Today was a hang loose, roam around the area day. There is a lot of history of cowboys and cattle drives. This town was the destination of the cattle drives from Texas, bringing the cattle up to meet the railroad taking them east and west.
We visited Boot Hill, which really is a hill. There were very old stone markers and even older wooden ones. There was a beautiful, detailed statue entitled "Trail Boss" in the cemetery. Looking at it close up, it was amazing to see the smallest details like the horse's hair, the strands of the rope, carvings on the leather saddle and straps. There was even a horsefly on the horse's hip and the animal was raising his back leg in response to that fly, even turning his head towards it.
Then we went into the Mansion on the Hill Museum. It was built by a banker to be a wedding gift to a new bride. She said she would come and marry the gentleman if he would build her a house. Sadly, when it was finished, she had changed her mind and married someone else.
Here is a link to read more about The Mansion History.
After lunch we went for an adventure (which means we really didn't exactly know where we were going, or didn't have good directions) with Bruce & Sue at the helm. We drove along Lake McConaughy with miles of bright yellow summer wildflowers all around.
We were looking for the "Little Church of Keystone" that Susan found on her favorite website Roadside America
. She has been finding us some interesting, or odd things to see on this site.Keystone is a monument to religious harmony. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this combined Catholic/Protestant Church was built in a pioneer town that was too small for two churches. Special dispensation was received from Pope Leo XIII.
It has a Roman Catholic alter at one end and a Protestant alter at the other end. Pews with reversible backs were installed to permit parishioners to face either alter. The stove was an old Union Pacific depot stove. The church, 18 feet wide and 40 feet long and seating 70 people, was built in 1908 at a cost of $1200.
The last regular services were held in 1949, but on occasion the church is still held for weddings.
We took the long and scenic route back to town, with miles of yellow flowers. We could see where the Platte River was in the distance, where the trees were. On one rural road a flock of wild turkeys scurried across the road and hid in the high grasses.