Thursday, September 23, 2010

Peoria Stuff & More

Another great day for a road trip, our first mission is to locate the Whispering Giant located near Hopewell,Ill. After a lot of back roads and a few detours we arrived at Hopewell, a community built on the high bluffs of the Illinois River. I think this is the sixteenth Whispering Giant that Peter Toth carved in this journey across America.

Yesterday we revisited one of his Giants in Ottawa, Ill, the last time we saw that one was during a flood and was more then half under water, it appears to have weathered the storm pretty good. At the peak of the flooding we were told that only about two foot of the carving was above water.

After that we followed the river to Peoria and spent the first part of the afternoon visiting their zoo. We spent about an hour and a half walking around a very impressive little zoo. Not counting the small school class of about 20 kids we only saw about ten other people in the zoo. Of course there are some pictures.

Little Red River Pigs that were born two months ago.

After that it was a short walk across the park to the Peoria Gardens, this only took about 40 minutes to walk through, it was on the small side but very well laid out.

Looks like a nice big plate of fresh out of the oven cinnamon coated sugar cookies, right. Wrong the answer is below.

..........................NOPE not cookies, Mushrooms

It was getting on into the afternoon and we were looking for a place to eat, we decided to cross over the river and eat at the first place we saw, as luck would have it we found another Culver's (sorry about that Margie).

On the way back to camp we drove through Metamora to see the Adlai Stevenenson House, the Vice-President from 1893-1897, the house is now a museum but is only open Sunday afternoons. So instead we stopped by the historic County Courthouse. They are doing some restoration work on the front pillars but the curator was there and dragged us inside and held us captive for the next two hours. This courthouse was part of the circuit that Lincoln traveled and practiced law with Judge Davies. I'm always amazed at how this little museums have so many one of a kind items, this one had the table that Lincoln used to eat at when he stayed at the Metamora House Hotel, Judge Davies Desk and chair that he used to hold court. There is an old map of the United States hanging on the wall and it is the same one that was hanging there when Lincoln was there. Lincoln handled 74 cases in this building and the only time he ever acted as a prosecutor was in this building, we heard a lot of great stories and learned quite a few new facts about about history. This courtroom that they have restored with many of the original pieces of furniture once contained a President, a Vice-President and a US Supreme Court Justice, not bad for a little rural town.

I left the map picture pretty big so you can click on it and see the states and territory's.

Back to camp and get ready for our move to the Quad Cities tomorrow.

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