Saturday, November 22, 2008

Waverly - Many towns honor Sir Walter

Sir Walter Scott

Sir Walter Scott was a Scotsman born in 1771. Sir Walter is known as the father of the romantic novel. He started his literary career at the age of 25. He is considered to be one of the first true international authors. He became popular throughout Europe, Australia, and the United States. His novel “Waverley” was a sensational success and he followed with a series of other books on this topic. His books were so popular that many towns in the United States are named after his titles or characters. Scott always considered himself as a poet and would publish his novels using the name “Author of Waverley”. However, by 1825, it became common knowledge that Sir Walter was the true author of these works. It was at this time that Sir Walter fell into bankruptcy. His royalties paid all of his debts after his death in 1832.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Bellefontaine Neighbors

In the early 1800's, land ownership to settlers in this area was made from land grants by French, Spanish, and American officials. Fort Bellefontaine was nearby and they were all neighbors. So why not name the new town, Bellefontaine Neighbors?

Ghostly remains of Fort Bellefontaine
The fort was established in 1805. It was the first military post west of the Mississippi. Located near St. Louis, Fort Bellefontaine became a major starting point for many westward expeditions. Zebulon Pike started his famous trek west here. Lewis and Clark ended returned here from their “Corps of Discovery” expedition. Due to the ever changing course of the Mississippi River, the Fort became flooded and fell into disrepair. In 1904, over 30 bodies were excavated at the present day site. Many of these victims were assumed to be former soldiers and family members that lived here in the early 1800’s. Today the site is noted for its ghost stories. Tourists and visitors report that when they take photographs of the area, a mysterious red smoke appear on their pictures. Legend has it that the red smoke appearing on these pictures are from the souls of the soldiers from the past. .