Sunday, July 10, 2011

Cahokia Mounds and Springfield, IL

Last year my husband and I traveled back to Illinois to celebrate his 50th high school reunion (class of 1960). This year we traveled back again since his class hosted this year's class of '61 for their 50th and my husband served as master of ceremonies for the dinner. This year we flew into St Louis, MO and planned to sight-see before heading to the weekend of reunion festivities. After picking up our rental car we headed for Collinsville, IL where we stayed overnight so we could visit Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site the next morning. The photo below is a shot of Monks Mound, the largest of several mounds in the area.

Below is the second set of steps to the top of Monks Mound.
We could see the Gateway Arch and downtown St Louis from the top.
Below is a depiction of what archeologists have pictured what this community/city looked like back in its most populated era. This group of natives lived around the same time as the southwestern natives lived in Mesa Verde, around 1100 AD.
Below is a display of the pottery that was made and used by the natives at Cahokia Mounds.
Here is a map showing the area. As you can see various locations noted, such as St Louis, the Gateway Arch, the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers, etc. Even the interstate highways are marked.
The museum even noted that there was a connection between Lewis and Clark and the Cahokia Mounds and St Louis.
After visiting Cahokia Mounds we headed for Springfield, IL - Abraham Lincoln country. We stayed at the Rt 66 Motel and Conference Center. And they had so much memorabilia, it was so fun reminiscing old favorites like the photos below show. These food ads sure go back a long ways, don't they?
And here is one of three old Coke machines on display in one of the motel's hallways.
Here's another with the Rt 66 logo on it. How cool is that?
And then, just outside the main lobby there were two "fancy" motorcycles parked. The items painted on this cycle showed a theme of "Street Dreams" showing landmarks that are well known to most folks, such as Texas longhorns with the state/shape of Texas behind it. Another spot showed the desert southwest picturing saguaro cacti and a howling coyote. Another painting showed old 1950s autos.
This one showed a bunch of cartoon characters, such as Tazmanian Devil, Tweety, Roadrunner and Coyote.
The following day we visited the Lincoln Library and Museum and eventually Lincoln's Tomb. But first I wanted to visit the old "train station" which is now a visitor center and previously was the Springfield Museum. That was a cool place to visit. The interior is beautifully renovated to show what the station looked like back in the late 19th century. Outside the visitor center was this park (in the middle of town) and I was certainly attracted to the beautiful flowers that were blooming. Here are some pretty lilies.
Here's a view of several daylilies behind a bench. This seemed so inviting; I would have loved to just sit and enjoy, but we had the Lincoln Museum and the library to visit yet.
A bunch of black-eyed Susans also blooming in the park.
This is a statue of Abraham Lincoln in this same park which is the backside of the train station/visitor center.
This is the view of the backside of the station from the park.
This is the front view of the train station/visitor center. I found out that the street in front of the station (which I think is Madison St) was where the tracks used to be.
Here is Lincoln's Tomb. I found out that Lincoln, his wife, and two of his three sons are all buried here. His oldest son is buried at Arlington Cemetery.
A close-up of the statue of Lincoln here at Lincoln's Tomb.

1 comment:

scott davidson said...

What an interesting blog, introduced by a thought-provoking photo. The unusual wall painting of the dwellings is also a strangely modern interpretation. Something like this hieroglyphic view of a park by Swiss painter Paul Klee,
The image can be seen at who can supply you with a canvas print of it.


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