Saturday, February 19, 2011

Poking around in the blog basement

Chariton's D.Q. Storie house was built during the same year construction of the Mallory family's Ilion began. Unlike the Ilion, the Storie house has survived.

I'm still trying to spend a little time every day in the basement of this blog with broom, scoop-shovel and scrub brush --- restoring order (when possible). And bringing old posts that some may find of interest to light.

Because of changes during the last seven years to Blogger, which powers this beast, the clean-up involves opening each post, doing some modest reformatting, reprocessing photos, integrating the photos into the posts they were intended to accompany, then killing off the separate posts each once occupied. If a post is of general enough interest, I'm then indexing it in the sidebar to the right of the main page here to make it accessible.

I'm also finding it necessary to update posts occasionally, add notes to reflect more recent occurrences and in some cases to correct misinformation.

Two of the posts brought recently to light concern two of Chariton's two finest church buildings --- First United Methodist and First Presbyterian.

Two others deal with fine old Chariton homes on the market when the posts were written but now in the hands of new owners, the Gibbon-Copeland house and the D.Q. Storie house.

You'll find a post about Brownlee Cemetery here. Brownlee is the oldest of English Township's three cemeteries. Among my family members buried there (in an unmarked grave) is a cousin, 7-year-old Alonzo Miller (son of Sylvanus and Adelia), who died in August of 1869 after being bitten by a rattlesnake.

There's also a post regarding Benjamin Franklin Bates, proprietor of Chariton's legendary Bates House hotel;  a little bit about the Civil War monument up on the square that we're so used to we hardly see any more; and a little history of Mount Carmel Church, built on the Myers family farm in Benton Township.

Although it's been indexed for some time, this part of the blog also contains one its most interesting yarns --- an account of the July 1870 murder of Sheriff Gaylord Lyman and the subsequent dispatching of his killer --- thrown out of a courthouse window with a rope around his neck causing predictable results.

All of these posts and others have been indexed in the sidebar and I'm going to keep plugging away at this. Only six hundred and some posts to go!


The weather map for north Iowa is a crazy patch quilt of green (flood warning), pink (winter storm warning) and blue (winter storm watch) this morning. The big danger up thataway is ice --- and while Iowans are up to just about anything in the weather department, ice is probably the most dreaded in winter.

Down here, the map's a reassuring brown --- with patches of green scattered around. That means we're in for a wet weekend and possibly snow on Monday. But ice is not predicted --- yet. Iowa is not an especially big state, as states goes, but there can be a good deal of contrast between conditions down here and up there. Sunday's predicted high in Chariton, for example, is 64; up at my old home in Thompson, the predicted Sunday high is 32.

Now it's time to get to work!

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