Wednesday, August 29, 2012
The South Dakota was 660' long with 9 huge 16" guns. This ship could travel at some 30 mph with her 130,000 hp engines. The South Dakota was heavily involved in many of the largest battles in WWII and was claimed to have been sunk by the Japanese at least twice. This lead to the battleship being called Battleship X so as not to give away the fact that the South Dakota had survived the battle intact.
The South Dakota was also involved in one of the last battleship to battleship surface conflict in the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal where the South Dakota demolished several Japanese ships using guns like this one that fires a 16" shell that weighs over 2,600 pounds! Imagine that heading your way!
Of course, the gun barrels had to be cleaned as this sailor shows. This would be a very tight fit for most folks today and Rick was very happy he was not asked to clean this out!
Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Before hitting the road fulltime in the motorhome, we lived for a number of years in Madison, SD, a relatively small city northwest of Sioux Falls. We really enjoyed our time in Madison and knowing the friendly folks who lived there. As you can see, Madison still has a real Main Street which is a pleasure to stroll along while shopping.
Of course, Madison was not always the tranquil town that you see now. Indeed, back in the 1874 era, the Town of Madison was established here, on the shore of Lake Madison.
But where is the town?? It turned out that the railroad decided to come through the area about 5 miles north of this location and the person holding that land, C.B. Kennedy, invited the residents of "old" Madison to move to his homestead and create a "new" Madison. This was done in 1880 and the town moved to its current location.
The railroad is still a force in the city, but now, instead of hauling passengers, it predominately hauls corn and beans from the productive farmland in the area.
When C. B. Kennedy offered land for the new City of Madison, he also provided land for a new University, which evolved into Dakota State University, located in the city area.
Dakota State is a smaller public university (of about 2,500 students) that focuses on information technology as well as traditional liberal arts and sciences. Rick and Orinda were proud to be members of the Business faculty here and greatly enjoy returning to visit.
One of the great leaders in South Dakota as well as at Dakota State was General William Beadle, whose statue Rick is standing next to. After a distinguished career in military service during the Civil War, Gen. Beadle was appointed as the Surveyor General of the Dakota Territory and later, President of the University.
We also had to be sure to stop by our "home" here at MyDakotaAddress.com which serves as our mail forwarding and residency location. We have had great service over the years from Terri and her crown who operate the firm. It is fun to cal the couple thousand folks who "live" here neighbors!
Sunday, August 26, 2012
We had a fabulous weather day with cloudless skies and mild temperatures. It was hard to imagine a nicer day to drive amid the forests and rock cliffs of the Hills.
One of the top attractions on the Spearfish Canyon drive is Bridal Veil Falls. Unfortunately, this has been a dry summer and the "Veil" was pretty small. Indeed, this was more of a Bridal trickle than a real falls. Still, we have seen this in wet times and it is spectacular then.
Just a few miles away is Deadwood, SD as indicated by this welcoming sign. We eased back to our RV to enjoy the rest of the day.
Thursday, August 23, 2012
In 1905, this house was finished for the Director and his family. Now over 100 years old, this house had all the modern features such as indoor plumbing, electricity, and steam heat.
Tuesday, August 21, 2012
Close to the Mount Rushmore monument is the fabulous Peter Norbeck Scenic Byway which travels some amazing terrain in the Black Hills.