Saturday, December 10, 2005

Lost Homestead, Kingdom of Callaway

Lost Cemetery, Kingdom of Callaway, Missouri

Cahokia Mounds, Collinsville, Illinois

Lincoln's Tomb, Springfield, Illinois

Sharing History

December 10, 2005

Sharing History!

Sorry I haven’t had an opportunity to post in several weeks as I have been on the road doing research on a couple projects.

During this time I had the chance to visit the new Lincoln Museum in Springfield, Illinois… It is wonderful. I do suggest that anyone that might have the opportunity to visit – do so… I have always been interested in Abraham Lincoln and thought I knew quite a bit about the man but I learned even more when I visited Springfield.

I also had a chance to stop, again, to visit Cahokia Mounds near the Mississippi River in Collinsville, Illinois. This is another important site that is well worth the visit. Cahokia Mounds is where the pyramids of North America are located. (I will try to download pictures on the blog to share.)

From there I made my way to St. Louis to do some work at the library and on to central Missouri where I did extensive research in the Kingdom of Callaway, which is the setting for my new book. I was there for several days searching for records in the courthouse, library and historical archives. Very fascinating work and I found lots of wonderful information that will help me in the outline and writing of the new book.

After I completed the documentary work I had a wonderful expedition trip to search for the location of the original homestead and family cemetery. It was 9 miles south of town on what is now Missouri State Land. With a compass in hand and dodging cow pies in the field, I finally found the original location where I was able to map out the foundation lines of the original home (built in 1832 and now no longer standing) and search out the foundations of the slave cabin, outhouse, well, stables and barn… It was a wonderful expedition. From there, there was another walk, about ¾ of a mile into the woods to search out the old family cemetery. The last burial there was 1895… Very cool!

After searching for about 30 minutes, I found an old barbed wire enclosure and inside there were approximately 9 old gravestones that belonged to the family I was searching for… It was a wonderful research trip with lots of great information and many rewards.

This is just some of the fun I get to experience and share in my profession.