Travel

Journeyman Distillery, Three Oaks, Michigan

 

I created this blog to show you interesting places you can enjoy that don’t cost any more than the gas it takes to get there. That’s how I’m able to go so many places! I attempt not to go beyond the planned amount to spend, but I do love my whiskey! When we stopped in at Journeyman’s, I had to get some! The bottle that caught my eye is called Corsets, Whips, and Whiskey! Sexy, right? Surprisingly, it’s named that because the distillery is in an 1800’s corset and buggy whip factory. It was $65, but at 117 proof, I definitely got my money’s worth!

 

 

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Travel

Jacksonville, Illinois

This is the former site of the Jacksonville Insane Asylum which in later years became the Jacksonville Developmental Center in Jacksonville, Illinois. It was opened in 1851.

In those times, Illinois law allowed husbands to commit their wives without a hearing. This was so in the case of an important lady named Elizabeth Packard. She was committed because she questioned her husband’s religious beliefs along with his opinions on financing and child care. During her stay, she was regularly questioned by doctors and, although encouraged, refused to change her views. She was eventually allowed a jury trial where the jury declared her falsely imprisoned and she was released.

She went on to form the Anti-Insane Asylum Society and led a campaign to guarantee that everyone (including wives) got a public hearing before being committed. Can you imagine if this law had never changed??

Today, it’s just a pretty shell of what it was. At a closer look, you’ll see the buildings are falling apart. Some have disturbing graffiti, many windows have bullet holes. When driving through it, you almost feel as if time just stopped. You wonder what happened to all of those people… And who is still around!!

 

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Travel

Fort Bellefontaine

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One of my most favorite places to spend the day!! I’m sure I’ll write about this again in the future! It sits about an hour south of us on the Missouri River. The road back to it is well maintained. You’ll have to sign in with the guard, just tell him you’re there to see the staircase.

The fort has been a St. Louis County park since ’86. It was the first US military installation west of the Mississippi. It’s history dates back to 1805. The massive staircase was added in the 1930’s.

The stairs are somewhat uneven and watch for crumbling. They’re currently doing some work on one side, but it’s still accessible. We’ve never gone east at the bottom, but a short walk to the west leads you to the stunning bathhouse!

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Sugar Creek Covered Bridge, Illinois

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This has been the site of many photography sessions! Only about an hour from our home, my daughter and I occasionally go just to watch the sun rise. There’s really nothing else there. Just a couple paths that lead you through the brushy area beside the creek and a grassy area that’s nice for sitting. There are no restrooms, but there is timber… there are also cameras, so go at your own risk! She’s definitely a beauty, especially at sunrise!!!

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Twin Culverts, Pike County, Illinois

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“Yep, I know where that’s at.”¬† Steps back, looks at my truck.¬†“Yer takin this down there? Ain’t ya got a bike er somethin? That road, I bet it’s a good foot narrower than yer truck here. If you go off the side there, well it won’t be pretty, I’ll say that much! I guess I can’t talk ya out of it. If ya run into any problems, just honk yer horn. I’ll be listnin for ya.”¬†He was right! The road is narrow, but we made it!!

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Starved Rock

If you’re looking for a nice hike with smooth trails, Starved Rock may be for you! Not gonna lie, it is a ton of walking!!¬†The park has stairs that take you to the canyon bottoms. The stairs are nicely built and have resting places (thank goodness) and lookout points along the way. The views are beautiful in the spring and summer! Someday I hope to visit it in the winter!

One of our favorite waterfalls is in St. Louis canyon. The road to it is just across from Grizzly Jacks Resort. It is a less traveled path, but worth the walk!

Oh, and legend says there’s over $100,000 in gold buried throughout the park!!

 

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Staunton, Virginia

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We got into town just before dark. In Virginia Beach, the weather channel was showing a massive storm system heading across the state. I wanted to get as far as we could before nightfall and Staunton just happened to be where we stopped. While on our way to our hotel, I got the worst feeling! The negative energy coming off this place was enough to make me think of chancing the storm and continuing to drive! With two young girls, I knew I couldn’t.

When I got back to Illinois, I googled it and found out it was the former (and apparently extremely haunted) site of the Western State Mental Hospital. Treatment for depression was literally torture! The horror stories are unending!

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