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View du jour June 15, 2014

Magnolia bloomI love to visit the gardens at Chatham Manor in Stafford County overlooking the Rappahannock River and Fredericksburg. This is a photo of a bloom past its prime on one of the large magnolia trees on the grounds.

Chatham is a Georgian house that was the manor house of those that owned Chatham Plantation before the Civil war. The owners were adamant secessionists. They the house when troops of the Grand Army of the Republic (the Union) appeared in 1862 for the ill-fated battle of Fredericksburg. The house was used as a hospital. The descriptions on site are quite graphic and somewhat gruesome, but the War itself was as terrible as all wars. Walt Whitman supposedly was on site as a nurse. The home was privately owned until the later part of the twentieth century when it was dedicated to the National Park Service.

The photo is also available on Flickr at

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