Vampire Begone!

 Posted by at 12:02 am  Nick's Blog
Aug 202014

With the new issue of the paper finished and at our printer’s in Michigan, we have a few days to goof off before it gets delivered to us here in Pennsylvania. So yesterday, that’s what we did.

A while back Miss Terry had read about a place in nearby Gettysburg called Hacienda Shiloh in Karen Eidson’s FabGrandma blog, so we decided to go check it out.

Hacienda Shiloh sign

Owned by Marda Mattox, an outspoken women who told us a whole lot more about garlic and garlic farming than I ever knew, Hacienda Shiloh is a small organic herb farm located in the rolling hills above Gettysburg. Marda sells 20 different varieties of garlic in season, which is about 19 more varieties than I knew existed.


They say that if you wear a bulb of garlic around your neck it will ward off vampires. I’m pretty sure there’s not a vampire within 500 miles of Gettysburg. The small gift shop at Hacienda Shiloh also has over 200 different custom blended teas, herbs, peppercorns, pepper blends, sea salts, and other natural products.

Bagged herbs


We’re history nuts and I love Gettysburg because there’s so much history there that you can almost feel it in the air you breathe. It’s hard to imagine that such a pretty place saw so much pain and suffering when Union and Confederate troops clashed here back in 1863, when three days of fighting left more than 30,000 dead and wounded soldiers in their wake.


More than 1,400 monuments, markers and tablets at Gettysburg honor the men from both sides who fought here and it seems like everywhere you turn there is a reminder of the battle.

80th New York monument

This monument honors Abner Doubleday, a Major General in the Union Army who is credited with inventing the game of baseball in a cow pasture in Cooperstown, New York in 1839.

Abner Doubleday statue 

Five years ago we spent a few days in Gettysburg, and while we were there we found a nice little store called Wilderness Lodge Leather & Hat Shop, which is where I finally found my beloved fedoras after looking for just the right hats for years. Back then we met a wonderful lady named Gail, who was very friendly and a wealth of knowledge about the town. She was fascinated by our lifestyle and we gave her a copy of the Gypsy Journal.

When we were in town yesterday we decided to stop at the shop again, and Gail immediately recognized us. We chatted for a few minutes and then had to leave, because I was seeing a couple of new hats and found my hand involuntarily reaching for my wallet. I mean, how many hats does a guy really need?

Gray hat

Brown hat

White hat

Nick jester hat

It’s Wednesday and that means it’s time for a new Free Drawing. This week’s prize is an audiobook of Dog’s Run, my mystery set in a small Ohio town in 1951. If I had to name one of my books as my favorite, it would be this one. To enter, all you have to do is click on the Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening.


Thought For The Day – You can’t grasp today if you’re still holding onto yesterday.

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Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  5 Responses to “Vampire Begone!”

  1. Ahahahahahahahaha!!! Good pictures Miss Terry!!!

  2. Hat #4 is soooo you Nick!

  3. Our favorite thing in Gettysburg is the horseback ride through a different area of the battlefield from the Artillery Ridge Campground. The headphones and riding through an area with only a dozen people is so much better than all the people and cars.

  4. you look good in all four hats, but I like #4 the best

  5. We had no idea Gettysburg had so many orchards and farms when we visited in 2011. We were very moved by Gettysburg itself and the beautiful surroundings. Impressive area

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