Thursday, May 30, 2013

May 30 – Pender, NE

Our trip from Abilene, KS to Pender, NE was cross-country, passing rolling farmland and small towns. Marysville, KS is on the banks of the Big Blue River was Home Station #1 for the Pony Express. It took 10 days for mail to travel from St. Joseph, MO to Sacramento, CA. Horses were changed every 10-12 miles and drivers changed every 100 miles. The Pony Express operated from April, 1860 – October 1861. The telegraph was completed then, which was faster and cheaper.

We made a day trip to Sioux City, Iowa to explore another Lewis and Clark site. The
Corp of Discovery arrived here on August 20, 1804.

Sgt. Floyd had been seriously ill for several days and died.  Modern medicine has diagnosed his symptoms as appendicitis, which was unknown at the time. There is a large stone obelisk to mark his grave. He is the only member of the Corps to die on the trip.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

May 29 – Abilene, Kansas

Abilene, Kansas was the boyhood home of Dwight David Eisenhower, 34th president of the United States.  After attending West Point, Eisenhower’s assignments took advantage of his skills in organization and planning rather than battlefield leadership.
The Eisenhower Museum explains the progress of the war as Germany battled the Allies on two fronts.
Uniforms, weapons and correspondence brought the history to life.

By 1941 Ike was Chief of Staff of Operations Division with rank of Major General.  He was the liaison to the Allied leaders.  After Pearl Harbor in 1941 it took two years for the Allies to prepare for an invasion of Europe.

On D-Day, June 6, 1944, 150,000 men came ashore at Normandy.  After eleven months of fighting, victory was declared on November 11 at the 11th hour, VE Day.  Eisenhower remained in Europe as Army Chief of Staff overseeing the demobilization of the military.


In 1952 “Everyone Liked Ike”, he won the presidency by 6 million votes.  It was a time of economic development and scientific advances.  Television broadcast a political convention live for the first time.  Space exploration began.  The Interstate Highway System was started.  Most important of all the Cold War with Russia did not turn into a nuclear war!