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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Day Twelve of Our Lincoln Highway Road Trip

Today up at 06:00 at our hotel in Mansfield, Ohio and we were greeted by rain. It began raining during the night and by the time we finished breakfast, checked our maps and loaded the car it was still raining. Ugh! I think we are in for some rain the next few days. Oh, well we will just have tough it.

As we drove through Mansfield, not a pretty town, we passed the abandonedFXP_9080 Westinghouse appliance factory, a plant that once employed 7,000 people. Now the plant is being torn down and all of the jobs are gone, probably to China or Korea. So much for all of those union jobs.

After we got out of Mansfield we picked up the Lincoln Highway and began rolling though Ohio farm country. The Ohio DOT has done a good job of marking the highway. Around 10:00 am the rain quit and it began to clear. This was good.

I forgot how pretty the central and western Ohio farm country is. The farms are neat and the fields are well manicured. The smell of freshly cut hay and grass was terrific. These farmers are prosperous and conservative. I can remember hearing about the reactionary, conservative farmers in southern Ohio when I lived in Cleveland. I did not realize then how correct these farmers and citizens of the small towns are. They are patriotic as demonstrated by the American flags on their houses and the monuments in the town squares. The town of Delphos on the old Lincoln Highway had an impressive memorial to the fallen heroes of the town dating to the Civil War. There was also a terrific mural painted on the wall of a Firestone garage depicting the Lincoln Highway of bygone days.

We had to make a quick stop at a Rite Aid in Ontario, Ohio pick up some supplies for the trip. We needed ice, paper towel, crackers and a few other items. The store was neat and clean and the checkout clerk was friendly and helpful. Of course Kathy had to tell her all the details of the trip as she does everyone she meets.

We found several of the historic markers for the highway along with someFXP_9092 great fall colors along the way. It almost makes me want to move back to Ohio where there are sensible people who believe in America. You just have to stay away from Cleveland and Toledo.

Around lunch time we crossed into Indiana where the Lincoln Highway is not marked as well as Ohio. We had lunch at a truck stop at the junction of Route 30 and I-69 on the outskirts of Fort Wayne, Indiana. We bypassed Fort Wayne as here was not much of the historical Lincoln Highway to see there and we wanted to make some time to get to our send destination of Joliet, Illinois and the Texas Road House for a great steak dinner.

We discovered the cheapest gas prices in Ohio at $3.19 per gallon. I don’t know why gas is so cheap. Another thing we like to do is stop at a McDonalds for a coffee and a pit stop.

When I went to use the restroom at the restaurant there was a black guy hanging about and he asked me for some money to buy a sandwich as his “comp” check had not come in. I ignored him and walked out. It’s a good thing he did not have a knife or some other weapon.

We had a good lunch and then were back on the road again. Now the sun was out and the farm lands of Indiana were as nice as those of Ohio. There were not many points of interest related to the Lincoln Highway in this part of Indiana so we jumped on the expressway and Interstate 94 for Chicago and Joliet.

We arrived at our Super-8 motel in Joliet very near the Hampton Inn where we stayed the first night of our Route 66 road trip. This is the location where the Lincoln Highway crosses historic Route 66. The Texas Road House where we had a great steak is the same restaurant we ate at the first night of our Route 66 trip.

Tomorrow is supposed to be partly sunny with a chance of showers as we make our way across Illinois and on to Cedar Rapids, Iowa. I hope the showers hold and the sun is predominant. I think we will see many historic points and some more lush farm lands.

You can see all of my pictures by clicking here. Don’t forget to click the “Slideshow” button at the upper right to view the largest image.

Till Thursday night.

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