Sunday, June 22, 2014

Elephants, Estates and Mounds

Great time in Rochester with my brother John and his wife Heike. Ended up staying a day longer than planned because of the MINI. I knew when we left the tires were on their last treads but figured they would make it there and back. They were noisy as heck, so we simply turned up the stereo. I finally couldn't take it any longer so my brother set me up at one his places and we got new tires to quiet the MINI down. When I went to pick up the car, they said I definetly needed new tires, but I should have the right front wheel bearing looked at. In their opinion it was shot.

Called MINI in Minneapolis on Thursday and they arranged to have the car towed from Rochester to Minneapolis under warranty. They even managed to squeeze me in since they were open on Saturdays. MINI was towed back to Rochester all covered under warranty. You wouldn't believe how quiet the car is now.

I planned journey today is to mosey our way on back roads to Milwaukee, WI with some stops along the way. Right across the street from my brothers house and where they dropped off the MINI is the George Stoppel Farm listed on the register and also the Olmsted County Historical Society.

DSC_6006_7_8Enhancer ES

DSC_6003_4_5Enhancer ES

From here we are heading south into Iowa. On our last National Park Tour we didn't make it to Iowa but headed south toward St. Louis from Illinois. Now MeAsWe can say she has been to Iowa.

DSC_6027_8_9Enhancer ES

On my first National Park Tour I had Effigy Mounds National Monument on the path, but getting behind a bit I ended up skipping the site. Since we were out here figured it would be a good time to grab another park.

DSC_6030_1_2Enhancer ES

Effigy Mounds sports over 200 mounds left built by Native Americans that are shaped like animals, such as bears and birds. Prehistoric earthworks are pretty common in the Midwest, however the ones shaped like animals, call effigies, only exist in southern Wisconsin, northeast Iowa and parts of Minnesota. While you can't really see the mounds that good in the picture they are there.

DSC_6045_6_7Enhancer ES

Not too far away we stumbled on Pikes Peak State Park. Recollection is that someone recommended we visit maybe where we had breakfast.

DSC_6102_3_4Enhancer ES

Great view of the Mississippi and Wisconsin Rivers.

DSC_6081_2_3 PESC

Stopped in McGregor Iowa for lunch. This was a pretty neat town. McGregor was founded by Alexander McGregor in 1847 and operated a single ferry across the Mississippi between Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin and the town. When the railroads came it completed a transit route between Lake Michigan and the Mississippi River. McGregor became a major transportation hub and commercial center for grain.

At lunch MeAsWe got hit on by the female chef in a big way. It was fun to watch.

DSC_6105_6_7 A Pan ESC

DSC_6126_7_8Enhancer ES

At lunch MeAsWe got hit on by the female chef in a big way. It was fun to watch. A picture of the joint where MeAsWe lit the fire of desire.

DSC_6129_30_31Enhancer ES

Stopped at wildlife refuge to get a stamp in our Blue Goose book but they were closed.

DSC_6182_3_4Enhancer ES

Had to stop for this guy, Pinky the Elephant. Pinky is on the Roadside America site.

DSC_6191_2_3Enhancer ES

The bridge over the Mississippi showing the impeding weather coming at us.

DSC_6203_4_5Enhancer ES
Marquette Joliet Bridge

DSC_6212_3_4Enhancer ES

In Wisconsin and heading toward Spring Green where Taliesen, Frank Lloyd Wrights estate. We had stopped at the visitor center on the way out and did not have enough time that day to make the tour. I have always been a fan of FLW and decided we would take the tour. At $45 per ticket it is not cheap, however I am sure the cost of upkeep to the estate is not cheap either. We spent the next couple of hours walking about with our guide and the group. It was worth the price. One can take all the pictures you want on the outside, however inside they have you leave your camera in the entrance way area. You have to put on slippers over your shoes and you are not allowed to touch or lean on anything in most parts of the house.

A little about Taliesen. This is the third home that FLW built on the property. The first 2 burned down and his wife Mamah Borthwick was murdered here by a disgruntled employee alont with several other persons as well. At this location in the studio, FLW designed some of his most memorable buildings including the Guggeheim Museum, Fallingwater, Johnson Wax Museum and the Imperial Hotel.

Only a few pictures are shown here, however I have included a link to a slideshow which has more a larger collection of pictures. SLIDESHOW

DSC_6271_001_2_002_3_003TM A E

DSC_6257_8_9Enhancer ES

DSC_6321_2_3Enhancer ES

DSC_6242_3_4Enhancer ES

Back on the road heading for Milwaukee, but of course I had some other stops in mind. In Columbus we stopped for a National Historic Landmark, the Farmers and Merchants Union Bank that was designed by Louis Sullivan. This location was used in the movie Public Enemies with Johnnny Depp. Louis Sullivan was an architect considered the "father of skyscrapers" and "father of modernism". He was a mentor to Frank Llyod Wright.

DSC_6339_40_41Enhancer ES

About 3/4 of the way to Milwaukee was another National Historic Landmark, Aztalan State Park which was the site of massive earthworks created by Native Americans from the 10th to 13th centuries.

DSC_6396_7_8Enhancer ES

DSC_6408_09_10Enhancer ES

DSC_6417_8_9Enhancer ES

On the way into Milwaukee stands a Wauwatosa, a suburb. The Dr Fisk Holbrook Day House also called Sunnyhill House is located in a residential area and we stopped for some pictures of the place. The guy Day was an amateur naturalist who played a key role in the 19th century in American science, specifically geology in his case. It was folks like Day that assembled collections of natural history specimens, made scientific observations and were willing to contribue their findings to the professional scientists that advanced the studies in the US. His house was designated a National Historic Landmark.

The whole time I was standing in the driveway there was a lady next store yelling at me that I was on private property. This unnerved MeAsWe, however I contiuned to take my pictures. I was there maybe 10 minutes and I am sure I provided that lady with something to talk about with her friends.

DSC_6429_30_31Enhancer ES

We had other places to stop, however at this point we lost the sun so we headed to our hotel. We got a great price from Priceline on the Hilton Garden Hotel. This was a classic old hotel that has been refurbished by Hilton and probably the poshist place we have ever stayed at.

DSC_6441_2_3Enhancer ES

DSC_6447_8_9Enhancer ES

Close out the night with a boot of Miller, hey it is Milwaukee.

DSC_6468_69_70Enhancer ES

DSC_6475_6_7Enhancer ES

The trip. Click here for and expanded Slideshow

T 2014 06 22

No comments: