Tuesday, January 31, 2017

News From Along Route 66, December 2016:

DECEMBER 26--  The facade of the Donut Drive-In in St. Louis gets a facelift to look as it once did.  It is located at 6525 Chippewa St.  (Route 66).  Real good donuts.

DECEMBER 27--  Two Edwardsville, Illinois, business on Route 66 are going to switch places:  Afterwards Books and Bailey Cakes.

One originally was the Hotz House Tourist Inn on Route 66.  The other place was built in 1898 and later became the Hi-Way Tavern.

They are located at 454 and 451 Vandalia Street.

Never stopped at either, but will try to now.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Wendy Rice Taking Us Back to 1982 Right Now on WXRT, Chicago

Wendy Rice is back to 1982 right now on Chicago's WXRT, 93.1 FM for her Saturday Morning Flashback, running from 8 a.m. to noon, CST.  It streams at www.wxrt.com.

So far, she's played:

MEXICAN RADIO--  Wall of Voo Doo

HELP ME ANGEL--  Steve Winwood
ME AND THE BOYS--  Bonnie Raitt

I DON'T CARE ANYMORE--  Phil Collins

Give it a listen.

Name That Tune (from the above):  "Get Up, Get Up, Get Up, Get Up."  --RoadDog

"Sexual Healing"

N.C. January 2017-- Part 2: A Really Great Ten at Ten-- 1973

JANUARY 12, 2017

Whenever I'm traveling, I absolutely have to have my tunes.  Something about those tires on the pavement and sound just make the trip so much more fun.  I alternate between local radio stations and CDs I bring along with me.

Because of the late start, I was able to listen to Bob Stroud's Ten at Ten on WDRV, 97.1 FM out of Chicago.  It is simulcast also on 96.9 FM, which is how we listen to it to the north of Chicago.  Once you get a bit further south, we switch to 97.1 FM.

Today, he was back to 1973, and even if I do say so, I couldn't have picked a better Ten.  Can you name the performers?  Answers below.




Needless to say, I was cruising along and doing a lot of singing.

Name That Tune (from the above):  "Wash Away My Troubles, Wash Away My Pain."  --RoadDog

Performers:  1.  Doobie Brothers, 2.  Paul McCartney & Wings,  3.  Three Dog Night,  4.  Greg Allman,  5.  Uriah Heep,  6.  Stories,  7.  Rick Derringer,  8.  Brownsville Station,  9.  David Essex,  10.  Billy Paul.


Friday, January 27, 2017

Here Are Five North Carolina Twists on the Classic Deviled Egg

From the March 2014 Our State Magazine "Updating a Classic: The Deviled Egg" by Wendy Perry.

If you're like me, you really love your deviled eggs.  Ever notice how these are always the first to go at a potluck or buffet?

BREAKFAST DEVILED EGG--  Crisp bacon and mashed potatoes.

CAROLINA COAST DEVILED EGG--  Blue Crab and roasted corn.

SASSY HABANARO DEVILED EGG--  Habanero bread-and-butter pickles by N.C.-based Miss Jenny's Pickles.  I kind of doubt I'd try one of these.  I accidentally got ahold of a habanero once in a stuffed olive and hope to never do that again.

PIMENTO CHEESE DEVILED EGG--  Pick up your pimento cheese from Conrad & Hinkle in Lexington.  I LOVE my pimento cheese.

TEXAS PETE DEVILED EGG--  Using Winston-Salem's Texas Pete sauce.  Now, you'd think with a name like Texas, this is where it would be made, wouldn't you?

Devilishly Good, Ya'll.  --RoadDog

Thursday, January 26, 2017

N.C. January 2017-- Part 1: Snow and Ice

JANUARY 12, 2017, Thursday

I was hoping to leave by 6 a.m., and was up, but the weather last night did not cooperate.  All of yesterday's rain and last night's had turned to ice and had a slight covering of snow on top of it.  Thus making for very treacherous driving.  I decided to wait for the sun and warmer temperatures to help.

Went on the internet and posted to all my blogs and then loaded the '11 Malibu much more carefully because of all the things I left behind during my December trip to North Carolina.

I did have a really hard time scraping the ice off the truck windows, but eventually got it clear enough to move it so I could back the Malibu out of the garage.

I had no slippery roads until I got to Yorkville and did some sliding to get into the Hardee's parking lots, then nearly did a header myself walking into the place.  Once back on Illinois Highway 47, it got real sloppy with all the slush the trucks were splashing up.   The wipers were not doing a good job keeping the mess off the windshield.

I stopped at the gas station east of Sauneman, Illinois, and took a hard knee walking in on what appeared to be water but was actually ice.  Just the thing for a 65-year-old knee.

Not the Best Driving Day.  --RoadDog

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

North Carolina's Sweet Spot: Sweet Potatoes

From the November 2016 Our State Magazine "The Sweet Spot" by Lynn Wells.

The photographs of the concoctions can sure make you hungry.

North Carolina ranks #1 in sweet potato production in the United States.  Here are four dishes in honor of the state's vegetable:

Sweet Potato Casserole Pie  (with a buttery, crunchy topping).

Kale and Sweet Potato Salad  (Well, I don't know about the kale.)

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili

Baked Sweet Potato Orange Cups

Recipes accompany the article.

Don't Look at the Photos.  --RoadDog

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

There Is No More Carlton, Illinois (That I Can Find)

I have mentioned this town in several blog entries this month involving road building in 1916.  However, there are no sites dealing with this town in DeKalb County.

I did come across the name of a Carlton School (historical), but that is about all.

If anyone knows if it still exists, please contact me.


Monday, January 23, 2017

Looking Back to 1916: DeKalb's Annual Road Day

From the November 16, 2016, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois) "Looking Back."

"DeKalb's annual road day, which was conducted yesterday out at Carlton, was without a doubt as big a success as any previous affairs of like nature, and those in charge of the affair at both ends of the line are indeed pleased with the results attained.

"DeKalb shovelers started out from here yesterday morning at seven o'clock and the last auto load returned sometime late last evening, tired, but satisfied that they had again helped in doing work that would be of direct benefit to DeKalb as a city.

"The shovelers were met at Carlton by 52 teams moving as much as possible, and from all reports the work was accomplished in fine shape."

-Hopefully, they Got Their Meal At Afton Centre, Not Carlton.  --RoadDog

Looking Back to 1916: Taxi Cab Service in DeKalb

From the November 16, 2016, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois) "Looking Back."

"Terry Redmond announced that he has arrangements all completed to start up his taxicab service in the city of DeKalb tomorrow.

"Terry recently purchased one of the newest Studebaker cars for use in this work and which has been fitted up in the best manner possible for the work."

Hey...TAXI!!  --RoadDog

Sunday, January 22, 2017

That Great Driving Song: The "I-95 Song"

Check it out on You Tube.  Also called the "I-95 As____ Song."

Someone dedicated this to the presidential election between the Hillary and the Donald.

Actually, this is what you politely say when someone cuts you off.

Jimmy Buffett does a great rendition of it.

"Were you born an as_____  Or did you work on it your whole life?  Either way it worked out fine 'cause you're an as_____ tonight."

Also, a great song when you get mad at certain motorists when you're driving your car.  Sing this and avoid getting mad.

Why Not Get Drunk and Sing This Song?  --RoadDog

Friday, January 20, 2017

Afton, Illinois (DeKalb County)

Supposedly, the name was taken from an early settler's love of the song "Flow Gently, Sweet Afton."

The town was organized in 1854.

They sent some 81 men into Union service during the Civil War, out of a population of 516.  Six of them did not come home.

I will write about the town's Civil War experience in my Saw the Elephant Civil War Blog.

The town is also called Afton Center and is south of DeKalb on Illinois Highway 23.


Thursday, January 19, 2017

Looking Back to 1966: Getting Roads Ready for Winter

From the November 9, 2016, MidWeek "Looking Back."

1966, 50 Years Ago.

"Crushed gravel and a sealer coat have recently been placed on various streets in Malta in preparation for winter weather."

Bad Even Back Then.  --RoadDog

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

News From Along Route 66, December 2016: Gasconade Bridge and Arizona Plates

DECEMBER 16--  Continuing with options for the Gasconade River Bridge.

**  Demolish old bridge but build one in the same style (truss-style bridge)  Cost:  $5.51 million.

**  Build a totally new bridge between the current one and the I-44 bridge.  Cost: $4.12 million.

** New bridge on the other side of I-44.  Cost:  $5.82.  This would cause a 6-mile detour for Route 66 drivers.

Personally, I like the refurbish the current bridge for cars and small trucks.

DECEMBER 18--  Arizona unveils its new Route 66 license plates.

Hey, I want One.  --RoadDog

It's a Driving Thing: Exit Strategy

From the August 23, 2016, Lockhorns comic strip.

The Lockhorns are driving in their car.  Mrs. Lockhorn is looking disgusted at Mr. Lockhorn and says to him: "How many off-ramps do you plan to miss before you get an exit strategy."


Thursday, January 12, 2017

News From Along Route 66, December 2016: Want a Christmas Tree With That Concrete and the Gasconade Bridge

DECEMBER 14--  Ted Dewes Frozen Custard's other business.  For one month during the holiday season, they sell Christmas trees and other greenery.  They have been doing this since 1950 while they are closed for the winter.  Fresh foliage instead of a concrete, you know.

DECEMBER 16--  MoDOT lays out options for the Gasconade River bridge at a public hearing in Lebanon, Missouri.

**  Refurbish the bridge for cars and regular-sized trucks.  Cost $4.4 million.

**  Demolish the old bridge and build a new one.  Cost:  $4.3 million.

More to Come.  --RoadDog

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Looking Back to 1916: Feeding the Road Guys

From the November 16, 2016, MidWeek "Looking Back."

1916, 100 Years Ago.

"Because Carlton has only a few of the fair sex residing there, the Afton Centre Ladies Aid Society is to serve the dinner next Monday for the road workers will be in Carlton for the day at the Afton Centre church.  Many people do not understand that the Carlton and Afton Centre are five miles apart.

"The women of Afton Centre want to make it clear to te men that there will be no dinner at Carlton, instead it will be in the next town."

Afton Center is an unincorporated town six miles south of DeKalb, Illinois.  At first I thought they were talking about the town of Ashton, Illinois,I was unable to find any reference to a town of Carlton.


Looking Back to 1916: Here Come the Buicks

From the November 9, 2016, MidWeek "Looking Back."

1916, 100 Years Ago.

"Perry W. Fisk, or rather the Fisk Motor Company, announces that in about three weeks' time, a Buick service station and show room will be established in conjunction with its Ford station at North Second Street.

"Roche & Concidine have leased the other end of their large tie-in barn to the Fisk Motor Company and have ordered the place remodeled for the auto rooms.  The new addition will be about 50 by 90 feet, with a driveway on Locust Street."

Lookout, Here Come the Buicks!  --RoadDog

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Looking Back to 1916: A Trainload of Buicks Draws Attention

From the November 9, 2016, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois) "Looking Back."

1916, 100 Years Ago.

"A solid train load of Buick automobiles passed through DeKalb this afternoon headed west.  The entire train loads with pleasure vehicles attracted no little attention from those who chanced to be near the tracks at the time."

Is There a Buick in Your Future?  --RoadDog

Monday, January 9, 2017

News From Along Route 66, December 2016: Teaching Students and Gateways

DECEMBER 3--The University of New Mexico is sponsoring The Route 66: The Road Ahead Initiative and wants educators to share materials and thoughts with their students.

I know I sure did a lot of that in my last years of teaching after I became a dedicated 66er.

DECEMBER 8--  The Route 66 Gateways in Tulsa, Oklahoma won an architectural design award.  They were designed by Dewberry Architects and won the People's Choice Award at the American Institute of Architects.

The gateways are at the eastern and western edges of Tulsa.

More Route 66, we need more Route 66.


Looking Back to 1966: Working on Illinois 23 North of Sycamore

From the November 9, 2016, MidWeek "Looking Back."

1966, 50 Years Ago.

"Laying of blacktop on Highway 23 from Sycamore to Genoa was completed late Monday afternoon in Sycamore.  The final stretch ran from the Great Western railway tracks to Exchange Street on North Main Street in Sycamore.

"Work on the railroad overpass near Genoa also was reported completed Monday."


Sunday, January 8, 2017

Looking Back to 1941: Montgomery Ward's Expands in DeKalb

From the November 11, 2016, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois) "Looking Back."

1941, 75 Years Ago.

"Work on the remodeling of the former Ford garage building on First Street and the Lincoln Highway in DeKalb, leased earlier this year by Montgomery Ward & Company, was started this week.

"The building is adjacent to the company's store."


Saturday, January 7, 2017

Eleven Most-Endangered Places, 2016-- Part 2

Delta Queen--  steamboat at Houma, Louisiana

Historical downtown Flemington, New Jersey

James River--  There is a worry about proposed lower lines.

Lions Municipal Golf Course--  Austin, Texas

Mitchell Park Domes--  Milwaukee, Wisconsin

San Francisco Embarcadero

Sunshine Mile--  Tucson, Arizona

Xheck them Out.  --RoadDog

Eleven Most-Endangered Sites-- Part 1

From the National Trust for Historic Places.

This group has listed 270 sites to date.  It is always good to make people aware of sites with important history that are in danger.

1.  Azikiwe-Nkrumah Hall--  Lincoln University, Pennesylvania.

2.  Bears Ears--  Colorado Plateau, Utah (has archaeology sites and petroglyphs)

3.  Charleston Naval Hospital District--  North Charleston, S.C.

4.  Chihuahuita and El segundo Barrio Neighborhoods--  El Paso, Texas

The site has pictures and information on each.


Location of Sycamore's Electric Park

The park itself is long gone and I don't think any structures survive.

However, there are some street names in the area it once stood.  The most noticable is Electric Park drive, just to the west of DeKalb Avenue (the DeKalb-Sycamore Road)  Illinois Highway 23 just south of Sycamore.

Other streets in the area which used to be Electric Park are Fairland Drive, Pine Street, Oak Lane, Eastgate Drive, Highland Drive.

The area is north of Portillo's and across from McDonald's, Tom & Jerry's restaurant and Menard's.


Friday, January 6, 2017

Sycamore's Electric Park-- Part 4: Bug Six

Baseball teams played at the park.  One of them was the Grove's Cotts and another the Bug Six named after a cereal company that sponsored the team.  (I don't know that I would buy a cereal named bug.)

There was also advertising on a barn at the east end of the park.  It was painted by a man named Cheetham.  On it there were two men and one says to the other:  "Have a cigar, my dear Alphonso."  The other replies:  "Certainly, if it's Bell of Sycamore,"

This was a cigar made in Sycamore.

I was unable to find out anything more about a Bug Six cereal or Bell of Sycamore cigars.


Thursday, January 5, 2017

Sycamore's Electric Park-- Part 3: Huge Picnics and Parties

The American Legion used to sponsor huge picnics on July 4th at the park which would attract 10,000 to 15,000 people.  Labor Day celebrations were also big.

At a Labor Day in 1910 or 1912, a man was killed jumping from a balloon when his parachute didn't open.  Sadly for him, he just missed landing on a stack of wheat bundles which might have saved his life.

The original dance pavilion burned down in the 1920s and was rebuilt with a concrete floor by a man named Murphy.

Organizations had huge parties and picnics on the grounds.  The C.H. Palmer orchestra (he played the trumpet and violin) often performed at these.  Supposedly the Aleda Young temple building was financed from an Odd Fellows picnic at the Electric Park Corners.

-Quite a Place, Evidently.  --RoadDog

Sycamore's Electric Park Amusement Park-- Part 2

At one time the park advertised that you could leave DeKalb at 8 on the trolley and arrive at Electric Park to attend a vaudeville and motion picture show at the theatre at 8:15 at a total cost, including a reserve seat at the theatre for 25 cents.

The park had a 100 by 300 foot dance pavilion.  But the Depression and a fire took it down in the early 1930s.

It also featured one of the best baseball diamonds in the area.  Even the Chicago White Sox played an exhibition game there with the famous Ed Walsh doing the pitching.


Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Sycamore's Electric Park Corners Amusement Park-- Part 1

From Living History of Illinois and Chicago "Electric Park Corners, Amusement Park, Sycamore, Illinois, 1904-1931."

Nothing remains of the Electric Park today and, even though I went to NIU, I never heard of it before this mention of it back in 1941.  I did some more research on it.

This amusement park was located about a mile southwest of Sycamore on Route 23 which still has a gradual curve there at the site now.  It is on the first road to the right after leaving Sycamore going south.

It was the first electric amusement center in the area and owned by Henry Groves and consisting of a huge dance pavilion, baseball diamond, theater and other attractions.

An electric trolley line, the Electric Traction Company, connected DeKalb and Sycamore and helped bring people to the park.  The Electric Park was able to survive the demise of the trolley company.


Looking Back to 1941: Nearing Completion of Sycamore End of DeKalb-Sycamore Road

From the September 21, 2016, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois) "Looking Back."

1941, 75 Years Ago.

"The DeKalb-Sycamore highway paving crew was at the Electric Park corner today, every attempt possible being made to reach the Sycamore end of the road by this evening.

"It was doubted, however that the stretch from the park corner to Sycamore could be laid this afternoon."

The construction of the DeKalb-Sycamore four lane highway was a huge news story back then.

I went to college at NIU in DeKalb and had never heard of an Electric Park, so will have to look it up for the next post.


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

News From Along Route 66: Christmas at the Elbow Inn and Devil's Elbow bridge

DECEMBER 25, 2016.  Route 66's Roamin' Rich posted videos of Christmas decorations at both places and if that doesn't get you into a belated Christmas mood, nothing will.

The videos were taken of the Elbow Inn Bar, an ultimate dive bar and of that beautiful Devil's Elbow Bridge in Missouri.

You can view the videos on Ron Warnick's Route 66 News for this date.

While the Mood Still Strikes You.  --RoadDog

About Those Bird-Feeder Thievin' Squirrels-- Part 3: My Own Little Personal War

They weren't a problem here in northern Illinois in our subdivision since it was a new one and all the trees in our part of the subdivision were all planted new.  But that was 24 years ago and now the trees are getting bigger and so is our squirrel population.  My conflict with them continues getting bigger every year and it is all about my three bird feeders.

Squirrels really, really like the sunflower seed I put out for the birds, but won't touch the safflower seeds.  (That is the favorite of a close cousin of theirs whom I also battle, the chipmunks.)

I occasionally to come up with a way that baffles these varmints temporarily, but they always come up with a way to get that seed.  But, it is hilarious to watch them looking up at the feeder and you can just see those little minds a thinkin' and a-thinkin'.

And, i even put out unsalted peanuts for the squirrels and chipmunks.

I am amazed at how far both groups of birdseed thieves can jump.

Good Thing I Like Them So Much.  --RoadDog

Monday, January 2, 2017

About Those Birdseed-Thievin' Squirrels-- Part 2: Some More About Them

Eastern gray squirrels are more active in the early morning and early evening hours and don't hibernate ibn the winter.  they love bulbs, too.  Predators include humans, hawks, raccoons, cats, snakes, owls and dogs and can live up to 15 years.


About Those Birdseed Thieves-- Part 1: You Can't Win Against Squirrels Who Want Your Bird Food

From the March 2014 Our State Magazine, North Carolina "Our Most Maligned Mammal" by Susan Stafford Kelly.

"Considered bird-feeder thieves by many --  and even worse by some --  these furry creatures are still our cutest state symbol -- paws down."

In 1969, the N.C. General assembly designated the gray squirrel as the state's official mammal.

Generally speaking, anything squirrel is not a positive reference.  There are no teams nicknamed the Squirrels.  How much fear would that strike in opponents?  No N.C. state products use a squirrel as a logo (although the town of Olney, Illinois, is more than a bit proud of their albino squirrels).  If a person is referred to as a squirrel, that is not good either.

Squirrels eat a big variety of foods:  acorns, fruit, even trees  and are "rapacious, mindless eaters."  "squirrels raid birdfeeders, too...."

Love Those Squirrels.  --RoadDog

Looking Back to 1941: Aids to Nighttime Driving

From the September 21, 2016, MidWeek "Looking Back."

1941, 75 Years Ago.

"A white line has suddenly appeared dividing Glidden road into two lanes.  That indicates that the Glidden and Sycamore-Sandwich roads will in due time have dividing lines.

"Such lines have been awaited by many motorists as an aid for night driving.  several accidents on the Cortland-Sycamore stretch of the Sycamore-Sandwich road were said to be caused by motorists sideswiping because they were not sure of the center of the road at night.


Looking Back to 1941: Governor Comes A-Visiting

From the September 21, 2016, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois)  "Looking Back."

1941, 75 Years Ago.

"Several hundred people not to mention that many, if not more school children, turned out this morning to give Governor Dwight G. Green a rousing welcome as he made a fifteen-minute stop in DeKalb while passing through on the first day of a ten-day tour of Illinois state highways and state institutions.

"Today the governor and other state officials were making a tour of the Lincoln Highway from Geneva to Sterling."

Wonder If They Stopped at Andy's?  --RoadDog

Sunday, January 1, 2017

The Pioneer Locomotive

From Wikipedia.

First locomotive to operate in Chicago.  Built in 1837 by Baldwin Locomotive Works for the Utica and Schenectady Railroad in New York where it was given the name Alert.

It pulled trains for them for nine years before being sold to the Michigan Central Railroad where it had a cab and tender added.  It was used by them for two years.

After that it was sold to the Galena and Chicago Union Railroad where it was renamed Pioneer and used in the construction of its railroad.

It has been preserved and is currently on display at the Chicago History Museum.  Its tender is in Villa Park, Illinois.


Looking Back to 1941: The Famous Pioneer Locomotive Returns

From the November 2, 2016, MidWeek "Looking Back."

1941, 75 Years Ago.

"The Pioneer, first locomotive engine that ran on the railroad west of Chicago, will participate in the Fall Festival All-American parade tomorrow night.  Arrangements to bring the famous locomotive were completed today.

"The Pioneer was placed in operation by the Galena and Chicago Union railroad, the predecessor of the Chicago and North Western railroad.  It was built in 1836 and put in operation in 1848 being used until 1873 when it was retired.

"The Pioneer weighed only ten tons, it had but one pair of drive wheels, and its cylinders were ten inches in diameter and had an eighteen-inch stroke.  Its top speed was 25 miles per hour."

Small by locomotive size.  I figure the 1848 referred to when it was placed in service in Illinois.

I Had Never Heard of This Locomotive, So Looked It Up.  Next Blog.  --RoadDog

Looking Back to 1941: Speeding in Malta, Illinois

From the November 2, 2016, MidWeek (DeKalb County, Illinois) "Looking Back."

1941, 75 Years Ago.

"At the last meeting of the village of Malta board, it was decided to take such action as is necessary to control the excessive speed of autos in the village streets.

"The speed limit in the business district is twenty miles and on the village streets 25."

Hey, Mister!!  SLOW DOWN.  --RoadDog

This Blog's 11th Year

This marks the 11th year I've been doing this.

I started this blog the year after I retired from teaching with the help of my niece Andrea who is good at things like this.  I, of course, am not.  I'd heard about blogs and had an interest to put my thoughts to print as well as things I was interested in.

This was my very first blog of the seven I now have.  Many times I wish this was the only one I did, but there are just a lot of things that interest me.

This will be my 4569th post here.

Keeps Me Out of Trouble Most of the Time.  --RoadDog