On September 28, 2021, a group of Salem Academy and College alumnae and friends set off to recreate the 1766 journey undertaken by the Single Sisters from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, to North Carolina. The trip covered 500 miles over 29 days and followed the historic route as outlined in the 1766 journal of Salome Meurer — along the colonial migration trail, which passes through Maryland, continues east of the mountains in Virginia and turns west in Hillsborough, North Carolina.
Through the years, many other Salem alumnae and faculty have honored the Single Sisters’ bravery by recreating their journey on foot and on bicycles. The 2021 walkers finished their trek October 26, 2021, with great fanfare as the entire Salem Community turned out to accompany the group on the final 6.5-mile leg of the journey from Bethabara to downtown. The student body of Salem Academy was on hand to celebrate the day, and as a Moravian band played, walkers checked in and reunited with long-lost friends.
The procession was led by the “Fabulous Five” through-walkers — Lucy Rose C’76, Debbie Faires A’82, Marcia Shawler A’75, Elizabeth Wade C’88, and Frances Cronlund C’98 — and Holt Morris C’88, route and logistics manager, followed by President Summer McGee and Mayor Allen Joines. As the Winston-Salem State University Red Sea of Sound played its drums, a crowd of more than 350 walkers strolled triumphantly into Salem Square for a homecoming celebration.
Check out daily blog posts from walkers taking part in the Journey from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania to North Carolina.
Information for Walkers
See information like navigation, waivers, and other important tips to make your walk a success.
On October 26, 2021, The Journey to Salem concluded with more than 350 alumnae, students, faculty, friends and family walking from Bethabara to Salem Square for the Triumphant Entry and Homecoming Celebration.
- 500 Mile walk Celebrates 250 Years of Women’s Education, WFMZ news, Allentown, PA
- 500 Mile Trek Passes Through Reading, Reading Eagle
- Salem Academy and College Alumni Repeating Historic 450 Mile Journey Stop At Lititz, Lancaster (PA) Online
- 500 Mile ‘Journey to Salem’ Crusaders Cross Loudoun, Loudoun Now
- Salem alumni make 250th anniversary trek from Pennsylvania to North Carolina through Orange, The Daily Progress
- Salem Academy and College to Recreate Historic 500-Mile Journey from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania to North Carolina, Yes! Weekly
- Women on 500-mile journey to celebrate women’s education, The Farmville Herald
- Re-creating history: Women trace 500-mile journey taken by revolutionary women of the 1700s, WRAL (Raleigh)
- In their footsteps: Salem alumnae walk from Bethlehem to Bethabara to mark 250th anniversary of Salem Academy and College, Winston-Salem Journal
- The WSSU Red Sea of Sound on the last leg of the ‘Journey to Salem’, Winston-Salem Journal
- Salem Academy and College conclude 500-mile Journey to Salem at Salem Square (photos), Winston-Salem Journal
- Salem Academy and College Recreates Historic Journey from Bethlehem, PA to Winston-Salem, City of Winston-Salem YouTube Channel