Thursday, May 22, 2008


Ron and I hiked the east end of the North Boundary Trail (approx. 3.2 mile round trip), a Greenway in the Oak Ridge, Tennessee area, near where K-25 Plant sits. The gravel road runs about 7 miles from the west end of the City of Oak Ridge, just below the old war era guard station, to just below the old Wheat Community.

This area was settled in the 1700s, and in 1846 was first called the Bald Hill Community. However, it was changed to Wheat in 1880, after the community’s first postmaster Frank Wheat. Early residents included family names such as Henry, Inman, and Welcher.

In about 1840, a Gallaher purchased the area and it was later called the Gallaher-Stone Plantation.

These families buried their families and their slaves (unmarked) in family plots all over the area that became the Reservation known as Oak Ridge. The homes and farms in this area ceased exist in 1942 when the U. S. Government began their “secret” project to build the first atomic bomb that eventually ended World War II.

Today, all these graveyards are numbered and documented using GPS positioning, and open to only the families that once lived in the area. However, if you walk this particular Greenway, you can visit at least 3 of them.

Today we visited 62 (Slivey family) and 63 (Rather family) sites.

Along the trek we discovered a new wildflower with lovely “violet like” blooms called Moth Mullein - the flowers grow from and around a single stalk. If you look closely, you can see why it’s call “moth”…the bloom has the appearance of a moth.

We also stopped and listened to the mating chatter of the 17 YEAR CICADAS that are out in force this year!

This is a very peaceful walk…and sometimes, when the weather and lighting is just right, it can be down right spooky!

Naturally, Ron and I ended up at the Smoky Mountain Brewery for burgers and pale ale later!


Sarge Charlie said...

Good post Mr Mushy, I am still stuck in Florida but if it is the year of the CICADAS, maybe it is a good thing.

BBC said...

Ah, a camper, I'm going to do a lot more camping this year, spent a whole day at a beach yesterday, but it was just a day trip.

Mushy said...

Stuck in Florida...someone has to do it!

I get out every chance I get's good for ya!

~Fathairybastard~ said...

Glad to see you're up and about, with no residuall issues from the tumble. Great story about the slave graves. My buddy Dave thinks he has a few of those on his property up in Gatesville, right up the hill from the range where we shoot. Part of me would love to find out more about all that and see who those folks really are.

BRUNO said...

I never did fear cemeteries, even as a kid. Used to mow a three-acre cemetery by hand, when I was a "baby" in the early sixties. Got paid a whole TWENTY-FIVE DOLLARS for it---BIG money, then!

But still, to this day, I can "sense" the difference between a "friendly" cemetery, and a "cold, spooky" one.

Laugh if ya' want, but at least I've chosen one already that my "future-neighbors" won't mind ME stayin' at...!

Mushy said...

I ain't a going in the ground...gonna be a big bonfire...probably give off light enough for a 3 day wake!

BRUNO said...

Well, I intend to "split the difference", so to speak. Think I'll go with cremation, and have my ashes put in a nice "mini-casket" if you will. I wanna leave just enough of my "leftovers" around, to piss-off the developers, so's they have to PAY to root me to hell!

I'll be sittin' there on my "rock", with a heavenly cigar, and one helluva pitcher of beer waitin' on the rest of ya'....!

Mushy said...

That's a deal!

Sarge Charlie said...

Happy Memorial Day Mushey

On this Memorial Day remember my friends who died for your freedom.

Dear Lord, lest I continue in my complacent ways, help me to remember that someone died for me today. And if there be war, help me to remember to ask and to answer “am I worth dying for?”~

Eleanor Roosevelt

Drowsey Monkey said...

Lovely photos :) Looks like a wonderful place for a hike ... and yes, I bet it could be spooky!

Lin said...

That Moth Mullein is BEAUTIFUL! The regular mullein is shameful ugly by comparison.

VERY glad to see that you're back out hiking after that last tumble/splat you did! Bet you were still a little achy though.

Mushy said...

Thanks Sarge and ladies for you well wishes, and yes, I've discovered two bruises and a hip joint issue that I wasn't immediately aware of...but, it's good to be alive!