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March Date Thursday September 21, 2006 March Day 97

Good Day to all March to Yorktown followers and supporters ~

The group sleeps in at Halcyon House..no reveille as we are at rest these two days in Georgetown. On entering the privy area of the basement studio, we find Dave sleeping peacefully behind a closed door from the studio proper and later learn that Dylan the hound's, playful and affectionate manner was not conducive to his good night's sleep.
We take advantage of the modern and elegant shower facilities and are soon picked up and whisked by BJ in her large carriage into downtown Washington. The day is cool and breezy and we are thankfully comfortable in our wool outergarments.

We are delighted to be joined by Ursula Reed who has travelled by train from Philadelphia to be with us today. Our hosts have arranged a personal tour of the Geography and Maps Division at the Library of Congress with cartographic historical specialist Patricia Van Ee. The marchers, along with Pat and Robert, Adele, Margaret, BJ, Acquinetta and Ursula are ushered into an immense cool, climate-controlled map room where our guide has displayed the original French maps of the march routes from 1781 and 1782, along with the illustrated book of each camp. The large map is covered with a plastic layer and we are allowed to touch this surface and trace our journey on this precious relic. Also on display in a clear case is an intricately carved powder horn depicting the surrender scene at Yorktown. Patricia informs us of the literally millions of maps that are stored here, and of the security and cataloguing measures that insure their safety.

Our tour is over much too soon but we continue throught the basement tunnel under the street and emerge in the Jefferson Building which houses the majority of Thomas Jefferson's personal library. We visit the Great Hall, the North, South, East and West Corridors, awed the grandeur, majestic ceilings and symbolisms. We are stopped, questioned, and photographed often. Again, too soon, it is time to move on.

We walk the few blocks to the Hart Senate Office building where we are scheduled to lunch in the Senate Dining Room, but first, there is security screening as we enter. Of course, Rose is wearing the same set of metal stays as at Independence Hall in Philadelphia, and the alarms sound as she walks through the arch. Only this time, the security officers are not satisfied with the body "wand" and a female officer is summoned for a full - and I mean FULL - body pat-down. During all this, BJ is having her own security problems.....having parked her carriage, she enters the building through another entrance, sweetly and innocently carrying Mike's sword which she did not want to leave in the carriage. The group joins her as she is detained....the sargent at arms has been summoned and arrives with his "men in black" escorts. After much discussion and explanation, the sword is kept by the sargent for the duration of our stay. Our personal escort then is able to lead us to the dining room in the Capitol, via underground shuttle.

Outside the dining room, we breifly meet and are photographed with Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Spector. Bill Clark, a photographer from the Capitol Hill Newsletter "Roll Call" happens by and takes our story and photographs for this daily publication.

As the guests of Indiana Senator Richard Lugar ,we have a very pleasant lunch in the Senate Dining Room, seated at a far table under a beautiful stained glass window of George Washington, in the midst of our elected officials. Photographs are not allowed here, but we so want a picture of our table with General Washington splendidly displayed above us....we hope we did not jeapordize our waiter's employ as he attempted to accommodate us. We never did get that photo.

BJ has arranged a short meeting with Wyoming Senator Craig Thomas, a proponent of the W3R legislation, and we leave the ladies behind enjoying their just desserts, and are escorted to his office, again via underground shuttle. After a very brief wait and chatting with his staff, the senator arrives. We are each introduced and he pleasantly engages with us about the march, gives us the current status of the W3R senate bill, congratulates us and is photographed with the group. We also photograph him reading the article and front page photo of America's March to Yorktown in today's Washington Times.

Attempting to return to the Capitol building sans escort, we are "adopted" by guide Sally Goyea who personally volunteers to escort us through the Capitol. As we tour, we draw the attention of Vermont Senator James Jeffords, Pennsylvania Congressman Chaka Fattah, Virginia Senator John Warner, and Speaker of the House J. Dennis Hastert. Tourists in full colonial garb is not a daily occurence. We visit the Rotunda, the Old Superior Court Chamber and are even squirreled down a back circular stair to view "bullet holes" in the wall, allegedly fired by the British. We are each given Senate and House of Representative passes to the visitor's gallery for the One Hundred Ninth Congress. It is a wonderful sight-filled day and we soon find the time has slipped away. There is far too much to see in one short day.

We have a final visit to make before we leave the Hart Building....the office of the sargent at arms to retrieve Mike's sword. Brett Swanson, Deputy Assistant SAA Police Operation wishes us good fortune on our march, but the sword is not relinquished until we are outside of the building. We photograph the ceremonial passing of the sword from Brett to its owner.

We make our way to the Monocle, favorite watering hole of many officials and are treated to a round of spirits by patron Peter T. who states he is a "lateral" relative of George Washington, and wishes us well on our journey.

We say goodbye to Ursula as we leave her at the train station, and BJ delivers the group back to Halcyon House where we now move forward in the dark, bringing camp Martha to our night's camp at Fort C.F.Smith. This site has been arranged by Park manager Scott Deibler and we are greeted by Dave Farner who has waited beyond hours in the dark for our arrival. We are given every accommodation at this lush gardened Civil War Fort, and Martha is "berthed" in the drive near the main house. We seem to have it all, except level ground. In tents and bunks, we retire...listing about twenty degrees to the side. No matter....we adjust and sleep well again. A demain.

Avec amour,