Sunday, November 20, 2011

Trip #10 Los Angeles area

Beautiful scenery at the Reagan Library. Simi Valley, California

Presidential Gravesites seen on this trip: #37 Richard M. Nixon  Yorba Linda, California  33 of 38
                                                  #40 Ronald W. Reagan  Simi Valley, California  34 of 38

When we got back from Texas I started getting used to the idea that we probably wouldn't do anything to big for the rest of the year. There was a possibility of going to Washington DC around Thanksgiving, but that fell through. I already had a pretty big year so I was pretty happy and I started gathering information for next years trips.

My sister travels alot for her work. In the spring of 2010 she went to San Fransisco for work and took my parents with her. This got me thinking. I had plans for finishing the Presidential Gravesites that I needed for my collection. All but the 2 in the Los Angeles area. I really had no idea how or when I might get around to seeing those 2. So awhile ago I told my sister that if she ever got a chance to go to Los Angeles for work to let me know.

So one evening in late July she gave me a call and told me of the possibility of going to Los Angeles the first week of October. At this point it was a long shot. Even if she would definatly go, I would need to see if I could afford the plane tickets, car rental, hotel, ect...

After about a week of us looking into things it all came together. Even now nearly 2 months after the trip it hardly seems real.

October 1, 2011  Richard M. Nixon

I got off of work 2 hours early on Friday September 30th. I rushed home, got a shower, double checked that I had everything, kissed my family good by, and was on my way to the Detroit Airport with my sister. This was a new experience since I hadn't flown in nearly 10 years, and I had seen all 32 Presidential Gravesites at that point by driving.

We flew out of Detroit around 730. We arrived for our layover in Denver just long enough to run the length of 20 terminals to make our flight to Los Angeles. I wasn't able to get any rest between Detroit and Denver. But somewhere between Denver and L. A. I dozed off. I woke up and looked out my window at the lights of Los Angeles and for the first time a saw the Pacific Ocean coast line. It was a pretty amazing feeling. We finally landed and hopped a shuttle to our rental car place and then drove to our hotel for the night. It was midnight L. A. time.

We woke up the next morning and got a pretty nice complementary breakfast at the hotel. We had 5 stops to make that day. The 2 Presidential Libraries were both open from 10 - 5, with a 2 hour drive inbetween them. Our first stop of the day would be the Pacific View Memorial Park, burial place of John Wayne. Thanks to information found on the internet we found John Waynes gravesite with little trouble. We still had some time to kill before the Nixon Library would open. So we found a beach to kill a little time walking.

We finally made it to the Nixon Library just as they were opening. I ended up enjoying the Library and Museum alot more I had expected. There are alot of interesting displayes in the museum. Most recently they put in a display on Watergate that doesn't hold any punches. Nixon is buried on the property just afew feet away from his birthplace home. It is kind of cool for people like me when the Presidents birthplace, library, museum and gravesite is all in one place. Very convenient.  Richard Nixon has a very simple black headstone. One of the simplist of Presidential Gravesites.

Richard Nixon's gravesite. Yorba Linda, California

October 1, 2011  Ronald W. Reagan

After about an hour and a half at the Nixon Library we were on our way to Simi Valley. It was a beautiful drive. More and more as we got closer. I could definatly tell why Reagan picked this site for his Library. It may be because Reagan is one of my favorates but so far the Reagan Library is my favorate Presidential site. 2nd favorate is a tie between the LBJ Ranch and Coolidges Vermont home.

Anyways we spent about 2 and a half hours there and really took it all in. Reagan is buried in the back of the property with an absolutely beautiful view.

Ronald Reagan's gravesite. Simi Valley, California

After the Reagan Library we headed into downtown Los Angeles to Pierce Bros. Westwood Memorial Park. It is a small cemetery that is the final resting place of several big names. Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau, Marilyn Monroe, Dean Martin and many more. After the cemetery we headed to have dinner at a place that our cousin recomended. Philippes french dip sandwhiches was a very good end to a perfect day of site seeing.

The next day we went on a 5 hour Hollywood bus tour. For just a weekend in L. A. this tour showed us alot of the big sites one would want to see. We saw the Hollywood sign, Chinese Theatre, Beverly Hills, Bel Air, Muscle Beach and a bunch of other stuff. After the tour we didn't have alot of time. We hit one more nearby cemetery, Holy Cross Cemetery. We were able to find the graves of Bing Crosby, Rita Hayworth, John Ford, Sharon Tate, and Lawrence Welk. We also made it into the mausoleum that John Candy and Fred MacMurray and buried, put were kicked out before we could find them because they were closing.

This concludes my trips for now. I still have 4 Presidents to see. Which will mena 2 more trips. One down to eastern Tennessee to see Andrew Johnson. And one more eastern trip to see Grover Cleveland, Ulysess S. Grant, and Theodore Roosevelt. And more trips will follow someday assuming I survive any of the living former Presdients.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Trip #9 Back to Texas

Lincoln birthplace Hodgenville, Kentucky

Presidential Gravesites seen on this trip:   future gravesite of #41 George Bush  College Station, Texas

It had been a full 2 years since I started this little hobby and it had expanded to basically any site to do with Presidents. Birthplaces, Homes, Libraries. I wanted to see them all, and still do. For the first time I found myself planning a big trip that would not include any current Presidential Gravesites.

Just like we did in 2009, we decided to make a trip down to Texas so that my wives family down there could meet our new baby. In 2009 it was our little Khloe that we were taking down to meet the family. In 2011 it was our little Nicholas that we took down. Of course Khloe went down this time also.

In 2009 we had seen all the the Presidential Gravesite on the way down and back. This time I explored several options of other stuff to see. On the way down and back I decided to keep it simple, not knowing how 2 little ones would or would not cooperate on such a long road trip.

We left about as quick as we could get around after work on Friday June 17, 2011. It was around 5 pm when we hit the road. We drove and drove all through the night and came to our first stop of the day in Hope, Arkansas early in the morning. We got some breakfast at the Waffle House in Hope. We then saw several sites that have to do with Bill Clinton's early life in Hope. We had alittle car trouble in Hope, so when we finally left we cut out any other possible stop and headed straight for my wives' cousins apartment near Houston, Texas.

We would leave the Houston area early on the morning of Monday June 20th on a little 2 day trip. Our first stop would be the George Bush Library and Museum in College Station, Texas. As we know George Bush is alive and well, but as is the case with several recent Presidents his burial site is prepared for when the time comes. And also like most recent Presidents he will be buried on the property of his Presdiential Library and Museum. While we were there I couldn't help but check it out.

Future burial site of George and Barbara Bush College Station, Texas

George and Barbara Bush are not buried there yet but it is a current gravesite. Sadly the Bush's had a little girl Robin who passed away at the age of 4. She is already buried in the small cemetery.

Young Robin Bush's headstone is off to the left

We all had a good time at Bush's Library. It was very well done. After we left College Station we headed for Austin. In Austin we visited the LBJ Presidential Library and also the Texas State Capital Building. He ended up spending the night in a town in between Austin and San Antonio. The next morning we headed to San Antonio. In San Antonio we walked some off the city's Riverwalk and of course we visited The Alamo. It was pretty cool to see such an iconic landmark. After The Alamo we started back to Houston.

Not much in the way of historical sites for the rest of the time down there. At one point we stopped by the church that George Bush attends. We also drove by the well guarded gate to the street that he lives on.

Early Friday morning we left Houston and had a long day of driving ahead of us. Altough we drove past several points of interest, there just wasn't time to stop and see anything. That night we arrived in Columbia, Tennessee for the night.

Saturday morning we left the hotel and drove into Columbia and saw the James K. Polk Ancestreal Home, aka his parents house. Then we headed north of Nashville to Hendersonville to see the gravesite of Johnny Cash. The first of many big name celebrity gravesite I would see this year. But more on that later. After Hendersonville we continured northward towards home and stopped by Abraham Lincoln's birthplace in Hodgenville, Kentucky. That was the last stop of the trip. It was a good time. That was seemingly the last big trip of the year. But life has a way of throwing some pleasant surprises at you from time to time.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Trip #8 Western Midwest

Place of Meditation. Burial place of Dwight D. Eisenhower

Presidential Gravesite seen on this trip: #33 Harry S. Truman  Independence, Missouri  30 of 38
                                                  #34 Dwight D. Eisenhower  Abilene, Kansas  31 of 38
                                                  #31 Herbert Hoover  West  Branch, Iowa  32 of 38

            Presidential Gravesite revisit #23 Benjamin Harrison Indianapolis, Indiana

After our June 2010 trip to Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington DC, we started preparing for the new addition to our family. It was a very exciting time. We did take some small day and weekend trips in August, September and October. We revisited Hayes home in Fremont, Garfield sites in Cleveland, McKinley sites in Canton and the Henry Ford Museum in Detroit.

Nicholas was born in early November and we started settling in for the Holiday Season and Wintertime. In January we started discussing a possible weekend getaway once the weather breaks. One of our favorite bands the Christian band Third Day. So we started looking for where they would be stopping on their upcoming tour. 2 spots stuck out to me. Davenport, Iowa on March 12, and Johnson City, Tennessee on March 31. President Hoover is buried near Davenport, and President Andrew Johnson is buried near Johnson City. At that point we had taken 3 big trips, south to Texas, east to New England and east to Virginia. So I was itching to do a western trip.

We decided to do the Davenport show. After I looked into a few things we added a day to the trip in which we would see Presidents Truman and Eisenhower. I found a bunch of other sites to see along to way and before we knew it March had arrived and my wife and I were off on a 4 day trip, just the 2 of us since we left Klo and Nicky with my parents.

March 10, 2011  Harry S. Truman

On the night of March 9, 2011, we left home around 8pm. This was a strange feeling. It was the first time that both of us were going on a trip by ourselves since we had kids. It was a great time together. The plan was to drive 12 hours through the night and arrive at the Truman Library when they open. It was a long night. But knowing all that the next day would hold kept me going. We arrived in Independence with about an hour to kill before the Truman Library. We explored the town and walked some of the Truman walking tour. We saw 'Clintons Soda Fountain' where a young Truman had his first job, the courthouse where he was a judge, his home and his boyhood home. Finally the Library opened. We were the only ones there for a little while. So it was like having the place to ourselves. We took about an hour and a half to explore the Library. It is definatly one of the better ones. I think that it was because, for all of Truman's retirement he lived just up the road. He even had an office there. So in the early day of the Library, Truman himself would on occation give tours. After the Museum part we headed out to the courtyard where the Truman's are buried. Like most of the modern Presidents, Truman's gravesite is simple and respectable. I really enjoyed the Truman Library but we had alot to see, and a long way to go before the end of the day. So we were on our way.

The Truman's gravesite, Independence, Missouri

March 10, 2011  Dwight D. Eisenhower

We left Independence and crossed the state line into Kansas. We went through Kansas City and before long we were driving through the open plaines of Kansas. On the way out to Abilene and Eisenhower we made a quick stop in Topeka to see the gravesite of Vice President Charles Curtis. It was a very quick stop in that the cemetery was just off of the Interstate.

We finally arrived at the Eisenhower Center in Abilene, KS. It was a nice set up. His boyhood home, Library, Museum, and the Place of Meditation (where the Eisenhowers are buried) are all there. After driving all night to Truman's Library, and then driving another 2 hours out to Eisenhowers, we were pretty exhausted. Plus we still had to drive 4 hours to our hotel near Omaha, Nebraska when we were done in Abilene. So I decided to tour the boyhood home and skip the Museum since I heard that it wasn't one of the better ones. Now I really regret this choice since I can't claim to of seen Eisenhowers Library and Museum now. I guess that it gives me a reason to return someday.

After the house tour we walked around the loop on the property. There are a bunch of memorial plaques at the far end of the property and a statue of Ike in the center. We then made it down to the Place of Meditation. Which is a small chapel built to be the Eisenhowers final resting place. Inside are the graves of Dwight, Mamie and an infant son Doud.

Dwight Eisenhowers gravesite Abilene, Kansas

After the Eisenhower Center we got some Sonic burgers and headed north towards Omaha, Nebraska. We made a quick stop on the way in Marysville, Kansas which was the location of the Pony Express station #1. There is a prety cool statue of a Pony Express rider on his horse there. We continued into Nebraska as we were losing daylight. One last stop of the day was in Omaha at Gerald Ford birthplace. We got there just as the sun was setting. I'll bet that it's a pretty cool thing to see in the summer and in the daylight. It's a garden on the site of the house where he was born. After that we crossed our 6th state line in 24 hours from Nebraska into Iowa. We spent the night at a hotel in Council Bluffs, Iowa. It had been a long tough day and we got to see alot. The next 3 days would be a little more easy and relaxed.

March 11, 2011  Herbert Hoover

We got a great nights sleep on the night of March 10th. We had a pretty simple day ahead of us with 3 stops. We would drive the entire length of Iowa that day and spend the night in Moline, Illinios. Just on the other side of the Mississippi River from Davenport, Iowa. We left our hotel in Council Bluffs, Iowa around 8 am. First stop of the day was in Winterset, Iowa at John Waynes birthplace. After we toured the birthplace we headed to nearby Des Moine to see the gravesite of FDR's Vice President Henry Wallace. Then we continued east to West Branch, Iowa where both the Herbert Hoover National Historic Site and the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum are. We toured the small Hoover birthplace as well as some other buildings that were significant to Hoover's early life there. We then tour the Hoover Library and Museum. We really enjoyed the Hoover Library. It focused more on the humanitarian work that he did, than it did his administration. We then walked out to the Hoover gravesite. The whole Hoover experience was a pretty cool one.

Herbert Hoovers gravesite. West Branch, Iowa

The trip would continue for 2 more days. On March 12 we left our hotel in Moline, IL and saw Ronald Reagan's birthplace in Tampico, IL and we also saw his boyhood home in Dixon, IL. We then returned to our hotel in Moline and rested for the rest of the day until our concert that night.

March 13, 2011 Benjamin Harrison revisit

On Sunday March 13 all we had to do is drive the 8 hours home, and hit a few sites along the way. We first stopped in Bloomington, IL to see the gravesite of the 2 Adlai Stevensons. One was Vice President under Grover Cleveland, and the other, his grandson ran for President twice against Eisenhower, and was Ambassador to the UN under Kennedy. We also stopped in Indianapolis at Crown Hill Cemetery to revisit the gravesite of President Benjamin Harrison, as well as the 3 Vice President buried there and John Dillinger.

Ben Harrison's gravesite Indianapolis, Indiana

Before we left Indianapolis we made a quick stop at Ben Harrison's home, which was closed. We then drove the 3 hours home and had a nice evening with the kids.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Trip #7 PA, DC and Virginia

National Cathedral in Washington DC. Gravesite of Woodrow Wilson

Presidential Gravesites seen of this trip: #15 James Buchanen  Lancaster, Pennsylvania 21 of 38
                                                  #35 John F. Kennedy  Arlington, Virginia 22 of 38
                                                  #28 Woodrow Wilson  Washington DC 23 of 38
                                                  #27 William H. Taft  Arlington, Virginia 24 of 38
                                                  #1 George Washington  Mt. Vernon, Virginia 25 of 38
                                                  #4 James Madison  Orange, Virginia  26 of 38
                                                  #3 Thomas Jefferson  Charlottesville, Virginaia 27 of 38
                                                  #10 John Tyler  Richmond, Virginia 28 of 38
                                                  #5 James Monroe Richmond, Virginia 29 of 38

Bonus President: Jefferson Davis #1 and only President of the Confederate States of America

This was a trip, in large part, to pick up some loose ends. 8 of the Presidential Gravesites that I saw on this trip were sites that I had seen at least once before. But I had few to no pictures of any previous visits. But I was happy to re visit them, since it had been at least 6 years since I had seen any of them.

2009 had been a great year with this hobby, seeing 20 Presidential Gravesites total. At the begining of 2010 I had hoped to add another 10 or more for the year. Then around March we found out that my wife was pregnant. This was great news! I gladly put some of my trip ideas on the back burner until the after the baby was born. Our little boy Nicholas was born then in November.

We agreed on one big trip for the year. I cut quite a bit out and turned what was originally a 9 day trip into a 6 day trip once we found out that we had a baby on the way. Before all was said and done we added a day at the end of the week to break up the trip home a little, making it a 7 day trip. So when the time came we were heading east to pick up 8 re visits, 1 new visit, and a bunch of other great stuff.

June 12, 2010 James Buchanen

We headed out around midnight on the night of Friday June 11th. We had the same travel group as the New York New England trip from the previous September. Mom, Dad and my cousin came along with my wife, Khloe and I. My plan for the day was to visit the Buchanen gravesite, a quick stop by Buchanen's Wheatland home, which I figured would be closed when we would be there, and they were. Then spend the rest of the day in Gettysburg.

A couple weeks before our trip my sister and her family went to Gettysburg and toured the battlefield with a CD that they put in their car that directed them where to go. The CD was made by 'The History Channell'. So it was really well done. Knowing that we were heading there she gave us the CD. So my plan was to see the the Buchanen stuff in Lancaster, PA, then tour the Gettysburg Battlefield,  tour the Eisenhower home at Gettysburg, then head to our Arlington, Virginia hotel for the night.

He made it to Lancaster around 8 am. We found the cemetery ok, but the gate was locked. My cousin and I got out on foot to find a way in as the rest of the van circled the cemetery in the van to do the same. After further investigation we found an area that didn't even have a fence. I missed the sign that directed you to Buchanen's Tomb. Instead I spotted a flag pole in the distance and made a bee line for it as my cousin followed. On the way I couldn't help but notice that most of the cemetery was in serious disrepair. But when we found the Buchanen grave it was easy to see that someone was maintaining his gravesite pretty well. Everyone in the van found us after a few minutes at the gravesite. It wasn't long and we were on our way to Gettysburg. All went as planned that day except that we didn't get to tour the Eisenhower Home at Gettysburg. But it was a very full day of site seeing. After Gettysburg we were all pretty exhausted and then were on our way to Arlington, Virginia for the night.

James Buchanen gravesite Lancaster, PA

June 13, 2010, John F. Kennedy

This turned out to be a day where not everything went as planned, but it all worked out in the end.
Here was my original plan: Drive the short distance from our Arlington, Virginia hotel to Arlington National Cemetery. Since I had a pregnant wife I figured that we would take the Arlington National Cemetery bus tour, instead of venturing into the massive cemetery on foot. The bus tour only stops at JFK's gravesite, The Tomb of the Unknown Soilder, and Arlington House, home of Robert E. Lee. After the bus tour we would go back to the hotel where everyone else would relax while my cousin and I would venture back into the cemetery on foot and see President Taft as well as some other points of interest. We would return to the hotel in time to get everyone else and drive out to the National Cathedral to see the gravesite of Woodrow Wilson. After calling ahead I found out that on this day I only day a window of one hour to see President Wilson's gravesite between 1 and 2 pm. We would then return to the hotel, hop on the subway and head to the Holocaust Museum and then spend the rest of the day walking the main mall area.

What really happened: We got to the cemetery when they opened just like a hundred other people. I underestimated how long it would take to buy the bus tour tickets, wait in line for the bus, and take the tour.  First stop of the tour was JFK's gravesite. It is a nice and respectable gravesite. Probably one of the most visited of all Presidential Graves. JFK's brothers Bobby Kennedy and Teddy Kennedy are buried nearby. There is also an area nearby that has a bunch of Supreme Court Justices buried in it. Including Chief Justices William Rehnquest and Warren Earl Burger. Justice Thurgood Marshall is also there, he was the first black man appointed to the Supreme Court.

John F. Kennedy's gravesite. Arlington National Cemetery Arlington, Virginia

June 13, 2010,  Woodrow Wilson

By the time we were done with Arlington National Cemeteries bus tour there was no time for anyone to relax at the hotel. And no time to see President Taft's grave. We HAD to get moving to the National Cathedral or else we would miss our one hour window of oppourtunity to see Wilson. So we left ANC for the National Cathedral. When we got there my wife, cousin and I hopped out and headed into the Cathedral while Mom and Dad stayed with a sleeping Khloe. Wilson's gravesite in a beautiful part of the Cathedral including stained glass windows and a marble casket. After seeing Wilson we explored the Cathedral a little more, and then were on our way back to our hotel in Arlington. Once we got there we packed up and headed for the subway to go into DC. We got to the Holocaust Museum which my cousin really wanted to see. We went inside and I had to throw away an unopened bottle of Pepsi Max in order to gain enteree. But once I got in there they said no more civilian tours for the day, only government employees for the rest of the day. Which really pissed me off. We checked out a couple of temporary displays and were off to the Mall area. We saw the Washington, Jefferson, FDR, Lincoln, Vietnam, WW2 and Korean War Monuments. I decided that we would have to make an unexpected stop back at Arlington National Cemetery on the way to Mt. Vernon on the next morning to see President Taft.

Woodrow Wilson's gravesite. National Cathedral Washington DC

June 14, 2010  William Howard Taft

After an exhausting day in the Washington DC area we all got a good nights sleep. The original plan for this day was simple. Be at George Washingtons Mt. Vernon when they open, then make it down to James Madisons Montpelier before the end of the day, then continue on down to Charlottesville for the night. But since the day before didn't go quite as planned we had to make a quick stop at Arlington National Cemetery to see President Taft. Now on this trip I really came to hate the roads around Arlington, Virginia. We missed our turn and ended up driving past the Pentagon. We eventually made it all the way around ANC and got it right the 2nd time. We parked the van and my cousin and I headed in on foot. I knew that it wouldn't take long since Taft's gravesite is very close to the front gate. We made our way up to Taft's grave. It is a unique grave marker for the only man to serve as both President and Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. Not far away was the gravesite of Robert Todd Lincoln. Abraham Lincoln's only son to live to adulthood. We made a quick stop at Robert Todd Lincoln's grave before heading back to the van. Then it was off to Mt. Vernon.

The day before I got a map of ANC and all of the graves of interest to me marked on them. Taking the bus tour I wasn't able to see very many of them. But unexpectedly I would be back in the Washington DC area 6 weeks later for the weekend to see my nephew in the Boy Scout Parade. On that trip I was able to go into the Cemetery on foot with my cousin and see alot of those loose ends, plus a bunch of stuff that I missed in DC as well.

Taft's gravesite. Arlington National Cemetery

June 14, 2010  George Washington

We left Arlington National Cemetery after seeing Taft's gravesite for Mt. Vernon. We arrived shortly after they opened. We waited in line to see the house and started heading toward the Tomb, seeing the old tomb on the way.

There are just a few Presidential Gravesites that I have visited that I had to wait my turn to see, and wait for the crowd to clear some, in order to get my pictures. Washington was one of them. Also in this category was Jefferson, Lincoln, Kennedy and Reagan.

I had last visited Mt. Vernon 6 years earlier on my honeymoon. In that time they had added alot. A museum, visitors center and reconstructed distillery. One could easily spend the whole day there, which I really hope to return someday and do. But we had a scheduel to stick to so we were on our way after a couple of hours.

Me at Washingtons Tomb

June 14, 2010  James Madison

After Mt. Vernon we were on our way to James Madison's Montpelier. Montpelier had undergone a huge renovation in recent years. The Du pont family owned the house for a long time and added to it over the years. The recent renovation restored the house back to how it looked in Madisons time. Having worked in Construction since High School I was very impressed with all that they had done. After the house tour we headed down to the family graveyard. James and Dolley Madison are buried together there. Dolley's smaller marker is just behind James's larger one. We then headed to our motel in Charlottesville. On the campus of the University of Virginia. Being on campus I figured that it would be a decent place. But it turned out to be a dump. After dinner we headed to the older parts of the U of V campus that Thomas Jefferson designed. It was pretty cool.

James Madison's large tombstone in the front. Dolley's smaller one in the back.

June 15, 2010  Thomas Jefferson

We got up early to leave the craphole motel, and head over to Monticello. I must of got bad information because we showed up at 8 when I thought they opened. The guy at the gate told us that they don't open until 9. He mentioned a donut place called Spudnuts nearby to kill time at. So we went there for some donuts. They were pretty good.

We made it back to Monticello in time for the first tour of the day. The house tour of Monticello is very interesting. Jefferson was a brilliant inventor on top of everything else, and his house is proof of that. Like Mt. Vernon, Monticello has also added a museum and other things that we didn't have time to see. So sometime I would like to return. After the house tour we walked the grounds alittle. It is a beautiful property that is mostly unchanged since Jefferson's time. We then headed down to the family cemetery where Jefferson's family members are still being buried on occation.

Thomas Jefferson's gravesite at his Monticello home. Charlottesville, Virginia

June 15, 2010  John Tyler
                       James Monroe

After we left Monticello we were making good time so we stopped by James Monroe's Ash Lawn Highland home. It was a nice tour. The home is owned by the College of William and Mary. After Ash Lawn we headed to Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond. The burial place of Presidents James Monroe and John Tyler, and also Confederate President Jefferson Davis. Confederate Generals J.E.B. Stuart and George Pickett are also buried there.

First we saw the 2 Generals. And then we headed to the area where both John Tyler and James Monroe happen to be buried near each other. There are 3 places that can claim 2 Presidential Gravesites. The first is the United First Parish Church in Quincy, Massachusetts where John Adams and John Quincy Adams are both buried. Another one is Arlington National Cemetery were William Howard Taft  and John F. Kennedy are both buried. The last is Hollywood Cemetery.

John Tyler's gravesite,  Hollywood Cemetery Richmond, Virginia. The black birdcage in the background to the left is the gravesite of James Monroe.

James Monroe's gravesite

June 15, 2010  Jefferson Davis CSA President

After we saw the 2 U. S. Presidents there was one last stop before we left the cemetery. Any real gravehunter can't visit Hollywood Cemetery and not visit the grave of Jefferson Davis, the only President of the Confederate States of America.

The grave of CSA President Jefferson Davis

That concludes the Presidential Gravesites seen on this trip. However the trip continued for 3 more days.

When we left Richmond we headed towards Williamsburg for the night. On the way we stopped at Berkeley Plantation, birthplace of W. H. Harrison, Sherwood Forrest Plantation, home of John Tyler, and the roadside marker marking the birthplace of John Tyler.

The next day Wendesday June 16th was the Lighthouse and beach day that I promised my wife. On this day we saw 4 lighthouses. One happend to be on the same island that Jefferson Davis was imprisoned for 2 years after the Civil War.

On Thursday we visited Appomattox Court House, where the Civil War ended. Then we hit Lexington, Virginia where Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson are buried. And finally we stopped in Staunton, Virginia at the birhplace of Woodrow Wilson.

On Friday we stopped in Shankesville, PA at the Flight 93 Memorial. After the terrorist attacks on 9/11/2001 there was a memorial started near the crash site of  Flight 93. It was a mooving experience. We then hit French and Indian War sites Fort Liggioneer and Fort Nessesity. Fort Nessesity is the site of George Washington's first battle.

All in all it was a pretty great week. We went home to soak it all in, and of course prepare for the arrival of our son Nicholas, who would be born the following November.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Trip #6 Grand Rapids

Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum Grand Rapids, Michigan

Presidential Gravesites seen on this trip #38 Gerald R. Ford  Grand Rapids, Michigan 20 of 38

December 26, 2009 Gerald R. Ford

On Christmas Day, 2009, My whole family came to my house for Christmas. I was talking with my sisters about my hobby and they asked how many Presidential Gravesites I had seen that year. I added them up. 19. That's when I started thinking that it would be cool to make it an even 20. The closest and easiest that I hadn't seen yet was Gerald Ford in Grand Rapids, Michigan, 4 hours away.

I gathered some last minute information and talked my wife into getting an early start the next morning. So we headed out for Grand Rapids around 7am. The weather cooperated. As I got higher up in Michigan and closer to Grand Rapids we started to go through some dusting of snow. As far as the weather went we were very lucky for being in Michigan in late December.

This was a new experience for me. This was the first Presidential Library or Museum that I had taken the time to tour. Ford is the only one whose Library and Museum are in different places. As mentioned his Museum is in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he is also buried. But his Library is in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on the campus of the University of Michigan, Ford was a U of M alumni and I am a big Ohio State fan. But that's ok. lol.

I really enjoyed the Ford Museum. It was very well laid out. After this I tried to incorporate the other Presidential Libraries into future trips. Ford was the only President to be appointed President. He was House Minority Leader when Richard Nixon appointed him to be Vice President to fill the vacancy left by Spiro Agnew's resignation. When Richard Nixon himself resigned Ford became President. Ford wouldn't win the election of 1976. Making him the first VP who assumed the Presidency who never won a term in his own right since Chester Arthur. He was a good, decent man who brought integrity to the White House after the coroption of Watergate.

After visiting the gravesite of Gerald Ford on December 26, 2009 it made 20 gravesites in one year. In 2010 I would visit another 9. So far in 2011 I've seen another 5. Which leaves 4 left which I hope to see in 2012.

Gerald Ford's gravesite, Grand Rapids, Michigan

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Trip #5 Northern New York State and New England

United First Parish Church Quincy, Massachusetts Presidents John Adams and John Quincy Adams are buried in the basement.

Presidential Gravesites seen on this trip: #32 Franklin D. Roosevelt Hyde Park, New York 12 of 38
                                                      #8 Martin Van Buren Kinderhook, New York 13 of 38
                                                      #21 Chester A. Arthur Albany, New York 14 of 38
                                                      #2 John Adams Quincy, Massachusetts 15 of 38
                                                      #6 John Quincy Adams Quincy, Massachusetts 16 of 38
                                                      #14 Franklin Pierce Concord, New Hampshire 17 of 38
                                                      #30 Calvin Coolidge Plymouth Notch, Vermont 18 of 38
                                                      #13 Millard Fillmore Buffalo, New York 19 of 38

The brainstorming for this trip started back in May. After hitting 3 Presidents in 3 states in one day I started thinking of what could be accomplished in 3 or 4 days. I got the idea for this trip from Dave, who's trips are on this link, traveled from Detriot to New England and saw 7 of the President above. I started kicking around idea's for doing a simular trip. I ended up doing it alittle differently then Dave did. Plus I added FDR which he hadn't seen on his trip. My Mom, Dad and cousin came along on this trip with my wife, Khloe and I. I originally planned to do this trip over Labor Day weekend. But there was a work conflict with Dad so we did it the weekend after Labor Day and added the next Monday and Tuesday to the trip.

September 12, 2009 Franklin D. Roosevelt

We left home around 11 pm on the night of Friday September 11. We drove through the night with the idea of being at FDR's home when they opened. We made better time than expected and got there an hour before they opened. We found an older looking diner just down the road and got some breakfast. We made it back shortly after they opened. They were offering free house tour that day that we took advantage of. FDR's Hyde Park, NY home is kind of a one stop of most significant FDR sites. The house there was his life long home and he was born there. He is buried on the property and his Presidential Library is also there. We didn't take time to see the Library so I may try to return someday. The house tour was pretty interesting. He had a beautiful property along the Hudson River. After touring the home we headed for the garden where Franklin and Elenor Roosevelt are buried. FDR once said that he didn't want his tombstone any bigger than his desk. Which explaines the unique shape of his tombstone.

FDR's gravesite Hyde Park, New York

September 12, 2009 Martin Van Buren

We left Hyde Park and continued north along the Hudson River. Along the way we came to a roadside farmers market type place that had fresh apples and cider. With apple and cider to snack on we continued north to the small town of Kinderhook, New York, Martin Van Buren's hometown. We made a quick stop at the Van Buren birthplace historical marker before heading to his Lindenwald home. Lindenwald has been called the 'Monticello' of the north. It was the first house in America with indoor plumbing. We took the tour which we really enjoyed. I would definatly recommend it.

After the house we headed for Kinderhook Cemetery, the final resting place of Van Buren. It was pretty easy to find in that it was one of the tallest gravestones in the cemetery. We took a few pictures and then were on our way to the next stop, Chester Arthur in Albany.

Martin Van Buren's gravesite Kinderhook, New York

September 12, 2009 Chester A. Arthur

We left Kinderhook for our last site of the day. Chester Arthur's grave in Albany Rural Cemetery is only 30 minutes or so away from Kinderhook. We found the cemetery but it took awhile to find the gate. We eventually found Arthur's gravesite. It is definatly one of the most unique Presidential Gravesite. After a few pictures we where on our way to our hotel for the night over 3 hours away just south of Boston, Massachusetts.

Chester Arthur gravesite Albany, New York

September 13, 2009 John Adams
                                John Quincy Adams

We spent the night in Braintree, MA at a motel near the Boston subway system. Braintree is the last stop on the subway line that stops at Quincy. So we hit the subway around 8am and headed to Quincy. Quincy was the birthplace and hometown of both John and John Quincy Adams. The National Park Service controlls the 2 birthplace houses which stand side by side, and also 'Peacefield' which was John Adams retirement home. When John Adams died John Quincy Adams inherited the house. The National Park Service opened at 9. We had a little time to kill so we explored Hancock Cemetery. Hancock Cemetery is right across the street from the United First Parish Church in which both Adams and their wives are buried. Hancock Cemetery is the final resting place of many members of the Adams family as well as John Hancock's family. John Hancock himself though is buried in Boston. Which we saw later that day.

We were on the first Adams National Historic Site trolly of the day that took us to the birthplace houses and "Peacefield'. The 'Peacefield' tour remains one of my favorites. The National Park Ranger that gave the tour was very good and informative.

When we got back to the National Park station we headed over to United First Parish Church to take the tour and see the Adams gravesites. It was a nice tour which showed us the Adams family pew. We headed to the basement where we came across 4 big stone coffins, for lack of a better term. Having recently watch the HBO mini series 'John Adams' I was really enjoying the Adams sites. And visiting their final resting places was a great way to finish the Adams experience.

That afternoon we hoped back on the subway and headed into Boston. We walked the 'Freedom Trail' which had several big historical sites along the way including Granery Burial Ground where Samuel Adams, John Hancock, and Paul Revere are all buried, the site of the Boston Massacre, The Old North Church, and the USS Constituation. All in all a really great day of site seeing. We then headed back to our motel in Braintree for the night.

John Adams grave Quincy, MA

John Quincy Adams grave Quincy, MA

September 14, 2009 Franklin Pierce

We got an early start on the morning of Monday September 14th. I didn't know what to expect as far as Boston morning rush hour traffic. So we left the motel around 6 am figuring that should be early enought to avoid it. All went well as we headed north out of Boston for Concord, New Hampshire and Franklin Pierce. Once we got to Concord we stopped and got some breakfast. We then headed into town and found the 'Pierce Manse' Home of President Pierce. Of course they were closed that day so we took some pictures and were soon heading for Old North Cemetery to see Pierce's gravesite. It was a small town cemetery and the Pierce family gravesite wasn't hard to find.

Pierce left a sad legacy that I couldn't help but reflect on at his gravesite. Franklin and his wife Jane had lost all but one of their children by the time he was elected President. On the train ride to the Inaguration there was a train derailment and their last surviving child 'Benny' was decapitated right in front of them. Franklin went on to serve 4 miserable years as President. After his wife died he spent his remaining years drinking himself to death. Now it seemed that most of the residence of Concord didn't even know or care that there was a former President buried nearby. All very sad.

Franklin Pierce gravesite Concord, New Hampshire

September 14, 2009 Calvin Coolidge

From Concord we headed west into Vermont to see Calvin Coolidges home and grave. To this day the Coolidge site in Plymouth Notch, Vermont remains in my top 3 of all Presidential sites that I have visited. The small town seems unchanged since Coolidge lived there. His birthplace is there as well as is his boyhood home were he spent alot of time as an adult, and was Inagurated there also after Harding died. There is a cheese factory there that the Coolidges once owned, and it is still in use. But I guess that the main thing is that it is in the middle of the Vermont wilderness surrounded by beautiful scenery. This very unique spot was what made Calvin Coolidge the man he became. And it was great to experience it first hand.

Coolidge is buried in a small cemetery not far from his birthplace, along with 7 generations of his family. It is a simple respectable tombstone. And if you didn't know any better you could easily drive past the cemetery and never realise that there was a President buried there.

Calvin Coolidges gravestone Plymouth Notch, Vermont

September 15, 2009 Millard Fillmore

After Coolidges historical site we started heading west. It was a 6 to 7 hour drive to our hotel in Batavia, New York. After getting dinner along the way we finally arrived at our hotel around 10 that night.

In 3 days I had pushed my family pretty hard. So we slept in on this Tuesday morning and enjoyed the hotels continental breakfast. Around 9:45 am we started to drive the 30 minutes or so to Forest Lawn Cemetery in Buffalo, New York to see the final Presidential Gravesite of the trip, Millard Fillmore. We found Fillmore's gravesite easily enough. It was a simple pink obelisk. I spent a little time reflecting on Fillmore himself but more in thankfulness that the last 4 days had gone great. We left Forest Lawn and headed down the road away's and saw the Theodore Roosevelt Inagural site. I got directions to see the marker where William McKinley had been shot. But I could tell that my family was getting restless and they really wanted to see Niagara Falls. So we skippped the McKinley assassination site and headed for Niagara Falls. After a little time at the falls we started our 5 hour car ride home. It had been a great 4 days and I had started to think about all that I had seen that year as compared to previous years. So at the half way point in September I looked back on 2009 thinking that it had been a great year. Little did I know that one small adventure was to occure before the years end.

Millard Fillmore's gravesite Fores Lawn Cemetery, Buffalo, New York

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Trip #4 Down to Texas and Back

Lincoln's headstone in Lincoln's Tomb Springfield, IL

Presidential Gravesites seen on this trip: #11 James K. Polk Nashville, Tennessee 8 of 38                        
#7 Andrew Jackson Nashville, Tennessee 9 of 38
#36 Lyndon B. Johnson Stonewall, Texas 10 of 38
#16 Abraham Lincoln Springfield, Illinios 11 of 38

June 20, 2009 James K. Polk

The trip that started all of this had finally come. We left home around midnight. My plan was to drive through the night and arrive at Andrew Jackson's Hermitage right when they open. This all worked out ok. We arrived at The Hermitage at 8:45 and they were to open at 9:00. As we sat waiting the last few minutes before they opened the security guard drove up behind us and started looking at us funny as he circled our van a couple times. He eventually stopped behind us. I got out to see if there was a problem. He said, "you know that we don't open until 9 right?" I said "Yeah". He said, " ok, you are welcomed to sit here, but I just wanted you to know." I said, "ok" thinking that it was strange. Then it occurred to me. The time change. Somehow in all of my planning I had never considered that Nashville is just on the other side into the Central Time Zone. Which meant that it was actually pushing 8:00 not 9. Which explains the security guards confusion. So I decided to go see the other President buried in Nashville, James K. Polk, while The Hermitage was still closed.

So we drove into the heart of Nashville and found the Tennessee State Capital Building pretty easy. Polk's Tomb is located on the State Capital lawn. But the problem was, where to park? We drove a couple blocks down the hill from the Capital and found a parking spot. We then proceded to walk the stroller up the hill over what seemed like a thousand steps. We got to the street next to the Capital Building and found more steps. We started to walk around the property hoping to find a ramp or something other than steps. I looked up the hill and saw it. Polk's Tomb was hard to miss after seeing pictures of it. It was just up the hill. I guess that I figured the quickest way between 2 points is a straight line. So I proceded to drag the stroller up the hill as my wife pushed. The hill proved to be steeper than expected and by the time we got up the hill my wife was a little peeved and not speaking to me. Polk's Tomb is a nice and respectable memorial to one of our greatest Presdents. He was originally buried at his house Polk Place. But when the house was torn down the Tomb was moved to the Capital. We found an easier way down the hill and we were on our way back to The Hermitage.

James K. Polk's Tomb Tennessee State Capital Building Nasville, Tennessee

June 20, 2009 Andrew Jackson

By the time we made it back to The Hermitage, they were very much open. There are a few sites that are absolute must sees for Presidential site enthusiast. Among them are Mt. Vernon and Monticello. The Hermitage is also one of them. It was a very hot day. We looked through all of their indoor exhibits and then headed outside to the house. We toured the house which was a great tour. We then went to the garden next to the house, where President and Mrs. Jackson are buried. We spent a little time there but it was getting very hot and Khloe was only 5 and a half months old. So we continued on our way down to Texas. I do plan to return to Nashville sometime just the wife and I to see The Hermitage more closely and explore other things.

Andrew Jackson's Tomb at The Hermitage

June 24, 2009 Lyndon B. Johnson

Fast forward a few days to Wednesday. I planned out the way down and the way back to Texas. I left the rest of the week open to whatever, except for Wednesday. Not knowing if I would ever make it back down to Texas, I was determined to go to the LBJ Ranch while I was down there. It would be a 4 hour drive from where we were staying in the Houston area to the LBJ Ranch. So I wanted to get an early start. I figured that we should leave around 5am so that we could be at the Ranch around 9. My wives 2 cousins decided to come along and they weren't happy about the early rise. Although one of them mentioned recently that looking back, they were glad that they got to see it. I hadn't planned on hitting Austin around rush hour that morning, which set us back alittle. We arrived in Johnson City, Texas around 10. LBJ spent part of his childhood here and there is one of his boyhood homes there to see. We looked around a bit but weren't allowed inside because they were moving furniture that day. I talked with the man at the visitors center and he gave us directions to the LBJ Ranch which was another 15 minutes or so down the road.  

Now to this day it remains one of my favorate sites. The experience of driving out to the Ranch with the scenery really sets the mood. I have heard to refered to as the 'LBJ experience' . And I definatly found it to be that. Whatever LBJ was, growing up in this area of Texas made him that way. And it is a great experience to see it first hand.

It was around 11 when we finally made it to the Ranch. We stopped at the visitors center and they gave us a cd to put in the car as a sort of self guided tour. Others were taking the bus though. We drove out of the visitors center and turned to drive along a river. We eventually came to the bridge that took us over to the main LBJ sites. In a very small stretch of road is LBJ's school house, his reconstructed birthplace, his grandparents home, the family cemetery where he is buried, and the main LBJ Ranch house. I got out to see the birthplace home. And then we headed over to the cemetery. You aren't allowed to step across the stone wall that surrounds the Johnson family cemetery. But you can see LBJ's tombstone very well from the outside. We continued on to the ranch house where just months before they started to let people in to tour. LBJ's widow Lady Bird Johnson lived until 2007. At that point the house was given to the National Park Service. 2008 was the 100th birthyear of LBJ. So around his 100th birthday they opened the house to the public. At the time only a few rooms where available to tour. But it was still pretty cool to be inside.

LBJ's Tombstone in the Johnson family cemetery at the LBJ Ranch Stonewall, Texas.

June 27th 2009 Abraham Lincoln

We started the trip back home from Texas on the late afternoon of Friday June 26th. We left around 4pm and arrived in Dallas around 8. We stopped by Dealey Plaza in Dallas. The site of John F. Kennedy's assassination. We continued on our way driving through the night and hoping to arrive in Springfield, IL in the morning. We arrived in Springfield around 10:30 am. We headed straight for Lincoln's Tomb. I would have to say that Lincoln's Tomb was one of my favorites. It's like a sort of mecca that all Americans should experience at least once.  Before we left Springfield we stopped by Lincoln's Home. There is so much Lincoln stuff to see in Springfield that it was ashame to see it as a drive by stop. I hope to someday go out there are spend a couple days to soak up all of the Lincoln sites. We then drove the last 6 hours or so home. It was a great trip. Once things settled down from it I started gathering information for my next big trip to come the following September.

Abraham Lincoln's Tomb Oak Ridge Cemetery Springfield, Illinois

Trip #3 Northeast Ohio

Marble statue of Garfield in his Tomb

Presidential Gravesites seen on this trip: #25 William McKinley Canton, Ohio 6 of 38
                                                            #20 James A. Garfield Cleveland, Ohio 7 of 38

In a matter of a few weeks I had seen 5 Presidential Gravesites. With my big trip down to Texas coming up in June, I wanted to get more of the easy ones out of the way. I had just 2 left to see in my home state of Ohio. On the Saturday after Memorial Day my wife was working. I gathered together all who wanted to go that day. My Mom, Cousin, Aunt and Khloe all went on the days trip.

May 30, 2009 William McKinley

Oddly enough the 2 Presidents that we saw on this day were both assassinated. So both were given very large tombs as memorials to them. The first we came to was William McKinley's Tomb in Canton, Ohio. I remember visiting once as a kid. We made a weekend of seeing the 2 Presidents Tombs as well as the Pro Football Hall of Fame, which is in Canton not far from McKinley's Tomb.

On the morning of May 30, 2009 we arrived around 9:30 am. The place was crowded with runners using the many steps for exercise. Of course when we climbed to the top of the steps and entered the monument we were the only ones interested to see what was inside. It made we wonder if all of the people running the steps ever took the time to pay their respects to the martyred President.

McKinley was a good President who led us through the Spanish American War. His administration is oftain overshadowed by Theodore Roosevelt. Who was McKinley's Vice President and assumed the Presidency upon McKinley's death. After we spent a little time at McKinley's Tomb we were on our way to Cleveland to see President Garfields Tomb.

On this particular trip I forgot my good camera and only took cell phone pictures. This caused me to want to return sometime to get better pictures. So in October 2009 I returned to McKinley's Tomb one Sunday afternoon with my wife and Khloe. It happened to be a beautiful day at the peak of fall foliage and so we took some family pictures which turned out really good. So far we repeated this trip 2 more times for the specific purpose of getting family pictures done in October 2010 and October 2011.

William McKinley's Tomb Canton, Ohio

May 30, 2009 James A. Garfield

It was around 11: 30 am when we arrived at Garfield's Tomb in Lake View Cemetery. The Tomb really is amazing. The architeture of the Tomb is very unique. We took our time walking around and through the Tomb. There is a 2nd story balcony that offers a good view of Lake Erie. President and Mrs. Garfield's caskets are on display in the basment.

Lake View Cemetery is also the final resting  place of Lawman Elliot Ness, John D. Rockefeller and Sec. of State John Hay.

After Garfields Tomb we headed to Garfields home 'Lawnfield'. The site of the first from porch campaign. We took the tour and I would definatly recomend it. There is also a little museum on the life of Garfield in the visitors center that I enjoyed. Garfield was a brilliant man and I think that history may of been different if he had survived. But he was assassinated in less then a year in office.

As I metioned before I forgot my camera, so in September 2010 I returned with my wife and Khloe. Along with Lake View Cemetery and Lawnfield we also visited Garfield's birthplace.

When we left Garfield's home in the evening of May 30th, 2009 I was already starting to get excited about the next trip which would be much bigger. Going down to Texas was just a few weeks away.

Me at Garfield's Tomb

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Trip #2 Tri State Presidential Tour

Inside William Henry Harrisons Tomb.

Presidential Gravesites seen on this trip: #9 William Henry Harrison   North Bend, Ohio 3 of 38
                                                            #12 Zachary Taylor   Louisville, Kentucky 4 of 38
                                                            #23 Benjamin Harrison   Indianapolis, Indiana 5 of 38

Since I started this I had been kicking around alot of trip options. I read on one particular website where a man who lived in Detroit made a weekend of visiting the graves of 3 midwestern Presidents. Using his trip as a template I figured that from where I live that I could do it in one day, if I got an early start.

May 16, 2009 William Henry Harrison

During the week following up to Saturday May 16 my wife decided to visit her sister in southern Ohio to help her with her upcoming wedding. She took Khloe with her. With nothing else to do that Saturday I rounded up an assortment of family members who were willing to go. So at 5 am that morning my Mom, Sister, Neice, Nephew, Cousin and Aunt all loaded up. We started to head for the Cincinatti area. We arrived in North Bend around 8 am, which is about 20 miles west of Cincinatti along the Ohio River. I had been there once before, and twice since this trip. I was just a kid when I saw it last. It is a very large Tomb for our first President to die in office. Harrison of course died just one month into office.

Mom had packed some cold meat sandwhiches and was making some for everyone. I remember walking down the road to a nearby cemetery in which many of W. H. Harrison children and other family are buried. Harrison sadly would outlive most of his 10 children who mostly died as young adults. So many of them where buried there before the Tomb was built.

W. H. Harrison's Tomb

May 16, 2009 Zachary Taylor

We left W. H. Harrisons Tomb for Louisville and Zachary Taylors Tomb. Along the way I remember stopping at a Kroger near North Bend for one reason or the other. It was around noon by the time we made it to Taylors grave in Louisville. Taylor is buried in a National Cemetery that bares his name, with the same military grave stones as you would see in Arlington National Cemetery. An interesting side note to Zachary Taylors gravesite is that his body was exumed in 1991.

In 1850, President Taylor took part in the ground breaking ceremony for the Washington Monument. It was a hot day and the President eat alot of cherries and drank milk and water. He came down with cholera and became the 2nd President to die in office. In 1991 historians convinced Taylors descendents to have an autopsy performed on Taylors body to see if he may have been poisoned. The test proved negative and the history booked didn't need to be changed.

Taylors Tomb is a respectable one. My nephew and neice enjoyed getting out and running up the hill of his old tomb. But they also took time to pose with their Uncle at Taylors Tomb. After Taylor's grave we explored Louisville a little bit. We visited Locust Grove, the home of George Rodgers Clark, Revolutionary War General. We also found the home of Zachary Taylor which is private property. So we took some pictures and where on our way to Indianapolis.

Zachary Taylors Tomb

May 16, 2009 Benjamin Harrison

We arrived in Indianapolis around 4, with only an hour before closing time. We went through some very bad areas of Indianapolis to get to Crown Hill Cemetery. The path to Benjamin Harrison's grave was easy to find. It is a simple marker that nearly any family may have. Before long we were on our way home. It was a great day. I went home to an empty house since my wife and Khloe were at my sister in laws helping with wedding stuff. I felt a strong sense of accomplishment and started to think that if I could accomplish so much in one day. What all could I see if I had 3 or 4 days. This brainstorming eventually became my New York New England trip that would happen the following September.

I did learn a lesson on this stop. I came to find out later that also buried at Crown Hill Cemetery were 3 Vice Presidents and bank robber John Dillinger. Ever since I always check before I go to a cemetery to see if there are any other gravesites of interest there.

Benjamin Harrisons gravesite