Where in the world is Bilbo?

bilbojourneypump1Bilbo, MrD, and I went over to Old Salem, NC to take some photos of the community where I grew up. I spent a lot of time with my great aunt Nana and this is where she lived. The town was established in the 1750s. My family has been here since that time and there are still two counsins living here. But first—let’s see the village town hall of the town where I currently live.


Bilbo made it to Clemmons, North Carolina! First, he visited our Town Hall where MrD works. Clemmons is named after Peter Clemmons who owned a stagecoach stop on The Old Plank Road. The Old Plank Road ran from our town to our coast and transported goods back and forth. Some of that route is called Interstate 40 today. The Village of Clemmons was established in 1802 but there were people living in the area long before that.


Above is our town hall and inside is a stage coach called the Hattie Butner. Enlarge the photo to read about our famous stagecoach. The village emblem is a stagecoach of course. We have approximately 18,000 people. It’s a quaint town and was voted by Money magazine as one of the top 100 places to live in the USA just two years ago. I would say we have gotten better and better.

Hattie Butner Stagecoach

Bilbo had the privledge of sitting on MrD’s desk and I know MrD will never be the same again. Just look at how delighted he is to have Bilbo. MrD is the town manager of Clemmons and he’s never had a gnome on his desk. Not that he is aware of anyway.


Then we took Bilbo and showed him the council chambers where important decisions are hashed out through blood, sweat, and tears.

100_9781 Yes, Bilbo is sitting up there where our Mayor sits. MrD would not let him bang the gavel. Some things are sacred.

Bilbo said all that government talk was making him a bit queasy so we showed him the stagecoach.


We have a wonderful park close by maintained by our county. It’s called Tanglewood Park and I’ve written about it and you can search for that park on my sidebar. Here is Bilbo out in front of the main sign.

BilbojourneytanglewoodI know you can’t see Bilbo too well in some of these pictures but MrD did the best he could. I appreciate that he came along to be our chauffeur.

Old Salem is located within the city of Winston Salem, NC and is about 15 minutes from my town. Below is a picture of the Old Salem coffee pot. It symbolizes the art of tin smithing. During the 1700s when the Moravians settled this community, there was a need for craftsmen to fix and trade goods used by the area settlers. The Moravians settled to this community of Old Salem and brought with them the most talented craftsmen of the region. People would come from all over to have their farm equipment repaired, have a gun made, or purchase their tinware. This coffeepot sits at the entrance to Old Salem as you enter from the Winston Salem downtown area.

My great grandfather of the 1700s was a gunsmith and miller. I have written the story of my grandmother on my sidebar. You can read her story HERE. She was on my father’s side. My mother’s side is just as historic but they were not Moravian and I’ll save that story for later. Her family was friends with Squire Boone’s family. Do you know who that is?

Old Salem dressThis is how my grandmother of that time would have dressed. Docents of Old Salem walk around in period dress and answer questions or have their pictures taken. I told her all about Bilbo and she said it wasn’t the first time someone had done that. So maybe Jane Austen brought Bilbo here and no one knew. I sure wondered how this woman had seen Bilbo before.

100_9836 Old Salem is a beautiful place and I’ll post more about it tomorrow. But for today—-I need to finish this post and let you start signing up to have Bilbo come visit you. The coffeepot below has been in a lot of famous historical brochures. Bilbo was honored.


Sign up at this post and I’ll pick a winner later tonight. I was going to do it by 8ish but we stayed out too late today showing Bilbo around. Sign up here today and let’s say—-by 11 pm East Coast Time—I’ll pick the winner. There are rules you must follow and here they are:


April @ Dirt Princess in Alabama is the brain child of this project and you can read her sidebar to see all the places Bilbo has traveled. HERE. Julie @ My English Country Garden was Bilbo’s previous hostess. She sent me Bilbo and included a few sweet goodies for fun. I’ll do the same for the next recipient. You’ll get a few NC items—not expensive—but just for fun. Thank you Julie and April. I really enjoyed having Bilbo. I’ll get him in the mail soon as I get the address from the next recipient.

While Bilbo was lost, Bitsy took his place and she traveled to Michelle’s blog at Mosaic Cottage Garden. Bitsy was treated to a swimsuit and sunglasses and lounged by Michelle’s pool. I’m happy for Bitsy but more happy for myself cause you should see Michelle’s mosaic creations! Click on Mosaic Cottage Garden and visit her beautiful blog!


#1) COPY & PASTE these rules into your post on Bilbo if you receive him. The post must be titled WHERE IN THE WORLD IS BILBO: (your city). If everyone copies the rules, then the person you send it to will know what to do. If each post is titled the same, we can keep track of Bilbo and follow him on his adventure. PLEASE do not forget to copy and paste these rules into your post if you receive Bilbo.

#2) In order to participate you MUST leave a comment on the post about Bilbo with the blogger that has him. That blogger will draw names from the people who left comments on that post. Once the winner is selected Bilbo will be on his way to see your garden.

#3) When you receive Bilbo please take a photo (or photos) of him in your garden as well as a photo of yourself with Bilbo.

#4) Rules are linked to http://northmobilegardensociety.blogspot.com/ . Please leave a comment on The Dirt Princess’ page so she can keep track of him and let other bloggers know where Bilbo is, and post where bloggers can see his latest travel.

#5) Please try to get Bilbo out the door as quickly as you possibly can. If at all possible please try not to keep him more than 7 days. We want to get him to as many places as we can in 6 months.

#6) Bilbo will travel for 6 months, April 21, 2009- October 21, 2009. If you have Bilbo at the end of this 6 month time frame, you will ship him back to the Dirt Princess athttp://northmobilegardensociety.blogspot.com/.

#7) When Bilbo arrives back with the Dirt Princess, there will be a great post letting everyone know where Bilbo has been, when he visited as well as links to the bloggers posts that had Bilbo.

#8) There will be a list enclosed with Bilbo for each blogger to sign once they receive Bilbo. That list will be sent back to the Dirt Princess.

#9) Should anyone have any questions please contact Dirt Princess at


#10) The blogger that is has possession of Bilbo is responsible for shipping him to the next blogger. Please handle him with care. He is ceramic.

#11) Bilbo may be shipped to countries outside the United States. We want everyone to join in on the fun!

#12) If you would like to throw in a little something with Bilbo to ship the next blogger, please feel free. Add to the excitement. See what Bilbo brings you when he arrives at your door step.

11 Comments Add yours

  1. Jesikarena says:

    Bilbo looks like hes enjoying NC!
    and he behaved himself too!


  2. Gail Morris says:

    Mercy, I had no idea the famous Bilbo was right across the street!!!! You certainly gave him a whirlwind tour of the most important sites around!!! Of course, I AM partial to Salem!!!The photos of you were really cute!! Wish I could BE Bilbo!!!
    You got to pay better attention Gail. Bilbo was hurt your didn’t notice ;). Did you see my porch full of boxes this week? I’ve been busy finishing up decorating the bare rooms and walls since the move. Somehow, this house eats furniture. I can order a piece and then it looks like I didn’t do squat. So more boxes will arrive this week.

    I got your email and that is funny that we took the same photos of Salem. I can tell you are around here from forever ago/always–cause you say Salem. That comes from the days of hearing the old timers who were use to Winston and Salem being two separate communities. I like that about you cause it feels right. It feels like home. I sure missed home while MrD was traveling in the AF.


  3. I LOVE IT LOVE IT LOVE!!!! He is just learning so much on his travels.
    I feel badly for not doing a better job on Bilbo. He’ll have fun at Peggy’s house. She’ll feed him gourmet organic dishes.


  4. Janet says:

    Looks like you all had a good time showing Bilbo around town! Pretty cute.
    I had planned to do a lot more but Bilbo got lost in mid ocean and took a month to get here. April at Dirt Princess is trying to get him around to see as many people as possible so I rushed him back out the door.


  5. Betty says:

    Anna, thanks for the tour..my sister and sister-in-law took a tour of Salem, NC years ago. Isn’t that the home of the famous Moravian cookies? I don’t blame Mr. D for not smiling..he probably thinks you have lost it for sure..with this bilbo character! LOL! Did bilbo have to go through security check before he entered the town hall headquarters and chambers? That stagecoach is beautiful; how did they preserve it for that long?
    Since Bilbo had a reliable escort, he didn’t have to pass security.

    And yes, Old Salem is the home of Moravian cookies—-remember the Iris lady–Thelma?, well she use to own The Moravian Cookies Shop and she’s actually a distant cousin some how…we think. Then there is Mrs. Hanes cookies that is still famous too. I remember watching my great aunt Nana roll the dough out really thin and cut her cookies for me! I ate them till I was sick. They are difficult to make cause the dough is so thin. There is a great deal of tradition in my family and this is one of the yummiest.

    I don’t know how the stagecoach was preserved. I should know it.


  6. Congrats Peggy http://http/organicgrowingpains.blogspot.com
    -she was an entry from post 1 and lives in Ireland! She gardens organically has the most amazing plot. I know that she will treat Bilbo with the best of care and be a gracious hostess. Thanks to all of you both yesterday and today who entered.

    I enjoyed having Bilbo. I had more plans for him but he came to my house a month late—no fault of Julie’s! She mailed him back on the 18th of June. I was in a hurry to get him back out the door so someone else could enjoy him.

    He’s got a southern accent Peggy so I hope you can understand him.


  7. Catherine says:

    Anna, this was such a great post! I love the picture of MrD with Bilbo on his desk. I think my husband would have the same look on his face 🙂
    I loved the tour of your town, it makes me want to move there, or at least visit!
    Can’t wait to see where he ends up next!


  8. cindee says:

    WHat a fun tour! Looks very pretty there! I would love to visit!
    I told MrD to smell it today–he said what? I said do you notice this place has a smell–he said yes and what is it? I said–old. But that old smell is so familiar to me and comforting.


  9. meghan says:

    i love reading your blog!! we live in pinehurst and reading this makes me want to take my kids over to Old Salem for a visit. btw bilbo is very cute. 🙂
    Oh Pinehurst—love it and love it more! Thank you for telling me you love my blog. That means a lot to me. You’ve got a Sandhills Nature center down there associated with your community college correct? or something like that. It’s got a lot of fine programs and is on the cutting edge of plants.

    My husband and I thought we were going to move there years ago and I had the house all picked out and everything. I like how flat it is down there. But then I don’t think anywhere in NC is bad.


    1. meghan says:

      so true, North Carolina is a great place to live!! we do have the sandhills community college gardens. the landscape education dept. designs, plants, maintains it wonderfully. i was actually in their landscape design program when i first started college. at 18 though, i was not ready to be diligent and study hard….i had several majors as the years went on. 😉 your gardens inspires me though and i can’t wait for next spring to get some of that cleome and hollyhocks and the incrediball hydrangea….oh next spring.
      Be careful hanging out here cause I get you in loads of trouble.

      Yes, I thought it was the Sandhills community college. I hear you about being disciplined about college. I first started out in computers—wish I had seen that through. Can you imagine what 40 years of experience in computers would have done for me? I can see dollar signs. Now I’m sitting here plugging away for free.


  10. Okay, Miss Miniskirt, you look like you are having a great time! Very cute. Love that English Garden. Now that I have a garden plot, I may try to do one of my own.
    I hope that soil in VA isn’t like the rock hard clay here. It was awful getting this beds ready. I felt real sorry for MrD 😉


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.