Ft. Wayne, Indiana

Ft. Wayne Indiana is an interesting town in the northeast corner of the State.  I go there on an annual basis to pick up my supply of Sechler’s Pickle products. I am simply addicted to their kosher dill green tomatoes. During a visit a few years ago we discovered a local museum that had a large section to do with Prohibition.  That is what I am offering for ISOA Saturday today.  Take the time to read the mural included to see some pretty quirky things about my home State.  I will leave the more historical report for a future post.

Places Around Indiana

I thought I would use this week’s ISOA post to show you some pictures of old buildings and such I have found during my travels in Indiana.

Mountains…

ISOA Banner  One thing that Indiana simply doesn’t have are mountains. To me, there is just so much majesty in mountains. Sometimes I have brief glimpses of being a mountain man but I think that is probably just too much watching “Jeremiah Johnson” than anything approaching reality. 🙂

So, this InSearchOfAmerica post gives you some of my favorite pictures of my travels out west in the last decade.

San Francisco..

ISOA Banner  In this weeks ISOA post I thought I would finish off my report about San Francisco. Of course the first view is the Golden Gate Bridge, second is The Wharf. Don’t miss the Aquarium, it is one of the best in the country. We must have roamed about 6 miles one day throughout the neighborhoods. Not bad for a couple of senior citizens. Regretfully we never managed to get a ride on a cable car.

As usual click on any picture to bring up a larger slide show view

Here’s To You California..

ISOA Banner  I will be the first to admit that I have only been in California on a handful of occasions and only once in the 21st century. But here is my gallery celebrating your State.  I visited San Francisco and those pictures will be coming soon. But for this gallery I want to concentrate on the central farm lands and such. Here is a gallery of that:

As usual click on any picture to see a larger slideshow view:

Oklahoma State House..

I need another ISOA post to take my mind off this very stressful week.

For this week’s ISOA (in search of America) post lets go to the Oklahoma State house in Oklahoma City and focus particularly on the paintings and sculptures there.  This was one of the most lavish state houses I have been in and it was also the most paranoid as far as security is concerned.  It was my feeling that they didn’t really appreciate people taking pictures. When a young Asian couple were taking pictures of the unoccupied House chamber a guard came up and confiscated their memory card from their camera.  I try not to let that experience blunt the memory of the great paintings there.  I guess I looked a little less threatening than those Asian kids did as he didn’t take my card…

As usual click on any picture to see a larger slideshow view

Omaha’s Wilderness Park

ISOA Banner   One of the most impressive city projects I have ever seen is the Wildnerness Park that extends through downtown Omaha Nebraska. I goes on for about a mile with bronze after bronze celebrating the buffalo that once populated so much of that State.   Here is a rather extensive gallery/slideshow but it is still nothing like actually seeing them in person.

As usual click on any picture to see a larger slideshow view.

Vincennes Rendezvous

I have been remiss to put out a gallery post of my visit to the Spirit of Vincennes Rendezvous this past May. Since I am a Hoosier I know I am supposed to see George Rogers Clark as a hero but I just can’t get over his brutal slaughter of so many Native Americans in to clear out the State for others to take over.  He, like Andrew Jackson, are just not heroes of mine.   But that doesn’t take away from the historical significance of the rendezvous.

As usual click on any picture to see a larger slideshow view

Antique Tractors…

ISOA Banner  I spent a couple of summers during high school as a farm hand. A lot of it was putting up hay but some was helping with the planting and harvesting.  I hate to admit it but some of these antique tractors were the same models that I drove during those years.

Everything is being automated now. Even the tractors are beginning to be driven by GPS enabled robots. Less then 1% of us are now working the land. Its good to look back on the past to see where we have been.  I enjoy the continuing tractor shows here in the Midwest. Read more

Zoar Village – Ohio

ISOA Banner  Recently I visited the Zoar Village in central Ohio that  is one of the few villages where the whole town is on the National Register of Historic Places.  As is often the case Zoar was platted by Germans escaping religious prosecution by the Lutheran church in the early 1800s. It was a communal colony but unlike most did not discourage gawkers so it has a rich pictorial  history that I hope to bring you more of in future posts. For now just enjoy some of the buildings found there. It shamefully seems that many of these type sites are falling out of favor with tourists so if you are in the area give them a visit and maybe a small donation.

As usual click on any of the pictures below to see a larger slideshow view.

Swiss Heritage Village – Berne Indiana

ISOA Banner  On one of my recent uRV trips to northeastern Indiana I visited the Swiss Heritage Village. It was recommended to me by the tourist information center in the city of Berne.  I was not aware that there was a strong Swiss presence in that part of the State.

Here are some pictures of that visit.

(Click on any picture to see a larger slideshow view)

I felt very privileged that Phil Montgomery who is a docent at the village gave me a personal tour. The info about the area was very interesting and the buildings were well restored for their appropriate time periods. The large cider press was awesome…

Grand Ole Opry…

ISOA Banner Country music has never been my friend but in 1012 when we were in the area we visited the Grand Old Opry, or at least the early version of if. It was fascinating to see this almost eighty year old building that had been the start of so many country and blue grass artists.

Here are some pictures of that visit.

As usual click on any picture to see a larger slideshow version.

Since my mind can no longer wrap itself around the sound of musical instruments this media hasn’t much meaning to me anymore but this Nashville building was well worth the visit. I found the Helen Keller portrait there quite interesting.  In some respects I am a socialist too….

After visiting this building we tried to get a look at the inside of the new one which is out in the suburbs but they wanted $30 apiece just to peek inside!! No way was I going to pay that but I did get a picture of the outside of the building.  🙂

The Gem of Southern Illinois…

This morning I put out a post of the cons for my recent trip into southern Illinois so this afternoon I wanted to give you a gem to counterbalance it. That gem is Giant City Lodge.

Before I do that I want to give you a little background on my habits during my uRV trips. I usually stay the night at a State park at during the trip. Part of my ritual is to get up early as I usually do and find a local restaurant that serves breakfast.  I do have a Coleman stove in the uRV but it is yet to be used. The microwave is primarily for heating up Big Mac and such that I buy  as carry-out for dinner. Camping just doesn’t include cooking and washing dishes if you ask me.

So as I was sitting at the campsite I got out the brochure about the Mississippi River routes in Southern Illinois that brought me to this place and found one of the highlights was the Giant City Lodge. I thought it was kind of strange to have a state park lodge as a highlight so I thought I would try it as that is the park where I was camping.

The next morning when I pulled up to the front of the lodge it was nice but not much different from most of them.  But when I got inside I found something completely different. I have been to many national park lodges and this one could compete with almost any of them for its beauty.

It was built by the CCC during the Roosevelt years of the 1930s.  I don’t know how long it took to build or how many people worked on it but it must have been quite a crew.  I happened to get their just as they were opening for the morning so except for one other elderly gentleman I had the dining room to myself. It was a very peaceful meal looking out the massive windows onto the beautiful courtyard.  Now without further ado here are some pictures for our enjoyment:

(Click on any of the pictures above to go to a larger slideshow view)

I want to close the post out with a little about the title of the park. While driving up to the park I never did see a Giant City, just a few small towns?  I guess the original inhabitants had some grandiose plans that just didn’t attract enough potential people to live out.  🙂

I Am Dreaming Of Critters

I have always had pets in my life but I didn’t know an extreme animal lover until I met my wife. Simply stated she would likely wrap her car around a tree rather than hit a chipmunk crossing the road. We have had a large variety of pets over the years, mostly indoor ones but also a myriad of outdoor critters.  I haven’t counted but I pretty sure my wife has more pictures of her pets than she does of me. 🙂

I thought it is about time to show you a small sampling of some of these “loved ones”. If it ever came down to a choice between me and her pets I’m pretty sure I would be on my way out the door. The header image is of my dearly beloved as a young girl on a Wisconsin farm in the 1940s.

New & Improved…

I am back from a six-week hiatus here at InSearchOfAmerica. I wanted to take this time off to thoroughly enjoy the beautiful Spring season here in the Midwest.

2015-05-28_12-53-512015-05-28_12-54-16While I was gone from daily blogging I worked on some improvements to the site. Since pictures are at the heart of this blog I brought up a new “Gallery” option in the header menu. I also categorized and tagged the posts to be easier to find just the info you want.

It feels good to be back but I did come to some decisions about my blogging future. While I will post on a regular basis it will not be daily and not on a strict schedule. My goal is to put out a new post at least twice weekly.  Let’s have some fun in our Search Of America…

Around the Homestead…

Let’s use this post to show some pictures of my current homestead. Since we live in the country we have a variety of critters who visit us regularly. We also have plenty of room for flowers (although weeding them is another story).  We don’t get out in the gardens much this time of year as it is just so darn hot out there! I wish we could move our homestead to Maine in the summer. That reminds me I need to show some of my Maine pictures too 🙂 .