Friday, May 17, 2013

Walking in Glenwood

I needed a G for my USA A-Z book. Glenwood begins with G obviously enough. Walking there would also fill in G for my Minnesota A-Z book and also count for Pope County in the Minnesota County record book. So I took off for there yesterday morning.

Tuesday the temperature went to 98 degrees, after temperatures cold enough to create some frost on Sunday morning.  Wednesday was a perfect day, except as I started west big thunder clouds begin to form. However the clouds moved southerly, thankfully, from my destination, about 2 hours away from my home.

Glenwood is a small town, the county seat of Pope County. Pope County is named for General John Pope who was part of an exploring expedition in western Minnesota and up into present day North Dakota. He participated also in the Union side during the Civil War, but did most of his service within the U.S. Military assigned to Fort Snelling here in Minnesota.

Glenwood is named for a glen or valley found on the southeast side of Lake Minnewaska. Minnewaska means dish lake, a lake found in a natural basin.

I was expecting a 6K or 10K walk, but when I got the map out I found the choices were 6 K or 4K. The description cautioned walkers that 2K of the 6K was uphill. That quickly made me think 4K was a good option. It also would balance out a previous 6K I had done and now I could keep track of my total distance in increments of 5 and 10.

 My first clue that I had arrived in lake country was that I was working on my records next to the bait tanks.

 Started off on the walk through the business district, noticing there were benches along the area, ready for someone to sit.

I turned right and soon was walking past the ambulance service for the county and then was soon by the hospital. I decided to go off route and walk a bit along the lake. That's what caused me to walk by the sign below. The combination of the two statements made me laugh.

Soon I was on Lakeshore Drive. The first thing I noticed is that homes along this are were very modest. No McMansion built here.

 This photo shows only a very small portion of the lake.

The photo above is an attempt to show how clear is the water. The picture starts at the bottom with sand and then when it becomes darker that is water over the sandy lake bottom. Finally one can see the filmy reflection of clouds in the water.

I continued to walk through a residential area and found where the large houses are.

These are blocks away from where one would have lake views. The only thing I guess is that 100 years ago "views" were not as prized as they are now. Also, perhaps right along the shore of the lake was a very cold place in the winter. It is a somewhat large lake and nothing would have stopped the north wind whipping over the lake.

Soon I was done with the walk and decided to follow the signs to the county historical museum. What a find!

The first part of the exhibits are about who lived here in the 18th and 19th centuries. One thing that was new to me is a fur trapper's cabin. One can't live in Minnesota for very long without knowing the early Europeans here were fur tappers and traders, but this is the first time I've seen how they lived.

One really can understand how small was this cabin when looking inside. There is a stove in the center and two bunks on the back side. To the right, out of the picture, is a plank along the wall that served as a table.

A major collection in this museum is a collection of American Indian folk art. A woman from Pope County worked as a teacher in American Indian schools for much of her career and collected all these objects during their career and sent them home to her mother. She decided to donate all these things to the Pope County museum rather than to museums in Washington, D.C. The volunteer curator said there are about 500 objects in the collection and about 300 on display.

Here's a sample of what I saw.

 Ivory carvings -- these figures are about 3 inches high and made from either whale bone or tusks or tusks from walrus. This is/was done by those who live in very northern area of present day Alaska or present day Canada.

Above is a potlatch spoon. Potlatch was practiced by indigenous people who lived in present day Canada or present day Alaska, but along the Pacific Ocean.

Further south, in areas now part of present day Washington State or Oregon, in the rain forest areas along the Pacific Ocean, the Klamath people made these hats to protect their heads from scratches and other injuries as they walked through the forest.

Many readers may already be familiar with Navaho jewelry. The Navaho live in southwest states.

Above is something I've never seen before. Box turtle shells are laced together and filled with pebbles. American Indian women in the southeast fastened these to their legs while dancing -- the instrument making percussion sounds.

These gloves are associated with American Indians living in the midwest and western states of the United States. Bead work is also found in women's clothing as well as in jewelry.

This is truly a terrific collection and I'd never heard of it before, and would never have found it had I not gone there to walk. That is another benefit of walking -- one finds all kind of new things, even in one's backyard.

This museum had a few buildings outdoors too.

This is what we always called a country school. It served children in 1-8 grades, usually high school students went to "town school."

Scattered about on the desks within the school were many old books. I was intrigued with the cover on this one.

The copyright is 1944 and was surprised to see a helicopter on the cover, for I didn't think helicopters were very prominent yet at this time.

An old Episcopal church, built in 1894, is also found on this site.

The windows over the altar were quite glorious in the spring sunlight.

By this time I was hungry, but the usual things such as Dairy Queen weren't calling to me. I had heard about a special restaurant in this town and simply couldn't find in my walk. I decided to do the first 30 miles of return to home and stop at the first major intersection at some restaurant.  On the way out of town I missed a turn and that's how I accidentally found the Penny Diner, the restaurant for which I'd been looking.

This is a restaurant associated with a new motel in this community. And when in a diner, have diner, have diner food.

Here's a great chili dog. Haven't had one in years!

A great day in Glenwood -- surprised all around.

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