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  • Writer's pictureBetsy

A Run and Walk Through History

Downtown Newburyport ⬆️

Hi FitFooters!

I brought my phone along for my run this morning along the Merrimack River through the towns of Salisbury and Newburyport, MA and thought I would share the charming sights and paths I passed. Almost everyplace has a complicated history and the section of northern Massachusetts is no exception. While today this area is booming in terms of property values and community revitalization (and some great restaurants!) it wasn't always this way and I would be remiss to not mention that Native Americans were the first settlers of this land and that many of ships that came into these ports were involved in the North American slave trade. Having said that, the abolitionist movement "reached a peak with the activities of William Lloyd Garrison, who was born in Newburyport and help develop an anti-slavery climate." (Wikipedia: Newburyport, MA). Like most things: it's complicated people.

But back to the path my FitFoot feet covered this morning:

Rings Island. I started my run with a half mile loop around this plot of land located in the Merrimack River estuary. I couldn’t find much recorded history of this island, except for the fact it was designated as a spot for fishing and running around the place you can see a sailboat in almost every yard 😆

The Essex Coastal Scenic Byway connect 14 communities along the northern coast of Massachusetts. It is 90 miles long and connects Lynn to Salisbury, MA, where my run started. Along this road are beautiful lookout points, historic sites and buildings, and recreational spots.

According to Wikipedia, Capt March was a colonel in the MA Bay militia and, as such, led military operations against the French and Indians by the English in King William’s War and Queen Anne’s War (mental note: look up King William’s and Queen Anne’s War). This photo is of Capt. March’s house on Ring’s Island.

Boats everywhere…

…Including this impressive 197 foot yacht 🛥 Bella Vita across the river.

The Clipper City (a clipper is a type of boat, btw) Rail Trail (just over three paved miles through town) connects the commuter rail station that can take you as far south as Providence, RI, to the Harborwalk along the waterfront. Another section follows the river through town and connects what is termed the South End, goes under the main High Street over to the neighboring town of Newbury. There are sculpture, murals, and great views of the water at almost every turn.

Memorial to Fisherpeople lost at sea.

Including the crew of the Heather Lynne II. You can learn more about their tragic story in the book Dead Men Tapping.

Newburyport is the birthplace of the USCG

More beautiful walkways for strolls with dogs or a 🏃🏻‍♀️ 🥰

shops in historic buildings

You can just see the steeple at the Central Congregational Church in Newburyport.

It was a drizzly and rather cool (for July) morning, but as you can see from these photos, the city still loves lovely!

Stay well, FitFooters!


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