Updated 12/18/10

In Podcast #40 Frank and Dave take you camping with our kids in the Blue Ridge Mountains.  We stayed at the Big Meadows campground in Shenandoah National Park.  Find out why there’s a huge meadow on the top of this mountain, discover the ruins of a mountain family’s home, learn more about the men of the Civilian Conservation Corps  (CCC) who built this national park, explore the beautiful overlooks and waterfalls along Skyline Drive, and check out some amazing wildlife... including an encounter with two black bears!  Come on, let’s go trekkin’!

About 450 families were forced to leave their homes and move out of the mountains when Shenandoah National Park was established in 1935. Most of them had been farmers or worked in the apple orchards on the mountains.  Some owned businesses like Melanchton Cliser (photo).  He operated a gas station and his wife had a small restaurant along Route 211 in the northern part of the park.  He refused to leave when the government told him to, so on October 3, 1935, he was forcibly removed from his property by four officers, then his seven-room house, gas station, and restaurant were torn down.  Now, not much remains of the homes and shops of these mountain dwellers, but it is important to remember what they sacrificed so we could enjoy the national park. (Source)

SOL Correlation:

VS.2b The student will demonstrate knowledge of the geography and early inhabitants of Virginia byb) locating and describing Virginia’s Coastal Plain (Tidewater), Piedmont, Blue Ridge Mountains, Valley and Ridge, and Appalachian Plateau;

4.8b The student will investigate and understand important Virginia natural resources.  Key concepts include a) watershed and water resources;

  1. b)animals and plants;

d) forests, soil, and land.

VS.10c The student will demonstrate knowledge of government, geography, and economics by c) explaining how advances in transportation, communications, and technology have contributed to Virginia’s prosperity and role in the global economy.

VS.9a The student will demonstrate knowledge of twentieth century Virginia by a) describing the economic and social transition from a rural, agricultural society to a more urban, industrialized society, including the reasons people came to Virginia from other states and countries;

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Blue Ridge