Dave & Dot's 25th Anniverary Tour

Week 2 - Memphis, TN

Friday, October 12th - A Visit to a Historic Cemetery and Mud Island . . .

Today is the 14th day of our trip our 6th day on the road. We have now been on our trip for two weeks and still have three weeks to go!  We are still in Memphis, TN and really enjoying our time together.  Not nearly as much stress as being at home and having to go to work each day. I could really get used to these extended vacations!

The rain is gone and has been replaced by beautiful blue skies. Everything is so green everywhere we have gone and the leaves on the trees are beginning to turn a brilliant array of reds, oranges, & yellows. It is truly beautiful here in the midwest . . . AND extremely humid!

We started our day in a cemetery. Cool huh? It is one of Memphis' most historic sites, The Elmwood Cemetery. Here you will find a historic tour that you can drive (although we choose to walk it) which takes you to several individual & group sites giving you a history of Memphis. There are governors, heads of state, historic figures, and thieves. Most notable was the civil war soldiers that had unmarked graves. These were only numbered (no names) but you could get a list of some names from the proprietor. Also noted were sites that were built for a riverboat disaster. The ship had blown up and burned, killing over 1500 people, on the Mississippi River. After the tour we got a list of the Mackey's and McHenry's buried there and went in search of them. Only found a few McHenry's in our search but none were directly related to our family.

We then traveled to Mud Island. It is a park, on an island, in the middle of the Mississippi River. You take a monorail that looks a lot like a light rail car but it hangs from the track. It takes less than 5 minutes to get there.

Last year nearly 200,000 visitors experienced this unique historical, cultural and recreational attraction. This year visitors will enjoy a variety of activities including: touring the ½ mile Riverwalk model, visiting the 18-gallery Mississippi River Museum, adventuring into the Wolf River Harbor on a rented kayak or canoe, or exploring Mud Island River Park by bicycle. Concessions, picnic areas, gift shops, concerts and special events throughout the season complete the experience.

But I found the River Walk to be one of the most unique representations of the Mississippi River in the world. It is a 5-block long replica of the lower Mississippi river, from Cairo, IL, to New Orleans, LA. Each 30" stride is equivalent to one mile on the actual river. Along your journey, you'll revisit historical events and learn about geographical transformations.

The "1,000" mile journey concludes at the Gulf of Mexico, a one acre enclosure that holds 1.3 million gallons of water. There, visitors can enjoy a leisurely pedal boat ride around the Gulf area with the Memphis skyline in the background. It was really very interesting! Quite an impressive display and one I would highly recommend to those who love history or geography.

Also on Mud Island (when we were there in 2001) was the WWII plane the Memphis Belle. You would recognize this plane by its painting of a lady on the fuselage.  As of today, however, it has been replaced by the Mississippi River Museum.