Subject: Legends of America - April 2019 Newsletter

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Legends of America Newsletter - April 2019
"A journey is like marriage. The certain way to be wrong is to think you control it."
John Steinbeck
Off the Beaten Path

Easter Sunday we packed up our travel trailer and the furry kids for a trip out to our original home state of Kansas. Our primary destination was the Kansas Media Marketplace, a gathering of various cities and counties tourism folk to talk to people like us, showcasing their attractions and growth. Since the shindig was on Tuesday, Kathy and I spent Monday adding to our Kansas collection of ghost towns and emerging ghost towns of the plains.  A stark contradiction to the tourism show we went for, but that's just the way we roll. 
Monday's weather cooperated with us for an adventure into South Central Kansas from our RV Park at Lake Afton, just southwest of Wichita. Kathy had us plotted on a 180 mile journey through small, off the beaten path places that once thrived but are now shells of former glory. Along the way we found beautiful fields of yellow. Kathy and I both spent most of our lives in Kansas, but neither of us knew they were crops of Rapeseed (which is what Canola Oil is made from). 
The towns we ventured through were never big, maybe only a couple hundred residents at their peak, but still big enough to leave a lot of memories, along with a handful of residents as keepers of the history. Towns like Milan, where we found the typical abandoned main street and enjoyed the old city park, complete with merry go round, old swings, monkey bars and the metal slide, with a ladder proclaiming "American" with each step, built by the oldest brand and playground manufacturer in the U.S., American Playground
Towns like Crystal Springs, complete with its welcoming committee of a turkey buzzard perched on a soon to be crumbling grain elevator. Didn't see a city park here, only a handful of old houses and a few residents who call this 1880's town home. Although it's post office was opened in 1885, it's long since been closed (1976). Finding information on some of these towns will be challenging, but we look forward to sharing their stories over the months ahead. 
Tuesday was a wash out weather wise, but that's ok, because we were headed to Tanganyika Wildlife Park where the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks & Tourism was hosting its Kansas Media Marketplace. This was an excellent chance to catch up with several of the communities we've traveled before, but have come a ways in what they offer. Like Dodge City, who has done an excellent job in embracing their western heritage, and has been nominated in USA Today's 2019 10Best Readers' Choice for Best Historic Small Town.  Or Abilene, which is celebrating its 150th Anniversary, and is the only Kansas town with a Presidential Library, the Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum.  Named one of the Top 20 Best Small Towns to Visit by Smithsonian Magazine, it's much more than just a cowtown.

We also talked with the folks from Marshall County and Marysville and have decided one of our goals will be to expand our stories along U.S. Route 36, another one of those historic travel corridors. There were many more there that we had a chance to visit with, and we'll be updating and expanding our stories soon on Legends of America's Kansas pages, and of course our dedicated state website, Legends Of Kansas. A huge thank you to all who took the time to set up at the show, and for Travel Kansas for putting it together. 

In the meantime, you can see some of our trip here in our Harper and Sumner County galleries on Legends' Photo Print Shop. 

Dave & Kathy
Legends of America
What's New on LOA

Here's a few of the latest additions since our last newsletter. For more, see our What's New Page
Shafter, Texas – Silver Mining Ghost Town – Shafter, Texas, a ghost town located at the east end of the Chinati Mountains 18 miles north of Presidio, has a long history closely tied to silver mining.

Jim Crow Laws – Jim Crow laws were state and local laws that enforced racial segregation in the Southern states from the 1870s into the 1960s.

Life in the Civil War – The Civil War became all-encompassing, touching the lives of nearly all Americans, while the country fought over the future of the nation.

English Colonials to American Patriots – Over time, the English Colonists moved away from rule British and became American Patriots.
Fort Barry, California – Fort Barry is a former United States Army installation that protected the San Francisco Bay area with a line of gun batteries at the edge of the Pacific.

Golden Gate National Recreation Area – Golden Gate National Recreation Area in San Francisco, California is one of the largest urban national parks in the world and one of the most visited.

Santa Clara Pueblo, New Mexico – Santa Clara Pueblo is a Tewa Indian settlement along the Rio Grande in north-central New Mexico that has been home to these Puebloans for hundreds of years.

We've added 17 new articles since our last newsletter. 
Did You Know?

On April 19, 1775, the first shots were fired in the American Revolution. Start your journey through America’s beginnings.

Native American Religion
Though Native Americans‘ spirituality, ceremonies, and rituals were often referred to as “religion,” most did not consider it in the way Christians do. However, it was labeled as such by American writers, soldiers, and settlers, who called it such, perhaps because they didn’t know how to otherwise describe the rituals and ceremonies. The Native Americans, themselves, believed that their rituals and practices formed an integral and seamless part of their very being. Like other aboriginal peoples around the world, their beliefs were heavily influenced by their methods of acquiring food, – from hunting to agriculture. They also embraced ceremonies and rituals that provided power to conquer the difficulties of life, as wells as events and milestones, such as puberty, marriage, and death. Over the years, practices and ceremonies changed with tribes‘ needs.

Thanks to the Interstate Highway System, it is now possible to travel from coast to coast without seeing anything.

— Charles Kuralt

Start here for some travel ideas of your own, "Off the beaten path"

Popular on Facebook 

In case you missed's some articles that have received the most interaction on our Facebook fan pages over the past month. 

Goodsprings, Nevada – Still Kicking in the Desert Dust - The community continues to boast the still operating Pioneer Saloon and the Goodsprings General Store next door.

Kachinas of the Puebloans - Also called katchina, katcina, or Katsina, these spirits, or personifications of things in the natural world, may represent anything from rain to crops, to various animals, stars, beloved ancestors, and even other Indian tribes.

(From our primary Legends' Facebook Page)
The Fight Of Buckshot Roberts - Emerson Hough provides this historic text about Buckshot Roberts and the gun battle that made him a frontier legend at Blazer Mill, April 4, 1878.

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What Our Readers are saying: 

Osceola native and historian, Richard Sunderwirth wrote a book about this. Here is a link to the Amazon listing.  You may be able to find it in a library. It is a very good read. Mr. Sunderwirth passed away three years ago. He loved his home in Osceola. Osceola never returned to its former glory. But was renowned as a fishing resort in the thirties, forties and fifties. Then the Army Corps of Engineers built Truman Lake and devastated the town again. - Cheryl (Ref: Osceola Missouri - Surviving All Odds)

In Needles, Ca on the Colorado River it’s pronounced La Herona (erona) She was a mother who lost her children by drowning. At night we can hear her calling and crying for them. And yes we’re Hispanic. - JoAnn (Ref: La Llorona – Weeping Woman of the Southwest)

Ghosts or not, it is a beautiful little town and the people are very nice. The scenery is breath taking. Enjoy it, you’ll never forget it. Sally (Ref: The Ghosts of Jerome)

Cochise, what a great man and fighter against all odds, with family and children to protect and nourish. We, the US really erred on this one big takeover. My hat is off to him. Mike (Ref: Cochise – Strong Apache Leader)

Great story thanks for sharing as a direct descendant of Felipe Espinosa as well. I heard the same story you gave. - Josephine (Ref: The Bloody Espinosas – Terrorizing Colorado)

or comment on any of our articles. 
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