Sunday, January 22, 2017

Stone village

Unbelievable! 72 degrees on January 21st. Hubby and I took a ride across the river into Illinois for Eagle Days which draws hundreds of people who come to photograph the majestic bald eagles.

Typically they migrate south when the waterways freeze. Eagles populate the trees and the river floes as they hunt and rest in the bird sanctuary, on the river bluffs, and along the river banks.We didn't see one eagle; due to the crazy warm weather they don't have to come this far to find food.

We drove about ten miles past Alton to a small village, Elsah, Illinois. This river settlement on the banks of the Mississippi was settled in 1840's by James Semple, a supreme court judge, who owned a stone quarry nearby. He gave a free property lot to anyone who agreed to build a house of stone there. This charming village, with a population of less than 700, is on the Illinois Historic Register and is not a museum town. Residents live there and maintain a peaceful and quiet life in this little village, which still maintains its 19th century appearance. If you'd like to know more about Elsah, Illinois or take a virtual, informative tour, click here.

These are some of the photos of the stone ruins and homes. So much history here!

We also drove a few miles further along the river road to Pere Marquette State Park. We went into the lodge and sat by the three story fire place and people watched.
This picture does not begin to show the intricate handiwork put into this quilt of vibrantly colored cloth leaves hanging from the rafters.
This building was originally a corn crib, converted in the 1930s to a visitor center until the new one was built in 1997. Can you imagine the work that went into building this structure?
Do you like taking drives to explore communities near you?


Janet, said...

That is so interesting. I love driving to neat places like that. We haven't did much traveling the past couple of years, but I love to do it. We are going to have to get up and at em. At the moment, I am watching Barnwood Builders on TV. They find some really great old log homes out in the country.

Kim said...

I love taking drives like that. Unfortunately, the big meanie doesn't.

Sioux said...

Linda--I've never been to Elsah, but I've been to Pere Marquette Park--actually honeymooned there.

It's a beautiful drive. I'm glad you two enjoyed the day.

Val said...

Well...I think you know my views on taking drives. But I DO love looking at old places, imagining what it was like to live back then.

Bookie said...

What a lovely outing for you!!! I love the stone houses!!!

Karen Lange said...

Looks like a lovely trip! Yes, I do enjoy excursions like these. You've inspired me; we may need to take one soon. :)

Connie said...

What a neat place to visit. That quilt is so pretty.

Kathy's Klothesline said...

You are so right about the eagles not migrating south! we have a couple lurking here. I am afraid to let Eddie out alone. Owls make me cautious, too.
I am so looking forward to selling my park and living in a motorhome. It will be fun to take our time and explore!

K9friend said...

I love checking out the history of places I visit. This one looks like it should go on my list.