Lincoln’s Head

This post is from a series of articles chronicling a 2020 cross-country trip with my wife and two daughters and a boyfriend, from California to Ohio (to visit family) and Pennsylvania (to drop off my oldest daughter at grad school), and then back. We spent over five weeks on the road…

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Trump Country, 2017

I crossed America by car in the summer of 2017, looking for Trump. I looked for him in truck stops and restrooms, parking lots and malls. I looked for Trump in roadside signs and unplanted fields, in thrift stores and magazine racks. And I found him, though I had to…

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Notre-Dame de Kansas

This post is from a series of articles chronicling a 2020 cross-country trip with my wife and two daughters and a boyfriend, from California to Ohio (to visit family) and Pennsylvania (to drop off my oldest daughter at grad school), and then back. We spent over five weeks on the road…

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The Man In the Mulch

Writing this blog has proven so far to be rewarding in many ways but sometimes it can become a bit of a rabbit hole. This post, for example, was initially going to be a short post, sharing an odd public sculpture that we came across in Missouri. We were on…

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Small Concussions In the Distance

I've driven across the United States dozens of times, usually a round trip every year for the past sixteen years, and before this year I've never had trouble finding things to do. The trips I take take time, usually two weeks from California to Ohio to visit family, then two…

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Cahokia: The Bodies at Mound 72

He is lying there on his back, you see his resplendency, at least in your mind's eye, in the white conch shell beads he lies upon, the shells brought here to just outside modern-day St. Louis from the Gulf of Mexico. The blanket of beads--some twenty thousand of them—were once…

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Cahokia: Digging in the Dirt
Big Mound during destruction. Daguerreotype by Thomas M. Easterly, ca. 1869. Missouri History Museum Photographs and Prints Collections. Easterly Daguerreotype Collection. N17078.

Cahokia: Digging in the Dirt

There are eleven UNESCO World Heritage cultural sites located in the United States, five of which are American Indian sites. Mesa Verde is by far the most famous with its cliff-dwellings, Taos Pueblo and Chaco not far behind, though Chaco is a bit a of a drive, three hours from…

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Another Try at the Serpent Mound

It's two hours out of the way along small highways, heading directly south of Columbus. Despite growing up in Ohio, and coming back to visit every year, I'd never heard of the town of Peebles. That's not as surprising as it might sound--southern Ohio is a different state than northern…

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An Ancient Circle In Central Ohio

It doesn't look like much at first but it is astonishing nonetheless. A rampart of earth, grass-covered with trees here and there rises up before you, a gap in the rampart beckoning you in. And you go in, and it's all flat, mown grass inside, with trees. The earthen rampart…

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A Wrong Turn to the Flight 93 Memorial

There's something wrong with the Flight 93 Memorial in Pennsylvania. I had taken a wrong turn and was trapped on the wrong highway through the endless forests of Pennsylvania when I passed a brown sign for the memorial. Oh, that's right! I'm near where the plane crashed on 9-11. I'm…

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