Friday – September 15th
Up about dawn. Had breakfast and got to work about 8:00. Trees are loaded down with big fine Jonathan apples. Have ladder to go up on the side of the trees. Work hard all day. Take some pictures after knocking off at 5 p.m. Mr. Hamilton tells us that we are the best apple pickers he has ever had and wants us to pick next day. Went about a mile to farmhouse. Bought a chicken and had it for supper. This part of Kansas is very rich. Lots of fruit growing, trucking and stock raising.
I have not been able to find out about a Mr. Hamilton or an Apple Orchard in Brenner Heights, except what Dave provided. Brenner Heights seems to be a subdivision rather than a town. This subdivision was plotted in 1907 and had 52 lots. It was considered highly desirable. There is a church there now but not much else with the Brenner Heights name. There was a trolley stop at Brenner Heights.
Saturday September 16th
Not being prepared for rain we were suddenly attacked this morning about 4 a.m. Had to put everything in the car. That included us too. While cooking breakfast “Mitch” hits chicken in the head with apple and kills it so McDonald and I have job of preparing it for supper. Kept raining so we couldn’t pick apples. Hamilton paid us $5.00 each so we set out for K.C. Saw coyote at store. Went to P.O. McDonald got mail. Leave K.C on Union Pacific Highway for Denver Col. Pass thru Lawrence Kas. Where state U is located. Has beautiful buildings and grounds. Got thru Topeka. State capital. Camp in big field by straw stack. Mitch and myself went to a farm house and got two watermelons, pk of potatoes and a qt of milk for 15 cents. “Fine people in this section of the country.”
Approximate mileage 65.1 miles.
The Union Pacific Highway followed the route of the Union Pacific Railroad. The line between Kansas City and Denver was started in 1864 and was called the Kansas Pacific Railroad. The Pacific Railway Act authorized large land grants to the railroad along its mainline. Such grants were to be distributed to homesteaders who would populate the lands near the railroad, forming new towns and providing the economic activity needed to support the railroad itself. Construction on the second half “the Colorado Extension” started in 1869 with the backing of German investors. The Kansas Pacific became part of the Union Pacific in 1880. The Union Pacific Highway was also renamed Hwy 40 about 36 miles outside of Topeka where the highway split into a North and South leg. The south leg was named Hwy 40 and the north route became Hwy 24. Hwy 40 was the route they seemed to have chosen since they traveled through Kanopolis on the 18th. The highway at his point was called Kansas Highway 140 and paralleled the Union Pacific Railroad.
Lloyd actually kept his Union Pacific Route book. This book was a great help in uncovering the route.
Kansas was where the roads become even more interesting. To cross Kansas, a traveler had several options: the Atlantic-Pacific Highway, the National Old Trails Road, the National Roosevelt Midland Trail, the Pikes Peak Ocean to Ocean Highway, the Union Pacific Highway, or the Victory Highway. Each of these roads overlapped one of its rivals part of the time.
The University of Kansas is located in Lawrence Kansas.
Sunday September 17th
It being Sunday we stayed in our straw stack home later than usual. Left about 8:30. Made very good time on the road about 160 miles. Camped at an Old German Ranch “straw stack”. After eating supper we all climbed a high hill just back of the camp where there is a noted cave. Lots of rattlesnakes are in this section which makes us a bit uneasy especially while in bed.
Approximate mileage 161 miles.
They continued on the Union Pacific Hwy which overlapped the Victory Hwy from Kansas City to Denver.
I assumed they stopped near Kanopolis and I think the noted cave was Faris Caves. These are man-made caves that were carved out of the limestone in the 1880s.
I assume the German straw stack was from the German investments in the railroad.
Monday – September 18th
Mitch and myself worked on “Lib” for a couple hours so we didn’t leave camp till about 9:00 am. Tuttle and McDonald went on the hill and made some pictures during this time. Went thru the largest salt mine in the world at Kanopolis. Country gradually changes from rolling country to level plains. Very few trees and we can see for 15-20 miles in all directions. Wheat growing is chief industry here. McDonald ran “Lib” into a Dodge. Bent front fender was about all. The weather has turned cold.
I assume they stopped in or near Granfield.
Interestingly, some old newspapers, some US secret documents, and some old movies such as the Wizard of Oz are stored in some of the Kansas Salt mines. The temperature in the mines stays around 65 degrees, and the humidity is 40-45% year round. There is a salt mine you can tour 62 miles south of Kanopolis in Hutchinson.
At this point in the trip they were still traveling the Union Pacific and Victory Highways.