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Journey to Salem

Salem College community during the journey to Salem

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.

Map of Salem College Journey to Salem

Through the years, 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 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.

Bridge on walk during Journey to Salem

History Blog

A series of short essays provides the cultural, political and geographical context for the 1766 travelers. For an account of the actual journey, read Salome Meurer’s journal.

Salem College community members walking with the Journey to Salem flag

Daily Posts

Check out daily blog posts from walkers taking part in the Journey from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania to North Carolina.

President Summer McGee holding the Journey to Salem flag while walking

Information for Walkers

See information like navigation, waivers, and other important tips to make your walk a success.

Salem College journey to Salem community


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.

Media Coverage


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