Thursday, October 7, 2010

US Grant - Missouri Gardens

White Haven, Home of the 18th President of the United States, Ulysses S. Grant.

That's where we started our day at, it is now under the control of the US National Park Service. They start you out with a 20 minute film that explains how Grant came to White Haven and his life here. After the film a Ranger takes you on a tour of the house, then they turn you loose to wander the grounds and the museum.

The house never was painted white.

The Ranger explained that after graduating from West Point Grant was stationed at Jefferson Barracks about 5 miles from here, his roommate's family owned White Haven and he made Grant promise to stop by and visit with them. Grant visited once a week until their daughter Julia returned from school in St Louis, after they met he visited everyday. They had a secret engagement and Grant was shipped of to fight in the Mexican War. They wrote each other every day and when he returned they were married.

We found out a lot of little interesting twist that took place during his life, such as his father worked as an apprentice for a tanner side by side with John Brown and would not attend the wedding because it took place in Dent's (Grants father-in-law) house and Dent owned 30 slaves. Another thing was that Grant never wanted a life in the military, he was doing what his father wanted him to do when he went to the Point, he always wanted to be a farmer.

What we thought would be about an hour stop turned into a very interesting and informative three hours.

We grabbed a quick lunch then stopped by the Penzey's Spice store to stock up on a few things, then it was over to the Missouri Botanical Gardens.

This is one of our very favorite gardens, everything is spotlessly clean, always flowers in bloom and special displays scattered around the grounds. Since this is our second time here in the last three years I'll just post a few pictures.

Water lily

Glass floats in with the lily pads

Clematis going to seed

The yellow thingys look to be hand blown glass.

No comments: