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Field Trip Friday: Burritt on the Mountain

Tonya Prater, Owner

Here we are once again for Field Trip Friday and I have to admit that I’m feeling a wee bit lonely here. I’d really love for you to link up and share some of your own field trips. They don’t have to be recent, but it does have to be a field trip. It’s not necessary to be a group trip, some of our favorite trips have been spur of the moment outings as a family. So, link up so I can read about your adventures!

This week we visited Huntsville’s very first museum, Burritt on the Mountain. I’d wanted to visit this living history museum since we first stopped in Alabama over two years ago. I was really excited when I heard they’d be hosting a homeschool day and offering FREE admission! Do I need to mention that we were also very happy to get out of the camper?

Located on Round Top Mountain, Burritt was originally built as the retirement home for Dr. William Henry Burritt. Sadly, the first home burned almost completely on the day he moved in on June 6, 1936. The home was reconstructed and completed in 1938 overlooking Huntsville. Take a peak at this fabulous view!

This unique home is built in the shape of an X, possibly to provide each room with a beautiful view or as his friends claim, to hold a cross grid of antennae to improve radio reception. We noticed the large, open and airy rooms, the unique fireplaces with decorative rock mantles and facings, as well as the beautiful foyer with the curved staircase.

The mansion was hosting an exhibit called Molded in Chocolate that smelled wonderful. There was quite a bit of reading that I admit I didn’t read much of it. I learn so much better with guided tours and don’t often retain what I read so I didn’t bother; I know, what a great example. I did enjoy viewing the incredible display of antique molds representing chocolatiers from around the globe.

Highlights of the home tour included viewing the phosphorescent rocks, the Civil War soldier chocolate mold and the demitasse cups (my daughter collects them)located in the China cabinet. Burritt is much more than just the mansion though.

Also located on the grounds is the Historic Park demonstrating how early settlers of the area lived and farmed. Built around 1810, the Eddins home is the newest home to the park, but Alabama’s oldest documented log structure. All of the structures in the park were originally located within 30 miles of Huntsville, before being donated or purchased by the park and reconstructed to their original condition in the Historic Park.

The Gardiner Cabin was a single room cabin that would have been typical to slave housing in the area. It has been restored to c. 1850. As you can guess, it was very small and contained a partial loft to allow more sleeping space. The buildings have all been decorated with period furnishings.

We also enjoyed seeing the Chandler House. This home featured a dogtrot, or open hallway betweent the two living rooms. This hallway allowed the homes occupants to take advantage of the breezes to cool the house in the summer. In addition to several other homes, you’ll also find a Smokehouse, Spring House, Blacksmith Shop, Sorghum Mill & Furnace, Baptist Church and Farmyard on the property.

We all agreed that we didn’t learn as much as we could have because we were too focused on FUN & FRIENDS to spend much time actually learning. I guess that’s the downfall of planning field trips with friends, but you won’t hear any of us complaining too loudly! I plan to stop back with my husband so he can see what he missed. I also want to stop in the gift shop (lovely) once more and to hike on the beautiful trails.

Now that I’ve told you about our trip, why not take take a field trip of your own with a Virtual Tour?

So, that’s a wrap-up of our field trip. What’d you do this week? Do you have a field trip you’d like to share? Just add your link to Mcklinky and we’ll hop on over and take a peek. And remember, we’ll do this again next week. Same time. Same place. Happy Field Trippin’!

Cheesemakin' Mamma

Thursday 25th of February 2010

What a neat place and a really good idea to link up with other homeschool field trips. We'll be doing another field trip in March and I will have to link to you. Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a nice comment. Blessings, Jackie

little castle

Friday 19th of February 2010

That looks like a very cool place to visit!


Friday 19th of February 2010

Beautiful! Protection Status
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