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Time is Running Out!

Hurry and enter to win an autographed copy of Grace’s Pictures!

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Goodreads Book Giveaway

Grace's Pictures by Cindy Thomson

Grace’s Pictures

by Cindy Thomson

Giveaway ends May 21, 2014.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.

Enter to win

Giveaway!

I’ve listed a Goodreads giveaway for Brigid of Ireland. I hope you’ll help spread the word!

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Goodreads Book Giveaway

Brigid of Ireland by Cindy Thomson

Brigid of Ireland

by Cindy Thomson

Giveaway ends April 20, 2014.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.

Enter to win

When Alone is Good

We need each other, and it’s a good thing to be with your friends and family and to meet new people. But I believe it’s good sometimes to be alone. That’s a really, really hard thing to accomplish today. Even if no one is about, if you have the internet, you are not alone.

That’s why when I read this today on www.sacredspace.ie, I tried to image what this is like. I’ve written about Skellig Michael before here and here and here. What do you think? Is it easier to find God alone or with others? My thought is that it depends on your personality. But even extroverts can benefit from some quiet time.

From www.sacredspace.ie

Solitude and Mystery

Several times I acted as a tourist guide on a tooth-shaped rock off the south-west coast of Ireland. Called Sceilg Michael, St Michael’s Rock, it towers 800 feet above the sea, is 13 miles from the mainland, and can be accessed by boat only on calm days.
From about the 6th to the 12th century it was the home of a small colony of monks, perhaps no more than twelve at a time. Their austere Rule has not survived. Removed from nearly all the secondary issues which preoccupy us, they spent their days in reciting the Divine Office, in personal prayer and in eking out a frugal existence from a small garden and a turbulent sea. Surely also they found God in contemplating the waves and the birds, the moon and the stars. A few names survive, seven or eight over six centuries. The few graves are unnamed. What these anonymous men underwent, in order to pray for all humankind – including ourselves – is beyond our imaginings.

It was exhilarating to live in so improbable a place. Solitude brought me into a sense of wonder at the beauty of nature by day and night. I found myself very alive there, and grateful, even when conditions were impossible. I experienced no great revelation. I met my old self, with its old feelings and follies. Surely the monks did too. Yet we both met Mystery there, they under one form and I under another, and I often crave to return.

Irish Photo Giveaway!

Congrats to Susan Poll, the winner of these photographs! Check back for future giveaways.

I’m sharing a bit of my trip to Ireland. Enter to win these prints. They are 4×6 prints.

This gives you a better idea of one of the images.

They are clearer than they appear here. From left clockwise: Slane Abbey, the coast near Sligo, Drumcliffe high cross with the mountain Yeats wrote about in the background, Armoy church and round tower in Northern Ireland.

Leaving a comment here will not enter you (although I’d love to hear your comments.) You must complete at least one step below. More than one gives you more chances.

Good luck!

On the Trail of My Civil War Ancestor

I’ve been on the trail of my 2x great grandfather, Edward Myrick, ever since I found out he and his father, Enoch Myrick, were born in Clermont County, Ohio. My father’s mother was a Myrick, and as far as I had known (and probably my father knew) they all lived in Indiana for a long time. But not this branch. Edward Myrick moved to Indiana right after the Civil War. He died when my grandmother was not quite six, so no one spoke of his service.

Edward Myrick served in the Civil War. He signed up not far from his home at Camp Dennison and he also mustered out there at the end of the war. Discovering he had applied for an invalid pension helped me find out this information. Last weekend I had the opportunity to visit the site. It’s only open on Sunday afternoons and run by some nice volunteer ladies from the DAR. There are two sites to visit. One is the Christian Waldschmidt Homestead, built in 1803. It’s quite interesting, but by the time my ancestor was there, the Waldschmidts were not. The area and houses were abandoned and claimed by the state, and the surrounding land rented from the families who owned it–between 600 and 700 acres, depending on the source you pick. Being so close to the river, and with the railroad running right through the middle of the site, it was the logical place to put a large (about 18,000 men at a time) training facility. The DAR ladies said the site was chosen to protect the city of Cincinnati.

Camp Dennison

I did not take any pictures inside, but there were some amazing pieces, including a wardrobe from Germany that was able to be dismantled for travel. It was beautiful carved and dated to 1714.

Camp Dennison. This photo appeared in Harpers Weekly.

But the reason I’d come was to experience a later time, the Civil War era. The Civil War museum houses much less, but is still interesting. A small house at the rear of the property, named Kate’s house by the Waldschmidts for the daughter it had been built for, served as the guard house to Camp Dennison. (The main house was for the officers and administration.) Kate’s house holds some guns, uniforms, photographs, letters, Bibles, journals, and artifacts unearthed from the site. In addition there are stories displayed throughout that make interesting reading.

Kate’s House, which served as the gate house to Camp Dennison.
Beyond where the railroad was. (Now a bike trail.) This serves as a youth soccer field but once would have held solider housing or perhaps a firing range.

This Civil War memorial was erected in the 1930s.
Back of the monument above.

Edward Myrick served in the 89th Ohio Volunteer Infantry, Company F, enlisting August 6, 1862. Camp Dennison opened about a year earlier. He was disabled by illness while on duty near Carthage, TN, on Feb. 28, 1863. He was treated at several hospitals in TN and Atlanta, so I believe with the exception of one 30-day furlough, he continued to travel with his company. He was discharged at Camp Dennison on June 17, 1865, essentially at the end of the war. The camp was deactivated in September of that year.

My dad, a WWII veteran, never knew this. He would have been proud, I’m sure.

Edward Myrick later in life. He died in 1907.

There is more to the Myrick story. Edward’s father, Enoch and who I presume was his father, George, joined the Gilead Anti-Slavery Society of Clermont County when Enoch was only 14, in 1836. I’m still trying to find out more, so the search continues! 🙂

From the minute book, found here: http://www.ohiomemory.org/cdm/compoundobject/collection/p267401coll32/id/3190/rec/1