Sunday, May 31, 2015

Day 7 - Last day - John Adams

Our last stop on our trip was Quincy Mass. (Pronounced "Quinzy") 
This is the Birthplace of John Adams.
 Evidently at the time he was born this was Braintree. But as Braintree grew they had to divide up the town a bit and Quincy was one of the parts separated off.

After finding the visitor's center in Quincy we joined a tour and got on a trolley that took us to Braintree to see the actual homes where John Adams was born and then later raised his family.
 The upper right window was the room where John Adams was born.
The guide called it a "Salt box" house. Two stories in the front and one story in the back. 

 Here is the home John Adams brought Abigail home to after they got married. This is where they lived for the next 20 years. So this is where John Quincy Adams was born and where Abigail lived and farmed while John was off being an ambassador and such.

The colonial flag flies over the property here.

Another Saltbox house.
Just to show how close these two houses are to one another. John Adams didn't move too far from home when he married. I guess it was nice to have family close by when John was away for years at a time.

After another short drive on our trolley we disembarked at Peacefield.  This is the house John Adams and Abigail settle in when they return from France. It was much smaller then and the guide explained that it was a bit of a fixer upper. The Adams' (Four generations called this home) added on several times to this house.

 The smaller building off to the side of the house is "the first Presidential Library", not officially of course. But it was a library built by John Quincy Adams' son Charles to hold all his father's books. The Adams family really loved books and John Quincy Adams had books in 10 different languages in his library.

 I really wish we could have taken pictures inside the buildings. The home was lovely and certainly much grander than the two saltbox homes that they had lived in and that we had toured earlier.

 The grounds were lovely! Everything so green and the flowers seemed to all be blooming.

 Our trolley dropped us off back in downtown Quincy.  A short walk down the street was the Church of the Presidents. Not an official part of the John Adams tour but we figured it would be a good place to finish off our visit with John Adams.

 This is where he is buried.
 Here is the crypt where John, Abigail, John Quincy and his wife Louisa are all buried.

 There were flags on each of the presidents. Take a close look at the one on John Adams. How many stripes and stars are there?  15 stripes and 15 stars. This is the flag as it would have been when he died. They hadn't yet set the standard as 13 stripes and a star for each state.

Here is John Quincy Adam's flag. He has the 13 stripes and 24 stars.

 We sat in the Adam's pew and the guide told us more about the church. This wasn't the original resting place for any of the Adams'. They have a family crypt across the street where the other member's of the family are laid to rest. This church was built after they had already passed.

 Their descendants still attend services here at times. Usually for the birthday wreath laying ceremonies and such.

 Did I say that was our last stop? I was wrong. We had one last place to visit before heading to the airport to fly home.

 While driving around in Massachusetts we joked that there was a Dunkin Donuts on every corner. It was such a joke we tried to google how many there were in the Boston Area. After doing a bit of research we found out that Dunkin Donuts originated in Quincy and that they outnumber Starbucks 10 to 1 in the area. We think that ratio is even greater because we hardly saw any Starbucks and everywhere we looked we saw Dunkin Donuts stores and everyone had a Dunkin Donuts coffee cup.  80% of their sales is in coffee.

 So we visitied the original store that started it all. It was only a few blocks away from down town so it was rather convenient.

 No coffee for us but we did get a Boston Cream Donut. YUM!
This truely was the last stop and we headed to the airport after this. We were ready to return home. We missed our normal life and families at home.

This is what we brought home for them.
Some Boston Baked Beans candies, Historical recipe hot chocolate, a magnent that says "Keep Calm and eat Chocolate" and another magnet for the fridge from Boston's Freedom Trail. There were some Little Women Paperdolls Sophie picked up at Orchard House. A Fife for me. I wanted to see if it was like playing a flute.  We brought the boys some Thanksgiving madlibs and a musket pen to do them with. Sophie picked up a lovely anchor bracelet and a snowglobe (not in the picture) from Plymouth.

That was the trip. Travel always wears me out. I am happy to be home.

Day 6 - Mayflower, Plymouth and Lobster Bisque

The Mayflower replica looked pretty small sitting in the harbor but once on the ship it didn't feel nearly as small as it had looked.

Not a great picture since the actor is behind the mast there. But we talked to John Howland for a bit and he explained that he was a manservant for John Carver who is the first Governer of Plymouth and most likely the one who wrote the Mayflower Compact.  It was interesting to talk to this actor because when we were at the Joseph Smith Memorial the day before he was the Ancestor that Joseph Smith was listed as decended from. They had a family tree there at the memorial that also showed that William Churchhill, George Bush,  and a few other presidents were all descended from this John Howland. He was a young man when he came on the Mayflower but he has many very important descendents.

 After talking with John for a short while we started to explore the ship. Here are the Captains quarters.

Looks like quite a big room for just one man but what do I know about what goes on in a ship.

 Here are the quarters for the rest of the mates. Not the crew but his first mates and such. It mostly looked like a pass through room to the Captains quarters. Certainly not a place to go to be alone.
 This looked like the Galley where the cook would have to do the cooking.
 Down one level is where the 102 passengers all stayed. They didn't go up on deck much because they didn't want to get in the way of the crew so they just sat down here in the lower deck.

 Here is the hold where all the furniture and other supplies were kept that they were bringing with them to settle in the New World.

This lady came on the boat and sat down waiting for someone to talk to her. We knew the drill so we asked her about herself.

 She said her name is Desire Minter. She came alone. Her family sent her to the New World under the care of John Carver because her recently widowed mother had remarried and felt like Desire would have a better chance in the New World. They had been living in Holland and it wasn't a good place for young ladies to make their way in the world.
Our girls talked to her for quite awhile. Desire was suppose to be about 15 years old so maybe they could relate to one another. Desire didn't talk about it but we knew her history from other things we had read already. She doesn't stay in Plymouth. She returns to England after that first hard winter.

 This man was one of the crew. He was a gunner. He told us about life for the crew and when asked if he was going to stay in America he said NO. There was nothing here for him. He had family back at home waiting for him to return to England.

This was certainly another interesting stop on our trip.

 Just a short walk down the harbor we found Plymouth Rock.

 I don't know if this is exactly where they landed but we were told this is where they would tie up the ship.
 After visiting all the places in Plymouth we wanted to see we took a drive down into Rhode Island.  Being this close to yet another state we decided we just had to go take a look. We drove down to Newport RI. We drove down Bellevue Ave which is where the Gilded age super wealthy were building the cottages. They certainly looked like Mansions to us. We drove around gawking at all the big beautiful places but never stopped to get out and I didn't even think to take any pictures.

 While in Rhode Island we figured it was time to try some local food. None of us are really excited about sea food but felt like we should have clam chowder or something. We decided Lobster Bisque would do. We googled places in Newport that served Lobster Bisque and found a pub that got rave reviews for their bisque.

We ordered some of the soup "to go" because the wait for a table was very long.

 The girls thought it was really funny that they were standing in a bar waiting for fish soup.

 But we got some Bisque and sat on a bench and gave it a try. My niece took a bite and decided it was great. Took a few more and then decided it was gross. She said it was just fishy butter.
 Sophie was on again off again sick on this trip and was really not feeling great at that moment so she decided not to have the soup. But at least she posed with it and took one small spoonful, just to claim she tried it.
There did seem to be a lot of oil but I enjoyed my cup of Lobster Bisque but can't say it was my favorite. It might have been better in a bread bowl. I think it is great in small amounts. It is pretty greasy! I don't know if I would ever order it again.