Today we continued on Old Route 66 (bypassing Springfield because we had seen many of the sights there at an earlier rally). We saw our last lighthouse – sitting outside an antique mall (had to stop) and went to Carlinville where there are 152 homes still remaining that were ordered from the Sears-Roebuck catalog in 1918. Although most of the houses had been updated, you could still see the familiar front steps leading to the door and the dormers. The homes were built by Standard Oil for their mineworkers. You can read about it at http://www.oldhouseweb.com/architecture-and-design/community-of-sears-homes.shtml.
Carlinville also has a Court House built in 1870 known as “The Million Dollar Courthouse” due to its cost overruns at the time it was built. From the looks of it now, it would take much more than that to restore it. Nancy went inside and reported that the cost comes from the decorating inside – quite elaborate.
We then made our way to Litchfield for the famous Ariston Restaurant, a classic Route 66 icon opened in 1924 on Route 4 which was the predecessor of Route 66. The restaurant was relocated to Litchfield in 1929. It has been run by the original family for three generations – the son and grandson were there running the business. I had the best Gyros sandwich I have ever had.
Nancy and I decided that would be our last stop before separating since she was going down Highway 55 to 44 and I would be taking I-270 in a few short miles. So we said our goodbyes and headed for home.
I drove all the way home to Independence – got there at 6:30 p.m. and because I had turned off my air conditioning, it was 96 degrees in the house. So I decided to spend one more night in the motorhome in air conditioning at Blue Springs Lake Campground.
This ends the journal of our trip. I hope you have enjoyed traveling with us and have learned about the great places we have been. It was truly the trip of a lifetime. I couldn’t have asked for more enjoyable companionship than Nancy, Diana, Sandy, Heidi, and Cinder.
Happy journeys, everyone.