Friday, August 3, 2012

Vintage Vacations...Golden Spike National Historic Site!

May 10, 1869...
"What was it the Engines said,
Pilots touching, head to head
Facing on the single track,
Half a world behind each back?"
...Bret Harte, What the Engines Said

Being a member of the Daughters of Utah Pioneers, the date of May 10, 1869 has special significance.  It is the duty of each Daughter to research and submit the histories of her pioneer ancestors.  We define "pioneer" as one who traveled to Utah, died on the trail or were born in the Territory before May 10, 1869...the date the final spike was driven uniting the Central Pacific and Union Pacific Railroads at Promontory Summit in Utah.  1,776 miles of desert, rivers and mountains had been crossed to bind together East and West.

"THE LAST RAIL IS LAID! THE LAST SPIKE IS DRIVEN! THE PACIFIC RAILROAD IS COMPLETED! THE POINT OF JUNCTION IS 1086 MILES WEST OF THE MISSOURI RIVER, AND 690 EAST OF SACRAMENTO CITY"   So read the the telegram to President Ulysses S. Grant.  The Jupiter and No. 119 touch pilots at Promontory Summit, Utah.  Photo by A.J. Russell.

The Big Trestle and the No. 119.
Photographer A.J. Russell left his wagon below to capture this moment.

I don't intend to do the whole story of the Golden Spike event.  Here are two places you can visit for more information:  Day 18 , a traveler's blog and the official NPS site,  Golden Spike National Historic Site.  I don't think there is any thing prettier than an old steam train!

Road Trip...

Amber and No. 119
A few years ago our sweet daughter worked as a Ranger and Interpreter at the Historic Site.

This No.119 is a working replica.
There is also a replica of Jupiter.

Volunteers re-enact the driving of the Golden Spike.
The original spike is at Stanford University.

George and I took a drive out to the Golden Spike NHS yesterday to take a look at a small water tank at the Vistor's Center.  Our company will be putting in a bid to paint and refurbish it.  I love taking mini-road trips in the middle of the week.  I took a few pictures, but I already had the ones I posted above.  On the drive home we stopped at...

Maddox Steak House
Located on old Highway 89 in Perry, a small town in northern Utah.  Maddox is one of those places that are a "must visit" and I was excited to go there and sample one of their famous bison burgers. 

Maddox parking lot was packed even back then!
The restaurant has been expanded over the seems the owner would just sketch out the new addition himself.  So you will find odd levels and little stairways linking everything together.  It's pretty pricy...but the tourists don't seem to mind.  I know my lunch was delicious!

Thank you for coming along with me on this Vintage Vacation!



Tammy's in Love said...

Oh Shirley! I love learning history when you tell it! My little grandson is enamored with steam engines but will accept the occasional diesel engine. Beautiful pix! Thanks so much for doing this post!

Heidi said...

I've always wanted to go to Golden Spike, but I have never managed to get there. I've also always wanted to go to Maddox's and have a bison burger. :) It's so nice to "meet" a lovely crafter in my home (and favorite) state. I love your little blog so much!

chris mckinley said...

What a great history lesson!! Thanks for sharing!! Love your mini vacations!!


Linda Ruthie said...

Great post and great pictures. I enjoyed the trip.

Little Susie Home Maker said...

How neat! Love your history every time I read it! I really think those engines are beautiful! I didn't know they reenact that event. That would be a fun place to work. A bison burger at such a neat restaurant sound grand!
Bless you,

vintage grey said...

I love this post!! So wonderful to hear history, that I would never have heard!! Love the last photo, with all those neat cars parked outside!! Happy weekend to you! xo Heather

Jann Olson said...

Hi Shirley, what a fun place for your daughter to have worked. I have not joined the DUP, but have been meaning too. My sister just joined in Pleasant Grove. My friends and I stopped off at Maddox on our way home from our Oregon girl trip. Such a yummy place. I love going to Perry and buying unusual squash for Fall decor.

Chenille Cottage said...

Hi Shirley!
I am just fascinated with your Promontory Point post! As a young girl my Gramma shared stories about my GGGrampa and GGGramma Benson. They were at Promontory Point at the time the golden spike was driven. I shared with you, a while back, that my GG Grampa James Monroe Benson (1849-1911) was a pioneer and a descendant of a large Benson family of Mendon, Massachusettes. He, ultimately, ended up in the Oregon Territory and lived out the remainder of his life in the Pacific Northwest. My Gramma donated several of their journals and family mementos to a pioneer museum in Asotin County, Washington. We have some tin type photos. They are treasured family keepsakes. One of my second cousins has them...along with a tin type portrait of GGGrampa Benson and Buffalo Bill Cody. One of these days, I will attempt to create a post about GGGrampa and Gramma Benson. My dear friend...You have inspired me in so many ways to take hold of my family roots and record as much as I can for my children and grandchildren.

I think it is so incredible for your daughter to have worked at Promontory Point as a Ranger and Guide. What a wonderful adventure and part of history it was for her!

Thank you for your "unexpected adventure" comment on my silly "when Pigs Fly" post. I just couldn't resist...When I drove by the "pink pig" I pulled over, made a quick U-Turn and swooped in for a closer look!
Have a great week, my sweet friend,
Carolynn :)

LBP said...

I am enjoying your mini vacations! The town where I work is a railroad town. Lots of historic railwway history here!

Thanks for sharing.


Betsy said...

I love road trips too! Especially if they involve anything vintage and historical. If there's a good restaurant involved, all the better!

I think it's so neat how involved you and your family are with the history of your state.