This tour is Part 4 of a four-part eastbound Pennsylvania Turnpike series that eliminates turnpike boredom. To access the rest of the series, just tap on my author profile.
It tells incredible prehistoric tales of ancient Indians who once walked this trail. Also, compelling historic dramas unfold from the time that the cultures of Indians and European settlers collided here.
This part of the tour begins at the Highspire travel plaza and ends at the Valley Forge travel plaza.
By the time you reach Valley Forge, you will have reached a new understanding about life and death here centuries ago. That's guaranteed!
Along the way, we'll hear the scary story of a boy who overcomes his fear of the dark. We'll learn of big cats that prowled this wilderness, and the wolves, too.
We'll get into tribal medical practices, and how to use signs of nature to forecast weather.
We'll learn a little Seneca. and I'll tell you about two remarkable men who kept this region from becoming the most dangerous place on Earth -- until they didn't.
And, there's more.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS: Thanks to the Lenape Nation of Pennsylvania for contributing Lenni-Lenape language to the tour; to Paul A.W. Wallace, whose 1965 work "Indian Paths of Pennsylvania," cleared the way for all to follow; and to Henry Schoolcraft, who in the first half of the 1800s put tribal stories, legends and myths into writing -- as best as a Victorian white man could -- as Indian culture was thought to be on the verge of extinction.
Valley Forge National Historic Park, Liberty Bell Philadelphia, Independence Hall Philadelphia
As you travel Route 76 East, the Pennsylvania Turnpike, look for Highspire travel plaza signs beyond the Route 283 Interchange. Pull into the plaza. If you need to download the tour, the plaza is wifi equipped. Start the tour and listen to introductory information before returning to the Turnpike.
Places to stop along the way:
Wolf Sanctuary of Pennsylvania; Antiques Capital USA, Adamstown; Indian Echo Caverns.
Best time of day:
Any time, day or night.
This wilderness path becomes a frontier trail when Europeans arrive. Frontiers tend to be violent. This one more than most. I avoid graphic details, but if you wish to spare a child -- or yourself -- talk of killings and scalpings, this tour is not for you. There's a good bit of scary witch cackling, too!
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