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Diana Gabaldon Drums Of Autumn NC Historic Sites New Bern Outlander North Carolina Pre-Revolutionary War Period Season 4 Tryon Palace

On the Trail of History: A Journey through Diana Gabaldon’s North Carolina, Part I

May 9, 2019

Guest post from Lisa A. Margulies

I recently had the opportunity to visit several sites in North Carolina, tracing the steps of the 18th Century historical figures, James Alexander Malcolm Mackenzie Fraser and his wife, Claire Elizabeth Beauchamp Randall Fraser. What? They are NOT real historical figures? Don’t tell that to the fans of Diana Gabaldon’s writing. To us, they are as real as the locations the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources brought the author to this last weekend in April.

My journey began in Iowa with a flight from Des Moines to Raleigh, NC. I drove to the historical town of New Bern on the eastern coastal region to kick off my tour. Tryon Palace would be the first to host Diana’s visit so I decided to familiarize myself with the Palace and the community in which it is centered.

The Palace as described in the Diana’s Outlander series is indeed like the grand opulence on display today. The first NC Governor’s state of residence was completed in 1770 and occupied by Governor Tryon until 1771 when a new Governor, Josiah Martin replaced him. Tryon went to great lengths to document the construction and furnishings of his mansion. This proved invaluable for the 1959 reconstruction of the Palace. All but the original stables were destroyed by fire just 28 years after its completion in 1798. The Governor had hired an English architect to create a place of residence worthy of King George III and Queen Charlotte of England, one that could support visits of royalty and promote the affairs and the Crown’s dominion. It is easy to imagine the pages of The Fiery Cross come to life and to understand the the Regulator’s points of view regarding unfair use of tax payer’s dollars! The Palace is definitely fit for a King! No wonder Governor Tryon “got out of Dodge” (or accepted the commission of Governor of the State of New York taking his furnishings with him in late 1771) before the backlash of his spending could ignite a Revolutionary War. Wait, in a way, it did. The grievances aired by North Carolinians to their government became seeds of revolutionary discontent. Thus, history as we know it.

The beauty of the Tryon Palace was used as a backdrop for Diana Gabaldon and the two events for which she was the guest of honor. The first, “An Evening with Diana Gabaldon,” began with a small group and cocktails at a private historical residence in New Bern and then moved to the North Carolina Historical Museum adjacent to the Palace for a lavishly Outlander themed dinner with seventy plus in attendance. The event had been planned for the South Lawn of the Palace Gardens but due to inclement weather was moved indoors.

Diana was escorted in by her husband, Doug Watkins, with accompaniment from a local bagpiper playing the Skye Boat Song . The attendees were seated, (well, actually standing at that point), around ten tables, pumped to hear all that she had to share. Introductions were given by various members of the North Carolina State Government and Diana was given platform to speak for approximately 30 minutes before taking questions from her followers. Our character-themed dinner and dessert followed the conclusion of the Q&A session.

So what did Diana share? She began by addressing her writing connection to North Carolina and the importance of the Regulator history in the story of Jamie and Claire, and now, Murtagh, in the TV series. This storyline, by the way, was her suggestion and she is pleased with the conflict it sets up going forward in the adaptation. While she does see the scripts and is allowed notes upon them, Diana does NOT have complete control of every detail. Sometimes her voice is heard, sometimes not. She joked that the NC of the show is NOT geographically accurate and that the powers that be are counting on viewers not having been to the actual state of North Carolina! She further added, that having seen the dailies from season 5, at least the wigs are a lot better! (Cheers from all!)

Back to the subject of writing and specifically why it takes so long for Diana to complete a book… The average novel is 100,000 words. Outlander, the shortest book in the series is 300,000 words. It takes at least 2 1/2 years to write a book with all the research that she puts into each novel. This led to Diana’s reasoning for not having an assistant. She could tell someone to go to the store and pick up hotdogs and beans but if she went to the store, she might see other interesting ingredients. Thus changing, adapting, creating a whole new menu at the end of the day. DG has many times described her writing style as nonlinear in fashion. Her example illustrates this as well. Needless to say, none of her adoring fans will be hired as a personal research assistant anytime soon. (Sigh.)

Diana also looks for first person historical accounts to weave in the details of her storytelling. She cited the Battle of King’s Mountain and the historical account of an actual soldier’s experience for this. The Battle will be included in the ninth book. Watch for details about tree bark flying from bullet spray and the aftermath of other sights, sounds, and smells experienced by a character in Bees. “History is not what happened, it’s what people wrote down about it.” Diana went on to share other consultant and script-writing anecdotes. She told the story of Jamie’s missing hat in an early season four episode. It was written that after the misplaced hat had been found in the pig’s pen the hat was to be thrown away in the trash can. Diana had to step in and explain the value of the leather and that nothing would be thrown away in that time period, especially in a wastebasket because that didn’t even exist! The scene was rewritten and the hat was then placed on an upper shelf. Script writers think dialogue first then what people are actually doing last!

Overall, DG’s experience with the series, writing and being on the set has been most enjoyable. Everyone is always joking around! Diana made us all want to stow away in her luggage next trip to the set.

Six questions were answered from the audience during the last part of the formal programming and before dinner. Diana was asked about how much input she has in the casting process and she told the story of finding the leads Sam Heughan and Caitriona Balfe. Diana has no say in the hiring and remembered thinking Sam was a chameleon actor, he looked different in every role he had played so far. Diana was shown “grotesque” pictures of him but the tape sent to her was “Jamie.” The standing joke was that Jamie would probably turn out to be the UPS man, but Sam was found quickly in the selection process! Finding Claire proved to be the difficult one. Down to the wire in time, everyone was sent home with the reject pile and told to find her. Caitriona was then unanimously selected from that pile based upon her own self tape with an episode 1 scene, “Help, he’s going over!”

Other questions were also answered:
Q: Has there been any talk about a spin off Lord John series?
A: Although lots of interest has been expressed by many sources, no official conversations have been had.

Q: How has Diana’s Catholic upbringing influenced the characters and her writing?
A: Diana has knowledge, for one, (unlike many of the show’s script writers). Also, Celtic Catholics/Christians have an interesting take on religion. They tend to incorporate incantations, charms, rituals into their beliefs and daily lives, lending to a more natural process. The issue of killing was discussed and the introduction of other characters such as Quakers help to give the story balance here.

Q: Does Diana know what her characters will be and do? How do her characters come to her?
A: The pace and process take shape from a kernel, scene by scene. Diana went on to describe this process of her writing from the kernel in her mind’s eye of a Scottish crystal goblet.

The final question of the evening revolved around the origin of her writing and 1st novel. Her practice novel had to be historical because if she couldn’t come up with original stories, at least she’d have something to fall back on. Many of us have heard this telling of the Doctor Who episode that sparked the flame for an 18th-century man in a kilt who would become our beloved Jamie. Her English character, Claire, wasn’t having any of that 18th-century vibe though, and Diana knew from her voice and that first cottage introduction that Claire would be a modern woman having gone back in time, thus creating the sci-fi aspect. This origin of Outlander is a pleasure to hear in Diana‘s voice anytime.

On a personal note, I was given the opportunity to mingle a few minutes at the end of the evening. After bit of fangirling, I recovered my senses enough to ask this final question: If she could remove Herself as author and just be a fan of The Fiery Cross, what three moments would she most like to transfer to the visual medium of season five? Diana responded with the scene that involves Claire in the windowsill in the middle of the night. Jamie comes in to find her with goosebumps on her arms. What transpires then is a very intimate moment that Diana is really pushing for inclusion this season. (Fingers crossed!) The next scene she described to me I will only say, for spoiler reasons, is a moment of great impact on Roger and his character. She would want to include that and also the poignant aftermath with his son.

Of course I was thrilled to have had this interaction with my all-time favorite author. So, along with my thanks for her insight and time that evening, I told Diana I would be following her as she traveled across the state over the next few days. (Now cemented in the mind of Diana Gabaldon is the image of me as a stalker. Great.)

This incredible “Evening with Diana Gabaldon” transpired over four plus hours and was made possible by the coordinated efforts of Bill McCrea, Executive Director of Tryon Palace, Susi Hamilton, NC Department of Natural and Cultural Resources Secretary and their amazing team members. Many thanks and much praise to everyone involved.

Thank you so much Lisa for sharing your “Evening with Diana Gabaldon” at Tryon Palace with us!

Tryon Palace is a great place to visit, as well as the adjoining NC History Center, with informative and interactive exhibits–it’s fun and educational! We appreciate the folks at the NC Department of Natural and Cultural Resources bringing this amazing event to eastern North Carolina in support of historic New Bern. All proceeds went towards continuing repairs at Tryon Palace from Hurricane Florence in September 2018.

Drums Of Autumn Fraser's Ridge Native Americans Outlander North Carolina Pre-Revolutionary War Period River Run Season 4

Episode 410 Recap – The Deep Heart’s Core

January 11, 2019

Guest Post by Cameron Hogg

After last week’s episode, I was especially excited for this week to see the truth about Roger’s disappearance come out, and this episode did not disappoint!

As a devoted Daddy’s girl myself, I love the dynamic building between Bree and Jamie.  This episode starts with a heart to heart between the two of them, but it becomes clear that this is not an episode of “Father Knows Best.”  Jamie does some pretty slick reverse “psychologizing” on Bree here.  He smoothly goes from reassuring Bree that no one thinks less of her “for something {she} didn’t do, but was done to {her},” to turning things around and suggesting that maybe she was “playing with the truth” to cover a mistake.  But it doesn’t take long for Jamie to bring on the brawn to show her there was no way to have prevented what Bonnet did, no matter how strong Bree feels she is or feels she should have been. Man, does this guy know how to create a great teachable moment, or what?  Then the two discuss how Jamie has dealt with his own experiences with BJR at Wentworth.  Scenes like this help show Jamie’s depth and complexity, and I think Sam Heughan plays it beautifully every time.

You may be wondering what poor Roger is up to right about now.  Oh right, he’s being dragged through the mountains by the Mohawk.  Our writers and producers do love a good slog through the wilderness, now don’t they?  At least these treks seem to be getting shorter, and this one had more plot relevance than 15 minutes of Claire hacking through the jungle or Bree limping through the highlands, but I digress…

Meanwhile, back on the ridge- Claire and Bree have an emotional talk about what Bree plans to do regarding her pregnancy.  They discuss all the options, and both are essentially contemplating the loss of a child- Bree is deciding on the future of her pregnancy, and Claire is facing the possibility of losing Bree a second time if Bree chooses to go back to her own time.  Could someone please pass the tissues?

On a lighter note, I loved the exchange between Claire and Bree lamenting all they miss from the future.  From cheeseburgers to Led Zeppelin, toilets to aspirin, this was a sweet moment for the two of them displaying how much they’d missed each other when separated by 200 years also. 

In a nod to Jamie’s nightmares season 2, Bree’s dream sequence includes a loving visit from Roger, showing how incredibly understanding he is and how much he loves Bree but quickly turns terrifying when he is replaced by Stephen Bonnet and we get a taste of the violence Bree likely experienced during her attack, but was mercifully left out in the original scene of their first meeting.  When Lizzie tries to comfort her, Bree realizes that Lizzie has been keeping something a secret and begins putting together that Roger isn’t really missing or back in the 60’s after all.  Side note- does anyone else want to smack Lizzie right about now?  Maybe she needs a Jamie-style teachable moment about not jumping to conclusions. 

Now that Bree knows what’s up, stuff is about to get real… Bree storms in to confront Jamie about his part in the mix up that sent Roger packing.  If that weren’t enough to make you mad at Jamie, then he turns around and accuses Bree of actually lying to cover her pregnancy and claiming to be raped when it was really consensual.  Well now, Jamie deserves slapping too… and Ian doesn’t get left out for his part and gets slapped… hey, Lizzie’s there, can we slap her now too?  Here we really see how Bree is just as fiery as her parents and all heck breaks loose when Jamie gets all indignant again, when Bree calls him on it saying, “you don’t get to be more angry than me!” Go, girl!  During this exchange, Jamie learns that Bonnet was the real rapist when Claire slams the retrieved ring on the table, and the change (from the book) of which ring was taken by Bonnet pays off!

Now comes the time when Jamie and Young Ian acknowledge their mistake and promise to get Roger back.  It’s also here that we learn that Bree is planning to keep the baby, if there’s even the slightest chance that the baby is Roger’s.  But Bree doesn’t trust the menfolk to get it right after all that happened, so she tells Claire she has to go to supervise.  Understandably Claire balks at this as it means she can’t be with Bree when the baby is born.  Bree tries to convince her she’ll be fine… because she has Lizzie.  Is that supposed to be reassuring at this point?  Thank goodness Jamie suggests sending Bree off with Murtaugh to Jocasta’s.  Murtaugh certainly doesn’t seem to mind a visit to Jocasta, and knowing his fondness for Jamie’s mother, could this be foreshadowing of their relationship to come? 

Jamie and Claire argue over the situation and it occurs to me that Claire doesn’t really have a lot of right to be so mad at Jamie for it when she knew it was Bonnet all along.  But Jamie entrusts Murtaugh to find Bonnet after seeing Bree safely to Jocasta’s so that Jamie can kill him, as he’d persuaded Bree not to do when they were recounting the attack at the beginning of the episode…the phrase, “do as I say, not as I do,” comes to mind, but you have to love the protective instinct Jamie has for those he loves.  

Fast forward to the painful goodbyes- Jamie, Claire, and Young Ian are about to ride off on their quest to find Roger, and Bree, Murtaugh, and Lizzie are headed for River Run.  Leave it to Young Ian to provide a bit of levity here, vowing to marry Bree if they can’t find Roger, only to be called an “idjit” by his uncle.  Jamie reassures Bree that there will be no need for that, as he won’t rest until Roger is found. 

Bree arrives safely at River Run, and meets Jocasta, who reacts especially well to a previously unknown pregnant niece appearing on her doorstep, in my opinion.  Maybe Murtaugh being there softened the blow.  Can you tell, I’d love to see him find a little happiness after all this time?

Talk about a cliff hanger! While Jocasta welcomes Bree into her home, Roger is still with the Mohawk when he falls and dangles from a rope over a rocky ledge until the rope snaps and he can finally attempt his escape.  He manages to elude the Mohawk recapturing him and finds himself near a buzzing stone structure.  He has the jewels he received as payment from Bonnet, he’s right there, he reaches out, but does he go?  We’ll have to tune in next week to know for sure!

Cameron Hogg is a North Carolina girl currently living in northern Virginia. She is a mom to twin boys and works in nursing education and clinical practice, which may explain the draw to Claire and the medical aspects of the books and show. She enjoys history and loves to explore the notable sites wherever she goes, but especially those that have a tie to NC and more recently those related to Outlander. She is also a moderator for the Outlander North Carolina Facebook Group. 

Cameron Hogg
Fraser's Ridge Pre-Revolutionary War Period Quotes Season 4

Daniel Boone ~ A North Carolina Legend

January 3, 2019

By Susan Jackson

Unfinished Portrait of Daniel Boone c.1820

Did you notice in “The Birds and Bees” when Jamie was showing Bree the view from the Ridge, and Bree mentions Daniel Boone? Very likely, she was familiar with the television show that aired in the 60’s, if not from history class in school.  Boone was a trapper, hunter, frontiersman, landowner, politician, and in spite of his Quaker birth and upbringing, owned slaves. He is credited with “discovering” the state of Kentucky. He was born in Pennsylvania in 1734, but his family moved to North Carolina around 1750, settling on the Yadkin River in what is now Wilkes County.

Boone was not afraid to defend the white settlements from the Native Americans, and at 16, joined a militia for that reason.  1755 brought the French and Indian War to his region, and he served as a wagoner, and when that was done, he married. He built two cabins, one near the Yadkin, and one on Beaver Creek, and settled down. Eight children later, he and his wife Rebecca moved to Kentucky, and in 1755, he helped arrange a treaty between the Transylvania Company and the Cherokee, who sold the majority of what is now Tennessee and Kentucky to a Richard Henderson, owner of the Transylvania Company.  Boone and other settlers built and lived at a settlement called Boonesboro. The land is now a state park in Kentucky, complete with camping sites and a living history museum.

Boone never returned to North Carolina, and, after losing his land in spite of being a Kentucky representative in the Virginia General Assembly, moved his family to what is now Missouri, where he was given land by the US Government in exchange for clearing the land. Upon his death in 1820, he still owned 850 acres of the homestead.

Much of what was written in the early history books and biographies about Daniel Boone are stuff of legend, and mostly untrue.  One author interviewed Boone, but elaborated a great deal in his book, and other biographies were written about him, mainly to encourage people to settle in Kentucky.  One story goes that he dictated his life story to his grandson, but the papers were eventually lost when a canoe he was traveling in tipped over, and the “manuscript” was lost in the water.  

He was somewhat famous, however, and he didn’t like it much, stating, “Nothing embitters my old age [more than] the circulation of absurd stories … many heroic actions and chivalrous adventures are related of me which exist only in the regions of fancy. With me the world has taken great liberties, and yet I have been but a common man.”  Wonder what he’d have thought of the television series?!

According to findagrave.com, “Seven counties, a national forest, and numerous towns and schools across the United States are named for him.”  The lovely mountain town of Boone, North Carolina is one of those namesakes.  Those of us at the recent Fraser’s Ridge Homecoming got to visit Whippoorwill Academy, where there is a replica of the cabin Daniel and Rebecca lived in and raised their family.  The rocks that form the chimney are from the original cabin.

Appropriately, in Boone, NC, you’ll find the Hickory Ridge Living History Museum, and during the Summer months, they produce the long-running outdoor drama, Horn in the West, portraying the life of Boone and other settlers in the region before and during the Revolutionary War.

Oh, and, according to his son Nathaniel, Daniel Boone never wore a coonskin hat.

Susan Jackson is a mother of four who lives in coastal North Carolina, and is an avid Outlander fan.  Besides reading, she loves cooking and baking, and music.  She is a thyroid cancer survivor and has worked in education most of her life. She hopes to one day blog about her thyroid cancer journey. She is a contributing author for Outlander North Carolina and, among other articles, has previously written about the infamous Stede Bonnet in Will The Real Stephen Bonnet Please Stand Up? 


Drums Of Autumn Pre-Revolutionary War Period Season 4 The ONC Gazette Wilmington

The ONC Gazette (12/29/18 Edition)

December 31, 2018
*|MC:SUBJECT|*

Covering The Books, The Show, The History & The Places
Of Outlander in North Carolina

Greetings Outlander Fanatics! 

Hey, everyone!  Did you survive it? Christmas, I mean? I barely did. I’ve been pretty much missing in action for a few weeks. Between sickness (the winter crud, ugh!), Christmas shopping plus friend & family get-togethers and a new grandbaby, I’ve barely had time to breathe. I know you won’t believe I’m saying this but I almost wish Outlander had taken a week (or two) break for the holidays as many other television series do. Although, it was a great way for us to pause for an hour and lose ourselves in the 18th century before coming back to the busyness before Christmas.

Enough about me! I hope this newsletter finds you all doing well and getting geared up for Hogmanay! One of our admins, Tara Crawford, shared this recipe from the Outlander Clan Cast Blog for Black Bun, which was served up in Season 3, Episode 8, First Wife. Here in North Carolina, the tradition is…get ready for it…it’s not Black Bun….it’s…
  • Hog jowl
  • Collards
  • Black-eyed peas
  • Cornbread
Yum, yum!!! All of these are supposed to bring good luck in the form of wealth, good health or good things happening in your life. Check out this article about North Carolina’s New Year’s food traditions (or superstitions).  It will give you a little insight into these four specific New Year’s must-eats here in the Tar Heel State.  Do you have any Hogmanay or New Year’s food traditions? Oh, check out these five little known Scottish traditions for Hogmanay plus more information on why the holiday is so important to the Scots!
Episodes 406 through 408
I missed recapping all of these episodes and told my admins to take a break from the ONC Admin Awards as well but I’m very interested in hearing your opinions. So, what did y’all think?

Here are the condensed stand-out moments for me from each episode:
  • Episode 406, Blood of My Blood –  The conversations between and the time spent together with Jamie & Willie were very special. Also, a lot more was revealed to Willie in their time together than in the book so I’m interested to see how this plays going forward. Also, the conversation between Claire and Lord John was very good and a lot of the lines taken straight from the book. 
  • Episode 407, Down The Rabbit Hole – Bree being rescued and then terrorized by Laoghaire. I had begun to think maybe Laoghaire was going to turn over a new leaf but then the Laoghaire we all love to hate came out in full force. I was somewhat disappointed that Bree didn’t go to Lallybroch as written in the books but I understand why those changes had to be made due to Laura Donnelly’s inability to return as Jenny. At least, Bree got to see Lallybroch, courtesy of sweet, sweet Joanie. How did Laoghaire ever have a daughter so sweet?!?! 
  • Episode 408, Wilmington – Roger finding Bree and the handfasting ceremony was WONDERFUL! It was interesting that ALL of the characters were in Wilmington for this episode. And just in case you really want to know, it’s not an easy or fast trip on horseback from Wilmington to New Bern. It’s another one of those times when Diana said we would have to close our eyes but fortunately due to the wonders of television, Fergus was able to save Murtagh from certain doom!  P.S. I thought the rape scene, although not done in flashbacks as in the book, was handled very well. 
Fact Check: Were George Washington & Governor Tryon Acquaintances Before The War?

In the book series, the Frasers don’t meet George Washington until the Revolutionary War has begun, so I was surprised to see him and Martha being entertained by Governor Tryon!  Many people are disputing the show’s writers placing the future General and President in North Carolina at that time, but why not?  George Washington was a surveyor and land owner, and could’ve possibly met with Tryon. We’ll let you decide, but there is a history with Washington and the colony/state of North Carolina.

As mentioned, Washington was a surveyor as a young man.  In 1763, he founded and had a large share in the Dismal Swamp Company.  The company was formed so that the 4,000-acre swamp could be drained, logged, and eventually farmed, but that never happened. Washington surveyed the land there, as well as where the Dismal Swamp Canal was eventually dug to connect the Chesapeake Bay in Virginia with North Carolina’s Albemarle Sound.  The canal is now part of the Intracoastal Waterway and is used year-round by boats of many kinds, sailing the East Coast.  If you’re ever traveling in northeast North Carolina, stop in the Dismal Swamp Welcome Center, walk or bike the trail there, and see a few boats if they’ve docked in the canal by the rest area.

Once George Washington was General of the Patriot forces, officials scurried to name places for him, but little old Washington, on the coast of North Carolina, was the first!  Now the seat of Beaufort County, (pronounced bo-furt), the town had been petitioned to be formed in 1771, but founder James Bonner never called it “Washington” until five years later, and it was incorporated as Washington by the NC General Assembly in 1782.  Even today, it is called “Original Washington” by many, and is also known as “Little Washington” by locals after Washington, D.C. was founded–just so everyone would know that it wasn’t the capital of the country.

Many years later, in 1799, Washington County was formed from the western section of Tyrrell County. Plymouth is the county seat, and the Albemarle Sound borders the northern section of Washington County.  If you’ve ever driven to the Outer Banks via highway 64E, you have driven through the northern section of Washington County and Plymouth.  The downtown area has a nice historical district, and in June, it hosts the annual NC Black Bear Festival.  Washington County is also the home of Somerset Place Historic Site, but just barely–if you cross the canal just a few yards from the main house there, you’ll be in Tyrrell County.

While the line in the Wilmington episode where Gov. Tryon mentioned to Jamie that Washington had surveyed the 10,000 acres that was Fraser’s Ridge isn’t necessarily hard to believe, but it is doubtful. Washington was an aristocrat and politician longer than he was a surveyor.  He didn’t travel the lower Southern Colonies or States until 1791. North Carolina had not ratified the constitution, so he waited until it had been before traveling south from his Virginia home. He eventually traveled and stayed in New Bern and Wilmington, and found them “delightful.”  I am proud to say that Washington also visited my home county of Edgecombe, the town of Tarboro specifically, and spent the night there on April 18, 1791. The Town Common in Tarboro is one of only two remaining original Colonial Town Commons in the United States, with the other being in Boston. Tarboro’s historic Town Common, established in 1760, encompasses 15 acres adjoining the town’s historical district. Five 18th century homes and over two dozens antebellum homes are in the historic district which encompasses 45 blocks. In his diary, Washington remarked that the town of “Tarborough” was “more lively and thriving” than Halifax. You can read more about Washington’s tour of the Southern states at the NCPedia website.

Any relationship that Washington had with Tryon would have been marred by the Revolution.  Tryon, as an appointed–versus elected–official, had a loyalty to England.  Washington, obviously, wanted independence.  So, obviously, they ended up on opposite sides of the political spectrum, and since the Revolution was stirring in 1768, it isn’t likely that Tryon would have Washington as an invited guest, since he was already in the House of Burgesses for his county in Virginia.  

Cool discovery alert: In 1776, Tryon, with other government officials and several of Washington’s trusted bodyguards, plotted to kill him!  Not much has been written about this, and while there is some information available online, there’s a new book, The First Conspiracy: The Secret Plot to Kill George Washington, that will be available in January 2019. (I’m not being compensated for sharing this link.)

London Has Nothing On Us!
Yes, that’s right! Guess who is performing in the London (yes, London, England) New Year’s Day Parade? The Warriors of AniKituhwa! Click HERE to read all about it! Why is that newsworthy, you ask? Well, these very same Warriors will be spending an entire day with us at A Fraser’s Ridge Homecoming~Return to the Ridge 2019. They will be doing demonstrations throughout the day and will perform for us at lunchtime on Saturday. I am so excited about our special guests! 

They’re not the only special guests we’ll be having though. Captain Robert K. Rambo (USA, Ret.) will be performing for us on Sunday morning with a one-hour dramatical presentation of the Reverend Thomas Woolsey. The Reverend just happened to be a frontier Baptist preacher and teacher and also participated in the Battle of Kings Mountain in 1780. A busy man indeed but he will find enough time to come through the stones to share his story with us!

Tickets to the Homecoming~Return To The Ridge 2019 are still on sale. You can click the button below to either purchase the full admission ticket or pay the $150 deposit – it’s up to you. Flexible installments are available and you have until now and June 30, 2019 to pay! If you need more info before you purchase, click HERE. We’d love to meet you at The Ridge!
BUY TICKETS NOW!
Special Discount On Outlander North Carolina Merchandise 

We’re offering a New Year’s discount on all merchanding in the Outlander North Carolina Tee Spring store. Use code 201910OFF at checkout. The beautiful winter pillow below which celebrates Fraser’s Ridge is one of many items available in the Outlander North Carolina Store! Promo Code is good through January 4!

Photo of The Week 
The photo above was taken from Season 3, Episode 8, First Wife. I loved this scene so much and it was so good to see Jamie finally happy again…even though it did end up with him marrying that terrible Laoghaire. I would like to wish each one of you a Very Happy Hogmanay! I pray 2019 brings you many good things and when the bad things comes around, as we know they will, I pray they will only be a momentary inconvenience.

Sláinte from all of us at Outlander North Carolina! Happy 2019!!!

Your crazy Outlander-obsessed friend,

Beth

Drums Of Autumn Pre-Revolutionary War Period Season 4

ONC Administrators’ Choice Awards – The Best of Outlander Episode 401.5, Savages

December 7, 2018

Welcome back to the ONC Administrators’ Choice Awards!  Now until the end of Season 4 (we refuse to think about it), some of the ONC adminstrators and myself will be voting on our “Bests” from the latest Outlander episode.  Last week, we gave awards for Episode, 401.4, Common Ground. Next up, is Episode 401.5, Savages.  This week’s voting contributors are Mitzie Munroe, Nancy Roach (a/k/a The White Sow), Susan Jackson, Tara Heller, Blair Beard and Cameron Hogg! And the winners are…

Tara:  Murtagh and Jamie seeing each other for the first time in 12 years! I almost died when I saw Jamie’s eyes start to water and that turn of his mouth that he does when he’s emotional and then them embracing! The family is almost back together!

Cameron: When Ian is looking for the smithy, and lo and behold, it turns out to be Murtagh. I squealed like a kid at Christmas. But I did the same when he turned around to see Jamie… and again when he saw Claire… it seems there’s a common thread here.

Susan:  Definitely Murtagh–I love the show character, and was so tickled to see him in the blacksmith shop, and that reunion of shock and awe with Jamie was so moving.  I assumed he’d be the silversmith and Jamie would have to eventually tell him about his sassy wife. lol

Blair:  I call them “The Murtagh Moments”. They start when Ian goes into the smithery and speaks to the man at the forge. Though the ponytail was grey, I immediately identified the backside of Murtagh Fitzgibbons Fraser!  Welcome back Duncan Lacroix!

Mitzie:  No-brainer here; we have been teased all year about a possible appearance by Murtagh and AT LAST we have it! My mind is joyfully imagining in all kinds of roles and scenarios we will find our beloved Murtagh engaging in for the rest of the season (and hopefully beyond).

Nancy:  The appearance of the White Sow. I’ve been on tenterhooks for two years now as to whether she would make it into the television series. (Lol) Second would be the appearance of Murtagh.

Tara:  ‘You’ve no idea you are just a Christmas pork chop, do you?’ It just cracked me up!

Cameron:  The exchanges between Jamie and the frisky Mrs. MacNeill. I’ve never heard so much subtext in someone just saying “not today,” when asked if Mr. MacNeill was home. And I’m pretty sure she was hoping to serve him more than “a hearty piece of pie.”

Susan:  Jamie’s response to the silversmith’s wife’s question about whether his wife was good at making pie–”Aye, very.” I laughed out loud.

Blair:  Murtagh’s cheeky comment to Ian, “Who you calling an old coot, eh?” was the best line of the night!  Reminds me of the dated meme, “Whatcha talkin’ bout Willis?”, but better!

Mitzie:  Murtagh’s greeting to Claire as he approached the cabin. “Murtagh…?! Is it really you?” “Well, it isn’t no the boogie woogie bugle boy.”

Nancy:  Murtagh’s reference to the “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy of Company B” song as he greeted Claire. It brought back to mind the episode in season I with the two of them singing and dancing to find Jamie.

Tara: Murtagh/Duncan it was so great to have him back and have his humor infused into the season.  There’s a new side to him being apart of the Regulators so that will be interesting. Loved how he announced his arrival on the Ridge, I did like that part of the Search episode.

Cameron:  Duncan LaCroix- he’s just great in this role anyhow, but absence makes the heart grow fonder. I didn’t realize how much I’d missed him until he was back!

Susan:  Cait gets my award on this one–she was great.  Claire’s emotions had to run the gamut in all of those scenes, and Cait is just wonderful at portraying them all.

Blair:  Actress Tantoo Cardinal’s character, Adawehi, was stellar. Sometimes less is more, and Adawehi spoke volumes.

Mitzie:  Well it looks like it’s Claire’s turn to snag this honor. Like Jamie last week, we got to see so many emotions from Claire this episode. We saw her strong, weak, happy, sad, scared, angry, exhausted and determined.

Nancy:  Again, the White Sow.  I believed she was really trying to mess with Jamie’s hat.

Tara:  When Murtagh showed up and being part of the Regulators. I don’t know if I saw that storyline coming.

Cameron:  The Cherokee setting fire to the Mueller cabin and Mrs. Mueller’s death in that scene. It was different than the book, if I recall, and really more graphic than it needed to be. I felt like it villainized the Cherokee.

Susan:  To see Murtagh rousing the troops, so to speak.

Blair:  Claire surprised me when she unwrapped the towel that contained not a doll, but the scalp of Adawehi. Her face reflected the horror and sadness that I felt as well.  Claire tenderly cares for what remains of her new, yet dear friend and respectfully puts her to rest.

Mitzie:  Claire unwrapping the checkered cloth thinking it is baby Klara’s doll when in fact it was Adawehi’s scalp. Being a book reader I knew it was coming but I was still completely caught unawares as to how horrific that moment really was for Claire.

Nancy: The appearance of Murtagh. I knew the moment was coming, but I didn’t guess that he was a blacksmith, silversmith and regulator.

 

Tara:  Well there’s two things.1. Murtagh showing up and reuniting with Jamie and Claire. 2. Seeing Claire’s day to day working on the Ridge.

Cameron:   That Murtagh settles right back in with Jamie and Claire, despite being a Regulator and Jamie’s land grant, and it’s like they’ve never missed a beat.

Susan:   Seeing Claire being portrayed more accurately as a woman in the 18th century–cooking over a hot fire, being a midwife, feeding the animals (did she run to the Walmart in Woolam’s Creek for those fresh veggies?), and handling a firearm.  Historically speaking, women of that time period didn’t live an easy life, unless their family was very well off financially.

Blair:  The entire episode was exciting. Full of reunions, regulators and readiness for the future!

Mitzie:  We still have split storylines going (which I love) and seeing Roger chasing down leads for Brianna just breaks my heart. And with seeing the rabbit, Adawehi’s comment about Brianna being here and Jamie’s dream, I am enjoying the slow integration of Brianna to Jamie and Claire in the past.

Nancy:  The reunion between Murtagh and Jamie and Claire. These moments are so emotionally rewarding.

Tara:  I think this is going to see my favorite now. Last week’s moved down to number 2. This week’s had grit and substance and then the day to day thrown in there with Claire.

Cameron:  Best so far! The gang’s all here! The Murtagh/Jamie dynamic brings back some of the earlier seasons’ spark. And a lot of the clever one liners are back too, like the silversmith’s wife bit. This episode has some of the “zip” of season 1, which had been been missing in many of the episodes so far this season.

Susan:  My favorites in order of 1-5:  404, 405, 403, 401, 402.

Mitzie:  We have a new #1!!!! 405 – 1st/403 – 2nd/404 – 3rd/401 – 4th/402 – 5th.

Nancy:  This episode moves to number one for me.

So, now that we’ve voted, what about you? Agree? Disagree? Tell us in the comments who or what gets your vote for “Best” Awards for Episode 401.5, Savages. Leave it in the comments!