Ten Things To Know Before You Visit Ireland

Kylemore Abbey, Galway, Ireland

Ten Things To Know

Castletown House, Kildare, Ireland, infrared photography
Castletown House, Kildare, Ireland

Before You Visit Ireland Ten Things to Know…

The Troubles

Firstly, it is important to be mindful of sensitive topics, such as “The Troubles” and politics. This can be polarizing and potentially offensive to locals. Therefore, it is recommended to avoid discussing these subjects to prevent any misunderstandings or conflicts.


Additionally, visitors from America may be referred to as “Yanks.” This is a colloquial term that should be understood and accepted without any offense.

Last Name and Personal Questions

It is also advisable to avoid asking personal questions, such as a person’s family background based on their last name, as this can be seen as intrusive and impolite.

Pack Light

Since cars in Ireland tend to be small, it is recommended to pack light to avoid any difficulties with transportation.

Avoid driving

Additionally, driving in Ireland can be challenging due to narrow roads and unfamiliar traffic laws.  Best to avoid driving if possible. However, if driving is necessary, it is important to familiarize oneself with the road rules and regulations before getting behind the wheel.

Drinking and Driving

In Ireland, drinking under the influence is strictly enforced, and it is essential to have a designated driver or refrain from drinking alcohol entirely.

Enjoy Local Food

Trying local, fresh food is a must.

Prepare for cold and rain

It is also important to be prepared for the weather by packing layers and rain gear, as the weather can be unpredictable.

Good manners

Moreover, etiquette is essential in Ireland, and it is essential to practice good manners, such as saying “please and thank you,” waiting your turn, and showing patience. These are simple yet critical elements of Irish culture that visitors should embrace.

Kissing the Blarney Stone

Finally, it is recommended not to kiss the Blarney Stone as locals have been known to urinate on it. This is not only unpleasant but also disrespectful to the culture and history of the site.

Slainte and have a safe trip

In conclusion, I hope you enjoyed ten things to know before you visit Ireland and have a safe trip.

Ornate Interior of Kanturk Castle, Cork, Ireland, infrared photography
Ornate Interior of Kanturk Castle, Cork, Ireland
Kanturk Castle, Cork, Ireland, infrared photo
Kanturk Castle, Cork, Ireland
Castletown House Driveway, Kildare, Ireland, fine art photography
Castletown House Driveway, Kildare, Ireland
Yew Tree Pathway in Glasnevin, Dublin, Ireland, fine art black and white photography
Yew Tree Pathway in Glasnevin, Dublin, Ireland
Stone Circle, Drombeg, Cork, Ireland, fine art black and white photography
Stone Circle, Drombeg, Cork, Ireland
O'Brien's Tower on Cliffs of Moher, Clare, Ireland, fine art photography
O’Brien’s Tower on Cliffs of Moher, Clare, Ireland
Grazing Time
Grazing Time
Dunguaire Castle
Dunguaire Castle, Galway, Ireland
Dublin Tap Markers
Dublin Tap Markers, Ireland

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Reasons to Visit Oxford, Maryland

Watermen Mural Oxford, Eastern Shore, Maryland

Reasons to visit Oxford, Maryland

Fine-Art Photography Oxford Maryland

Watermen Mural, Oxford, black and white
Watermen Mural Oxford, Maryland

Oxford, Maryland, is a waterfront, historic town located in Talbot County on the Eastern Shore of Maryland.

Oxford originated in 1683 as a major shipping port for tobacco until the American Revolutionary War.

After the war, the economic crop changed from tobacco to wheat and the town economically thrived on the oyster industry.

Today, Oxford is populated with residents, watermen, and tourists. It is a quaint, quiet place to enjoy the serene waters of the Eastern Shore of Maryland.

Sail on the Tred Avon River

Tred Avon River, Oxford, Maryland, black and white photo
Tred Avon River Oxford MD

Buy picnic provisions from the Oxford Market and Deli at 203 S. Morris St.

Oxford Market, Maryland, fine art photography by Jacqueline LaRocca
Oxford Market, Maryland

Picnic at the waterfront park on Morris St.

Oxford Park on Morris Street, Oxford, Maryland
Oxford Park on Morris St, Maryland

Spend the day at Strand Beach on East Strand Rd., and search for sea glass.

Strand Beach, Oxford, Maryland, fine art photography
Strand Beach, Oxford, Maryland

Stay and/or dine at the historic Robert Morris Inn and Tavern.

The Robert Morris Inn, Oxford, Maryland, infrared image by Jacqueline LaRocca
The Robert Morris Inn, Oxford, Maryland

Learn about local Black history at the John Wesley Church and graveyard – Oxford Rd.

John Wesley Church, Oxford, Maryland, infrared photo
John Wesley Church, Oxford, Maryland

Famous graves include Tench Tilghman, who was the Aide-de-Camp to General George Washington. Pay respects to original residents of Oxford at Oxford Cemetery.

Historic Cemetery, Oxford, Maryland
Historic Cemetery, Oxford, Maryland

Bike ride around the town.

Get an up-close view of the beautiful homes and gardens. The terrain is flat and perfect for biking.

Historic House, black and white
Historic House, Oxford, Maryland

Enjoy a ride on the Oxford – Bellevue Ferry

The Oxford – Bellevue Ferry links Bellevue (near St. Michaels) and Oxford across the Tred Avon River.

This ferry has been operated since 1683 and is known as the oldest privately owned ferry in the United States.

Enjoy the scenery during the 10-minutes long ferry ride. The ferry runs from April to November.

Visit www. Oxfordferry.com for more information.

The Oxford - Bellevue Ferry, Oxford, Maryland, fine art
The Oxford – Bellevue Ferry, Oxford, Maryland

Check out special events throughout the year.

Events include the resident artist studio tours, garden tours, Paint Oxford Days, Oxford Day, Fine Arts Fair, Cardboard Boat Race, the Oxford Regatta,· Waterfowl weekend, and Christmas on the Creek. Anytime is a good time to visit Oxford, Maryland.

Artist Studio, black and white
Artist Studio, Oxford, Maryland

For more information on visiting Oxford, Maryland, and other parts of Talbot County,

visit: https://tourtalbot.org/resources/maps-brochures/ 

To view and buy my fine-art photography Oxford Maryland, and the Eastern Shore of Maryland, please visit my online gallery at




In Search of Civil War History in North Carolina

Somerset Place, Creswell, North Carolina

North Carolina Fine-Art Photography

Somerset Place, North Carolina, fine-art photography
Somerset Place, Creswell, North Carolina

Bennett Place State Historic Site in Durham, North Carolina, played a significant role in American history. It was where the largest surrender during the Civil War occurred, between Generals Johnston and Sherman from April 17th to April 26th, 1865. The negotiations lasted nine days and were marked by tension and uncertainty as both sides struggled to agree on terms to end the conflict.

During the negotiations, the generals were informed of John Wilkes Booth’s assassination of President Lincoln on April 26th. The unexpected news complicated the surrender’s terms and raised questions about the Confederacy’s fate. Sherman faced political criticism in Washington, D.C., as some politicians accused him of being too lenient in his surrender terms.

Despite their opposing sides during the war, Generals Sherman and Johnston formed a friendship after it ended. Their bond showed the human spirit’s resilience and the potential for reconciliation, even after a significant conflict.

General Johnston refused to wear a hat at General Sherman’s funeral, which unfortunately resulted in him catching pneumonia and dying shortly after. He is now buried in Greenmount Cemetery in Baltimore, MD.

In Conclusion

The events at Bennett Place remind us of the sacrifices made by those who fought in the Civil War and the toll that conflict can take on a society. They also caution us about the dangers of political division and highlight the importance of finding common ground for peace.

By studying the history of Bennett Place, we can gain insight into the complexities of our past and work towards creating a more equitable society for all. It is important to remember those who sacrificed their lives for their country and strive towards a more just future.

For more information visit: (http://www.bennettplacehistoricsite.com)


Bennett Place, North Carolina, fine art infrared photography
Bennett Place, North Carolina


Somerset Place-146, North Carolina, , fine art photography
Somerset Place-146, North Carolina

Bentonville Battlefield, in Four Oaks, N.C.

Bentonville Battlefield is an important historical site that played a significant role in the Civil War. The battle that took place here marked the last major Confederate offensive against the Union Army, and it resulted in heavy casualties on both sides.

The monument marking the mass grave of unknown Confederate soldiers is a somber reminder of the human cost of war. It’s important to remember and honor the sacrifices made by those who fought in this battle and in the war as a whole.

The Harper House is another important part of the Bentonville Battlefield site. As a hospital for both Union and Confederate troops, it represents the human side of war. Visiting the site can give you a greater appreciation for the experiences of those who fought and lived through this difficult period in American history.

Overall, Bentonville Battlefield is an important historical site that offers a glimpse into the past and the struggles of those who fought in the Civil War. It’s a place where visitors can reflect on the sacrifices made by those who came before us and gain a greater understanding of our nation’s history.

For more information, visit https://historicsites.nc.gov/all-sites/bentonville-battlefield.

Bennett Place, North Carolina, fine art photography
Bennett Place-23, North Carolina

Somerset Place, in Creswell, N.C.

Somerset Place, situated in Creswell, North Carolina, has a rich history dating back to 1785. During its operation until 1865, it became one of the largest plantations in the region. The site is currently owned by the state of North Carolina. Visitors can tour the main house, enslaved buildings, and grounds.

In addition to the tours, Somerset Place’s visitors center provides a historical timeline profiling the landowners and several enslaved persons who lived and worked on the plantation. This timeline offers an overview of the plantation’s history and insights into the lives of its inhabitants.

Visitors can learn about the daily routines and work of enslaved persons, including the living conditions they endured. The main house and grounds provide a glimpse into the lifestyle of the landowners.

Somerset Place provides a unique and thought-provoking window into the history of plantation life in the American South. It reminds visitors of the complex and often painful legacy of slavery in the United States.

For more information, visit: https://historicsites.nc.gov/all-sites/somerset-place


I hope you enjoyed my North Carolina fine-art photography and it’s connection to the Civil War. North Carolina contributed to both the Confederate and Union war effort. The State of North Carolina served as one of the largest supplies of manpower sending 130,000 North Carolinians to serve in all branches of the Confederate Army. North Carolina also offered substantial cash and supplies.


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