The birthplace of the Triple Crown winner Secretariat. The deathplace of confederate General Stonewall Jackson and Abraham Lincoln assassin John Wilkes Booth. Home of the state fair, an army base (Fort A.P. Hill) and one of the biggest fossil sites east of the Mississippi (Caramel Church Quarry).
A tough place to find a good place to run.
I looked at maps, web sites and travel books. I couldn’t find any trails or even sizable public parks in Caroline County that seemed appropriate for running.
Ultimately, I went to the town of Bowling Green on the day of its fall festival and hoped for the best. After running through some neighborhoods, I found a country road that was relatively safe and then a nice gravel road. It wasn’t ideal, but it worked.
The festival itself was somewhat of a disappointment from my point of view. It was a good event for kids or for people that like classic custom cars. I didn’t find any gems among the arts and crafts. When I went by the main stage, the live music consisted of local groups playing covers of popular country songs.
Caroline County, about 80 miles south of D.C., has a population of around 28,000. Its equine history actually goes back to 1700s when Arabian horses were imported from England. Secretariat was born at Meadow Farm in 1970 and won the Triple Crown in 1973, the first horse to accomplish the feat in 25 years.
During the Civil War, Robert E. Lee’s and Ulysses S. Grant’s troops first battled against each other in the county. In May 1864, Lee’s troops thwarted Grant’s first attempt to make his way to Richmond.
Stonewall Jackson was shot by friendly fire in the Battle of Chancellorsville in May 2, 1863 and died six days later at the Chandler plantation.
After John Wilkes Booth assassinated Lincoln on April 14, 1865 in Washington D.C., he escaped and made his way to the Caroline town of Port Royal. He was killed near there by Union Calvary forces on April 25, 1865.
60 runs down, 74 to go.