Saturday, July 30, 2016

Week 9 - You Learn Something New Each Day

Week 7 was another mixed week as I was scheduled to be with interpretation but ended up lending two of my days to finish up a project I had started while with cultural resources the previous week. I say project but we were really just moving part of the collection at Jamestowne over to Yorktown. This move required three trips and when the trip is a forty minute drive one way on top of the time it takes to load and unload, the time it takes quickly adds up. But over the course of two days we were able to get everything moved and organized in its new home and even had time to travel around to various locations and check temperature and humidity data loggers, which quickly turned into a scavenger hunt as a few of them had died and we couldn't use our phone to track there location. Overall, I'm glad I was able to do this as not being able to see the project through to the end would have bothered me. 

The rest of the week I was back to my normal interpretative duties of working the information desk at both the Jamestowne and Yorktown visitor centers. I have to say by the end of the week I really had the job down and was able to tailor my short speech to the visitors' interest pretty accurately. Through the week I also got the chance to participate in two interpretive programs I hadn't gotten to do my first week with Interpretation. The first is the subject of the three pictures included in this post. We have 3 buildings within the park that we open to visitors when we have staff to station there and the one I didn't get to do last time, the Nelson House, was finally open this week. This was the house owned by Thomas Nelson, Jr. who was a signer of the Declaration of Independence, a brigadier general in the Continental Army who fought at the Siege of Yorktown, and a governor of Virginia. This house was one of the few that survived the siege and is estimated to be 80-90 percent original today. Oh yeah and that cannon shot you see in the side of the building isn't real, but it sure looks cool.

The second new thing I got to do was take the guided Yorktown tour. Our visitor center used to offer a variety of programs and tours but these have slowly been whittled away as staff diminishes. However, we have a few volunteers that are knowledgeable enough to be able to lead tours and programs. This Yorktown tour is a rare occurrence so I made sure tag along for this one and it was well worth the hour out in the heat. I learned things during this tour that I hadn't even heard mentioned in the eight weeks I have already spent here. This tour really was a testament to the benefit of participating in an internship that allows you the ability to work with and talk to as many people within a park as possible.

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