Sunday, October 31, 2010

Monday, October 25, 2010

Magic House

We went to the Magic House in St. Louis

Crawling down a secret passageway. The Magic House is an old mansion, and one day the residents of the time hired someone to come and wash the windows. The window washer noticed that there was one more window on the outside than on the inside, and asked the owners - who had never counted their windows. For some reason that nobody knows, a section of the house had been walled off and rendered inaccessable - including that extra window.

Sophie loved the model train set.

Driving a Smart Car.

Driving a Recycling Truck with Daddy. And telling Grandma and Grandpa that they need to recycle!

There was a very cool construction site for the kids to play on - put together by the people who do Bob the Builder. Apparently all Sophie really needs is some pvc and some joints and she's happy. We could barely get her out of here!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Honest Abe

Abraham Lincoln's house in Springfield, IL.

Lincoln's widow, Mary Todd, never returned to this house after going to Washington. The house belonged to their eldest son, Robert, who never lived there. Robert agreed to sell this historic home to the state of Illinois for $1, provided that it would never be sold, that the state would open the house to the public and never charge a visitation fee, and that the house would always be maintained.

Lincoln's desk.

Robert's bedroom. The two younger boys, Edward and Tad, shared a nursery across the hall with their mother.

Upstairs hallway.

Lincoln's bedroom.

One of the most interesting things to me was that a neighbor of Lincoln's, Jameson Jenkins, was a conductor in the Underground Railroad. It's not known if Lincoln knew of his neighbor's activities, but the two men were friends. In fact, Jenkins gave Lincoln a ride to the Great Western Depot where he gave his farewell address to Springfield before leaving for the White House.

Lincoln's tomb. Buried here are Abraham Lincoln, Mary Todd Lincoln, and their three youngest sons, Edward, William and Thomas (Tad). Their only child to live past childhood, Robert, is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

Here is the incredibly interesting story of the attempt to steal Lincoln's body. Lincoln's only surviving son, Robert, wanted to move the body out of the tomb to someplace safe, without anyone knowing.

So... is he really in there? We may never know.

Here is the vault where Lincoln was until the tomb was completed.

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