Friday, March 26, 2010

More photos from my trip....

One of the places my students at the Heartland Stitch Counters retreat told me I should visit in their area was the Steamboat Arabia. What a remarkable treat that turned out to be!

The Arabia, a sidewheeler, sank in the Missouri River on September 5, 1856 after hitting a tree snag. Thankfully, the only casualty was a mule. (Well, perhaps the mule was not thankful for this.)

In 1987, a group of men set out to find the Arabia. Over the years, the course of the river had shifted a half mile from its location in 1856. The steamboat, which was fully loaded when it sank, was found in a cornfield and buried under 45 feet of silt. The digging was a long and tedious job, but thousands of artifacts were uncovered and preserved and are now on display in the museum.

Here is a list of items that were on the Arabia when it sunk. Quite a few pertain to needlework. I loved the calico buttons. You can read more about calico buttons here.
There was an enormous amount of china on display. Here are two pieces. Here is some of the jewelry which is on display.
Preservation continues even today on the found items. The museum has the largest collection of pre-Civil War artifacts.

You can read more about the Steamboat Arabia here, here, or here.

Another interesting place I visited was the Watkins Wool Mill which claims to be the only surviving wool mill from the 1860’s. Would you believe the original equipment is still in place? Although the wool mill was already closed for the day by the time I arrived, I was able to learn about the mill through a film and exhibits, and I was also able to walk the grounds.

I think you'll agree that I had a lovely trip.


QCSG Lisa said...

Oh Ellen, thank you for posting this today. Husband and I have been toying with where to go for vacation this year. Sounds like this might be a good spot to visit.

Margaret said...

Oh wow, that is so interesting about the Steamboat! How cool to see all the artifacts! Things like that always fascinate me! Thanks for the pictures! Too bad the wool mill closed before you got there.

Jules said...

One of the things I love about traveling around our country is all of the rich history "hidden" within. Our National Parks get so much attention, but it's our State Parks that hold the true history of this "melting pot" we live in and call home.

Thanks for sharing these two places with us. They are definitely going on my "Bucket List", lol!

KsMaryLou said...

ellen i knew you'd enjoy the arabia exhibit. isn't it amazing how many artifacts are on display? the og and i will have to check out the watkin's wool mill.

Ellen said...

Thanks, Mary Lou, for suggesting the Arabia. It was fascinating!!

For anyone who is going to that area of the country, make sure that you go to Independence and visit the Truman home and library. The home was closed for renovations, but a national park ranger walked us around the house and told us lots of interesting anecdotes. There were photos of the inside of the house at the visitor's center.

Make sure you also enjoy some wonderful barbecue