Vacations, Wine and a Confederate Submarine

Melissa and I took a little break last week and went to Seabrook Island, S.C. It’s just outside of Charleston, so we took a day to visit the history of downtown – Rainbow Row, The Battery and White Point Garden.

However, by far, the most fascinating part of the day was our visit to the Warren Lasch Conservation Center, which houses the Confederate submarine, the H.L Hunley.

On the night of Feb. 17, 1864, the man-powered Hunley made the first successful submarine attack in the history of warfare when it detonated a bomb in the hull of the USS Housatonic off the coast of Charleston. The Housatonic sank in minutes; the Hunley never returned from its mission.

The late adventure author Clive Cussler funded a mission to locate the sub. It was discovered in 1995 and raised in 2000. Since then, researchers have been painstakingly working – with dental tools – to preserve the Hunley, which is on display in an underwater tank.

The remains of Lt. George E. Dixon, the leader of the mission, and his seven crew members were found entombed in the sub. In 2004, thousands of people turned out for the funeral procession through Charleston to their final resting place at Magnolia Cemetery.

If you’re in the Charleston area, don’t miss the opportunity to visit the museum. I guarantee it will be worth the trip. In the meantime, you can visit the museum’s excellent website at

A Visit to the Vineyard

We made a side trip on our way south and stopped by my favorite winery – Stony Knoll Vineyards in Dobson, N.C. This is a former tobacco farm that has been in the Coe family for 125 years.

Van Coe began converting from tobacco to grapes in 2001.

Very nice people and great wine. My favorite is the Chambourcin.

If you’re in the neighborhood, stop by. The vineyard is located at 1143 Stony Knoll Rd. in Dobson. You can check them out at

A Nice Tribute to Our POW/MIAs

Over the weekend, I went to Bowling Green, Kentucky, to watch my daughter’s University of Tennessee-Martin volleyball team play in a tournament at Western Kentucky University. (Yes, I’ve been logging a lot of Interstate miles lately.)

I was touched by the display WKU has for our soldiers who were prisoners of war or missing in action. It is a single black chair with the POW/MIA logo, with black stanchions cordoning it off. The display includes a plaque that reads:

Since World War I, more than 92,000 American soldiers are unaccounted for. This unoccupied seat is dedicated to the memory of those brave men and women for the sacrifices that each made in serving this great country.

Meet WKU’s Big Red

It was my first visit to WKU. It’s a beautiful campus.

On a less somber note, the WKU mascot is called “Big Red.” You may have seen Big Red on the commercials for the old Capital One College Mascot Challenge.

While at the tournament, Big Red stopped down to visit my granddaughters. You can see by the photo that Cali was excited to meet Big Red. Cami . . . not a fan!

Buckeye Book Fair Set for Nov. 6

I was accepted to participate in the Buckeye Book Fair on Saturday, Nov. 6.

If you’re a book fan, this is a great book fair. This year it will be held at the Greystone Event Center in Wooster, Ohio.

Here’s a link to the authors and illustrators who will be participating in this year’s fair.

2 thoughts on “Vacations, Wine and a Confederate Submarine”

  1. Thank you, Robin, for including me with your travel update. I like your inquisitive mind. Even on vacation you’re researching and learning new things.

    I came across some historical information that someone put together about the Yocums that goes back to when Peter Yocum (Yochinson) our immigrant ancestor, was a soldier, who came to America about 1643 on the ship Swan. It says he played an important part in colonial affairs, and died in New Amsterdam, where he had been sent by the Swedish Governor, to try to convince Peter Stuyvesant that Delaware belonged to the Swedes and not the Dutch. ( it doesn’t appear he was very successful).

    Did I send this information to you before?

    It appears we are descendants of Peter, 3rd. One of his sons, Joseph Addison Yocum, married Sarah Samantha Butler and they had 6 children: Jacob, Clark, Lydia, Frank, Harry and Clarence. I’m still trying to figure out where Thurman fits in there. I was thinking he might be the son of Lydia, but his last name wouldn’t be Yocum, so possibly the son of Jacob, Frank or Harry?

    If you want copies of this genealogy I can copy and mail them to you if you want to give me your address.




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