Day 5. York, PA to Hanover, PA. 20 total miles. 52,000 steps for me. Absolutely delightful day. 17 miles on flat rail to trail – Heritage Rail Trail. We were joined today for our journey by Kendra Jones Mabon C’ 94, who immediately won our hearts!! I understand she gave shelter to Deanna Bass and friends during their bike journey in 1994. Kendra, you rock!! We were also joined by Kendra’s husband, children, and mother (Ann Butler Jones C‘61) at the end of the day!! Note Ann’s photo with her pink Salem shirt! And, Sara Engram C ‘71, joined us for a little decompression gathering after the Walk, bringing gifts of beer and an apple cake!! She nailed it!!! Thanks to all of you for making this day especially meaningful!! So, the walk went great. Beautiful day. Two women we met on the road in York loved our story and walked with us several blocks. Cool tunnel – within which a group of us sang the alma mater! Flat walk. Gorgeous scenery. Great people along the way. A fabulous lunch picnic, provided by Lisa! Continued support from Dail – for which we will never be able to adequately thank her! Homemade ice cream at walk’s end! After doing collective laundry and a quick dinner at Texas Road House, everyone was more than ready to literally fall into bed!! Our 7:15 AM pre-walk daily meeting comes early! As always and ever, thanks to Holt and Lisa!! #mysalemjourney#journey2salem
– Lucy Rose C’76
Day 5 and 21 miles! We have now covered 100 miles by foot and are 20% done with our 500 mile journey. Today was fantastic! We were 18 miles on the #heritagerailtrail from #YorkPA to #GlenRockPA which was exceptionally beautiful crossing over farms, livestock, and many old train stations. The trail was covered in cyclists, hikers, and runners. We enjoyed a picnic lunch at mile 13 which our van driver, Lisa Bankoff C‘73 organized for us. Today we feel our #traillegs are getting stronger and getting in our groove. Highlight of the day was meeting up with a local alumna, Kendra, C‘94, who hiked with us for the entire trail. At the end we were greeted by Kendra’s mother, Anne, C‘62. We were thrilled to end the journey with Sarah Ingram C‘71 who brought us a cooler of ice, beer, and hard cider! Sarah drove up from Baltimore to meet us and help us recover. Salem Academy and College Alumnae are THE BEST!
Day four is done! Nineteen miles on foot! The story of the day was crossing the #susquehannariver which was the peak of difficulty for the original 1766 Journey. They used the ferry but could only only cross half way before turning back. The ferry kept taking on rough waves and their 22 souls plus nine horses was too much. After four hours, they tried again successfully. Their courage was recalled to themselves many times for the remainder of their voyage. At this point, the hardest day was behind them!
Day three is done! 19 miles from #readingpa to #lititzpa which included the rails to trails greenway from Ephrata to Lititz… so #postcardperfect I could not adequately absorb its beauty in my memory or camera. The texture of the packed gravel and freshly cut grass was the perfect backdrop to our non stop giggling and cheerfulness. Loved all the benches to cool our feet and stretch! #lindenhall is celebrating their 275th anniversary this year! They were founded in 1746 and the cousin to @salemacademy Felt great to be welcomed into their charming town of #lititz after a long day. #hiking#mysalemjourney
– Frances Cronlund C’98
Day 3 – Journey to Salem! We walked in the circa 1766 footsteps of the 18 girls and women who journeyed from Bethlehem to Salem today. We could feel their presence. We picnicked at Ephrata Cloister, where they visited. And we ended the day in Lititz, where these brave women attended church services and stayed the night in the third floor of Sisters House, as pictured in today’s photo collection. Our Salem alumnae PA lead and hero, Dail Richie, worked with professionals at the Moravian church in Lititz to provide an evening program for us in the Single Brothers’ House. We learned history, sang Moravian hymns with church choir members, and were soothed by the 1765 organ built by Tannenberg- the SAME organ the girls and women sang with in 1766! The church members were enormously kind and generous, even gifting us with local chocolates (the girls and women drank chocolate there!) and small Moravian Stars. The walk was gorgeous. Picnic lunch was local German bologna sandwiches and sliced local red peppers bought at a roadside stand. The pastoral views were endless, the architecture ever interesting, and the people incredibly warm and generous. And, along the way, our team grows closer each day, sharing and supporting and having increasingly interesting and meaningful conversations. Thank you again for today, Dail, and for dinner last night, Lynn!! And thank you, Salem, for 250 years of educating girls and women – for maximizing the impact of these women and for allowing us to recreate their steps!
Day 2 of Journey to Salem!! Our Day 2 walkers started our day with an incredible send off from the Day 1 Salem community walkers. As you can see from the photos, but can’t possible feel, it was profoundly powerful and emotional to say goodbye. Thanks can’t come close to describing our gratitude for your love and wishes! And then the day’s journey began! The fields of corn and soybeans were impressive and pastoral, the small town main streets bucolic, the food adventures SO fun (think homemade ice cream and Philly cheesesteaks!), the company and discussions incomparable. And we ended the day with a DELICIOUS dinner at the home of Lynn Sakmann (A’75) co-hosted by Dail Richie (C’72) both Salem alums! THANKS SO MUCH!! A wonderful day was had by all! And not too much soreness!! As always, a huge thanks to everyone who is making this all work – the planners and those executing the plans!!
– Lucy Rose C’76
Day Two in the books! 18.5 miles between #AllentownPA and #ReadingPA Fantastic course with rolling country hills, soybean and feed-corn farms, #amishcountry and terrific greenway trail offered a much needed ice cold bath. All locals and drivers were so kind and respectful taking care not to run us over!Francie: Leg Two in the books! 19.5 miles. Today’s walk from Allentown to Reading PA included a great stop for lunch, then ice cream, too much fun!!
We gathered for a meaningful Send-off at 7:00 am in front of Single Sisters’ House and received well wishes from the Bethlehem Mayor’s Office, Moravian U President Bryon Grigsby, and Dean of Moravian Seminary (and former Salem Chaplain) Craig Atwood. The Trombone Choir played the Alma Mater (thanks, Salem archivist Donna Rothrock, for providing that music to our Bethlehem friends). A group of 38 set off enthusiastically led by our Fab Four carrying the Journey banner and President McGee waving our flag!
The first picturesque moment happened quickly as we crossed the beautiful Lehigh River. Our walk took us through neighborhoods, commercial areas, a wooded park by a stream and across a historic covered bridge.
The “story of the day” occurred at mile 11.5 around lunchtime when we spotted a Wendy’s on the horizon like an oasis. Imagine our despair when we discovered the dining room was closed. But never to be deterred, Salem alumna Marcia Wood Shawler A’75 marched right up to the drive-thru window and convinced them to open the dining room for us. A Wendy’s single has never tasted so good! At pivotal moments, the van with Lisa Bankoff C’73 and Holt Morris C’88 showed up to honk and wave and cheer us on. At mile 14 when our feet started to ache a bit, a playlist of walking songs (“Walk of Life,” “Walking on Sunshine,” “Walk the Line,” and others) provided levity and inspiration to push on. The last half mile was especially joyful as we felt tremendous pride and connection to our Salem Sisters, past and present, as we concluded 18+ miles at the Allentown Fairfield Inn. Hooray for us! “We are the Champions!”
– Katherine Knapp Watts C’80
September 27 – Bethlehem
Day Zero. September 27, 2021 Bethlehem, PA
More than forty out-of-towners, including members of Salem’s administration, alumnae, spouses, and friends, checked into the historic Hotel Bethlehem to begin the 250th Journey send off celebration with a look at where Salem’s story began. Hotel and dinner arrangements were handled by Lynn Timberlake Sakmann A’75 and Dail Mahood Richie C’72. Dail also prepared gift bags filled with goodies provided by Lehigh Valley area businesses, which were presented at check-in to all overnight guests.
The afternoon was filled with special activities, including:
A presentation from Salem for Moravian Academy students at The Old Chapel at 1:30 PM. A lesson about the journeys of 1766 and 2021 was written by Martha Johnston Manning A’73 and presented by Martha and Katherine Knapp Watts C’80, VP Strategic Initiatives and Chair of the 250th Anniversary. Chaplain Jenny Nichols welcomed us to Moravian Academy. The students were so well-behaved and interested. We chuckled at their honest answers. We suggested that the girls might come to Salem Academy and College to further their education. The program concluded in God’s Acre, where the 2nd graders placed flowers on the headstone of the sole original walker buried in Bethlehem. Sweetest thing! We left the children writing pens with Salem Academy logos procured for us by Jessica Cecil Rogers C’04, Salem Academy Director of Enrollment Management.
Following the ceremony in God’s Acre, the group enjoyed a tour of Historic Bethlehem, including the Single Sisters’ House and the Saal of the Gemeinhaus, where we were separated into choirs. Every building was reminiscent of our beloved Salem campus. It felt like home. Arrangements for the tour were coordinated by Krispin Barr, former Dean of Students at Salem College.
At 4 pm out-of-town visitors joined those from Bethlehem-area congregations for a moving service of worship entitled “Where Journeys Take Us,” created by Lynnette Delbridge C’80, pastor of Central Moravian Church. All gathered to give thanks for the Sisters’ migration to Bethabara in 1766 and to bless the upcoming journey of the modern day sisters heading off the next morning.
Dr. Bryon Grigsby, President of Moravian University, provided a warm greeting. We all loved meeting his wife Lea at dinner later that evening.
Lynnette struck just the right chord in incorporating appropriate words and music into this service.
Organ music written by Salem’s cherished Margaret Vardell Sandresky A’38, C’42 was performed by Lou Carol Brown Fix C’77. Deana Bass Williams C‘95 and Chair of the 250th Journey Committee read from Hebrews 11 and 12, the passage that appeared in the “Daily Text” for October 1, 1766. The bulletin from the service provided us with historical context.
Much of the music used in the service came from Salem Manuscript Books of the Moravian Music Foundation Archives in Winston-Salem, which had been transcribed by Mary Lynnette Delbridge while she was a student at Salem College’s School of Music in 1980.
Upon exiting the Old Chapel, walkers and attendees were presented with gifts of a small writing journal and the 2021 edition of “Moravian Daily Texts.” Yet another expression of thoughtfulness by our Salem sister, Lynnette Delbridge.
Many thanks to Becky LePore and Central Moravian Church of Bethlehem for donating these generous gifts of music.
The day of honoring our history was concluded with a dinner at the Hotel Bethlehem, complete with centerpieces provided by Lynn Timberlake Sakmann. Lynnette Delbridge led us in the Moravian Blessing. Lucy Rose C’76 and a through walker(!) served as emcee for the evening. Dr. Summer McGee, President of Salem Academy and College and Jeff Zemsky, Head of School of Moravian Academy, shared remarks.
A special thanks to Ashley Tomlin C’05, Director of Alumnae Engagement for handling registration for all September 27 events in Bethlehem.
– Martha Johnston Manning A’73
Tomorrow morning at 7:00 I will join hundreds of other Salem alumnae in recreating the 500 mile walk by 18 Moravian women and girls (and 2 men) from Bethlehem, PA to Winston-Salem, NC in 1766 that resulted in the founding of Salem Academy and College. Around 40 alumnae will set off in the morning on the first leg of our 29 day journey, sent off by a rousing celebration of 250 years of educating girls and women. I am honored to join three alumnae in walking the full 500 miles, joined by literally hundreds of alums along the way. All of us are excited beyond words! Join me here as I share photos, videos, and reflections along the way. So many thanks to every single person who worked tirelessly to make this possibility a reality. Salem alums, and all friends of Salem, please join us in this huge celebration of educating and empowering women and girls to make an impact on our world. Honor the past. Ignite the future. Let the journey begin!