Part 2 of Aunt Annie’s 1924 trip diary from Steve Ellis. He’ll be retracing part of her trip next month and is looking for info on whether places Annie mentions have survived, particularly the tourist camps.
Left at 3:15 so as to get thru Chicago early and avoid heavy traffic. Got thru Chicago clear out on west side at 8 AM. Wasn’t much traffic . Had bad thunder storm. Just as we were driving out of Chicago stopped and put side on out of Wheaton, Ill. Had lunch in Chinese restaurant in DeKalb, Ill. Had big wind storm between Ashton and Dixon, Ill. Blew down trees and tele poles. Crossed Rock River out of Dixon. Passed fields of the tallest corn I ever saw. It had rained so hard we saw a roaring river thru a farm out of Sterling, Ill. Went through water on pavement all most to top of car wheels where there had been a cloud burst. Just E. of Morrison, Ill. crossed Mississippi River toll bridge between Fulton, Ill & Lyons, Iowa. Took snap of Miss. Bridge. Camped at Wheatland, Iowa. Camped at 3:15
Left camp at Wheatland at 6:45. Roads not so bad. Stopped at Mechanicsville for light bulbs. Stopped in Belle Plains, Iowa for oil. O’Leary caught up to us just west of Belle Plain at 11 a.m. Had lunch at Tama in tourist camp. Stopped a few minutes in Marshalltown, Iowa. Came thru beautiful farming country, principally oats & corn. Camped in tourist park at Jefferson, Iowa.
95 in shade Left at 7:10 A.M. Drove thru farming country most of the morning, then in a hilly, bluffy country and had dinner in tourist park in Council Bluff, Iowa. The park is on top of hill overlooking the Missouri R. and Omaha, Neb. Nice park with a convenience. Stopped in Council Bluff to get check cashed and send message. Camped at Columbus, Neb. Nice tourist camp.
Left at 7 A.M. Drove thru nice farming country – corn and alfalfa. It was Uncle Dick ‘s birthday so he treated all to our dinner in Central Café in Kearey, Neb. Changed oil in Cozad, Neb. Hot day – about 90 in shade. Got on to desert country in afternoon thru North Platte, Neb. Passed home of Buffalo Bill – 3,000 acre farm. Cody Ranch printed on the barn. Camped in Big Springs. Good tourist camp.
Left at 6:45 A.M. Came thru nice prairie country where wheat raising chief industry, also cattle. Terribly hot day. Had lunch at Cheyenne, Wyo., cowboy town of the west. Crossed Rocky Mts. in the afternoon between Cheyenne, Wyo. and Laramie. Camped at Laramie.
Left at 7:55. Drove thru desert country, hot weather, nice scenery in places. Passed oil wells and big oil refining station before we got to Rawlins. Had cold lunch and hit a bum tourist camp. Drove thru sagebrush desert and camped at Rock Springs, Wyo.,
bum camp too.
Got oil changed. We went to P.O. Didn’t get started till 8:20 A.M. Front tire got flat, had to change it. Just as we were climbing the plateau after crossing Green River caught up to O’Learys. They had tire trouble. Had to fix it on the hot desert, about 100 in the shade. Had lunch in Lyman, a little desert town. Drove thru little green valley, thru Ft. Bridger, and in rolling hills & canyons, thru one beautiful canyon with yellow stone walls. Came into another pretty valley and stopped in Coalville, Utah for drinks and groceries. Drove thru beautiful canyons into Salt Lake City. Camped in park.
Got up early and drove downtown. Saw Mormon Temple and Tabernacle. Beautiful grounds & saw Old Mormon (J.L. Loynd). Couldn’t go in Tabernacle till noon so went out to Salt Lake. Went in bathing. You float like a cork in it. Started to Ogden at 2:25. Drove on from there to Pocatello, Ida. Camped in nice tourist camp. Had puncture on way in.
Got up early to get started early. Had flat tire. Patched tire. Got started 7:30. Went thru American Falls where the great-irrigation project, a of Snake River Valley…
Here they leave the Lincoln Highway.
TOMORROW: Tallying the cost of gas