Mingo

I’m always on the lookout for more Small Towns. This is possibly not qualified as a Town, Hamlet, or even a Village. It’s just a place. But I’ll call it a town for now.

One of my stops on a vacation trip to Colorado was a small town of Mingo Kansas. From I-70 one goes west on County-K for about a mile, don’t blink or you might pass right through. Mingo’s main claims to fame is that it is the home of the oldest Geocache appropriately named Mingo. Placed in May of 2000, this cache is on the bucket list of many geocachers, we like finding geocaches of special significance. After finding the geocache I proceeded into Mingo itself to do a bit of exploring. The following photos don’t show much, and that’s right. There’s not much to the town, maybe a dozen houses, a church, the requisite Grain Elevators and a railroad. Most of the roads in the area are dirt, well, the Interstate is paved. From 1888 until 1940 Mingo had a post office. The closest towns of any size that show up on Google Maps are Colby and Oakley, each about 10 miles away.

The Railroad tracks

Tracks to the north
Looking to the north the tracks seem to go on forever.

Rails from the south
Looking the south the tracks go on forever too, but with a siding.

Grain Elevators

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Out in Wheat country, whatelse but grain elevators, of course they are along the railroad tracks.

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The only life I saw

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While I was wandreing around in Mingo, these three horses were the only living cratures i saw.

Other sights around Mingo

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What’s being hidden by the bush. There’s got to be something lurking in the window.

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This sees to be local art.

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None of the grass seemed long enough to need mowing. and the day I was there I doubt that the grass would grow. the temperature was near 100F and sunny.

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Where are the kids for the playground. Probably it is used when the parents are spending Sunday mornings in the Church.

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This looks like a typical rural road in Kansas – dirt.

Got any ideas of towns you’d like to see? Send me them in the comments.

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Point of Rocks

My last article focused on Lucketts, Virginia. Driving north on US-15 from there we cross into Maryland at the Potomac River, just over the river we come to Point Of Rocks. Before turning onto MD-28 into Point of Rocks take a quick look to the left and you can see the original tunnel that bears the name of the town.


Today the town has spread northward to a few subdivisions, another of the many bedroom communities surrounding Washington. But as usual I’m concentrating on the old towns and one of its raison d’être, the railroad station. The other reason is that it is located on the C&O Canal, but more of the canal in a later article.



As seems to be the habit of small towns, Point of Rocks has a fair number of churches and one convenience store/gas station, and of course a small town park.

But what is most important, a railroad station. This station has the reputation of being one of the most photographed station in this part of the country, and I’ve contributed to that reputation.

Many freight trains pass through here, both from Washington to the south and Frederick a few miles north on their way westward. This station is one of the stops on the MARC Commuter Train in southern Frederick County and Loudoun County in northern Virginia.


Twice a day Amtrak’s CAPITOL LIMITED passes through Point of Rocks on its trips between Washington, DC and Chicago.

A railroad in Railroad

Well, the previous article was about Gainesville, Ga. really stretched my idea of a Small Town. I hope this atones for that sin. This one is not only small, but it keeps with one of the motifs of that article, Railroad. This time I’m traveling northward, only a few miles north of the Mason-Dixon Line into Pennsylvania

Yes, a railroad runs through the small borough of Railroad, Pa. The borough boasts a population of just a few hundred, a Church or two and a BnB. Of course there is the ‘required’ antique ship for any small country town.

The rail line was built from Baltimore, Md. to Harrisburg, Pa. but today the rail line is almost unused. But for about 45 miles along the tracks from Baltimore to York, Pa the Rails to Trails Conversancy has worked to build multi-use trail. I’ve cycled the entire route a few times, but only about half at a time. Besides bicycling the NCR trail as it is known in Maryland and the York Heritage trail in Pennsylvania caters to many other activities. Hiking, horseback riding, dog walking, or just enjoying fresh air and seeing nature.

But today’s photos are only of one town, more of a borough in Pennsylvania. This one actually got it’s name from the railroad, “RAILROAD”, so says the great authority on all such things, Wikipedia.

The biggest building in Railroad, and in the summer it is probable the liveliest place in town is the Jackson House B&B. It sits adjacent to the trail and railroad tracks

Across the street, the only street in town is an old building that looks to have been some sort of wearhouse.

Just up the road is a curious barn with a couple “horses”.

My first walk through Railroad was just before Holloween, these flags were the only decorations I saw, but there were steps leading to … could that be a haunted house?


Ah yes, the town postoffice and the General Store Clock – which doesn’t seem to keep the right time.

I’ve warned you, I don’t take the normal tourist photos, two more.

What happens on the trail? Why walking and cycling!

And the occasional train! I’ll close with a short video of some activity on in Railroad.

Where’s my next stop? You’ll have to keep guessing for a month or so. I think I know, I’ve been working on it but I like to seep some surprises in store for you.

Gainesville, Ga – not really a small town

As the about page says, I’ll be roaming around, this time I’ve headed south into Georgia to the town of Gainesville. It’s not on my normal route, and I didn’t take the time to get photos of other small towns on this trip, maybe next time. You’ll have to excuse me for straying from my original goal of small town photo walks. Yes Gainesville, Ga calls itself a small town, but it’s not small by what I was thinking, but I was there and strolled around some of the historic area with my camera. Truly small and tiny towns will reappear next time.

The last town was Gratitude, this is another town that starts with “G “Gainesville, one small town that claims to the the Chicken Capitol of the World, there is even a story that one woman was arrested for using a knife and fork, chicken Is meant to be eaten with one’s fingers!. But the was exonerated by a compassionate judge when he found out that she was 91. The day I was in Gainesville I was with my son and though the early morning was comfortable the weather was clear and sunny and soon walking around town became less than comfortable. As we arrived in Gainesville we found a convenient place to park and quickly spotted “209” a 2-10-0 steam locomotive and tender that at one time belonged to the Gainesville Midland Railroad. Also at that site were a Caboose and Baggage Car. We spent a while there getting photos from all sorts of angles, and a bonus, one Geocache.


Headlight


The Drivers


What else but a RED Caboose


Roof Braces on what could have been the old Railroad Station

As we continued wandering the streets Gainesville we crossed through the Green Street-Brenau Historic District and spotted the statue of “Old Joe”. I won’t go into the controversy about this statue, so you’ll have to read a couple of accounts for yourself. Is “Old Joe” a Rebel? and Another Story of Old Joe


Old Joe

Then on to the business district and some miscellaneous shots.


Chicken on the roof


Some old store roof lines


Sunday morning coffee on the street


Looking north-east on Washington St

Next we strolled over to the more modern government center for more photos and our second Geocache find of the day.


The best looking stairs for a parking garage I’ve ever seen


One entrance to the Courthouse

A lone flower outside the Courthouse


In a memorial plaza in the Government center

The day was getting hot so as we crossed this bridge to return to our car and head home.


The bridge to Nowhere

What small-tiny towns will I find next? I’ve got the next one in the works, another one with a railroad motif, but that’s all I say for now. Beyond that I won’t say what’s up my sleeve. They are much smaller towns than this. I’m keeping my eyes peeled and the camera ready. Stay tuned for more of my travels.