Monday – September 11th
Got to E. St Louis Ill about 10:00 am. All of us got a haircut. Cross river to St. Louis a city of about 800,000 population. Saw Detroit and St. Louis play here. St. Louis won 5-4. Ty Cobb and (George) Sisler both played. Sisler hurt his shoulder but stayed in the game. Leave St. Louis about 5:30 pm. Camped out of St Charles, MO in a field by a straw stack.
Approximate mileage 37 miles.
Sisler was George Sisler who started playing for St Louis in 1915.
In St. Louis they would have crossed the Mississippi on the Eads Bridge. It was completed in 1874 and was the longest arch bridge in the world, having a length of 6442 feet. Steel was the primary structural material. The caissons of the bridge are still some of the deepest ever sunk. Because of the depth, many of the workers got the bends and 15 died. This bridge is still in use today.
The bridge in the photo is the First Wabash Bridge near St Charles, Missouri. It was built in 1868 and opened in 1871. It was replaced in 1936. They crossed on the Old St Charles Bridge which was started in 1902, completed in 1904, and demolished in 1997. Since it was not replaced, you cannot cross the Missouri at that location today.
Tuesday –September 12th
Mitch does his daily job of catching a chicken while McDonald and I wash the dishes and we set out for Kansas City, MO. Hit main highway connecting east & west. See more tourist than natives. Cross Mo. River near Boonville. Take snapshot of cliffs as we cross on the ferry. Go thru Fulton where state university is located. See lots of fine cattle. Corn and wheat growing chief industry. Camped 1/4 mile from road near a straw stack and also an old torn down barn. Yes and near some apple trees. So we had apples for supper and plenty to take along – had big camp fire.
Approximate mileage 134 miles.
After leaving St. Louis, they continued on the National Old Trails Road. This road continues to follow Old Hwy 40. The Victory Highway followed Old Hwy 50 from St. Louis to Kanas City. Old Hwy 40 does have a crossing of the Missouri River at Boonville, and there is now a bridge there. Since Columbia is not far past Fulton and both are encountered before Boonville, I think Lloyd might have been a little confused about the town locations.
Although the University of Missouri is located in Columbia, there are two small colleges in Fulton, William Woods University and Westminster University.
Wednesday – September 13th
Came to what must be the real Missouri. The fertile rolling plains covered with corn fields and fertile pasture crowded with horses, mules and cattle. Very little wooded land. Can see for mile in any direction. Crossed thru lots of little towns. None of any importance. Camped early so we could get early start to Kansas City. Stayed in or by school house. Tuttle and McDonald aren’t feeling well.
The mileage is unknown so it is combined with the next day’s total. They continued on the National Old Trails Road. From Boonville, the highway follows Highway 24 instead of Highway 40 until you get close to Kansas City. There it rejoins Highway 40.
Thursday – September 14th
Leave early. Got thru Independence and hit Kansas City MO. Go to the post office the first thing hoping to get some mail but didn’t get any. Tired of traveling we decided to answer an ad and go out to Brenner Heights where we all got jobs picking apples for Mr. Hamilton. Start picking at 11:30am and quit at 5pm. Mitch goes to town for mail. Returns with a letter for us all but McDonald. Mine was from H.G. Camp near the orchard. Had supper and retired early.
Approximate mileage 119 miles (2 days).
They followed the National Old Trails Road all the way to Kansas City.
Interestingly, you can still send mail to a Post Office today. It is called General Delivery. Your mail is sent directly to the post office where you can pick it up. You might choose to do this if you don’t have an address yet and are moving to a new town – e.g. Claire Cates GENERAL DELIVERY Kansas City Mo zip-9999 (the 9999 is also for general delivery).
H. G. is Herbert Green Smith, one of Lloyd’s brothers.
Dave Dearmond did find the ad in the paper from the 14th of Sept 1922 in the Microfilm section of the library. The wage for picking apples was $.30 and hour. Dave also thinks that the orchard was the SE corner of Leavenworth Blvd x 59th street, Kansas City, Kansas. Dave also mentioned that the post office they went to might be the Kansas one so I found a picture of what that post office looked like.