A Long Hiatus and a Cool Butterfly

It has been several weeks since I blogged of my travels in the field. I have had content, but not the time or inclination to write. We ware starting our third week of school and football season is in full swing, so I have not took much time at this venture. At any rate very people are seeing the blog. I wonder if it will every be pictured up by Google.

Today was a big day for the backyard naturalist. A Monarch butterfly was passing through and stopped at a sunflower.

Monarch on Sunflower


Rock Run Comissary

When I saw this building today I was moving across Cherokee County, Alabama at a pretty good clip. I turned around to go back and get a photograph. I pulled up in the church parking lot across the road and took my photographs. A silver haired gentleman and his wife were the only folks in the parking lot…as a matter of fact they were the only folks at church.  Mr. Strickland told me that the building was a commissary for a iron smelting operation.  He pointed out where other building had been replaced with privet hedges and trees.  Cherokee Historical Society signage states that the Rock Run Furnace operated from 1874 until 1923. Mr. Strickland said it was quite the community.

Rock Run Commissary Cherokee COunty, Alabama

Kolb’s Farm and Cheatham Hill

Slope of Cheatham Hill in Front of the Dead Angle.

I spent the afternoon at the Kennesaw Mountain Battlefield National Park today. I visited the Kolb’s Farm and Cheatham Hill.  Photographs were taken of wayside markers and troop placements markers that dot the landscape. At Cheatham Hill I walked along side Confederate earthworks thrown up along the highest contour of the hill. At one spot the works bend back perpendicularly to the east. I had just found  Dead Angle …a place of great killing. Captain James Hall of the 9th Tennessee Infantry described the carnage of August 27, 1864:

After the enemy had retired and we could survey the ground in our front which they had just occupied, a frightful and disgusting scene of death and destruction was presented to our view. During all of the four years of the war, I do not remember ever to have seen the ground so completely strewn with dead bodies. – The Kennesaw Line: Eyewitness at Dead Angle, Emerging Civil War, http://www.emergingcivilwar.com, accessed July 9, 2017.

Tonight as I write this dispatch from the field I am listening and watching the 25th anniversary version of Ken Burns, Civil War on PBS.  I remember people in the south did not like this when it first aired in 1989.  Now 25 years later in the time of removing Confederate monuments and calling southern soldiers losers and traitors I  find it a little amusing that most of the people I saw today today in the battlefield were walking dogs or jogging in their yoga pants, with bulky backpacks, and water bottles were the accruements of the day.

Oblivious to the drama that unfolded on this field…the face to face wholesale slaughter of humans by humans occurred here…cars whiz through land stained red with American blood. Family with their dogs on leashes and kids in tow hike past trenches where men squatted in blood and fired away at each of other separated by a mere 30 feet.

Goldfinch in the Butterfly Garden

I am not much of a gardener. This is evidenced by my total harvest of two tomatoes and one gourd last year. This is my claim to fame is going to be my stunted watermelons and Indian Corn. I how must have a penchant for growing weeds, because my butterfly garden is absolutely my most productive garden project to date. It is being visited by pollinators..bees, small flying insects, and an occasional butterfly. Yesterday, an American Goldfinch in full breeding plumageDSCN2623 sat among the Cosmos “Sensations” and picked away and the head and petals. The picture is a little fuzzy as I took the picture through the sunroom window.

What A Week in the Field

It has been quite the week.

Wednesday, June 13, 2017, was a real big “finding” day. In the morning I found one of the Calhoun Rocks painted rocks, and two Munzees. I took a Letterboxing trip to the cemeteries in Cassville and Kingston. The find of the day was a structure on Hall Station Road about a mile and a half from Kingston The structure or ruins appear to be the only extant structure of the Williams Cement Company double kiln…a pre- Civil War business venture in north Georgia. Apparently there is a rock formation that can be mined for an ore from which cement is produced.

NFTF Version
Williams Cement Kiln, Bartow County, Georgia

I also found Geocaches along this trip.

On June 15, 2017 We went to the top of Horn Mountain ..opposite John’s Mountain ..to find a Geocache GC6DA6 – A Surprise on Horn Mountain. That was quite the adventure. We were took Forest Road 231 to the top of the ridge where the old road bed crosses the ridge.  We would have never taken this trip in the past. BUT with our little orange jeep we are fearless!

The top is lined with a narrow strip of large and medium boulders. There is a geology lesson there. There is also a botany lesson to he developed.

When I got to the cache the ridge top was enveloped in a cloud…this was kind of surreal.

Horn Mountain
Horn Mountain, Walker County, Georgia


June 18, 2017 – Father’s Day Trip to Point Park in Chattanooga. We did a six mile hike that absolutely killed me. Saw a lot of interesting thing today.

Calhoun Georgia Rock’s

I have joined the ranks of Facebook followers hunting for painted rocks around town.  It seems it is another summer craze much like Pokemon was last summer. I have hunter Geocaches Letterboxes, and Munzees at one time or another, so it is kinda natural for me to join in. Here are my first three finds:


Howard Hill’s Grave


Howard Hill’s grave is located in the New Ashville Cemetery in St.Clair County, Alabama. If you look closely you will see bows and arrows carved into the headstone and arrows stuck into the grave! This is a tribute to one of the greatest archers of modern times. Hill was born in 1899 in Wilsonville, Alabama. He was a star athlete in high school and he played several sports at Auburn. His skills with the longbow landed him trick/stunt shooting gigs in the movies of the time. He played in several Errol Flynn movies and was said to be a good friend of Flynn.  He was equally famous for his hunting feats. He died in 1975.  Check out the link below:

Howard Hill Archery


For those Geocachers out there GC10P84 Real Life Robin Hood is located behind the trees in the background.

Dry Creek Milkweed

May 28, 2017: We took the Jeep to attempt a geocache near the Dry Creek Trailhead in Chatooga County this morning.  Along one section of the road toward the Pinhoti Trail there were several clumps of Milkweed being visited by Black Swallowtails.