Category Archives: Monuments

History of the World in Granite

History of the World in Granite
History of the world In Granite


History of the World in Granite
Coming west out of Yuma one crosses into the State of California where there is a long stretch of nothing for many, beautiful open space for others, and the great southwestern desert for me. About 8 miles later there is the off ramp for Felicity,

However there appears to be nothing, give one lone gas station. One turns down the frontage road on the north side and the next thing you see is the site of the History of the World in Granite.

History of the World in Granite - Photo by Fernando Castillo

What could this be one might ask? There is a rusty spiral staircase standing alone. There is a chapel on the hill in the distance. As you turn in the drive way there is an honor system three dollar donation. You can visit this museum anytime, if it is ‘open’ or not.

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Carhenge Monument

Carhenge Monument - by Charley Carlin
Carhenge Monument

At Stupid Vacations oddities are a specialty. We love oddities.  And the Carhenge Monument really qualifies. A step up fro Cadillac Ranch for sure, this qualifies way up there.  In far western Nebraska, away from the interstate on the north and the interstate on the south lies Alliance, Nebraska. Carhenge as built in the late eighties and at first the town thought of it as an eyesore. Small towns and small town politics is always a puzzle, with some vocal opinions om both sides of the aisle. The locals whined and complained until they figured out that The Carhenge Monument is a draw for tourism and that brings tourist dollars. So now the guy is a local hero. Tie that all in with the City of Alliance being in the path of the last solar eclipse and about a bazillion tourists came to know and love Alliance and Carhenge. There are additional odd art pieces in the town of Alliance. Carhenge is a fun oddity and a must see for sure.  Definitely a bucket list item for  the oddity fanatics.

About The Author
Charles Carlin - Finding Roadside Oddities
Charles Carlin
Charley is a magnet for those slightly odd and one of a kind places, some of which you may have never heard about. Charley easily found all over the web. Just Google Charley Carlin for more insights. He can also be found via Reviews on YELPTrip Advisor, and Google Maps

Steamtown National Historic Site

A real feather in the cap of the National Park Service is Steamtown.

SteamTown Locomotive 2421
Great Locomotives of the Past

Steamtown is located in Scranton, Pennsylvania and Houses a Fantastic collection of steam engines, a round house, and a staff that’s incredible. They are building and working and building and working on these trains and they have an entire shop of men devoted to the maintenance of steam engines. They are working very hard on an anniversary in 2017 to have the steam engines ready, especially a particular model that is well quite rare. The staff is full of storytellers who will talk your ears off all day long if Continue reading Steamtown National Historic Site

Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa

Mission San Luis Obispo Grounds
Father Serra

The Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa, named after a bishop from Toulouse France. Founded by Junipero Serra, it is one of the few missions that remains in the same location after all these years. Facing on to the mission plaza this church has been well taken care of over the years. If you come to the mission remember it is an operating church. Masses, christenings, weddings, funerals and other events are often in progress. There is a beautiful central garden that is hidden from most people as they are not as adventurous as they might be. The central garden has roses, a big pergola dripping with grapes, a space for big BBQ’s and connects to the parking area for handicapped church members. The three old bells are on display in the garden area. Now about those bells, there are five bells on in the church belfry. Most people only see the three on the front of the church, however on the north side there are two more. Each of the five bells has a unique name and tone. There is a plaque to the left of the main entrance with the history of the last bell replacements. Continue reading Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa

George Mason Memorial – A Constitutional Genius

On a recent trip to Washington DC I stumbled upon the George Mason Memorial. Really, while on my way to the Jefferson Memorial, which to me is the most beautiful monument in all of Washington I came upon this circular fountain. The fountain was dry . There is a pergola with a statue of a man sitting.  Naturally I stop and read the plaque. George Mason, I don’t remember him in my history, so I read on.

George Mason – Wisest Man of Our Time

When George Washington calls George Mason ‘the wisest man of our generation’ this gets my attention. When Thomas Jefferson calls George Mason a mentor, the attention level increases. Now I am wondering  why I have not noticed this superhero during the creation of the United States before. How could someone with these incredible credentials be unknown.  I admit my history may not be at a scholarly level, however this man is really important.

Digging deeper one finds that Greoge Mason was the Governor of Virginia. He wrote the Bill of Rights for Virginia, which was a model or framework for the Bill of Rights for the United States. His contributions were at a foundational level for this country.

George Mason was one of three delegates who refused to sign the Declaration of Independence. One was just cantankerous and one refused to sign something that had a possibility of failing. George refused to sign the Declaration of Independence based upon his principles. It seems he wanted the Bill of Rights to be part of the declaration, not something added on later.

The memorial is small and diminutive by comparison to Jefferson’s huge prominence. The George Mason Memorial is tiny compared to the Washington Monument. The Washington Monument is an always visible part of the DC skyline. Interesting, so very interesting that this man should definitely be a part of all historical research. As I gain more insights into the creation of this nation my respect for these leaders grows.


The Portal of the Folded Wings

The Portal of the Folded Wings Memorial is located inside a very large cemetery. When you come into the cemetery you must enter from Victory Boulevard and it is quite a long drive around to the far, what I would call, north east corner. It is a beautiful monument that was built about 1925 and was built to represent 14 fallen historical aviators of the era. There are monuments for each of them with their titles. their history, and what’s unique about each one to be honored in such a beautiful Memorial. The accompanying photographs will display this beautiful memorial,  from a what I would call a deco era. It is meant to include all aviators and in front of it has been added a replica of the Columbia space shuttle maybe a one-eighth scale I don’t know  as the real shuttle is pretty big. It is a tribute to the fallen aviators of that tragic event in 2003. I love the drive up to the monument surrounded by pine trees on each side completely covering the roadway. It reminds me of a main street in the town where I grew up. Just thinking of the bravery of some of these early aviators, some of the things they were willing to fly and test is mind boggling.  This gives us memories looking into their works as they contributed to flight as we have it today. Wow do we have flight today? You bet! Hundreds of thousands of people moving every day all over the planet. Aviation and one part of its history is here at the Portal of The Folded Wing Memorial