Cape Gazette
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SEA TO SHINING SEA: Thinking about the sun

By Dennis Forney | Apr 19, 2013
Photo by: Dennis Forney This stone in the old Ebenezer Cemetery in Quakertown - along the headwaters of Black Hog Gut - silhouettes the early morning sun and demonstrates the easterly orientation of the grave.

Lewes, Delaware — Thinking about the sun as it's rising this morning.  In a few weeks Becky and I will start pedaling east from Astoria, Oregon - destination Lewes by Labor Day. (I'm writing this morning from the Rotary Pavilion on Lewes Beach.  Testing my internet connection through my iPhone.  Personal hotspot.  So far so good.)

Our plan is to break camp each morning at sun-up and hit the road before traffic gets heavy and the heat gets up a full head of steam.  One concern I have about traveling from west to east is the morning sun in our eyes.  Not so sure how that's going to work.  Sunglasses of course but the helmets don't have much of a brim.  We'll see how it works out.  We might come to treasure cloudy days.

I passed an ancient cemetery on Savannah Road in Quakertown this morning and it put me in the mind of the rising sun.  Most of the gravestones - the ones still standing - are oriented toward the east and the rising sun.  There is some signifcance to that - perhaps something to do with rebirth and resurrection of the soul from the grave.  I'll have to do some research.

The cemetery is on the site of a church long gone known as Ebenezer. I believe it's the cemetery where 18th century surveyor Rhoads Shankland is buried.  Shankland laid out the town of Georgetown some time around 1790 when the people of Sussex wanted their county seat moved from Lewes to the center of the large county.

We're just at the edges of working with the state to erect an historical marker at the cemetery.  I've included a couple of photos from the cemetery I made this morning.

And a piece of wisdom from my father-in-law Dorsey Owings this morning:  Don't throw away dirty water until you have clean.  He's a Welshman - a generation or two removed, and a farmer.

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This is the gravestone for Mary Shankland, wife of Rhoads who did the original survey for Georgetown around 1790. Mary died in 1803 at the age of 36 which means she was born in 1767.
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