Day 7 Hannibal, MO to Springfield, IL

Tuesday August 11, 2010

Our hotel in Hannibal was real close to a bridg, so we headed down the street, gassed up, turned right and headed over the Mississippi river and into Illinois

It was a short 2 hour drive across the western half of Illinois on US 30 / I 72. This drive was very typical of what we’ve experienced here and unlike any driving in Oregon, Washington, or California. The speed limit was 65 so I set the cruise control on about 67 and just headed across the state. I passed 2 trucks, a pickup hauling a trailer and a sedan in 80 miles; in turn I was passed by 2 cars. When it came to passing a car, I’d see the car in the distance and slowly, ever so slowly gain and pass. In Oregon it seems as though when you are coming up on someone they speed up for a while. Not here, everyone just maintains their speed.
After a couple of hours we hit Springfield.

Notice the sign says “Route 66”; tomorrow we’ll be taking the Mother Road into Chicago.

We spent the day at the various Lincoln sites. First we went to Lincoln’s house where he, Mary Todd and the kids lived before he went to Washington, DC. If you’ve seen a picture of the house, odds are it is from this angle. There are marks on the street showing where most photos are taken.

Here is Carla outside the front door.

We also toured other old homes in the neighborhood and learned a bit about the Lincoln’s neighbors.

Then we headed over to the Lincoln museum which was fantastic.  There were separate displays for his Illinois days and his Washington, DC days. Pictures were not allowed except i the opening.

What’s that I hear? You want train pictures? Well, downtown is surrounded by two train tracks and we heard trains while we were in the museum. And we sent to the recently restored Union Station; but trains don’t stop there anymore, because the tracks don’t go by there anymore.

But I did capture a picture of the old depot where Lincoln gave his farewell address before he headed to Washington DC to be sworn in as our 16th president. They say it was a cold rainy day but over 1,000 people showed up.

We then checked into our hotel, the Statehouse Inn which was billed as a historic hotel. We are in Springfield, Illinois, where everything is related to the nineteenth century so we were thinking of a quaint brick hotel. What we got instead was a hotel built in the 60’s and there is no mistaking the vintage.

We had dinner at Cafe Brio which was rated high on yelp; but we weren’t impressed. Wilted greens, salty soba noodles and sour guacamole.

Tomorrow morning we head up Route 66 to Atlanta, IL and then take a state highway to Heyworth where we visit my mom’s last remaining cousin, Barbara May. She is fixing up a picnic for us. We’ll share stories and pictures then finish our eastward trek at Andrew’s place in Chicago.

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