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History happened here.

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  • 11/28/11--08:20: The Ammon Underwood House
  • Texas, Brazoria County, East Columbia
    A structure erected in noted old river port town of Marion in Republic of Texas era. First portion, of hand-hewn cedar, was built about 1835 by colonist Thomas W. Nibbs. Merchant-civic leader-soldier Ammon Underwood (1810-87) bought and enlarged house in 1838-39. In 1839 he married Rachel Jane, daughter of William and Catherine Carson, of Austin's original colony. President Anson Jones and other famous Texans often visited the Underwoods.
    Recorded Texas Historic Landmark-1970
    Entered in the National Register of Historic Places 1976

    (War, Texas Independence) Includes location, directions, 2 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--08:31: Sweeny-Waddy Log Cabin
  • Texas, Brazoria County, East Columbia
    John Sweeny, Sr. (d. 1855) moved his family from Tennessee to Brazoria county, Texas, about 1833. With the help of slaves, he cleared his land and established a large plantation. This log cabin, originally located about 9 miles southwest of this site, was built soon after Sweeny's arrival and housed the slave family that included Mark and Larkin Waddy. The Waddys continued to live in the cabin after they were freed at the end of the Civil War.
    Recorded Texas Historic Landmark-1983

    (African Americans • Settlements & Settlers • War, Texas Independence) Includes location, directions, 1 photo, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--08:48: Dance Gun Shop
  • Texas, Brazoria County, East Columbia
    Near site of Dance Gun Shop. Started on Brazos River in 1850 by brothers J.H., George, and David Dance. Shop produced guns which helped arm the Confederacy during Civil War, 1861-65. The firearms were noted for precision. Shop also made machinery for grist mills, cotton gins, sugar refineries, and sawmills.

    (Industry & Commerce • War, US Civil) Includes location, directions, 1 photo, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--09:36: Mercury Storage Vault
  • California, Santa Clara County, San Jose
    After cleaned mercury is collected, it was placed in iron flasks for transportation to market. A flask of mercury weighs about 76 pounds when filled and a flask needs to be strong because of the density of the liquid metal.

    Filled containers of mercury were valuable (worth about $720 per flask in 1965), so they were usually stored under lock and key. This “vault” (upper left illustration) was used to store mercury flasks during the last twenty years of mining. The flasks would be accumulated until a minimum lot was available to sell to a broker, usually ten flasks. The miners would load the filled flasks into a truck or car and drive them to the broker. In the last years of mining, the broker was Quicksilver Products Inc. in Burlingame, California.

    In the lower left photo, Andrew Dahlgren fills flasks at New Almaden, about 1894. From Images of America: New Almaden.

    (Industry & Commerce • Natural Resources) Includes location, directions, 4 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--09:42: M.L. Weems House
  • Texas, Brazoria County, East Columbia
    This Greek revival house was built about 1847 by Dr. Mason Locke Weems II, the first of a succession of Weems family physicians to live here. The house features a center passage plan and raised cottage form. Details on the six-bay inset porch include square posts with molded caps and turned-wood balusters. To avoid Brazos River floods, the house was moved to its present location about 1869 and later enlarged and remodeled.
    Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1962
    Entered in the National Register of Historic Places 1991

    (Science & Medicine) Includes location, directions, 2 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--10:03: Tyler-Bryan-Weems House
  • Texas, Brazoria County, East Columbia
    Ariadne O. Gautier (1834-1910) came from Florida to this part of Texas in 1841 with her parents. Her father, Dr. Peter Gautier, Jr., joined other Texans in turning back an invading Mexican army in 1842. In 1855, Ariadne married Clinton Lucretius Terry, with whom she had four children. Terry, serving with Terry's Texas Rangers, died in the Civil War at Shiloh in 1862. Six years later, Ariadne wed William Tyler. Again widowed, she purchased property at this site in 1871. Records indicate she built the original part of this house within the next two years. She married a third time, to Henry H. Swymmer, in 1875.

    Ariadne sold the property in 1897 to Frank Bowden Chilton (1845-1926), who had been a captain in Hood's Texas Brigade. In 1900, he gave the property to Mary Louise Chilton (1877-1973), his daughter by his third wife, Ann (Briscoe). The property formally transferred on the date of Mary's marriage to Austin Y. Bryan (1863-1930), grandson of Stephen F. Austin's sister, Emily Austin Bryan Perry. The Bryans sold the house in 1919 to West Columbia hardware and mercantile store owner Sands Smith Weems, Sr. (1873-1961) and his wife, Nan (Pickett) (1880-1964). The Weems family retained ownership of the house until 2000.

    The frame house was built in the Greek revival style. Details include square posts with molded caps, as well as a balustrade on the second level. The house features an inset, two-tiered porch with five bays. The entries are accented by sidelights. The original structure was symmetrical and built on a rectangular plan. During their ownership, the Bryans built a two-story, ell-shaped addition to the back of the house, which serves as a model of 19th-century vernacular architecture.
    Recorded Texas Historic Landmark—2002

    (Settlements & Settlers) Includes location, directions, 2 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--10:09: Aldridge - Smith House
  • Texas, Brazoria County, East Columbia
    This local landmark was built between 1837 and 1841 for William Aldridge, a farmer and large landholder. After a 10-year ownership by merchant, Henry Hansen, the house was sold to J.H. Dance and Co., a construction firm that supplied arms to the Confederacy. Businessman Thomas Masterson Smith (1882-1965) and his wife Mary (1881-1964) leased the house from 1908 until they purchased it in 1917. The home has been in the Smith family for more than 60 years.
    Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1983

    (Settlements & Settlers) Includes location, directions, 2 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--10:29: Shaker-Concentrator
  • California, Santa Clara County, San Jose
    The shaker-concentrator, also known as a shaker table, was used in gravity beneficiation (the concentration of ore) for sorting fine-grained materials, such as heavy cinnabar, from ordinary rock and dust particles. The beneficiation process was carried out on the surface of the shaker bed, which has a slight tilt. The particles to be separated were fed into the shaker from a trough above the bed. At the same time water was applied to the bed from a tank (or simply a garden hose). Due to combination of gravity, inertia, friction and horizontal flow of water, the particles were stratified according to weight and size; heavier material (in the case of cinnabar) moved slower that lighter material, and thus the material were separated.

    The exact use of this concentrator from the Guadalupe mine is not known. Concentrators were sometimes used to separate free mercury from the dust captured in the cyclone collector at the output of the rotary furnace or heavy cinnabar from the dust of crushed rock. Old dump rock discarded by miners in the 1800’s was, in their opinion, low-grade ore. In the 1900’s the low-grade rock was considered valuable. The crushing of old dump rock and the concentration of fine rock was often tried, but with mixed results. After 1942, hand sorting and roasting the old rock in rotary furnaces proved to be more economical.

    (Industry & Commerce • Natural Resources) Includes location, directions, 4 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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    California, Santa Clara County, San Jose
    The D retort, line the rotary furnace, was used to recover mercury from cinnabar ore. Whereas the rotary furnace was a continuously-operating system, the D retort was loaded with ore, fired for a period of time (usually 8 to 24 hours), then allowed to cool before emptying the burnt ore (calcines) and recharging with more ore. Burning fuel in a fire box under the retort heated [the] ore to dissociation temperature (1095 degrees F). Vapors driven from the ore by heat, including mercury, sulphur [sic], and water vapor, were condensed in external air-cooled or water-cooled metal pipes attached to the top of the retort.

    The retort was most often used to process relatively small amounts of ore and to perform a second processing of calcines and dust from the rotary furnace.

    This retort and condenser were used in the Guadalupe mine from 194-s until the mine closed in the 1970s. The Guadalupe Rubbish Company donated the D retort to NAQCPA in 1987.

    (Industry & Commerce • Natural Resources) Includes location, directions, 5 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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    Arizona, Maricopa County, Mesa
    This propeller, one of four, was installed on a B-29 Super Fortress. The B-29 was the largest and deadliest American heavy bomber of WWII. It is the aircraft that effectively ended WWII by delivering atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945. Interestingly, two of the four blades of this particular propeller were installed on "FIFI", the commemorative Air Force's air worthy B-29. The only super fortress in the world still flying.

    (Air & Space • War, World II) Includes location, directions, 3 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--10:47: Rattlesnake Bomber Base
  • Texas, Ward County, Pyote
    Nicknamed for the numerous rattlesnake dens that were uncovered during its construction, Pyote Army Air Base was established in 1942 to train replacement crews for bombers during World War II. Located on 2,700 acres of University of Texas land, the base consisted of two 8,400-foot runways, five large hangars, and hundreds of buildings used to house 3,000 to 4,000 soldiers an 2,000 civilians.

    On Jan. 1, 1943, the 19th Bombardment Group (later known as the 19th Combat Crew Training School), a heavily-decorated fighting unit from the Pacific Theater, arrived to begin training B-17 bomber crews. Pyote came to be highly regarded as a top training field, and its crews set many new records for flying hours. This reputation continued after the transition to B-29s was made in July 1944.

    During the post-war years, the base served as a storage facility, at one time housing as many as 2,000 aircraft, including the “Enola Gay”, the plane that dropped the first atomic bomb. Pyote also was used for a short time as a radar station, but by 1966 it was no longer economical to maintain such a large base for so small an operation, and the facility was closed.

    (Air & Space • War, World II) Includes location, directions, 3 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--10:57: Camp Huntsville
  • Texas, Walker County, near Huntsville
    Camp Huntsville, completed here in 1942, was one of the first prisoner of war (POW) camps built in the U.S. during World War II. Designed to house 3,000 POWs, it had more than 400 buildings, as well as eight branch camps. The first POWs, part of Germany's Afrika Korps, arrived in Spring 1943, and by fall the population peaked at 4840. Late in the war the camp became a branch of Camp Hearne (Robertson Co.). In Sept. 1945, Camp Huntsville sent its German POWs to Camp Hearne in preparation for the arrival of Japanese POWs at this site. The camp closed on Jan. 5, 1946, and the government transferred more than 800 acres, including buildings, to Sam Houston State Teachers College for use as a country campus.
    Texas in World War II-2006

    (War, World II) Includes location, directions, 2 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--11:29: Round Top Community
  • Texas, Fayette County, Round Top
    Home of the Townsends, Hills and McH. Windurn, veterans of San Jacinto; Joel W. Robison, one of Santa Anna's captors; John Rice Jones, first postmaster general, Republic of Texas; and John C.C. Hill, boy captive of Mier Expedition and adopted by General Santa Anna.

    A center of German culture and crafts of 19th century. Examples: Nassau Plantation; art of Mathias and Rudolph Melchior; Rev. Adam Neuthard's School; Stone Masonry of Carl S. Bauer; Lutheran Church with Wantke's handmade organ; and S.K. Lewis' Stage Coach Inn.

    (Settlements & Settlers • War, Texas Independence) Includes location, directions, 1 photo, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--14:35: Paġlagivisi!
  • Alaska, North Slope Borough, Barrow

    Sharing Food, Sharing Life – Then and Now
    Ukpiaġvik, which means ‘the place where we hunt snowy owls,’ was one of several ancient villages in the Barrow area. Our ancestors settled here primarily to hunt the great bowhead whales. But their diet – just like ours today – was supplemented by the harvest of Nature’s other gifts, including the highly valued snowy owl. Even with the conveniences of the 21st century, it is the gathering and sharing our Native foods that binds our families, friendships and spirits together.

    Homebuilding 2,000 Years Ago
    Our heritage comes from our culture’s ingenious use of the natural resources. The mounds before you are the 2,000 year-old remains of our ancestors’ semi-underground sod homes. The thick earthen walls held in the heat from the whale oil lamps while keeping out the bitter arctic winds. A sunken tunnel-like entrance was engineered to keep cold air from entering the warm interior living space, and the roof was supported with the long jawbones of the bowhead.

    (Native Americans) Includes location, directions, 5 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--14:48: Taylor Highway
  • Alaska, Southeast Fairbanks Borough, near Tok
    The Taylor Highway leads through some of the earliest and richest gold mining country in Alaska to the City of Eagle on the Yukon River. Gold was discovered by Franklin in 1886 and the old town of Forty Mile was located on the Yukon River at the mouth of the Forty Mile River. A river boat trip from Eagle will take you to this historic town. The Chicken Creek area was also a rich gold mining area at about the same time. Wade Creek was another rich area and the remains of an old dredge still stand along the road. The old horse and wagon trail used by the early day miners and freighters is still visible in many places and the present highway often parallels this trail. The largest herd of caribou in Alaska crosses the Taylor Highway each fall on it annual migration. This is truly a sportsmans paradise with an abundance of fish and game.

    (Notable Places • Roads & Vehicles) Includes location, directions, 5 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--14:55: Per Ardua Ad Astra
  • Arizona, Maricopa County, Mesa
    On June 12th, 1982, this plaque was unveiled to commemorate the years 1941 to 1945 when Falcon Field was established as No. 4 British Flying Training School.

    To this airfield came many air cadets of the British Royal Air Force, British Commonwealth Air Forces, and the United States Army Air Forces of whom 1380 British and 116 American pilots gained their wings before proceeding to flying duties in the Armed Services of their countries.

    On behalf of all those who trained at Falcon Field, the Falcon Field Association members record with gratitude the devotion to duty of the management, instructors and all other staff of Southwest Airways Company and the generous hospitality of the people of Arizona which has forged bonds of lasting friendship.

    We remember proudly also those of our comrades who gave their lives in the common struggle for freedom during the Second World War.

    "They shall renew their strength and mount up on wings like eagles."

    (Air & Space • War, World II) Includes location, directions, 4 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--15:08: Falcon Field
  • Arizona, Maricopa County, Mesa

    This commemorative area was dedicated on May 30, 1991 by her Honor the Mayor of Mesa, Peggy Rubach, in memory of these airmen who gave their lives in the cause of freedom while training at this airfield during World War II.
    Instructors Barney Gordon • Robert C. Hammond • Donald Walker

    Royal Air Force Alexander T. Brooks • James G. Buchanan • William Burke • Peter D. Campbell • Walter w. Chamberlain • Reginald G. H. Clarke • Paul C. I. Collins • George Davison • John R. Durston • Frank Glew • John L Gomm • Harold E. Hartley • Robert B Horn • Robert Lather • Arthur R. Lewis • Anteony S. Lowett • Peter F. Mitson • Albert Morris • Horace R. J. Partoon • Jack Payne • Alec H. Sutton • John Versturme-Bunburn • William J. Walters

    U.S. Army Air Corps
    Neil Funk • Lawrence J Janson

    (War, World II) Includes location, directions, 2 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--16:24: Corky
  • Kansas, Lyon County, Emporia

    ESU's mascot "Corky" the Hornet made his debut in 1933 when Paul Edwards (BSE 1937) designed him as a part of a campus-wide competition

    Dedicated August 17, 2004
    President of Emporia State University
    Dr. Kay Schallenkamp
    Original Design
    Paul Edwards (BSE 1937)
    John Forsythe (BA 1975)
    Emporia State University Foundation, Inc.

    (Arts, Letters, Music • Education • Man-Made Features) Includes location, directions, 4 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--16:32: Welcome to Coldfoot Camp
  • Alaska, Fairbanks North Star Borough, near Wiseman

    This Sign Greeted New Arrivals As They Arrived At The Pipeline Construction Camp Located One Mile West Of Here. We Salvaged This Sign When The Camp Was Being Dismantled.

    You are about 55 miles north of the Arctic Circle on the East Bank of the Middle Fork Koyukuk River at the mouth of Slate Creek, which drains to the east.
    —> ——— —> ———
    (Industry & Commerce • Notable Places • Settlements & Settlers) Includes location, directions, 5 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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  • 11/28/11--16:40: Dorothy Parker Birthplace
  • New Jersey, Monmouth County, West End Long Branch
    Site of the summer cottage of Dorothy Parker. Short story writer, critic and poet. Member of the Algonquin Round Table. Champion for social justice. Born here in West End, New Jersey. August 22, 1893 is designated a Literary Landmark by Friends of Libraries U.S.A.

    (Arts, Letters, Music) Includes location, directions, 4 photos, GPS coordinates, map.

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