March 20, 2005

Friendship Hill

If you are a resident of Southwestern Pennsylvania or North-Central West Virginia and are looking for an out of the ordinary excursion one day, I recommend you visit Friendship Hill. Friendship Hill was for a time the home of Albert Gallatin, senator, congressman, diplomat, and, for 13 years, Secretary of the Treasury under presidents Jefferson and Madison. And that's just his political life. His broader life story is, perhaps, even more interesting.

The National Historic Site includes several trails that are very pleasant for walking. One of them runs along the Monongahela River. And in the main house there are exhibits on Gallatin's life. The house itself, or at least the stories relating to its construction, are fairly interesting too. The museum's exhibits also include a holographic head of Gallatin that makes some points about the grounds and the gentleman's life. While it's more or less Disney technology - it's really kind of cool. It provides an interesting counterpoint to the much more traditional nature of the other exhibits.

Gallatin was hugely influential in his day, but is one (of the many) people from the era of the Founders that most Americans know little about. So if you want to learn a bit about him, or just take a pretty long walk in the country, this place is worth a few hours of your time.

Posted by armand at March 20, 2005 02:20 PM | TrackBack | Posted to West Virginia

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