Photo Friday: Manassas Battlefield, Virginia, and the romanticism of heroics

This week’s photograph was taken at the picturesque Manassass National Battlefield Park, site of the historic Battle of Bull Run (or Battle of Manassas, depending on whether you are Northern or Southern in disposition). We are walking together, as interested citizens (American and other countries) to discover the history of a field where 1,000 people died and 3,000 were wounded in August, 1861.

What we learned from our park ranger was about the romanticism of war that Americans had until their sons fought on this hill. The 16 and 17-year old “soldiers” came dressed in colorful uniforms of their own making, emblematic of the naivete about battle that was quickly shattered on this field.

In similar fashion in American health care today, when we become patients, we discover an unfortunate reality of our romantic notions about our high tech, more-procedures-are-better-approach.

The house in the distance is the Judith Henry house; here it is right after the battle:

Ruins of Henry House, First Battle of Bull Run

And here’s a bonus photograph, of the Park Ranger and citizens in front of the Stonewall Jackson statue on the site.

Ted Eytan, MD