Category Archives: Terts & Quats

The Mikado Engine at Paducah

A monument of Paducah’s extensive railroad history is located downtown at the riverfront wall.  This locomotive, a 1923 Mikado, along with a baggage-mail car and a caboose, is a reminder of our country’s dependence on railroads throughout history.

Up-close of the Mikado engine in downtown Paducah. These locomotives were very complex machines.

Cars, semi-trucks and highways didn’t exist in the 19th century.  Folks and freight moved across the country largely on trains.  Paducah became a transportation hub in the early 20th century with the intersection of two large rail lines – the Illinois Central Railroad and the Nashville, St. Louis and Louisville Railroad.  A large railroad shop, which still exists today on Kentucky Avenue, was built in 1929, further solidifying Paducah as a railroad hub.

The shop refurbished this Mikado 2-8-2 in 1940 and again in 1951 before being donated to the City of Paducah in the mid-1960s.

While the railroad industry has declined substantially in the United States, it continues to play a significant role to the economy in Paducah.  If you want to go see it for yourself, head to downtown Paducah’s riverfront area.  You can’t miss it.

If you want to read more about the railroad history of Paducah, check out this link.

 

Wooldridge Monuments – “The Strange Procession Which Never Moves”

Maplewood Cemetery in Mayfield, Ky. has many unusually large and ornate burial tombs.  The most prominent memorial display in the cemetery is the Wooldridge Monuments.  The curious set of 18 statues are known as “the strange procession which never moves.”

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Discovery Park: Education & History Come Alive

Discovery Park Exhibits
There are many interactive exhibits at Discovery Park of America

If you are looking for a great day-trip to make with kids, look no further than the Discovery Park of America.  Located on 50 acres in Union City, Tenn., this state-of-the-art facility can easily entertain children and adults alike.

There is literally something for everyone!  The main building hosts ten exciting educational exhibits.  There is a hands-on area for small children to explore as well as a 48-foot human sculpture with a slide inside.

History buffs in the family will love the military exhibits that feature airplanes and ground vehicles from military history as well as the regional and national history exhibits in the museum.

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Eggners Ferry Bridge

This 2002 photo of Eggners Ferry Bridge across Kentucky Lake shows the bridge before its destruction.
This 2002 photo of Eggners Ferry Bridge across Kentucky Lake shows the bridge before its destruction.

Prior to the 1920s highway bridges crossing large rivers were almost non-existent in rural America.  The reason for this is most highways, as we know them, simply didn’t exist.  And the reason for that is not many people in rural America had cars.

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Splitting Counties in Western Kentucky

Jackson Purchase

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You’ve heard of far western Kentucky.  It is the section of the state between the Mississippi River and the Tennessee River.  However, this part of the state did not become under definitive US control in 1792 when formed.  In 1818, Andrew Jackson officially purchased the disputed land from the Chickasaw Indians.  The Kentucky part of the sale became known as the Jackson Purchase.

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