Brad & Barb Wright - Southwest Trip 2009/2010 travel blog

Ameristar Casino on the Mississippi River

Battlefield Museum - building shaped like a gun boat

Diorama of Battlefield

Diorama of boat skirmishes

Illinois State Monument

Statue of Ulysses Grant & his horse, Cincinnatti. The fact that he's...

Entrance to National Cemetery for Union Soldiers and officers.

Missouri's Monument - one side depicts the men who fought for the...

Battleship Cairo - sat at the bottom of the river for 102...

Battleship Cairo - Notice the paddle wheel is enclosed

Some of the artifacts recovered from the Battleship Cairo

Location of the Connecticut Monument on LA side of the river

Connecticut Monument just erected recently at Grant's Canal in LA

Happy St. Patrick's Day everyone.

We arrived in Vicksburg on Sunday afternoon. We are staying at the Ameristar RV Park which is connected with the Ameristar Casino. The park is nice and upon checking in were given coupons for 1 breakfast buffet at the Casino. It was fabulous. We ate there yesterday. There wasn't much you could ask for that they didn't have. The Casino is on the Mississippi River and we were seated right in front of a window and could watch the ships and barges going by. What a wonderful way to start the day. We visited the Battlefield Museum. This is a museum that was begun by a man who had a great interest in preserving the memory of the Civil War battles fought here - especially the naval. He grew up on the Yazoo River which played an important part in the history of Vicksburg. He also shows a documentary film about the Battles in Vicksburg during the Civil War. There was a large diorama of the Battlefield in addition to many ship models - even to present times.

From there, we went to the Battlefield where we hired a guide to ride in our car, giving us a 2 hour tour. The road through the park is 8 miles long. The first half of the tour we were going through the Union positions and the 2nd half through the Confederate positions. There are over 1600 monuments in the park and the town in honor of different Generals and showing positions of the different units. Each state that had troops that fought here had a state monument as well. Connecticut had just put in a monument a couple of years ago - of course the CT soldiers were across the river in LA at a place called Grant's Canal - they were supposed to be building a canal to bypass Vicksburg. This was in June of 1862 and the temperatures were over 100 - many of the men got sick and died; then a dam gave way and flooded the area they had been working. They were then sent to another area. Vicksburg has done an excellent job of preserving the battle area which is now a National Park, and not letting business or housing encroach on the area.

We have changed our plans - AGAIN! We are leaving here today for Memphis as planned, but will only stay 2 nights in Memphis and then 2 nights in Nashville, which will only give us 1 day in each city to sight see. From Nashville we are heading to "Camp Newmar" (the Newmar Factory in Nappanee, IN). When we pulled in here and were setting up we were unable to open our front driver's side slide-out. After several calls back and forth on Monday trying to get service in this area, in Jackson, MS and in the Memphis area we weren't able to get anything set up. Brad decided he would just take it back to Newmar and let them fix it - they would at least have the parts in stock. They think it is probably the controller. We have several other small issues that will be taken care of at the same time. We were able to get an appointment for Tuesday. We will head home from there once everything is fixed. This is a good time to have work done at the factory as they run a special for the winter months (Jan - March) where any work done is at a reduced labor rate as well as a 15% discount on parts. This should not affect our arrival at home. We should still be home between the 28th and 30th of this month. It's always something with an RV just as it is with a boat or any other mechanical vehicle. Will write more from Memphis.

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