitch fork as his weapon, which he had taken from a relatives farm.  Arriving at the Waffle House, he herded the employees into a back room with the pitchfork then came out to get the money out of the cash register.  He wasn’t able to open the cash register so he took the whole thing with him, the pitchfork under his arm…. Running to his truck which was parked next door, after all he didn’t want anyone to see his vehicle, he dropped the pitchfork along the way.  The employees coming out and seeing he was unarmed, grabbed the pitchfork laying on the ground and broke his back window in the truck, before he got away.  The employees were able to identify him and it’s expected he’ll be picked up quickly.

A local festival took place this weekend.  Lobster racing.  They place lobsters on a divided track and the first one across the line wins.  That’s the excitement this weekend.

Local TV news anchors.  I’ve seen lots of facial hair on the guys on TV throughout Georgia.  Full beards, mustaches, goatees, you name it.  Don’t usually see that in other markets across the country, definitely not in Florida.

Savannah River

Augusta Georgia

Old meets new in Augusta Georgia

It was one of those days.  I headed out for a day trip to Augusta Georgia, a 40 minute drive, just over the South Carolina/Georgia border and I had my smart phone set on GPS for directions to the visitor center.  Should be easy yes?  No. I get directed into the heart of town, my GPS says I’ve arrived so of course I pull over and park.  Signs point in a couple different directions all indicating a visitors center.  An empty building sits in a median between the main roadway.  I check in at the Ramada Inn next door and the gal at the desk directs me a couple block away to the visitor center.  It’s the Chamber of Commerce.  That gal hasn’t a clue at first what I’m talking about, but then directs me to the Morris Art Museum where she says the visitor center is located.  I see more visitor center signs directing me in numerous differing directions.  I am now ignoring them and I get to the art gallery and they tell me, no it’s about 4 or 5 block further on down the street at the History Museum but since I’m here at the Morris Art Museum, they kindly let me in free for all the hassle I’ve gone through trying to find the elusive visitors center.  And I must admit, what a great place to start my touring in Augusta.  The Morris Art Museum centers around American Southern Artists and they’ve done an exceedingly good job of it.  Each room is dedicated to a particular Southern theme or style of painting, like Modernism, Southern Impressionism, Landscape, Civil War era, 18th century portraiture paintings, each providing a unique glimpse into the lives of those living in the south.  Each gallery is beautifully put together and I’m sure I’ll come back here anytime I’m in the area.  It’s located right on the river walk bordering the Savannah River with South Carolina right on the other side of the river.

gorgeous galleries

A must visit if in Augusta Georgia

Augusta is easy to navigate and there is free parking, always a plus in my book.  And there are quite a few attractions for the tourist to enjoy.  Here a few of the things I’m looking into:

Historic Trolley tour
River Walk
Artist Row on Broad Street
Augusta Canal Discovery Center
Canal boat tour

Augusta Museum of History
Morris Museum of Art
Gertrude Herbert Institute of Art
Woodrow Wilson Boyhood Home
The Ezekiel Harris House
Savannah River Boat Tour

So as you can see there are quite a few interesting things to explore and the ones I’ve listed are only those that are of interest to me.  They also have a free Jazz night and other concerts scheduled throughout the summer months.

Canal Discovery Center

electricity from hydro power

So today I signed up for the canal tour and a visit to President Woodrow Wilson’s boyhood home.  The canal tour and museum was quite interesting.  Showing the development of manufacturing in Augusta all made possible by building an industrial canal that provided water power to run the textile mills and other manufacturing mills along the canal.  Quickly electric hydro power was added and it is still used today for powering much of Augusta.  Riding along the canal in an open boat in 90 degree weather was a bit steamy to say the least.  Because we would travel under low bridges, there was no way they could have a canopy over the boat.  Instead they handed out sun umbrellas and spray bottles of water that we could sprits our exposed arms and legs with, really helping to keep us cool. Really neat to see a number of the old mills being renovated and repurposed for today’s needs.  The canal was almost forgotten by the locals in recent years until local historians brought it back to life along with the discovery center which was developed in association with the National Park System.  A great bike trail goes along the canal, canoes and kayaks can be rented as well and would make a great excursion along waterway.

old mills turned into office complexes

the old mill tower, now the entrance to modern offices

I think it's called the Major Butt Bridge

Historic Canal Boat Tour

one of the old mills, currently empty

Levis once made in this mill

kayak and canoe rentals available, what a great way to enjoy the city

My other adventure was to the Woodrow Wilson boyhood home.  Not quite as exciting as other presidential homes I’ve visited but it did provide a glimpse into the life of little Tommy Wilson as he was called back then until he became an adult.  Growing up in a house where his father was the pastor of the Presbyterian church.  While living in Augusta, he saw the carnage of war as Yankee soldiers were treated for battle wounds out in the open church yard during the Civil War.  Leaving an indelible impression on him of the carnage of war.  When he became the 28th president and would eventually lead America into the WWI it would be with much hesitation before finally making that decision.  Tours like this provide a unique perspective into the lives of our past presidents and what made them who they would eventually become.

Woodrow Wilson Boyhood home

childs doll and miniature furniture

One of the joys of being a full time traveler is that I get to continue my education in history, geology, human nature, environment, well, you name it, it’s like being in a grad school for seniors.

RV Tips and Info:


I’ve been full timing it for 10 years now and this is the first time a Post Office refused to accept my mail sent as General Delivery. After checking on whether my mail had arrived once in person and 3 times over the phone, the last call I made to the Post Office I was informed my mail had be sent back at least 4 or 5 days earlier.  Hmmm.  Now the post office in Edgefield SC is supposed to accept General Delivery packages.  However, Nancy the gal I talked to, told me they only accept general delivery mail is the person calls ahead of time and gets “special” permission for it to be delivered to their post office.  Well I never….

I checked with my mail provider in Pensacola and they said they have only encountered that problem once or twice over the past 7 years.  Makes one wonder.  Bottom line, I plan on calling the post office I intend to have mail sent to ahead of time to ensure they will accept my “General Delivery” package.

USPS find a post office

Longer Stays:  

Having been on the road for the past 10 years, I usually have been staying anywhere from 5 to 7 days at a time before heading to the next destination.  Sometimes less if there’s nothing in the area.  Last year I thought I’d try staying in one place for as long as a month at a time during the summer months.  Well that never happened, as my travel plans and destinations kept changing.  Which is as it should be for a full time Rv-er.  After all, we are not on any schedule, so if our plan changes, it's not a problem.  However, this year, I’ve been staying on average about 11 days at each stop.  Now don’t ask me why 11 days, I have no idea myself, except that it’s longer than a week and less than two weeks.  All in all, it appears to be working out wonderfully for me as I have more time to relax and explore an area.  I usually save money on the campsite as I’m able to find a good deal and take advantage of it for a longer period of time and it is especially saving me money on fuel costs.  I’ve noticed a drop in my fuel expenses by 50% by staying longer at each site.  I usually budget around $500 a month when traveling during the summer.  I’ve been able to cut that back to around $250.  Towing takes lots more fuel.  Driving around touring without the camper in tow takes much less. Simple as that.

More photos on PICASA

1 comment:

Mary gay Hutcherson said...

I certainly agree with your leisurely approach to travel ,,,,I like to have exploring time, hanging out time, no pressure to move on....aren't we lucky to be retired!

I just love your stories and your photos just get better and better, There is nothing like a corps of engineers park. Have you stayed at .goosePoint in Virginia?

There are also two near us in SWFL...yell if you are ever close. Would be great for our oaths to cross again.