mSo often we go away on a fabulous trip. We see amazing views and experience amazing things! We come home and we MIGHT look at the pictures that we took on our phones. We may look at the files on our computer once in a blue moon. But that is not the way life should be. We should be living with our memories and preserving our memories for our every day use!
What am I talking about? I'm talking about taking pictures from our vacation and exploration experiences and turning them into wall art! We recently went to the New River Gorge in West Virginia for a week of vacation time. We hiked, we explored and we had a great time. One of the places that we went to was the Babcock State Park and specifically the Glade Creek Grist Mill. It was absolutely gorgeous and I knew that I wanted to stop keeping my pictures, at least of this building hidden away in files on my computer. Instead, I wanted this on my wall as art! I wanted to preserve my memories so that I could relive them over and over.
How to Preserve Memories as Art
I didn't know how I wanted to preserve my memories as art for my wall. I just knew that I wanted to hang these memories on the wall for us to relive the experience and beauty day in and day out. I started to research online. I was very interested (and still am) in printing on glass but ultimately decided that I wanted a very large print for behind my couch. That narrowed my choices for how I could have my work printed and displayed. I chose to have my picture printed on Canvas. I began to research companies and settled on Canvas Pop (this is an unsolicited and unpaid review).
The Process to Preserve my Memories on Canvas
The process to preserve my memories on canvas was quite easy once I chose the printing company that would be doing the work. Canvas Pop had a really good rating so I decided to try them out. Wow! Am I ever glad that I did! I started the process on a Saturday night. I uploaded my picture and clicked a few buttons to make some selections and before I knew it, my order was complete. Even better, it had automatically given me a nice discount (first time user or something!) The original price for the largest size canvas was right around $200 but with that discount, I paid $121! (including shipping) Not bad at all!
I immediately received an email advising me of my order. This was an expected email but still nice to receive nonetheless! On Sunday afternoon I received my next email from this company. They had received my digital file and they had created a mock up of how my print was going to look. I had to review the mock up and approve it. I was leery about the process, thinking it was going to be long and drawn out and difficult. But once again, this company made it simple. I opened the email, clicked the link and looked at the mock up. Approval was as simple as hitting a button that said "I approve." EASY!
I knew that it was now time to actually wait for my canvas to be printed. I was expecting the next step to take a while. But no! By Tuesday I had an email saying that my print was ready and was being shipped and they advised me of my tracking number! I was NOT expecting service that soon!
By Thursday, 5 days after placing the order I had my canvas print! It looks amazing! It was everything I expected and then some!
My memory is preserved
Every time I walk through the living room I see the picture! I smile when I think about the day that we stood together looking at the building. I ponder and recall the sounds of nature as we hiked and spent time in the woods in that state park. I remember the good times we had! There is nothing like a well preserved memory and printing my memory on Canvas was the perfect way to do it!!
In June of 2020, we visited the area near Summersville, West Virginia and Fayetteville, West Virginia to see the New River Gorge Bridge. The three days in the area were not enough, we saw a lot of the sites, but there were so many more places to explore. I had lists of places that I wanted to see but we ran out of time. The Carnifex Ferry Battlefield was one of those places. In less than four months, we were back to see some of what we missed on our first visit.
The civil war battle in 1861 that took place near the Carnifex Ferry was a mystery to me. I had never heard of this battle and I wanted to learn more. Nestled in the Appalachian hills of West Virginia, this battleground is often overlooked as people chose to visit the larger more well known Civil War historical locations. However, this battlefield is a great historical stop for the person that is in the area enjoying the kayaking, hiking and gorgeous mountain top views that the New River and Gauley River areas offer.
The West Virginia State Park: Carnifex Ferry Battlefield
The Carnifex Ferry Battlefield is a small State Park near Summersville, West Virginia. The area draws tourists who vacation on the Summersville Reservoir, boat the Gauley and nearby New Rivers, come to see the mighty New River Gorge Bridge or visit the multiple parks (national and state) in this area. An area that is a playground for the nature lover and outdoorsman.
The grounds of this park have been preserved in memory of a civil war battle that took place in September of 1861. To fully understand the battle however, we need to back track a few days in time before the battle.
The Battle of Carnifex Ferry
In August of 1861, a contingent of the Confederate Army encamped in the area near the Carnifex Ferry Battlefield. The roughly 1,800 men settled onto the land near the Patterson Farmhouse. In early September, the union army arrived with nearly 7,000 troops. In the afternoon of September 10th, the Union army advanced upon the heavily entrenched confederate army. Both sides fought valiantly and it was the Union army that retreated at the end of the day.
When the union general was pushed back he must have realized his error. You see, he had only advanced a small portion of his available men to attack this confederate camp. When he retreated, he knew it was only for the night and that in the morning that he would be attacking with his full force of me.
Riding high on his troops ability to push back the Union army on the first day of fighting, the confederate general knew that he was seriously outnumbered. He assessed the risks and the benefits and that night in the cover of darkness he withdrew his troops and retreated.
The Union army claimed victory for this battle. They held the ground that they had fought for and the Confederate Army had retreated. However, the Confederate Army did not see it that way. They claimed that they rightfully held the victory due to the fact that they sustained far fewer casualties and absolutely no fatalities during this battle. A claim that could not be made by the Union Army.
Near the Patterson House on the Carnifex Ferry Battlefield is a single grave. This grave is a stark reminders that risk of being a troop in the Civil War was not confined to times of battle. Sickness in the encampments was a very real problem and this grave is testament to that. On September 7th, only three days before the battle a young soldier died of sickness within that encampment. Granville Blevins had been in the army for less than 3 months when he passed away. His brother and friends gave him a proper burial on the Patterson land. While many men died of sickness while encamped here, this is the only known gravesite.
Other activities at the Carnifex Ferry Battlefield
This state park also offers a few other neat tidbits of interest. The Carnifex Ferry Battlefield can boast of a fabulous overlook that gives visitors a breathtaking view of the river far below. This battlefield offers a 2 mile trail that circles that battlefield and will take a visitor near all points of interest within the battlefield. The multiple picnic shelters and the softball field round out the variety of activities that this park offers.
A trip to the Gauley River and the New River would not be complete without at least a quick stop to see the hallowed ground of this battlefield. During the summer months, the gift shop and museum is open for visitors (weekends and holidays). If you enjoy watching reenactments, you can visit in early September during an even numbered year and take in the thunder of guns as this battle for control of the valley takes place. During our visit we split our day at Carnifex Ferry Battlefield with a trip to the Babcock State Park to see the gorgeous Glade Creek Grist mill! Thanks for the great visit West Virginia State Parks!
Babcock State Park resides in the Appalachian Mountains near the New River Gorge. This state park is a multi faceted park with a variety of opportunities for fun. However, the main attraction at this state park is the Glade Creek Grist Mill.
Glade Creek Grist Mill
The Glade Creek Grist mill is frequently touted as one of the most picturesque locations in West Virginia. Many go as far as to say that it is the most commonly photographed spot in the state. I can attest to it's beauty and how photogenic this building really is.
The History of the Glade Creek Grist Mill
The Glade Creek Grist Mill may look old, but this building is relatively new with the construction being completed in 1976. What makes this mill look old and vintage? This mill was built from the parts of three other West Virginia Mills.
The actual building structure is from the remains of the Stoney Creek Grist mill. That mill dated back to the 1890's and was located in Campbelltown, which is in Pocahontas County.
The overshot waterwheel is from the Spring Run Grist Mill that was located near Petersburg, WV. The waterwheel was the only thing that was salvageable after a fire decimated the mill that was located in Grant County.
The other inner workings for the mill came from the Onego Grist Mill that was located near Seneca Rocks in Pendleton County.
The Glade Creek Grist Mill was built near the sight of the former Coopers Mill which was destroyed in 1920. This mill is fully operational and is open on the weekends. You can even buy some cornmeal that is ground on the premises.
What else does Babcock State Park Have
Babcock State Park is not just for the Grist Mill. There is a campground and the most charming cabins that are for rent. They have multiple trails that are good for trail running, hiking and mountain biking. They even have a mountain top lake for those hot summer days.
Babcock State Park and the Glade Creek Grist Mill are definitely something that we are happy that we took the time to visit. We are already making plans to return to this state park and stay in one of the cabins and explore more of the trails that this park has to offer.
Belief In Living
Travel with us as we explore!