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  • Austin 7 Around the Americas Book at Bespk

    The Book Here is the story about a dream, a dream that first appeared soon after buying the first of many Austin 7’s in 1966. Inspired by Tschiffely's Ride (Buenos AIres to New York in 1925 with horses and mules), Coleman's Drive (Buenos Aires to New York in a 1925 Austin 7, 1959-60) and Austins over the Andes by Vince Leek. It tells of the designing, building and planning of the journey from Baltimore to Alaska and onto Punta Arenas in a 1936/28 Austin 7 during 2012/13 by the Authors. It takes the form of a diary: Eunice wrote a blog on the website and Guy used Facebook as a daily record. To reflect on the immense generosity of the many people without whom this would never have happened ALL the proceeds of the sales of the book are being donated to Dame Hannah Rogers Trust ( www.discoverhannahs.org ). Book Orders Copies of the book may be ordered from; Guy Butcher, Unit 17, Moorlands Industrial Estate, Forge Lane, Saltash PL12 6LX Email - bespkinfo@gmail.com Tel no - +44 (0)7974 024499 ​ Book Biography How do you build an 80 year old car with the idea of attempting to drive it the equivalent of circumnavigating the world (24,860 miles/40,007 km)? You ask a friend. In this case John Sutton. Having written the specification out you circulate it to knowledgeable friends. After a surprisingly brief time you hear from Vince Leek who’s found just the car. Having bought the car, you take it to bits and rebuild it as (effectively) a new car to optimise the chances of reliability. Remember you’re on your own! Attempts are made to identify any weaknesses before it’s placed in a container to be delivered to the USA. Collecting the car in Baltimore; following a route that appears roughly like a reversed 7 you drive to Alaska, catch the Ferry down the Inner Passage to Bellingham. Urgent repairs are completed before heading south along the Pacific coast of the USA. A race across Central America, to escape very challenging border crossings, with arrival in Panama. With more very generous help the car is placed into another container for transportation to Ecuador. Meanwhile we visit the Galapagos Islands. Unpackaged in Guayaquil, the adventure continues south through; Ecuador, Peru, Chile, Argentina, before ending in Punta Arenas. We missed the turning to Tierra del Fuego! ​ ​

  • Austin 7 Adventure | Bespk | England & America

    Eunice Kratky & Guy Butcher Bespk Austin 7 Around the Americas Book front cover Bespk Austin 7 Around the Americas Book back cover Bespk Austin 7 Around the Americas Book front cover 1/2 Austin 7 Around the Americas The book The amazing story of the design, rebuild and driving of a 1936/28 Austin 7 from Baltimore to Alaska to Punta Arenas in 2012/13. In the footsteps of Aime Tschiffely, John Coleman and many others! now Bespk. All the proceeds of the book are being donated to Dame Hannah Rogers Trust ( www.discoverhannahs.org ). A charity supporting young adults with learning disabilities and their families. The car is to be raffled (essentially as it returned from the adventure) with all the tools and spares to raise further funds for Dame Hannahs.

  • Contact | Bespk | England

    Contact us Please help our attempts to raise much needed funds for the Dame Hannah Rogers Trust (See www.discoverhannahs.org ). Our epic and inspirational book 'Austin 7 Around the Americas' may be ordered by completing the Contact Form below. Alternatively you can write us a letter or email. Thank you so much for your support! Address Guy Butcher, Unit 17, Moorlands Industrial Estate, Forge Lane, Saltash PL12 6LX ​​ Phone +44 (0)7974 024499 Email bespkinfo@gmail.com Social Media Contact Us First Name Last Name Address Email Write a message Submit Thanks for submitting to bespk The Newton Abbot Orchestra Concert to fundraise the cause with David Yandle. 23-05-2012 At Bob Brandon’s being introduced to the American Austin. 29-07-2012 We’re on our way from Joyce Beelman’s home after our enforced stop over. 12-09-2012 The Newton Abbot Orchestra Concert to fundraise the cause with David Yandle. 23-05-2012 1/3

  • About Us | bespk | England

    About Us Finding Inspiration in Every Turn Guy Butcher : ‘silly Sussex born and bred’, attended schools in Sussex before becoming an undergraduate at Guy’s Hospital, London (1966). The first Austin 7 made its appearance in 1966 and there have been numerous different old cars (mostly Austins) since then. Progress through the ranks of the Hospital Dental Services ended with a consultant appointment in Plymouth (1989). As retirement approached he met and fell in love with Eunice Kratky who encouraged him to fulfill the dream of a long distance adventure in an Austin 7. Little did she know what she was letting herself in for ……… Eunice Kratky ; born and raised in Kenya of the 50’s and 60’s; educated in Kenya and the UK chose to study nursing at Great Ormond Street Hospital. A remarkable career in children's nursing, Social Services, education and the Child Development Centre, Plymouth also drew to a close about the same time as Guy’s career. The idea and practice of travel is a feature of their lives together. The possibilities for a shared big adventure seemed to hold great potential. Our Story This is a story of discovery. The life lesson that the ability to achieve almost anything in this life depends on the kindness of family and friends. But more importantly it depends on the amazing kindness of strangers. The often-awesome generosity of the people who we met on the road. The people who owed us nothing but showed a kindness that was/is breathtaking and inspiring. Intriguingly, it often felt that those with the least gave the most. All proceeds go to; Dame Hannah Rogers Trust Our Clients

  • Car Specifications | bespk

    Austin 7 Around the Americas The Specification of the ‘bespk’ Austin 7 Special to travel 25,000 miles. This article is based on the version published in the Bristol Austin 7 Magazine, June 2013 I travelled to London to meet up with John Sutton (he of the Maclachlan Special) at his ‘works’; Camco Solutions in Greenwich during August of 2009. John’s original notes are in italic. Acknowledging that John Coleman’s 1925 Chummy had broken its chassis during his epic adventure in 1959/60 the obvious choice was to either use a modified (strengthened) early chassis or a shortened later chassis. Having received John’s document by email within a few days I sent it to a number of my Austin 7 Friends for their thoughts and comments. Within a few weeks all had replied with their interpretation of the ideal specification. Vince Leek went further and suggested he’d found a very suitable car. Following negotiations VJ 9212 arrived in the workshop during October, so the story begins. Chassis:- A short chassis will be modified by boxing in the front forging, adding a plate at the rear of the chassis to tie in the rear spring mountings and an additional flange on the fore and aft chassis member. It will also be modified to take a Ruby brake cross shaft. VJ 9212 arrived as a 1936 ‘short chassis’; (6’9” modified in the 1980’s to 6’3”); probably following a very serious accident. (See below). The chassis member supporting the brake cross shaft has a fabricated additional fixing at the front to minimise distortion during braking. The stub axles, steering arms and the drop arm of the steering box were crack tested and the steering arms were shot peened. Springs:- These will be standard Chummy type but with zinc interleaves and bound with cord after fitting additional spring clamps. The 3 springs are remanufactured to 1936 specification. All 3 springs required resetting after it was found that the rear axle bottomed out against the chassis/body in initial unloaded testing. Additionally spare main front and rear leaf were also manufactured and carried within the chassis rails, under the car. They are heavily greased and wrapped with ‘Denso’ tape. The initial road tests after the rebuild were very disappointing: the handling was very wayward. This I learnt later was as a result of increasing the ‘set’ of the front and rear springs. This effectively eliminated the castor angle of the king pins. The radius arm ball joint was lowered with a bracket by approximately 1” to restore the castor angle. The shock absorbers (S/A’s) are standard Austin 7 modified by seam welding the rear blades for strength; the friction discs were assembled with grease and set up to a tension of 25 lb/ft (measured with a spring balance). This gives stiction rather than friction. It also prevents moisture affecting the performance of the S/A discs An additional pair of star washers were placed under the coil spring on each of the rear S/As to give a more ‘gradual’ response. Front axle:- A late semi-Girling axle and radius arms to be fitted with oversize king pins (rather than closing down the axle eyes) if required. Hubs will be the late Ruby type and the bearings will be the sealed type. +10 thou oversize king pins are fitted. The bearings are standard size and sealed, the small front hub bearings were not available in sealed form. Rear axle:- A three piece narrow axle with 5.125 axle ratio. New half shafts and bearings with late Ruby hubs for additional strength. The outer casings to be machined to take semi-Girling brake back plates. The prop shaft flange will be modified to take a Hardy Spicer type. A D type rear axle is fitted modified for a short chassis by a welded 1” block to the axle case inside of the backplates and outboard of the rear spring with a re-welded inner fixing point. A new 5.125 crown wheel and pinion was used with new manufactured long half shafts featuring long tapers and a square key (A7 Components). During the rebuild it was found that the O/S axle tube and the torque tube were both bent beyond reclamation (due to the aforementioned accident damage). There is a hypothesis that the trouble with the multiple broken spokes was due to the N/S axle tube being bent. Steering box:- A Chummy type short column with a dished steering wheel for preference. The control levers to incorporate the horn button. A Chummy type column was rebuilt, including a ‘top of the tube’ bronze bush rather than the felt originally fitted . A splined 1929 type steering wheel with hand throttle and advance/retard levers were fitted with only the throttle lever connected. Brakes:- These will be semi-Girling modified to Girling specification. The cross shaft is modified with a rear facing grease nipple to allow greasing and reduce the chances of seizure The standard semi-Girling brakes were modified by making the adjusters in each backplate able to float in the backplate and the brake shoes are able to ‘self centre.’ Long levers are fitted. Wheels and tyres: The wheels will be 17 inch Austin 7 rebuilt and not powder coated and the tyres will be 400 x 17 Armstrong. A set of 17” wheels were rebuilt and (?) powder coated 4.00/4.25 17” Excelsior tyres were used. (11 covers used over 20,000 miles). After fitting the new tyres in Tulare; the ride was very lumpy and on the advice of Nate Jones (Long Beach, CA) he removed all the covers, balanced the wheels which made a vast difference to the amount of ‘faceting’. He also advised using talcum powder as a lubricant between the tube and cover. (The two front tyres were too worn to pass an MOT on our return). Radiator:- An early Chummy type steel cowl painted black. The radiator to be re-cored. A four bladed fan (mag type) for cooling. The radiator core was replaced during the rebuild. During the testing of the spare top fan pulley, before departure, it collapsed and the four bladed fan damaged the core, destroying itself. This required another replacement core. I decided to use a thermostatically controlled electric fan with a switched override. Using this was found to be necessary only when climbing long hills and when moving slowly in traffic. VJ 9212 had an overflow tank (?from Morris 1100) this was refitted during the rebuild. Engine:- To be built using a Magneto crankcase with a 11/2” Phoenix splash fed crankshaft and conrods. This will involve some machining internally to gain clearance for the big ends. The camshaft will be modified to give an output of approx. 25bhp. Cam followers to be standard radius. Various camshaft designs are available but the manufacture or re–profiling needs to be of a high standard. Timing gears to of standard type but carefully checked for mesh. Cylinder block to be 10 studded for extra security. Pistons to be decided but the new slipper pistons as used in the Maclachlan Special are recommended. The valves to be standard size with the inlets made with 30 degree seats. Oil pump to be standard size. The sump to be decided on during the rebuild but it is important to make sure it is baffled. A possible option is to make a steel plate to replace the sump gauze as this has the advantage of stiffening the crankcase. The engine was built by Alex Myall (Pigsty Racing) essentially as outlined above to his ‘Trials specification’ with 11/8th” inlet valves, an alloy cylinder head (similar to a 1937 type), a high volume oil pump, oversize oil jets (for greater flow rather than pressure) and an Alan Raeburn type alloy sump, a full flow spin off oil filter is fitted. The starter dog was modified to support/drive the bottom pulley machined to accept a polyV belt for the alternator drive. The housing for the dynamo was blanked off. The top fan pulley, similarly modified for the PolyV belt, was fitted with a pair of sealed ball bearings held in place by Allen grub screws. Clutch; It is recommended that cast iron linings are fitted with standard clutch springs. A reconditioned clutch withdrawal bearing to be fitted and attention to toggle arms. Pressure plate to have a good starter ring. A standard Austin clutch was fitted using a late type release bearing and clutch release arms. Manifolding:- It is proposed to fit a 3 branch exhaust manifold under the bonnet. The inlet manifold to be designed to take an SU carburettor. A custom built 4 branch exhaust manifold is fitted. A John Barlow semi downdraft inlet manifold is fitted with an 11/4” SU (Mini type). This is actuated by a Bowden cable with a modified bulkhead accelerator/hand throttle arrangement. A custom made KN air filter is fitted The silencer is a standard Chummy type. Magneto/Ignition:- This will be an ML magneto rebuilt to the highest standard with a spare for security to be carried in the car. The original engine set up used the rebuilt ML magneto (Magneto Magician). Once the coil conversion was available and modified by Willie McKenzie to overcome lubrication problems this was fitted and used throughout the trip. One magneto was carried. Starter motor:- A “bacon slicer” type with a starter button attached. A 12v ‘soft start’ motor was developed by ARK Racing and fitted after advice that the original type 6v motor run off 12v wrecked the flywheel ring gear in about 10,000 miles. Gearbox:- A three speed with a high second gear and vertical speedometer drive. The output shaft to have a flange to convert to a Hardy Spicer prop shaft. A late 4 speed gearbox (2 SYN) was rebuilt and fitted with a vertical (3 speed type) speedometer drive. A new manufacture Hardy Spicer prop shaft was fitted. Body:- An approach to be made to Rod Yates for a Chummy type body to incorporate the proposed scuttle fuel tank. Failing this Keith Roach will almost certainly be able to make one to our specification. The body should also have reinforcement in the rear section to allow for carrying the additional weight. VJ 9212 came with a Keith Roach Chummy body built in the 1980’s (flat floor) This was modified; the woodwork was bonded to the aluminium skin with Sikaflex to create a stressed skin structure. A false floor was created to enclose the space under the rear seat which was removed/not fitted. Additional lockers were created to support the rear of the driver and passenger seats. All the trim panelling was discarded and replaced by high density polyurethane foam covered with aircraft quality aluminium (0.20” thick) A formed, hinged, lockable aluminium cover was made behind the seats for security and to provide a platform for our day to day luggage which was held in place using an elasticated net with fixed ‘hooking points’. Seats:- These are standard Chummy pattern upholstered in leather. The hood was remade and fixed to the body at the rear using ‘Lift the Dot Fasteners’ which allowed us to roll up the vertical panel whilst keeping the hood up and with the front screen held open, the thickness of a cork, to have a through flow of air; ‘air-conditioning’. Electrics:- An alternator (Kubota digger; 40A below 4,000 revs) driven by a poly V belt). Voltage regulator is integral to the alternator. Batteries Two 6 volt MGB type batteries one fitted as per Chummy and the second fitted under the driver’s seat. These can then be used for 12 volts or tapped off for 6 volts if required. Two 12 volt batteries (that fit into a standard A7 battery box) are fitted. The engine battery is under the driver’s seat. The other, under the passenger seat, was for running the sat nav. and the iPad. A split charging unit is used. A 12v CAV windscreen wiper motor, driving a single blade, is fitted. Scuttle lamps are fitted with LED lamps as indicators/hazard warning lights. The rear lamps are Model A Ford type fitted with LED indicators, conventional stop and tail lamps. Additionally high intensity rear lights are fitted for higher visibility on Freeways and for hill climbing in poor visibility at high altitude. Headlamps:- To be decided. VJ 9212 had Bosch type 51/2” headlamps with quartz halogen bulbs mounted on the front wings. Instruments:- Switch panel for coil engine (ammeter not connected) A speedometer calibrated to suit the axle and tyre configuration. An oil pressure gauge. A water temperature gauge A voltmeter. An additional switch panel was fitted to the steering column. The wiring used ‘switched earth’ to reduce the load on the switches. This included direction indicators/hazard warning lights, magneto on/off, fuel pump, alternator on/off, spare, electric fan, high intensity rear lamps. Fuel tank pressure gauge/air pump and taps for front/rear distribution. Taps for front/rear tank selection. See below. ​ Fuel tanks- This to be made full body width (similar to those on a TT car) so that it forms the scuttle onto which the Chummy bonnet sits. It should have a sump below the tank so that the tank does not run dry on steep hills. A standard Chummy front tank is used with a ‘Nippy’ type rear tank fitted to chassis extensions. It is possible to use either tank with the electric pump (or the hand air pump in case of failure). Both tanks have separate glass bowl filters. Oil Selection Alex Myall was adamant that only Castrol GP1 should be used (after 250 miles using ‘running in’ oil). This is based upon his experience and that of his father’s; Tim Myall, both of Pigsty Racing. Having run ‘old engined cars’ since 1966, I have a conviction that oil selection can be a really cheap form of engineering if you make wise choices. Having researched oils prior to the trip I was fortunate enough to find a book; ‘Which Oils’ written by Richard Michell, an Australian Oil Engineer (who owns an Austin 7) and published by Veloce Publishing. I made contact with the author by email. We had a very interesting correspondence. What I learnt is that oils for old engines of this type require high levels of Zinc and Phosphorus to cope with the high rubbing forces. In extremis (when the oil of choice is not available) Richard advised the use of straight 40 grade diesel oil in the engine/gearbox and 50 grade diesel oils for the back axle. I wrote to all the suppliers/manufacturers of ‘old car oils’ in the UK. Whilst receiving a couple of replies that were not very encouraging with my thinking; I had a visit from the local Morris Lubricants representative for Cornwall; Bruce Mccann. Extensive discussions with their technical team; Andy Brown, evolved a specification of oils; 15w50 Golden Film Motor Sport oil for the engine, Lodexol 80/90 for the gearbox and AG 140 for the back axle. It was not long before cases of oil arrived at the workshop. Introductions were given to their agent in the USA; Robert Bauer of Classicoils and another company who supplied oils from their base in Santiago, Chile. ​ ​

  • About the Car | bespk | England

    The Car I travelled to London to meet up with John Sutton (he of the Maclachlan Special) at his ‘works’; Camco Solutions in Greenwich during August of 2009. John’s original notes are in italic. Acknowledging that John Coleman’s 1925 Chummy had broken its chassis during his epic adventure in 1959/60 the obvious choice was to either use a modified (strengthened) early chassis or a shortened later chassis. Having received John’s document by email within a few days I sent it to a number of my Austin 7 Friends for their thoughts and comments. Within a few weeks all had replied with their interpretation of the ideal specification. Vince Leek went further and suggested he’d found a very suitable car. Following negotiations VJ 9212 arrived in the workshop during October, so the story begins. Chassis:- A short chassis will be modified by boxing in the front forging, adding a plate at the rear of the chassis to tie in the rear spring mountings and an additional flange on the fore and aft chassis member. It will also be modified to take a Ruby brake cross shaft. VJ 9212 arrived as a 1936 ‘short chassis’; (6’9” modified in the 1980’s to 6’3”); probably following a very serious accident. (See below). The chassis member supporting the brake cross shaft has a fabricated additional fixing at the front to minimise distortion during braking. The stub axles, steering arms and the drop arm of the steering box were crack tested and the steering arms were shot peened. Instruments:- Switch panel for coil engine (ammeter not connected) A speedometer calibrated to suit the axle and tyre configuration. An oil pressure gauge. A water temperature gauge A voltmeter. An additional switch panel was fitted to the steering column. The wiring used ‘switched earth’ to reduce the load on the switches. This included direction indicators/hazard warning lights, magneto on/off, fuel pump, alternator on/off, spare, electric fan, high intensity rear lamps. Fuel tank pressure gauge/air pump and taps for front/rear distribution. Taps for front/rear tank selection. Wheels and tyres: The wheels will be 17 inch Austin 7 rebuilt and not powder coated and the tyres will be 400 x 17 Armstrong. A set of 17” wheels were rebuilt and (?) powder coated 4.00/4.25 17” Excelsior tyres were used. (11 covers used over 20,000 miles). After fitting the new tyres in Tulare; the ride was very lumpy and on the advice of Nate Jones (Long Beach, CA) he removed all the covers, balanced the wheels which made a vast difference to the amount of ‘faceting’. He also advised using talcum powder as a lubricant between the tube and cover. (The two front tyres were too worn to pass an MOT on our return). ​ Radiator:- An early Chummy type steel cowl painted black. The radiator to be re-cored. A four bladed fan (mag type) for cooling. The radiator core was replaced during the rebuild. During the testing of the spare top fan pulley, before departure, it collapsed and the four bladed fan damaged the core, destroying itself. This required another replacement core. I decided to use a thermostatically controlled electric fan with a switched override. Using this was found to be necessary only when climbing long hills and when moving slowly in traffic. VJ 9212 had an overflow tank (?from Morris 1100) this was refitted during the rebuild. ​ Click to see the full Specifications The Build Rebuilding and modifying a car for any long distance trip is challenging, especially if you choose to travel without support or back-up. Undertaking a 25,000-mile trip through the Americas would stretch the ability of any car, especially one that was built nearly a century ago. 1936/28 Austin 7 Car Draw We raffled our 1936/28 Austin 7 for Dame Hannah Rogers Trust on 14th December 2022 having raised more than £26k. The lucky winner is: Matt Fowles of Dursley, Gloucestershire. Whilst you can no longer win the car you can continue to contribute to our fundraising efforts on the Just Giving page (click the Just Giving Logo to the right or Here ). You can Gift Aid as you are solely making a donation. Raffle for the Car

  • EndNotes | bespk

    EndNotes Below are a series of Endnotes which were written at the time of composing the book. In part they formed a therapy following the diagnosis of cancer affecting my left kidney, March 2021, and of secondaries in my liver, June 2022. A task that I really enjoyed and provided something creative at a time of great bleakness. The original intention was that we would eventually create and publish an electronic version of the book. It is possible to link each endnote to the text of our adventure so that the interested reader would be able to explore details that would not upset the flow of the text. However in discussion with Dan Bernard, the Publisher of Tricorn Books (https://www.tricornbooks.co.uk/ ) we decided that it would not be financially viable to include these as part of the printed version of our book. As a great deal of work has gone into their preparation and they offer an interesting opportunity to share the research whilst proving my self diagnosis of OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder), they also allow the opportunity to show how amazing are the possibilities of electronic publishing. Where practical I have included the link to the Wikipedia entry, the link to a relevant YouTube video or a website. Above all we very much hope that you enjoy this experiment, which can, perhaps be enjoyed as a Good Read on its own? We’d be particularly pleased to hear your thoughts, alternative references. Please feel free to contact us at bespkinfo@gmail.com ​ ​ Aime Tschiffely 1985-1954 A Swiss born teacher, professor and adventurer. As a young man he moved to Argentina and became a school teacher and headmaster of the Buenos Aires English High School. Having explored the pampas during the long vacations, learnt from the locals about long distance travel by horse he then proposed to travel on horseback from Buenos Aires (BA) to Washington DC. Whilst many considered the adventure pure madness his books, Southern Cross to Pole Star, The Ride or most famously Tschiffely’s Ride tell a wondrous story. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aim%C3%A9_F%C3%A9lix_Tschiffely John Coleman 1928-2009 Son of Charles Coleman, an engineer; first read the story of Tschiffely’s Ride as a schoolboy whilst ill in bed one Christmas. It’s this story and others by the same author that inspired 'Coleman’s Drive’*. It also affected many others to emulate Coleman’s adventure in Austin 7’s to many parts of the globe, including us. He attended Haileybury School before doing National Service in the Army where he learnt to drive. After, he went to university in Oxford, reading Theology, subsequently training to be a teacher. He had a particular aptitude with pupils who had Special Needs. The decision to emulate Tschiffely’s Ride began upon finding the Austin 7, he used for the adventure, doing service dragging boats out of the River Thames. Eventually acquiring the car by barter and some cash the adventure began. John approached Lord Montague, BMC (The British Motor Corporation, which had recently been formed by the joining together of Austin, Morris with other British motor manufacturers) and others in helping to fund the adventure. The whole story is worthy of reading the book*. ​ 2 Otakon is an anime (animation produced in Japan) convention occurring over three days in Baltimore. The convention represents Asian popular culture: anime, manga, music, and cinema. https://www.otakon.com/ American Civil War (also Civil War) 1861-1865. The Confederacy represented the Southern States. This eventually became 11/13 States when Abraham Lincoln became president in 1861. The Union represented the Northern States. The War was about the potential spread of slavery from the Southern States. Over four years approximately 600,000 Union/Confederate soldiers died. The Confederacy collapses. Slavery is eventually abolished. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Civil_War Battle of Gettysburg July 1-3 1863. Turning point of the Civil War Maj. General George Meade: (Union) defeated General Robert E Lee (Confederate) ending Lee’s attempt to invade the North. Number of casualties approximately 55,000. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Gettysburg Battle Of Gettysburg (Full Documentary) Gettysburg Address 19.11.1863 At the dedication of the Soldiers’ National Cemetery, Gettysburg. Edward Everett’s Gettysburg Oration (The Battles of Gettysburg) took about two hours. President Abraham Lincoln’s address was approximately 271 words, the essence of which is: four score years and ten ago [after the signing of the Declaration of Independence July 4 1776] our Fathers brought forth on this continent a new Nation conceived in Liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. A test that the Civil War would identify whether the the Union justified the basis of a Nation that these dead shall not have died in vain that this Nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom and that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth ​ 3 It is now known that Abraham Lincoln was prodromal for (in the early stages of) smallpox at the time he gave the address. The Gettysburg Address Explained https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gettysburg_Address Auburn Automobiles The Auburn Automobile Company grew out of the Eckhart Carriage Company (1874). The Company was sold in 1919 to a group of investors from Chicago who failed to grow the company. In 1924 E.L. Cord, a successful car salesman, was offered the opportunity to run the Company. In 1926 Cord partnered with Duesenberg. The portfolio of cars were all high priced luxury cars. Financial irregularities and the Wall Street crash contributed to the production of Auburns, Cords and Dusenbergs ceasing in 1937. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Auburn_Aut omobile History of Auburn Cord Duesenb erg Documentary Breezewood, PA, USA Sited along a traditional pathway used by Native Americans, settlers and British troops during colonial times. It became very popular to motorists with the opening of the Lincoln Highway, 1913 (see below). A well documented alignment anomaly occurs between I -70 and the Turnpike; not a controlled access highway. https://en.wikipedia.org/w iki/Breezewood,_Pennsylvania Cranberry, PA Famous as being on the route of George Washington’s hike towards the French Fort LeBoeuf with a message from the British Governor ordering the French to leave Northern Pennsylvania. Thus started the French Native Indian War. In this region the Delaware, Iroquois and Seneca nations had hunted for centuries. Today the biggest employer is Westinghouse Electric Company. https://en.wikipedia.org/wi ki/Cranberry_Township,_Butler_County,_Pennsylvania Butler, PA First settled early in the 19th century. A major centre of manufacturing and industry. Significant was the Standard Steel Car Company (SSCC,1902). The American Austin Company took over part of the SSCC site in 1929, subsequently it changed its name to the American Bantam Car Company. The Bantam Reconnaissance Car developed in 1940 very quickly to become the ubiquitous Jeep; perhaps one of the most important motor vehicles in the history of transport. The manufacturing of the Jeep was largely undertaken by Willys ​ 4 Overland, Crossley and Ford; together about 650,000 Jeeps were produced during WW2. In the meantime American Bantam produced a trailer to be towed by the Jeep, doubling its carrying capacity. The factory eventually closed in 1956. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Butler,_Pennsylvania https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Austin_Car_Company https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Bantam https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Willys_MB https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Er6l5NpY-bQ Lincoln Highway Known as the Main Street Across America. Is one of the earliest transcontinental highway routes across the United States for motor cars. Conceived by the entrepreneur Carl Fisher in 1912, it travelled from Times Square in New York City to Lincoln Park, San Francisco. Initially measured at 3,389 miles (5,454 km). With improvements it now measures 3,142 miles (5,057 km). Funded by public subscription; some individuals, notably, Henry Ford, refused to contribute feeling that the Highways should be funded by the Government. In 1919 the United States Army, hoping to promote Highway development, assembled the Army Transcontinental Motor Convoy. One participant was Dwight D Eisenhower. He was much affected by the experience of the convoy and having seen the German Autobahn system became much involved in road development in the USA eventually facilitating the construction of the Interstate Highway system during the 1950s https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lincoln_Highway 100 Years on the Lincoln Highway Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada Established in 1882, it is the Capital city of the Saskatchewan Province. The Royal Saskatchewan Museum has a wonderful First Nations Gallery. Full of dioramas of First Nation lifestyles, created in the main by the Native Indians and their families. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Regina,_Saskatchewan Native Americans (NA) Variously known as American Indians, Indigenous Americans. The ways Native Americans refer to themselves depends on the region and generation; the older NAs choose; ‘Indian’ or ‘American Indians’. While the younger NA choose ‘Indigenous’ or ‘Aboriginal’. ​ 5 There are 574 federally recognised tribes living in the US. Less than half of these live on reservations (1960s). Today there are about five million Native Americans. Their ancestors arrived on the American continent at least 15,000 years ago from Asia. European colonisation of North America began in 1492. There followed a disastrous reduction in numbers due to diseases (smallpox, chickenpox, and measles), warfare, biological warfare, ethnic cleansing and slavery (perhaps as high as 90% in total). Following the establishment of the US, the policy of settler colonisation resulted in the continuation of warfare, massacres, removal of NAs from their ancestral lands and the perpetration of one-sided treaties with very damaging governmental policies against the Native Americans. The Native Americans were often matrilineal and operated on a collective basis with the maintenance of the hunting and agricultural grounds for the use of the entire tribe. The European settlers were mostly Christians, proto industrialists with concepts of individual property as the centre of their culture. The Europeans were either not able or not prepared to understand or try to understand the Native Americans. As with the spread of European diseases, the Europeans introduced animals, insects and plants. The reintroduction of the horse had a profound effect on the culture of the NA, especially the extension of their range for hunting. The prejudice shown to the NAs increased after the American Civil War. Later the NAs were subjected to the Jim Crow laws. These Laws institutionalised economic, educational and social disadvantages to people of colour that was seen to include NAs. It was not until the NAs joined with the Civil Rights movement and especially Dr Martin Luther King Jr. in the 1950s that matters started to improve. NAs today are protected by the US Constitution; they can vote in elections and run for political office. More recently, in 2009, an ‘apology to Native Peoples of the United States’ was included in the Defence Appropriations Act. Today, NAs are dying in higher numbers than the average of diabetes, alcoholism, suicide and other health conditions associated with poverty. Progress in assimilation is appallingly slow; but this does not apply only to NAs but all ethnic minorities. In spite of the legal requirement to adopt equal opportunity employment and ​ 6 affirmative action measures to prevent discrimination the continuation of prejudice is endemic in the US. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Native_Americans Vegreville Egg is a giant pysanka, a Ukrainian-style Easter egg, that acts as a wind vane, in the city of Vegreville, Alberta. In order to obtain Federal funding it was a condition that it should be dedicated to the 1975 centennial of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Designed by Paul Sembaliuk, with the help of computer scientist Ronald Resch. The egg is 31’ (9m) long and weighs 2.5 tons (5,512 lb). It’s covered by 1108 congruent equilateral triangles, 524 concave hexagons (6- pointed stars) with 3,512 visible facets. Queen Elizabeth II visited here during her tour of Canada in July-Aug 1978. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vegreville Edmonton is the capital city of Alberta. Known as the ‘Gateway to the North’. As the host city of numerous Festivals it’s also known as ‘Canada’s Festival City’. In 1754 Anthony Henday, working for the Hudson Bay Company, is credited with settling the area now known as Edmonton. The Canadian Pacific Railway in Alberta and the Calgary and Edmonton Railway towards the end of the 19th century encouraged settlement in the city. 1929 saw the first licensed airfield in Canada, the Edmonton City Centre Airport. The City was very important during the construction of the Alaska Highway. Amongst many tourist attractions is Fort Edmonton Park, the country’s largest living history museum. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edmonton The Kissel Motor Car Company was an American automobile manufacturing company founded by Louis Kissel and his sons, George and William on June 5 1906 in Hartford Wisconsin. The company custom-built high quality automobiles, hearses, fire trucks, taxicabs and utility vehicles from their Hartford plant. During World War l the company produced trucks for the military and prospered after the war but with stiff competition and the Great Depression, mounting losses, and an attempted hostile take over by New Era Motors President Archie Andrews forced the owners to file for receivership protection in November 1930. Often called Kissel Kars, of the 35,000 automobiles the company produced only 150 are known to exist today. The most famous car was one the company donated to Hollywood ​ 7 actress Anita King for her trans continental trip in 1915 that marked the first ever such trip by a female driving alone. The most popular Kissel model was the 1919 'Speedster model nicknamed the Gold Bug, many owned by famous personalities of the time such as Fatty Arbuckle and aviatrix Amelia Earhart. Kissel also produced the sporty ‘White Eagle’ from 1927. The Kissel Company used Mercury the winged messenger as its logo. In the late 1930s Henry Ford requested use of the logo for the new marque the Ford Motor Company was planning to introduce and permission was granted by William Kissel. In 1935 the Kisse’s manufactured outboard motors and were major suppliers of Sears Roebuck. In 1942 the business was sold to the West Bend Aluminium Company. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kissel_Motor_Car_Company History of the Kissel Motor Car Company 1912 KisselKar (written by Chris Bamford) In October, 1911, the City of Edmonton took delivery of a KisselKar, Model 4-50 custom-bodied Fire Chief’s Car “the first motorised chief’s conveyance west of Winnipeg”. That car served Chief Tommy Lauder (our first paid fire chief) for a number of years; the last known photograph of this car was taken around 1920. My KisselKar 4-50 apparently arrived in Rich Valley, Alberta in the early 1930s as a seven-seater passenger touring car. It was subsequently sold for $35 at a farm auction, stripped and converted into a crude tractor during WW2. Parked soon after, it lay derelict until I purchased it from the two brothers who had made it into a tractor decades earlier. My original intention was to build a large, early speedster, but after learning about Edmonton’s mechanically-identical Chief’s car, chose that path instead. In truth, with no doors it’s very much like a four-seat ‘family speedster anyway, particularly when the windshield is removed! Restoration was an eight-year project encompassing thousands of hours, numerous swap meets and the assistance of many fine people and suppliers; most particularly my good friend and master craftsman Jerry. Although the mileage since restoration is unknown, the car is now on its second set of front tires and third set of rears. It was winter-driven for a number of seasons and has completed tours of up to 900 miles. Four-cylinders, 378 cu in, 6.2 litres, 4-speed gearbox (4th is 25% overdrive), 124” wheelbase, 37x5 beaded edge tyres on 27” wheels. The comfortable cruising speed is 45-47 mph, the engine turns 1,500 rpm at 50 mph in 4th gear, fuel consumption averages 10-12 mpg. ​ 8 1926 Ford Model T, Touring (written by Chris Bamford) This Canadian-built Model T was purchased at Meier’s Collector Car Auction in 2006. I met an earlier owner’s son at the Red Deer swap meet years later; he recalled helping his Dad restore the car in the mid -‘60s. It then passed through several owners in south-central Alberta prior to the 2006 auction. The car was running and driving then, but not particularly well. I’ve since been through it mechanically front to back, and it’s now my regular year-round oldie. The paint, upholstery and top all date back to that 1960s restoration and show numerous minor nicks and bruises — as such, it’s a perfect car to drive year ‘round, park at the mall, give rides in, haul Christmas trees, lumber, bags of insulation, you name it. Dozens of folks have had their first Model T driving lesson behind the wheel, including several grandkids… I’m always happy to share (the car, not the grandkids), so feel free to ask. Four-cylinders, 177 in3/2.9 litres flathead, 2-speed Ford Planetary transmission, high-compression cylinder head and a mild cam (but otherwise entirely stock), 4:50x21 balloon tires. Comfortable cruising speed 35 mph, flat out 43 mph. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ford_Model_T FORD MODEL T 🔧 History: Henry Ford's Automobile (Historical Documentary: Early American Automotive) The Alaska Highway, ALCAN Highway Following the Japanese air raid on Pearl Harbour December 7th, 1941, the west coast of North America felt extremely vulnerable to direct Japanese attack. Alaska, part of the USA, was very isolated and there seemed to be a strategic advantage in linking it to the USA through Canada. The road starts at Dawson Creek and runs to Delta Junction, Alaska, 1,700 miles (2,700 km) north. The US Army approved the construction of the Highway on 6-02-1942 and work started on 8-03-1942. Working from both ends the rate of building increased as winter ended. September 24, 1942 found the crews meeting at mile 588. Until 1943 the road was only usable to specialist vehicles. Constructed in an amazing 10 months it is unofficially, now, considered as part of the PanAmerican Highway. Since the end of the war the road has become shorter as it is realigned and improved. Historically there were mileposts that the locals still use to identify their location although not accurate. ​ 9 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alaska_Highway Construction of the Alaska Highway | 1942 | US Army Engineers Documentary Sign Post Forest, Alaska Highway A fascinating collection of road signs at Watson Lake. Apparently in excess of 50,000 as of 2012 The original sign was placed by a homesick GI in 1942 whilst recovering from injuries acquired during the build of the Alaska Highway. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sign_Post_Forest THE SIGN POST FOREST | 4K DRONE The White Pass and Yukon Route is a narrow gauge railway (3ft/0.9m) running from Skagway to Whitehorse, Yukon. Construction started in 1898 during the Klondike Gold Rush, being completed in 1900. It ran as a commercial business until 1982. Revived, partially, as a Heritage railway. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_Pass_and_Yukon_Route Skagway, Alaska In recent times is renowned as a significant port, particularly during the Klondike gold rush and the subsequent mining of other ores, more recently it has become a port of call for cruise ships travelling the Inner Passage. It is also a terminus for the White Pass and Yukon narrow gauge railway. The Alaska Marine Highway, BC Ferries and the Washington State Ferries all use the Inner Passage. The setting for Jack London’s ‘The Call of the Wild’. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skagway,_Alaska Inside Passage is a coastal route used by cruise ships, ferries and other vessels usually between Skagway and Bellingham. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inside_Passage Ketchikan, Alaska The town is the southernmost in Alaska on the Inside/Inner Passage. A tourist destination with more than one million tourists arriving each year. Downtown is a ‘National Historic District’. Originally a summer fish camp used by the Tlingit natives for millennia. Herein is the world's largest collection of Totem poles. In the harbour there is a seaplane base. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ketchikan,_Alaska ​ 10 Bellingham, Washington The most northern city in the US ‘mainland’. Sir William Bellingham was the controller of the storekeeper’s account of the Royal Navy in 1792. The Fraser Canyon Gold Rush of 1858 contributed to the settlement of the city. Coal was mined for nearly 100 years from 1854. The railroads arrived in the 1890s and the foothills around Bellingham were cleared to provide timber during the rebuilding of San Francisco following the 1906 earthquake. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bellingham,_Washington . Seattle is the capital city of the State of Washington approximately 100 miles (161 km) south of the Canadian border and one of the largest seaports in the USA. In the early days, logging was the major industry which in turn led to shipbuilding; it became one of the gateways to Alaska during the Klondike gold rush (1896-1899). Most recently Boeing Aircraft construction is based here, as are Amazon.com, Microsoft and T-Mobile. Jimi Hendrix was born here in 1942. Native Americans have lived in and around this area for more than 4,000 years. As was and remains a significant problem, the local people resented the Chinese immigrants which contributed to ethnic tensions which in turn led to the anti Chinese riots of 1885-6. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seattle Space Needle An observation tower built for the 1962 World Fair. At 605 ft (184 m) high and 138 ft (42 m) wide. It attracts about 20,000 visitors each day. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space_Needle http://www.spaceneedle.com Seattle's Space Needle Dale Chihuly born September 20th 1941; an American glass sculptor whose work is considered unique in the world of large scale glass sculptures. Dale Chihuly’s education was anything but conventional and included periods studying interior design and weaving before experimenting with glass blowing in the middle ’60s. A Fulbright Scholarship enabled him to visit the glass works of Murano, Venice. Later he visited other glass works in Europe. He co-founded the Pilchuck Glass School in 1971. Whilst travelling in the UK he was involved in a very serious road traffic accident in which he lost his left eye. Subsequently he dislocated his shoulder in a surfing accident. As a result of ​ 11 these traumas he was not able to blow glass so employed others to do the active blowing while he was able to supervise the creation of the sculpture. A remarkable craftsman artist creating unique works. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dale_Chihuly http://www.chihulygardenandglass.com Chihuly Garden & Glass Museum, Seattle, WA / ASMR Virtual Tour / Things to see in Seattle Port Townsend, Washingto n to be found on the Olympic Peninsula; famous for the many Victorian buildings in the historic quarter. It is a good safe harbour and was referred to as the ‘City of Dreams’. Currently very important for the colony of artists, the associated galleries and many wooden boat festivals. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Port_Townsend,_Washington Gig Harbour, Washington gateway to the Olympic Peninsula. Originally joined to the mainland by the first Tacoma Bridge which famously collapsed in 1940. Isolated from the mainland the residents relied on a ferry to Tacoma. Once the second bridge was open Gig Harbour became a suburb of Tacoma. Another bridge was constructed in 2008 which has further improved access. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gig_Harbor,_Washington Tacoma, Washington sited in an area historically inhabited by Native Americans for many thousands of years. It was selected as the Terminus for the Northern Pacific Railways at the end of the 19th century. As we have heard previously the Europeans took against the Chinese and several hundred Chinese were forced onto a train to Portland, Oregon 03.11.1885. The Klondike Gold Rush of 1898 saw Tacoma eclipsed by the boom of Seattle. Between 1915 and 1922 Tacoma became a major destination for automobile racing. Tacoma Narrows Bridge (1940) The first bridge collapsed in 1940 shortly after it was opened. Following construction it was the third longest suspension bridge in the world. The original bridge collapse is very important in the science of bridge building for the idea of mechanical resonance evolved into aerodynamics-aeroelastic flutter which is applied to the design of new suspension bridges. The replacement was built in 1950, the entry of America into WWII delaying reconstruction. ​ 12 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tacoma,_Washington https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tacoma_Narrows_Bridge_(1940) Tacoma Narrows Bridge Collapse "Gallopin' Gertie" Chehalis, Washington The Rose City In the language of the Chehalis Native Americans it means ‘shifting sands’. Initially, in modern times a settlement arose around the Northern Pacific Railroad in 1873. Soon logging began in the nearby forests. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Chehalis,_Washington&oldid=1034864280 The LeMay - America’s Car Museum Opened in June 2012 to house part of the world’s largest car collection belonging to Harold LeMay. He had owned and run a very successful local refuse company. Following his death in November 2000 the city of Tacoma donated 10 acres (4.0 ha) of land. His widow donated $15 million to the museum. In 1997 The Guinness Book of Records listed Harold Le May’s car collection as the largest private collection in the world; numbering in excess of 3,000 vehicles. The Museum houses 350 vehicles. Renee Crist is the Curator of Collections at the LeMay. Michael Craft is the Official Photographer for LeMay. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/America%27s_Car_Museum http://www.lemaymuseum.org LeMay Auto Museum - America's Auto Museum https://youtu.be/fsccltsck7s Astoria, Oregon was the first American settlement west of the Rockies and hence is the oldest city in Oregon, founded in 1811. Named after the entrepreneur, investor and trader in the American Fur Company, John Astor. He had founded Fort Astoria in his attempt to ensure his monopoly in the fur trade. It is joined to Washington State by the Astoria Megler Bridge, the longest bridge of this type in North America; a steel cantilever through truss bridge that crosses the Columbia River. It is 21,474 ft (4.067 mi, 6.545 km) long and carries one lane of traffic in each direction. Opened in 1966. ​ 13 There are no walkways; but once each year, usually in October, one lane of the bridge is closed to permit runners and walkers to cross from the Washington to the Oregon side. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Astoria,_Oregon Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum, McMinnville, Oregon . Most famously is the home of the Hughes H4 Hercules; ‘Spruce Goose’. The museum was originally the idea of Capt. Michael King Smith, the son of the founder of Evergreen International Aviation. Originally a small collection of vintage aircraft. In 1990 the Disney Corporation announced the closure of the Long Beach site that housed ‘Spruce Goose’. The Evergreen Museum won the bid to house ‘Spruce Goose’. Between 1993 and 2001 volunteers undertook a detailed restoration. The refurbished plane and Museum opened to the public in June 2001. The Space Museum opened in 2008. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evergreen_Aviation_%26_Space_Museum A Walk Through the "Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum" Hughes H4 Hercules ‘Spruce Goose’ During WWII, U boat raids in the Atlantic were causing heavy losses of shipping, many of which were carrying war supplies to the Allies in Europe and beyond. In 1942 the US War Department issued a specification for an aircraft capable of flying the Atlantic with a large payload. No strategic materials were available for the construction of the plane. The design was the brainchild of Howard Hughes and Henry Kaiser (a leading Liberty ship builder and an expert in the use of plywood in construction). Originally described as the HK 1 reflecting the collaboration between the two men, the specification required the building of three aircraft in two years. Because there was no aluminium available the plane was constructed largely of birch ply. It was to be capable of carrying 150,000 lb (68039 kg): 750 fully equipped troops, or two 30 ton Sherman tanks. Development was extremely slow, in part due to Howard Hughes’ obsession with perfection and his attempts to acquire strategic materials. After 16 months Kaiser withdrew from the project. Hughes renegotiated the contract so that only one plane was to be built. Now designated Hughes H 4, progress was slow. The ‘Duramold’ process (a plywood and resin process of cold moulding plywood) was used. The specialised veneer was made by Roddis Manufacturing. Due to the slow rate of progress; Howard Hughes was accused of misusing Government money. During the court hearing Hughes stated that the plane was extremely complex, larger ​ 14 than any other aeroplane (until 2019), complicated in the use of plywood and the requirement to develop hydraulics for surface controls. the list went on… During a break in the court hearing Hughes returned to California to run the taxiing tests. Initially there were 36 people on board. Four press reporters left after the first two runs to file their reports. During the final run the plane became airborne at 135 mph (217 kph), flew at 70 ft (21 m) for about 1 mile (1.6 km). Thus Hughes exposed his detractors; his masterpiece flew, he had not misused Government funds. Spruce Goose never flew again. It was stored in an air conditioned hanger with a staff of 300 to maintain it in ‘flying’ condition. This was reduced to 50 in 1962 and ceased completely at Hughes’ death in 1976. The Aero Club of Southern California acquired Spruce Goose in 1980. The Walt Disney Company acquired the plane in 1988 parting with it in 1990 when it became part of the Evergreen Aviation Museum. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hughes_H-4_Hercules SPRUCE GOOSE Detailed tour through the Spruce Goose! - the Hughes H-4 Hercules. Howard Hughes; 24.12.1905 to 05.04.1976 An American business tycoon, investor, aviator, aerospace engineer, inventor, filmmaker and philanthropist. His father had invented the two-headed oil drill bit (the Sharp-Hughes Rock Bit) that revolutionised oil exploration in the early part of the 20th century. The bits were leased and remained the property of the Hughes Tool Company. Howard was the only child and perhaps a child prodigy; he built Houston’s first wireless radio transmitter at age 11. At 12 an article in the local newspaper reported that Howard had built a motorised bicycle. He had his first flying lesson at 14. His mother died as a complication of an ectopic pregnancy in 1922. His father died of a heart attack in 1924. Howard received 75% of his father’s estate. He was declared an emancipated minor on his 19th birthday. In his will, written following his 19th birthday, he included the creation of a medical research laboratory. ​ 15 A very enthusiastic golfer, he had a handicap of three during most of his twenties. He married Ella Rice on 05-06-1925. They moved to Los Angeles so that Howard could start a career in the film industry. The first two films are considered successful; indeed he won the first Academy Award for the Best Director of a comedy picture. Further films followed that were also nominated for Academy Awards. Perhaps one of his most famous films was ‘Hells Angels’, about World War l in the air. Originally filmed as a silent film; Howard decided to re-record much of the film with sound between 1927 and 1930. Parts were also colourised. Controversial, it was a very high grossing film for the time. However the investment was never fully recovered. Many other films were produced in subsequent years including ‘Scarface’ 1932, ‘The Outlaw’ 1943. For a while he was involved with RKO; Pictures, Studios, Theatres, and Radio Network. Another significant source of income for the Hughes Empire were the investments in real estate. He amassed significant undeveloped land around Las Vegas. Howard’s enthusiasm for flying, aeroplanes, record breaking, airlines, aerospace and the defence industry resulted in many awards, prizes and significant advances in design and construction. There was a near death accident whilst flying the XF 11 following the failure of the counter rotating propeller in July 1946. Recovery took many months; the doctors considered it a miracle whilst Howard put it down to the consumption of freshly squeezed orange juice. Biography Documentary HD - Howard Hughes The Man and the Madness ‘Spruce Goose’ see above. Post-war Hughes extended Hughes Aircraft and formed Hughes Aerospace Group, the Hughes Space and Communication Group and the Hughes Space Systems Division. Over the subsequent years these groups changed their names and roles. Hughes quietly purchased a majority share in Trans World Airlines (TWA) during 1939. Having worked with Lockheed during his 1938 round the world record breaking flight he requested that the Company secretly design and build what we now know as the Constellation. TWA bought the first 40 off the production line. Due to various wranglings Hughes was forced to sell his holdings in TWA by a court ruling in 1966. ​ 16 In 1970 he purchased Air West, which he renamed Hughes Air West. This was acquired by and merged with Republic Airlines which in turn was acquired by Northwest Airlines and in turn merged into Delta Airlines. Hughes’ marriage to Ella failed when she filed for divorce in 1929. He infamously dated many famous women including Billie Dove, Bette Davis, Ava Gardener, Olivia de Haviland, Katherine Hepburn, Ginger Rogers and Gene Tierney. He proposed to Joan Fontaine several times. In January 1957 he married Jean Peters. Howard Hughes Medical Institute was founded in 1953 and became an area of conflict between Hughes and the Internal Revenue Service, which he eventually won. Bizarrely here is a link between Howard Hughes, Richard Nixon and the Watergate Affair. Sadly Howard’s life ended in a certain amount of mystery associated with his Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, physical decline, drug misuse, becoming a recluse and death. A remarkable life of a remarkable man. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Howard_Hughes Florence, Oregon Originally settled by the Native Americans; Siuslaw tribe. Currently it is a tourist destination. It has hosted the Rhododendron Festival annually since 1908. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Florence,_Oregon Langlois, Oregon A town straddling Highway 101, once famous for its Blue Cheese, until the factory burnt down in the 1950s. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Langlois,_Oregon&oldid=1028904379 Brookings, Oregon Founded in 1908; originally the headquarters of the Brookings Lumber and Box Company. In 1942, it was bombed by a Japanese float plane, the first such event in the USA. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Brookings,_Oregon&oldid=1017510036 Eureka, California The Redwood Empire region of California. Located on the Humboldt Bay and at the northern end of the San Andreas Fault. Originally settled by the Wiyot people, skilled in their basket making and fishing management. A local settler-led fight resulted in the massacre of the Native Americans. Following on from the California Gold Rush, Eureka became the ideal location for a deep port. Lumber became the major industry, becoming the Timber Capital of California. ​ 17 There remain many of the Victorian houses built during the good times. Fishing, including oysters, are a large source of employment and income. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Eureka,_California&oldid=1032965575 Fort Bragg, California Now largely a tourist destination it was considered, in 1855, as a reservation for Native Americans. This was discontinued in 1866 and the area opened up for settlement in 1869. As is so often found, lumber was the major industry. The 1906 earthquake resulted in much damage; particularly to brick built housing. Fires threatened the city and the sawmills. But the requirement for timber to repair both the city and San Francisco increased the prosperity of the region. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Fort_Bragg,_California&oldid=1028770202 The Avenue of the Giants. Northern California State Route 254 where the Giant Redwoods overshadow the Highway. Sequoia sempervirens; coast redwood, California Redwood. Evergreen, long lived (1,200-1,800 years or more), they are perhaps the oldest living things on Earth. The tallest - 379 ft (115.5m) with a girth of 29.2 ft (8.9m) Here are found a number of ‘Drive Through Trees’. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Avenue_of_the_Giants&oldid=1032812524 Avenue of the Giants: One of California's Best Drives Cloverdale, California An early stagecoach stop, then called Markleville. Renamed at the time of the railroad’s arrival in 1872. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Cloverdale,_California&oldid=1032184018 Napa, California. A Native American settlement until the arrival of the Spanish settlers in 1823. Tensions worsened in the 1850s when the settlers initiated a war against the Native Americans forcing them to leave the area. The California Gold Rush increased the prosperity of the town and provided employment for disillusioned miners. A Silver Rush in 1858 and quicksilver mines further increased the local wealth. Wine production started in and around Napa in the 1850s https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Napa,_California&oldid=1032985686 ​ 18 Glen Ellen, California The site of a significant vineyard in the 1850s, its notoriety increased with the arrival of Jack London (author) in 1909 until his death in 1916. Many of his books mention features of the locality. It is now called the Jack London State Historic Park. Many fine dining restaurants are housed here. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Glen_Ellen,_California&oldid=1025003568 Santa Cruz, California Native Americans, the Ohlone people and their predecessors had occupied the region for many years. Later a Spanish settlement founded 1791; it is now largely a beach resort community. Initially under independent Mexico in the 1820s, settlement increased in the 1840s with the opening of the California Trail. In 1848, following the Mexican American War, California became part of the USA. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Santa_Cruz,_California&oldid=1028637509 The Golden Gate Bridge Joining Marin County, in the north, with the City of San Francisco, it is one of the most spectacular suspension bridges in the world. At the time of construction in 1937, it was the longest (4.200 ft (1280 m)) and tallest (746 ft (227)) bridge in the world. Originally conceived as early as 1916, there were many opponents to the project including the Department of War, the US Navy and the Southern Pacific Railway. Many of the people contributing to the design and construction reflect the requirement for expertise in the creation of the structure and include Joseph Strauss, Irving Morrow, Charles Ellis and Leon Moiseiff. Construction started in 1933, cost in excess of $35 million and it was opened in May 1937. It was necessary to improve the torsional rigidity during 1953/4. The deck was replaced and lightened between 1982-86. Currently painted using a hue called ‘International Orange’; the 38 painters use zinc silicate primer and acrylic topcoats. It is the most used suicide site in the world. A project to place safety nets in an attempt to reduce the deaths was started in April 2017 and is expected to be finished in 2023. A side effect of this work is a loud hum audible on both sides of the river when a strong wind is from the west. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Golden_Gate_Bridge&oldid=1032717254 The Golden Gate: Building an Impossible Bridge ​ 19 San Francisco, California The most densely populated city in California and second only in the USA after New York. Native Americans inhabited the region before the arrival of the Spanish from the south. Originally founded in 1776, enhanced by the California Gold Rush of 1849 and largely destroyed by the 1906 earthquake and fires. The City responded and was rapidly rebuilt, hosting the Panama Pacific International Exposition in 1915. Returning service personnel, liberalising attitudes, Hippies, the Sexual Revolution, the Peace Movement, the Summer of Love, Gay Rights have all helped to ensure San Francisco's popularity as a place in which to live or visit. There are numerous attractions including the Golden Gate, Alcatraz, cable cars, ChinaTown and the Headquarters of many ‘Household Names’ international companies. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=San_Francisco&oldid=1034776770 Los Angeles, California The ‘City of Angels’, LA. The second largest city in the USA after New York and the largest city in California. Originally home to the Chumash and Tongva Native Americans it was claimed by the Spanish in 1542. Following the separation from Spain in 1821 it became part of Mexico. In 1848, at the end of the Mexican War of Independence it became part of the USA. Oil was discovered in 1892. Hollywood merged into LA in 1910 and thus became the world centre of the film industry. The city hosted the Olympic Games in 1932 and 1984. During WWII more aircraft were produced in LA than in all the years since the first flight by the Wright Brothers combined. Race relations have erupted into riots on a number of occasions. The Northridge Earthquake, 6.7 on the Richter scale, caused severe damage in 1994. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Los_Angeles&oldid=1034828830 Burbank, California ‘The Media Capital of the World’. Home to The Walt Disney Company, Warner Bros. Entertainment, Warner Music Group, Nickelodeon, NBC, Insomniac Games. Dr Burbank, a dentist, bought the land in the form of two ranches in 1867. He became a very successful sheep raiser, giving up the practice of dentistry. He also invested heavily in real estate in LA. ​ 20 The arrival of the railways and banking further enhanced values as did the arrival of internationally famous, and rich, investors. In 1887 manufacturing of furniture needed the construction of the first factory. Later the Moreland Motor Truck Company arrived and the tradition of manufacturing took hold in Burbank. Subsequently Lockheed Aircraft Company took over the Moreland factory for the construction of aircraft during WWII. Early flyers; Amelia Earhart, Wiley Post and Howard Hughes flew out of the Union Air Terminal. By 1935 it was ranked as the third largest air terminal in the USA. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Burbank,_California&oldid=1034122974 Warner Bros., Burbank, California There were four Warner brothers; Harry, Albert, Sam and Jack who had emigrated with their family from Poland into North America. Started with a film projector in 1903 upon which they showed silent films in their first theatre, the Cascade, New Castle in Pennsylvania. In 1918 they opened the Warner Bros Studios on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood. Warner Bros Pictures Inc in 1923. Initially not a first line studio, they were responsible for a number of significant early films; most notably Rin Tin Tin. Many other significant films were produced, including Casablanca (1942). Early adoption of synchronised sound and later colour, enhanced their position in the industry. A cartoon unit had its roots here, from the early 1930s, in the Harman and Ising studio; they were two Disney alumni responsible for Looney Tunes and many other cartoon heroes. Throughout the history of the studio there were periods of boom and bust. Financial issues continue to plague the company even to today. In 1949 Harry Warner decided to move into television and records. There are so many iterations of the companies that were/are part of the Warner name tag that the enthusiast will seek this information elsewhere. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.phptitle=Warner_Bros._Studios,_Burbank&oldid=1027817665 Jay Leno Born 28.04.1950 an American comedian, actor, writer, producer, voice actor, television host and transport enthusiast. Born of a Scottish mother and an Italian father grew up in Ballardvale, Massachusetts. Initially graduating as a Speech Therapist before setting up a comedy club in 1973. ​ 21 There followed a distinguished career as a television personality. Of particular relevance to the story is the Vehicle Collection of approximately 300 vehicles at the time of writing. In association with the collection is the website ‘Jay Leno’s Garage’. As can be seen from the YouTube videos the collection is housed in a vast series of workshops with remarkable facilities and very talented craftspeople. Simply Awesome! https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Jay_Leno&oldid=1032367358 Welcome to Jay Leno's Garage! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fOIrB1fwVPc Nate Jones Tyres; ‘Cowboy Tires’ Long Beach Nate Jones started in the tyre trade in the 1960s with a partner and mentor Mel Hamer. Working out of a single bay at Mel Hamer’s workshop, he became the Michelin distributor for western US for 25 yrs. In 1966, attracted by the thrill of motor sport, he loaded up the truck with his tyre gear and drove to Riverside International Raceway. There he met and talked with John Surtees who was running a Lola T70. Nate was allowed to do his magic. Surtees went out to assess any improvement. On returning to the pits Nate was invited to sit alongside John for a chat. Suitably terrified, having never previously sat in, let alone been driven in a race car, he said ‘I knew I was a dead man when Surtees changed into top gear on the back straight.’ On returning to the pits ‘You’re hired!’ was all that John said on removing his helmet. The rest of the season was spent travelling with the Surtees team across North America as they won the Can Am championship. Nate’s magic helped to reduce lap times by as much as 0.75 secs/lap. In the 1970s Long Beach was a very ‘run down on its luck’ harbour community; inspired by the glamour of the Monaco Grand Prix, several investors with Nate proposed the development of the Long Beach Grand Prix. First run in 1975 as a Formula 5000 race. In subsequent years Formula 1, CART/Indy/Champ races have used the very demanding and fast circuit. During the 1980s Nate became aware that the young people who he was employing had poor problem solving skills and an aversion to getting their hands dirty. ‘Your hands are your brain; just not as mushy.’ In 1991 Nate established Kids Motorsports Education (KME). A non profit organisation giving hands-on experience to children and young adults. Alongside this the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) were having a very similar experience with the graduate students. Nate and KME (with those responsible for hiring graduates) discussed matters and learnt that ​ 22 it’s very important to be aware of childhood activities and involvement in projects requiring problem solving. Continuing with his involvement in the Long Beach Grand Prix and KME he is as enthusiastic as ever for life and living. San Diego, California The Birthplace of California. The economy is based on tourism, trade, research/manufacturing in biotechnology. It is now the base of the largest naval fleet in the World. Initially inhabited by Native Americans; the San Dieguito and La Jolla people. Claimed by the Spanish Empire in 1542. The State of California was admitted to the US in 1850, following the Mexican American War. In the early 20th Century, the city hosted two World Fairs: 1915 and 1935 in Balboa Park. Significant during WWII, the City became a major hub in military and defence activity. The American Tuna fishing fleet and tuna canning industry were based in the City from 1911-1980s. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=San_Diego&oldid=1034832806 Tijuana, Baja California Sur Tijuana apparently means Aunt Jane in Spanish. But it is mostly accepted that the name derives from the name of a ranch, Rancho Tia Juana founded in 1829. The region was explored by the Spanish as early as 1542. Important during the ‘mission era’ the region became part of the US following the Mexican American War (1848). During the Prohibition era Tijuana became an important destination for the drinkers and gamblers. The San Diego-Tijuana trans-border agglomeration is one of the busiest and the most dangerous border crossings in the World. Tijuana is the medical devices manufacturing capital of North America. About 300,000 tourists visit the city each day. About 2.5 million medical visitors each year. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Tijuana&oldid=1033939904 Mexico Mexico is the Nahuatl term for the heartland of the Aztec Empire. It might mean ‘Place at the Centre of the Moon’. Settled since at least 8,000 BCE the bean, the tomato and maize were domesticated here resulting in hunter gatherers becoming sedentary agricultural villagers from about 5,000 BCE In pre-Columbian Mexico many Mesoamerican cultures evolved into the advanced civilisations including the Olmec, the Toltec, the Teotihuacan, the Zapotec, the Maya and the Aztecs before ​ 23 the region was conquered by the Spanish (1521). Mexico as a territory was recognised from 1821 following the defeat of the Spanish. There followed the Pastry War (1838-40), the Mexican American War (1848), the FrancoMexican War (1861-67), a civil war, two empires and a domestic dictatorship which led to the Mexican Revolution (1910). A constitution was promulgated in 1917. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Mexico&oldid=1035180310 Ensenada, Baja California Sur. ‘The Cinderella of the Pacific’ Originally home to the Yuman Natives, the Spanish arrived in the 16th century. A major effect upon the development of Ensenada was prohibition in the US (1920-1933). One of the first settlements founded in the Californias, a cruise ship destination, aerospace centre, commercial fishing port, a navy base, an army base, a military airport, vineyards, and an astronomical observatory. Whale watching is becoming a major tourist attraction. The city hosts the Baja 1000 and the 500 each year (off road races). https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Ensenada,_Baja_California&oldid=1033691613 Guerrero Negro, Baja California Sur Named after the Black Warrior, an American whaling ship that grounded near here in the 1850s. A significant place for viewing grey whales calving during February each year. Founded as recently as 1957 as the base for a salt works Exportadora de Sal which has become the greatest salt mine in the world. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Guerrero_Negro&oldid=1025131296 Santa Rosalia, Baja California Sur Founded by the French in 1884 as the base for copper mining. The Iglesia de Santa Bárbara (1884) has long been considered to have been designed by Gustave Eiffel (see below as this is now disputed); it was exhibited in the 1889 Exposition Universelle of Paris for which the Eiffel Tower was built. En route to a new home in Africa, it was found disassembled in Belgium by Charles Laforgue of the mining company. He bought it in 1894 and had it assembled in the town (1897). It is now attributed to Bibiano Duclos (1853-1925). https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Santa_Rosal%C3%ADa,_Baja_California_Sur&oldid=1016378915 ​ 24 Loreto, Baja California Sur The first Spanish settlement (1697) in Baja California founded by Jesuit missionaries, the site of a fresh water spring. The Jesuits were expelled in 1767 and it was given to the Franciscans who in turn were ordered to hand it over to the Dominicans. The expulsions resulted from jealousy by rivals and royal intrigue. The town is a popular winter stop over for the ‘Snow Birds’ of North America. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Loreto,_Baja_California_Sur&oldid=1030776913 La Paz, Baja California Sur Inhabited by neolithic hunter gatherers at least 10,000 years ago as evidenced by rock paintings to be found throughout Baja California. Cortes arrived nearby in 1535; his attempts at a settlement failed due to logistical challenges. Now a frequently visited tourist centre. There is a ferry across to Mazatlan on the mainland. Additionally silver mining, agriculture, fishing and pearls are the main industries. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Loreto,_Baja_California_Sur&oldid=1030776913 Mazatlan, Mexico The Nahuatl word for ‘place of deer’. Founded by the Spanish in 1531. A large number of German immigrants arrived during the 19th century. They imported equipment for mining and brewing. They have influenced many local cultural developments. Today it is the destination of the ferry from the Baja California Sur. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Mazatl%C3%A1n&oldid=1034473161 Tepic, Mexico The extinct Sanganguey volcano and its crater lake are clearly visible from the city. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Tepic&oldid=1033990935 Tequila, Jalisco, Mexico In the Nahuatl language ‘Place of Tribute’ There are shaft tombs dating from the 400-300 BCE. The Spanish settled here in 1530. The local people had been making a fermented drink (mezcal/pulque) from the blue agave plant. The Spanish distilled this drink and thus was born the Tequila we know today. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Tequila,_Jalisco&oldid=1015171306 Tequila (The drink) The blue agave plant grown in the local area has a flavour specific to the soil type and the altitude. The distilled product, Tequila, from the fermented mescal has 38-40% alcohol but can also be produced to between 31-55% alcohol. ​ 25 The husbandry of the blue agave plants is largely manual, relying on family-held traditions and wisdom. Details of the time of harvesting profoundly affect the amount of carbohydrate released. The harvested plants (pina) are taken to a cook house where they are baked in ovens to allow the complex fructoses to break down into simple fructoses. The residue of the ‘pinas’ are mashed under a heavy stone to extract the juice. The fibre is used as compost, animal feed, burnt as a fuel or processed into paper. The agave juice is allowed to ferment for several days before distillation; once for ‘ordinario’ and a second time for a clear ‘silver’ tequila. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Tequila&oldid=1033607024 Ajijic, Mexico ‘Place of Water’ or ‘place where water bubbles up’ in classical Nahuatl. Is located 5046 ft (1538 m) above sea level on the north shore of Lake Chapala. Inhabited by nomadic native tribes before the arrival of the Spanish. Popular with artists and writers since the late 19th century; it’s now very popular with Snow Birds from North America. A very colourful picturesque town remembering its hippy past. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Ajijic&oldid=1025248656 Morelia, Mexico Evidence of human occupation since the 7th century showing Teotihuacan cultural influences. Previously the city of Valladolid, becoming Morelia after the Mexican War of Independence (1810-1821) in honour of Jose Maria Morelos. The Spanish built the cathedral and an aqueduct during the 17th century. A previous aqueduct had been built as early as 1549. The system was completely rebuilt in 1785 remaining in use until 1910. Declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1991 for its well preserved colonial buildings and historic centre. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Morelia&oldid=1034970183 Toluca, Mexico . When named by the Matlatzincas it was called Nepintahihui; ‘land of corn’. Tollocan became the name when the Aztecs conquered the area and renamed it in 1473. The Spanish called it Toluca. Famous as a producer of smoked and cured meats especially chorizo. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Toluca&oldid=1024732656 ​ 26 Mexico City One of two capital cities in the Americas founded by Native Americans (the other is Quito). Sited at 7349 ft (2240 m). The largest metropolitan area in the Western Hemisphere. One of the most important financial centres in the Americas. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Mexico_City&oldid=1034625251 Puebla, Mexico Situated in the Trans Mexican volcanic belt; indeed Popocatepetl is 25 miles (40 km) east. A colonial times planned city, built in an area which means ‘where serpents change their skins’. Named a World Heritage Site in 1987. Famous for mole poblano, chiles en nogada and Talavera pottery. Now a largely industrial city. Volkswagen has their largest factory outside Europe here. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Puebla_(city)&oldid=1032236049 Oaxaca, Mexico ‘la Verde Antequera’ the green AntequeraIn the foothills of the Sierra Madre. The city relies on tourism largelybecause of the colonial era buildings. Additionally there are nearby archeological sites of the Zapotec and Mixtec cultures. There are also cave paintings that suggest ‘human habitation’ for perhaps 80,000 years. It was featured as a ‘Control’ in the Carrera PanAmerica 1950-54. This road race was initiated to celebrate the opening of the Pan American Highway in 1950. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Oaxaca_City&oldid=1028632722 Zapotec Civilisation From the Nahuatl meaning ‘inhabitants of the place of sapote’. An indigenous native population that can be traced back at least 2,500 years. Initially three separate tribes/communities co-existed with a 50 sq. mi. (80 sq. km) ‘no man’s land’ buffer zone. The construction/development of Monte Alba permitted the rural communities to find safety within the town. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Zapotec_civilization&oldid=1031506456 The Zapotecs (Zapotec Civilization of Ancient Mexico) Monte Alban is a World Heritage Site. There have been native inhabitants in the area for millennia. Currently estimated to be from 500 BCE to 1521 CE. A pre Hispanic, politically important, city of the Zapotec who resided here from 800-500 BCE. The city sits atop an artificially levelled ridge which features several hundred terraces. ​ 27 First excavated in 1902 but it was not until 1931 that scientific excavations were undertaken by Alfonso Caso, a Mexican archaeologist. The Main Plaza is 300m x 200m, the buildings were largely arranged around the periphery. Adjacent is one of the two ‘ballcourts’. There is evidence that the Zapotecs had both writing and a ‘calendar’ https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Monte_Alb%C3%A1n&oldid=1027611697 Mitla The Nahuatl meaning; ‘the place of the dead’ or ‘underworld’. Occupied between 900 BCE until after the arrival of the Spanish in 1521. Second only to Monte Alba in archeological importance, but the most important of the Zapotec religious culture, near Oaxaca. The Mesoamerican belief was that death was the most significant moment of life after birth. So Mitla became the gateway between the world of the living and the dead. The unique feature of Mitla is the intricate mosaic fretwork and geometric designs that cover features of the tombs, panels, friezes and even complete walls. Small polished stones are arranged in these complex shapes without the use of mortar. The images depict mythological scenes and characters. The basic crops were maize, beans, squash and chilli peppers grown on terraces, which were dependent on constructed irrigation systems. In their attempts to enforce their Christian beliefs, the Spanish Church demanded the destruction of the Mitla religious sites. They then built upon the Zapotec structures to state their power over the pagan gods and the associated beliefs. The building materials were reused by the Spanish in the construction of the church and other structures. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Mitla&oldid=1012818417 The Monastery of Cuilapan, Oaxaca The Cuilapan de Guerrero Santiago Apóstol Dominican Monastery Church and architectural ruins is about 6 miles (10 km) outside Oaxaca. Construction started in the mid 16th century. Designed to be an impressive centre at which the natives might be encouraged to convert to Christianity. It is a vast series of buildings that were never completed as the native population reduced and it no longer had a purpose. Most remarkable of its numerous features is a relief carving of the crucifix upon which Jesus was crucified but with no body. The explanation being that the Spanish Church was trying to avoid the idea of human sacrifice when converting the native Indians. ​ 28 https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Monastery_of_Santiago_Ap%C3%B3stol,_Cuilapan_de_Guerrero&oldid=1006469447 Arbol del Tule: the Tree of Tule Listed on a UNESCO tentative list of World Heritage Sites. A Montezuma cypress or in Nahuatl ‘old man of the water’. Estimates for its age range from 1,200-3,000 years. It measures 116 ft high, with a circumference of 137.8 ft (42.0 m). Frequently called the ‘Tree of Life’ for it is considered possible to see the outlines of various wild animals in the gnarled trunk including jaguars and elephants. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=%C3%81rbol_del_Tule&oldid=1014859525 Sierra Madre del Sur A mountain range in southern Mexico; 620 miles (1000 km) in length. Stretches from Oaxaca to Tehuantepec. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Sierra_Madre_del_Sur&oldid=1024624269 Tehuantepec, Mexico The name is derived from Nahuatl, ‘wild animal hill’. A pre Hispanic town that was part of the important trade route into the centre of what is now Mexico. The city is still the centre of Zapotec culture; being well known for the wearing of traditional dress by the women. There is a statue of a traditionally dressed Zapotec woman at the entrance of the City. It has had the reputation for being a ‘matriarchal society’. The Mexican painter Frida Kahalo (1907-1954) adopted the Tehana traditional dress as a statement of solidarity with the native women. During the period when the Atlantic and Pacific were joined by a railway there was a boom period which ceased when the Panama Canal opened (1914). https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Tehuantepec&oldid=1027562795 Tapachula, Mexico From the Nahuatl, ‘between the waters’. This reflects the tendency to flooding. Originally founded by the Aztecs in the 13th century. Currently its significance is as the main border crossing point from Mexico into Guatemala. There is a significant Chinese population. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Tapachula&oldid=1025738458 Guatemala From the Nahuatl; ‘place of many trees’. Inhabited since before 18,000 BCE. Recent LIDAR investigations suggest that Guatemala was an area of significant settlement in the Mayan Empire. Historically part of the Mayan Civilisation, conquered by the Spanish during the 16th century, attaining independence in 1821 as part of the Federal Republic of Central America which itself ​ 29 was dissolved in 1841. Since then, political stability has not been a feature; as for many Central American countries. This was in part complicated by the United Fruit Company (UFCO) an American owned company granted many benefits by successive Governments since its inception in 1899, to the disadvantage of the native workers. They are responsible for the sobriquet “banana republic”. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guatemala Escuintla. Guatemala From the Nahuatl ‘abundance or place of dogs’. The city is the centre of the country’s industrialisation. Agriculture, farming and fishing produce sugar cane, tobacco, cattle and seafood. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Escuintla&oldid=1025128539 The Republic of El Salvador Controlled by numerous MesoAmerican nations before the arrival of the Spanish and its incorporation into the Viceroyalty of New Spain. Achieving independence from Spain in 1821; forcibly incorporated into the First Mexican Empire, joined the Federal Republic of Central America (1823-1841), with Honduras and Nicaragua: the Greater Republic of Central America (1895-1898). There followed periods of great political and economic instability. Currently the service sector provides more than half of GDP followed by the industrial sector and agriculture. There is a vast range of biodiversity as for many countries in the region. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=El_Salvador&oldid=1034957581 Mizata Resort, El Salvador www.visitmizata.com The Republic of Honduras In Spanish, honduras means ‘depths’. Christopher Columbus had landed near the modern town of Trujillo in 1502. Controlled by many MesoAmerican nations before the arrival of the Spanish and its incorporation into the Viceroyalty of New Spain. Achieved independence from Spain in 1821; forcibly incorporated into the First Mexican Empire, joined the Federal Republic of Central America (1823 -1841), with Honduras and Nicaragua - the Greater Republic of Central America (1895 -1898). There followed periods of great political and economic instability. The economy is largely agricultural. The natural resources include minerals, coffee, tropical fruit and sugar cane. ​ 30 There is a vast range of biodiversity as for many countries in the region. Whilst categorised by the World Bank as a low middle income nation, more than 50% live below the poverty line. www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Honduras Nacaome, Honduras In Nahuatl; ‘union of two races’. An old city founded by warring factions; weary of fighting decided to join forces and build a settlement. www.en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nacaome The Republic of Nicaragua Controlled by many MesoAmerican nations before the arrival of the Spanish and its incorporation into the Viceroyalty of New Spain. Achieving independence from Spain in 1821; forcibly incorporated into the First Mexican Empire, joined the Federal Republic of Central America (1823 -1841), with Honduras and Nicaragua - the Greater Republic of Central America (1895 -1898). There followed periods of great political and economic instability. The United States occupied the country from 1909 -1933. Whilst categorised by the World Bank as a low middle income nation, more than 50% live below the poverty line. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicaragua Esteli, Nicaragua The ‘Diamond of the Segovia’. Founded by the Spanish in 1685. It’s now the third largest city in the country. The surrounding land is ideal for growing tobacco used in cigars. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Esteli Granada, Nicaragua Named by the Spanish Conquistadors as the first European city in mainland America. A centre of commerce: gold, silver and timber. Tourism is a significant source of income. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Granada,_Nicaragua The Republic of Costa Rica The ‘Rich Coast’. Controlled by many MesoAmerican nations before the arrival of the Spanish and its incorporation into the Viceroyalty of New Spain. Achieved independence from Spain in 1821; forcibly incorporated into the First Mexican Empire, joined the Federal Republic of Central America (1823-1841), with Honduras and Nicaragua - the Greater Republic of Central America (1895-1898). ​ 31 Education is highly respected; most people speak English. The economy depends on the financial and corporate sectors, pharmaceuticals and ecotourism. The Army was abolished in 1949. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Costa_Rica Liberia, Costa Rica The ‘White City’. Controlled by many MesoAmerican nations before the arrival of the Spanish and its incorporation into the Viceroyalty of New Spain. Achieved independence from Spain in 1821; forcibly incorporated into the First Mexican Empire, joined the Federal Republic of Central America (1823-1841), with Honduras and Nicaragua - the Greater Republic of Central America (1895-1898). Originally founded as a hermitage on a strategically important location in 1769. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberia,_Costa_Rica Arenal Volcano National Park, Costa Rica A National Park containing at least two volcanos: Arenal (last erupted 1969) and Chato. Very important to birders with 850 species identified. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arenal_Volcano_National_Park Samasati Yoga Centre, Costa Rica https://www.samasati.com The Republic of Panama Inhabited by indigenous tribes before the arrival of the Spanish conquistadors. Along with the other countries of Central America it broke from Spain in 1821, joining the Republic of Gran Colombia which was dissolved in 1831. Panama and Nueva Granada became the Republic of Columbia. Panama, under the backing of the United States, separated from Colombia to facilitate the construction of the Panama Canal in 1903. The Canal was transferred to Panama, from the USA in 1999. Essentially a service sector economy; commerce, tourism and trading. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panama Changuinola, Panama https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Changuinola&oldid=1033935061 ​ 32 St Jose de David, Panama Founded in 1602. A centre for finance and agriculture; cattle and bananas. On the PanAmerican Highway, due south is the Pacific Ocean. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David,_Chiriqu%C3%AD Santiago de Veraguas, Panama Founded in the 17th century, (1621?) Financial services, agriculture, livestock. Adjacent to the Pan American Highway https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santiago_de_Veraguas Panama City, Panama Founded in 1519 by the Spanish conquistador Pedro Avila (Pedrarias Davila), it was the base from which the Spanish set out to explore and conquer the Inca empire in Peru. The Panama Railroad Company was founded 1847, a year before the California Gold Rush. It was not completed until 1855. Subsequently it became important during the Yukon Gold Rush 1896 as this was the most direct route from the east coast of North America to the Yukon (on the west coast). The construction of the Panama Canal revolutionised the control of malaria and yellow fever in the jungle through which the construction of the canal passed; to the benefit of the local population. The presence of Caribbean workers led to racial and social tensions. In the late 1970s Panama City became an International Financial Centre; subsequently a centre for money laundering which resulted in the US invading Panama to depose General Noriega in 1989. The control of the Canal passed to the country from the USA in 1999. The economy is based on financial services; banking, commerce and tourism. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panama_City The Panama Canal The American Society of Civil Engineering; Seven Wonders, Engineering Feats, Number 6. The proposal for a canal across the isthmus of Panama between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, was made by Vasco de Balboa in 1513. It was acknowledged that a canal would facilitate the transportation of bullion from Peru to Spain. The technical challenges were perceived as extreme and no early attempt was made until following the success of Ferdinand de Lesseps in constructing the Suez Canal (1859-1869). He was encouraged to set up a company to create a sea level canal (1881). It quickly became ​ 33 apparent that there would be the need for the construction of locks at each end. Gustave Eiffel was approached and became involved in the project. The challenges: technical difficulties, heavy personnel losses due to malaria and yellow fever, combined with financial/political corruption in France; the attempt was abandoned (1889). Eventually de Lesseps and Eiffel were charged in France with financial irregularities, found guilty and initially given a sentence of five years; this was later overturned. The USA was very interested in the construction of a canal for the strategic advantages to its Navy. There were challenges: the relationship of the USA and Columbia (of which current Panama was then a part); the conversion of the French plan for a sea level canal to one utilising locks at each end and the tropical diseases that had caused in excess of 22,000 deaths during the French effort. The mosquito as the vector of malaria and yellow fever was unknown at this time and the rediscovery of quinine was yet to occur. The Canal was opened in August 1914. The Americans handed over the Panama Canal to the country of Panama in 1999. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panama_Canal https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_Panama_Canal https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#inbox/FMfcgxwLsdLwjjDzljnbbkblKVXgRBrW?projector=1 Is The Panama Canal The World's Most Difficult Engineering Project? | Super Structures | Progress Ferdinand de Lesseps 1805-1894, a french diplomat. Responsible for the Suez Canal 1859-1869. Attempted to construct the Panama Canal 1881-1889 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ferdinand_de_Lesseps Fraud Of The Century. How The French Built The Panama Canal Gustave Eiffel 1832-1923, civil engineer Gasworks, Tacna , Peru (1873) Church of San Marcos, Arica, Chile (1875) Cathedral of San Pedro de Tacna , Peru (1875) Ornamental Fountain of the Three Graces, Moquegua , Peru (1877) Statue of Liberty , Liberty Island , New York City , United States (1886) Eiffel Tower , Paris, France (1889) Casa de Fierro , Iquitos , Perú (1892) ​ 34 Estación Central (railway station) Santiago , Chile , (1897) Iglesia de Santa Bárbara in Santa Rosalía , Baja California Sur , México (1897) Catedral de Santa María, Chiclayo , Peru (Late XX Century) Church in Coquimbo, Chile Fénix Theatre, Arequipa , Perú San Camilo Market, Arequipa , Peru Bolívar Bridge, at Arequipa , Peru Puente Ferroviario Banco de Arena Railway Bridge near Constitución, Chile Not proven Malleco Viaduct , Chile (1890) "Vuelta al Mundo", Córdoba, Argentina Watermill, Dolores, Córdoba, Argentina https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gustave_Eiffel 7 Greatest Architectural Achievements of Gustave Eiffel The Pan American Highway The Pan American Highway (PAH) (according to the Guinness Book of Records) is the longest ‘motor able’ road in the world. It starts in Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, in the north, ending at Puerto Montt/Quellon in Chile, in the south. There is a 70 miles (106 km) break through the Darien Gap; only passable with very specialised all terrain vehicles. The first conference regarding the construction was held on October 5, 1925. Mexico was the first country to complete its portion of the Highway in 1950. In fact the Highway is a very significant entity in the Latin American countries whereas in North America and Canada only the road numbers are listed. The Alaska Highway (and the Dalton Highway) are the Northern extensions of PAH. The Federal Highway Administration designated the whole Interstate Highway System as part of the PAH in the USA during 1966. In Central America the PAH has a very significant role in benefiting business and life in general in what is a very challenging road environment. The Darien Gap is a 70 mile (106 km) marshland. Numerous attempts have been made to drive a variety of vehicles through this very inhospitable terrain, some successful. A few conventional cars (Chevrolet Corvairs 1962 and bicycles in 1972) have succeeded. A number of attempts using specialist 4x4 vehicles have been more successfully achieved. It is regarded as an extremely dangerous place, best avoided except for the very brave or foolhardy. In South America there are two parts of PAH, one which follows the eastern side of the continent and the other that largely follows the western seaboard. Just south of Santiago in ​ 35 Chile one road continues directly south and the other heads east over the Andes continuing to the Atlantic coast before turning south to Punta Arenas. Of particular interest to the intrepid traveller about the PAH is the story ‘Adventure South, the Richardson Pan American Expedition ’ bySullivan C Richardso who, with Arnold Whitaker and Kenneth C Van Hee, set out from Detroit in November 1940 to drive to the southern border of Panama, enship the car into Colombia and drive to Punta Arenas. Plymouth and the Richardson Pan-American Expedition- Plymouth Owners Club. The Pan-American Highway: The Longest Road in the World Rough Road to Panama, 1940's Pan American Highway Journey - Charlie Dean Archives / Archival Footage The Republic of Ecuador (including the Galapagos Islands) Historically home to a number of Amerindian tribes that became incorporated into the Inca Empire during the 15th century. Colonised by the Spanish during the 16th century before achieving independence in 1820. It became a sovereign state in 1830 having separated from Gran Colombia. Dependent on commodities petroleum and agricultural products - it is the world’s largest exporter of bananas. The 2008 constitution recognised the enforceable rights of nature or ecosystem rights. A world first. The Galapagos Islands form part of Ecuador. Following a civil war involving Atahualpa and Huascar, the arrival of the Spanish, in force, resulted in the capture of Atahualpa who was promised release if he fulfilled his promise to fill a room with gold. However in spite of assurances he was assassinated by strangulation. Spread of European diseases decimated the Indian population. Quito became the administrative base for Spain and part of the Viceroyalty of Peru latterly the Viceroyalty of New Granada. There followed a period of very unsettled politics up to and including the present day. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ecuador https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atahualpa Galapagos Islands, Ecuador ‘The Island of Tortoises’ Discovered in recent times by the 4th Bishop of Panama in 1535. Occasionally home to pirates and later whalers/fur traders the latter contributing to the significant reduction of tortoises culled for their fat. ​ 36 The volcanic islands are situated about 560 miles (900 km) west of mainland Ecuador, straddling the equator in the Pacific Ocean. Their isolated position results in numerous endemic species. Charles Darwin studied them extensively during the second voyage of HMS Beagle. His observations contributed to his theory of evolution by natural selection as presented in ‘The Origin of Species’ (1859). The Islands became a National Park in 1959 which has led to the development of ‘managed tourism’. At about the same time an Environmental Protection policy was evolved and enacted. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gal%C3%A1pagos_Islands Spectacular Wildlife in the Galapagos Islands https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Beagle https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_voyage_of_HMS_Beagle https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_FitzRoy https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Darwin https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/On_the_Origin_of_Species Quito, Ecuador In Spanish, equator. Almost exactly upon the equator, it is the capital city of Ecuador, the most populous, and sits at 9350 ft (2,850 m). The centre of the old city is one of the largest, least changed and best preserved in all the Americas. There is archeological evidence of human habitation for more than 10,000 years associated with the extraction and export of obsidian (a volcanic glass) to the coastal region. An important settlement from pre-Inca times. Politics has almost always been somewhat volatile. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quito Guayaquil, Ecuador Founded in 1538 Frequented by pirates who attacked and sacked the city, it was regarded as an important Spanish shipyard. The City declared independence from Spain in 1820. There followed a long period of civil unrest. The economy is based on small businesses, agriculture and aquaculture. It is the largest commercial port in Ecuador. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guayaquil ​ 37 Cuenca, Ecuador ‘land as big as heaven’ Sitting at 8,400 ft (2,560 m) it is the capital city of the Azuay province. Inhabited for at least 10,000 years, home to the Canari, Incas and subsequently the Spanish. The home of the ‘Panama’ hats that are made here. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cuenca,_Ecuador https://www.ecuagenera.com/ Machala, Ecuador The Banana Capital of the World A largely agricultural economy based on bananas, coffee and cocoa https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Machala The Republic of Peru The Norte civilisation is one of the oldest in the Americas and one of the ‘five cradles of civilisations’ that became the Inca Empire. Conquered by the Spanish in the 16th century; Lima was the capital of the Viceroyalty. Peru proclaimed independence in 1821, completing the process in 1824. Until the ‘War of the Pacific’ 1879-1884, there had been a long period of stability. As for most of Central and South America, during the late 19th, 20th and 21st centuries there were many periods of armed territorial disputes, coups and social unrest. The economy depends on mining, manufacturing, agriculture and fishing with the development of telecommunications and biotechnology. Early agricultural based native societies developed techniques of terracing, irrigation and camelid husbandry. Whilst there were many important and significant native civilisations the Incas are, perhaps, the most pre-eminent. Their capital was Cuzco with the citadel of Machu Picchu being the best known example of their city structure. The prevalence of European diseases led to the decimation and collapse of the indigenous population together with their exploitation and socioeconomic changes by the Spanish. Mining for gold and silver became exceedingly important to the bullion of the Spanish Empire at least until the 18th century. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peru Zorritos, Peru Historically the favourite beach resort of the Tumbes aristocracy. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zorritos 38 Piura, Peru Quechua; pirhua; ‘abundance’ Settled by Amerindian for many centuries and the third Spanish city in South America, the first in Peru. An important tourist destination. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Piura Chiclayo, Peru ‘The Heroic City’ Settled by the Amerindians; civilisations that were skilled in hydraulic engineering to facilitate agriculture. Copper features in their artistic creations, tools and weapons. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chiclayo Trujillo, Peru ‘The City of Everlasting Spring’. ‘The Capital of Culture of Peru’. A significant settlement of Amerindians. Chan Chan is the largest adobe city in the ancient world, the Temples of the Sun and Moon. The largest adobe pyramid in Peru. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trujillo,_Peru Huarmey, Peru A relatively newly founded city adjacent to the Pan American Highway. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Huarmey Lima, Peru The capital and largest city of Peru. Originally the capital and most important city of the Viceroyalty of Peru under the Spanish. The home of the National University of San Marcos founded in 1551; the oldest university in the Americas. The city is affected occasionally by severe earthquakes. Currently the country’s industrial and financial centre. Products include textiles, clothing and food. Chemicals, fish, leather and oil products are processed and manufactured. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lima Paracas, Peru A small tourist port town from which tours may be taken to the islands which had been the source of guano (bird droppings) an important source of nitrogen, phosphate and potassium in agriculture until the discovery of synthetic fertilisers. Indeed the Gibbs family, Tyntesfield, Bristol (now a National Trust property) made their fortune from importing the guano from the islands during the middle of the 19th century. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paracas_(municipality) https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Antony_Gibbs_%26_Sons&oldid=1033039152 Nazca, Peru The name is derived from the Nazca culture, which flourished in the area between 100 BC and 800 AD. The culture is credited with the construction of the Nazca lines ​ 39 and underground aqueducts which are still in use today. The original aqueducts may have originated in previous cultures. A significant earthquake in 1996 resulted in severe damage to the city, which is now largely rebuilt. The discovery of gold deposits, mined by a Canadian company, on displaced Native Indian lands has caused an ongoing dispute about land rights. During the Spanish colonial period the city was renowned for viticulture - wine and a type of grape brandy known as pisco or nasca. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nazca The Nazca Lines very large geoglyphs made in the surface of the Nazca desert covering 19 sq mi (50 sq km) by removing the top 4-6” (10-15 cm) iron oxide cover revealing a paler clay subsoil. Easily visible from the air or from the higher hills. Reported by Spanish chroniclers but not investigated until Peruvian pilots reported on the extent and wide ranging features. The forms include geometric patterns and zoomorphic designs. Constructed between 500 BC and 500 AD their purpose continues to generate many theories. These have included construction by aliens, astronomical indicators, surface maps of aquifers to a more realistic religious or spiritual significance. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nazca_Lines Nazca Culture: Reading Between the Lines Chala, Peru Lying on the Pacific Ocean, adjacent to the Pan American Highway. Nearby are the ruins of Puerto Inca. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chala http://www.puertoinka.com.pe/ https://www.arqueologiadelperu.com.ar/puertoinca.htm Camana, Peru Founded as Villa Hermosa in 1539. Lying on the Pan American Highway. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caman%C3%A1 Reynaldo Roberts One of six children born of a first generation Peruvian family. His father was one of two boys with three sisters. His grandfather had come to Peru in the 1880s on a five year contract working with a wool importer. He met a lady who was to become his wife and the five years became 10 years and then they settled for ever in this country. After the 2nd World War Rey’s father started selling De Soto cars and had the right to sell British cars, also ​ 40 Datsun and Toyota . At about this time the Peruvian government had decided that they wished to stop the import of cars and set up factories in Peru. They approached BMC, Rootes Group, Triumph, Rambler, Dodge, and other American companies to set up factories here. This state continued for about 12 years. It seemed that the locally made cars were less reliable, more expensive and the factories suffered worse trade union problems than by importing the vehicles. Eventually when the decision was made to return to the importation of foreign vehicles the Roberts Group took on Nissan and more recently Subaru. They are in the process of becoming BMW Distributors. This requires a huge capital investment that is on-going. In addition, for some 20 years Reynaldo was an Honorary British Consul. This in part explains why his English is so exceptionally good. Originally his brother (who never married) ran the car part of the Roberts Group. When Reynaldo ceased his Senate duties his brother offered him a share of the car business. In a very candid comment he stated that he took it on without really checking the books too carefully. It was a mess. But by a dint of hard work, good luck and a canny ability, he chose the best people for each role; the business has turned around and is now thriving. Reynaldo has a 10% share in the company and his children and others have the remaining 90%. During our conversation he mentioned that there was a man driving an Austin who passed through Arequipa, he thinks this was in the 60s or even the 70s. The car was placed in their showroom whilst the owner went to Cusco and Machu Picchu. There is the possibility that this was John Coleman, who brought his Austin here in 1959/60. Arequipa, Peru Settled since pre Inca times by a largely agricultural society. The Inca further developed the settlements before the arrival of the Spanish in 1540. There followed a long period of loyalty to the Spanish crown. Indeed following the 1821 declaration of Independence by Peru the city remained under Spanish control until 1824. As commonly occurred the next phase was one of political unrest. Second only to Lima in size and importance. The city is mostly industrial, with a wide diversity of production; food, drinks, construction, chemicals and export products. Tourism is also a significant source of income. The Old Town is a mix of colonial and 19th century buildings. Of importance is the Basilica Cathedral of Arequipa and the Convent of Santa Catalina. 41 There are three structures attributed to Gustave Eiffel (1832-1923) in the city: Fenix Theatre, San Camilo Market, Bolivar Bridge. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arequipa https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basilica_Cathedral_of_Arequipa https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monastery_of_Santa_Catalina_de_Siena,_Arequipa Moquegua, Peru Settled by Amerindians for many thousands of years. The Wari culture built numerous monuments, developed terraced fields before the Inca empire and the colonisation by the Spanish. The Plaza de Armas, the main square and centre of the city, was designed by Gustave Eiffel. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moquegua The Republic of Chile Archaeological evidence suggests human presence for at least 18,500 years. Amerindians occupied the lands including the Inca before Spanish colonisation. But the Mapuche resisted the attempts of the Spanish to take over and remained very much in control in the southern parts of modern Chile, Argentina and Patagonia until towards the end of the 19th century. In the northern parts of Chile the Spanish invasion (1540) established what became an effective border garrison. This helped to ensure attacks from the south by the Mapuche or the British (Sir Francis Drake raided Valparaiso, 1578) and the Dutch were effectively resisted. Independence from Spain was achieved in 1810. Proclaimed an independent republic in 1818. There followed a period of unrest that continued until the end of the 19th and into the early 20th century. Politics in Chile has continued to be periods of settled politics interspersed with unrest and volatile politics. Chile is currently one of the most stable and prosperous South American countries. Copper is responsible for 20% of the GDP and 60% of the exports. Agriculture is now contributing about 5% of the GDP. Tourism continues to grow as a significant part of the GDP. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chile Arica, Chile Inhabited for more than 10,000 years. Settled by the Spanish from 1541. Particularly important as the port for the onward transport of silver from the silver mines of Potosi in Bolivia, thus encouraging frequent raids by pirates, buccaneers and privateers. Originally part of Peru post-1821 but post-1883 the Treaty of Ancon formally acceded the region to Chilean control. ​ 42 The northern end of the Atacama Desert starts here, adjacent to the Pan American Highway The free port for Bolivia. Presently an important port on the Pacific coast of Chile/South America https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arica Atacama Desert The driest non polar desert in the world. The annual average rainfall is 0.6” (15mm). The aridity is explained because the strip of land is between a two sided rain shadow; the Andes and the Chilean coastal range preventing moisture advection. Stretching from Arica (at the Peru/Chile border) in the north, through Iquique, Antofagasta, Chanaral, to Copiapo in the south. A 1000 mile (1600 km) strip of land between the Pacific ocean and the Andes. The coastal strip has been inhabited for millennia and much affected by the mining industry, especially silver and copper. Additionally the presence of sodium nitrate (saltpetre) used for fertilisers, black powder, and fireworks was mined until the early 1940s. Currently many precious metals and non metallic minerals continue to be mined. The region, about 60 miles (100 km) south of Antofagasta is considered to be similar to the surface of Mars. Hence it’s been used in films set on Mars and by NASA for testing equipment for future missions to Mars. Because of the lack of population and the high altitude this region is the ideal place for astronomical observations/observatories. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atacama_Desert Iquique, Chile Settled from pre colonial times but significantly developed during extensive expansion of the saltpetre mining industry in the 19th century. Visited by Charles Darwin in 1835 during the second voyage of the Beagle. One of two free ports in Chile (the other is Punta Arenas). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iquique Antofagasta, Chile ‘The Pearl of the North’ Settled from pre colonial times, developed during the rapid mining expansion of the 19th century. Originally part of Bolivia but ceded to Chile after the War of the Pacific (1879-1883). The Bolivian and Chilean versions of the treaties are at some variance. There is a railway linking Arica and La Paz along which is permitted the free passage of goods. The economy is based upon metallic and nonmetallic minerals, the Port, tourism. ​ 43 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antofagasta Chanaral, Chile Significant deposits of copper were found in the early part of the 19th century and mines and the necessary infrastructure were developed. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cha%C3%B1aral Copiapo, Chile Settled for many centuries by Amerindians, the Inca and Spanish colonisation. The environs are rich in silver and copper mines. In 2010 the San Jose Copper mine collapsed trapping 33 miners. They were recovered after 69 days. The economy is based on mining supplemented by agriculture, light industry, energy, commerce and tourism. The Atacama Raid for 4x4 vehicles has run since 1992 and Rally Dakar uses the city as a stopover. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copiap%C3%B3 Coquimbo, Chile Originally settled by Amerindians; largely as a fishing centre. Gold and copper mining have increased the importance of the city. The economy depends on mining, shipping, light engineering and tourism. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coquimbo Los Andes, Chile Founded, in recent times, in 1791. The economy is based on mining and agriculture. Until 2004 Peugeot had a car assembly plant. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Los_Andes,_Chile Valparaiso, Chile is perhaps one of the most important sea ports of the South Pacific. It is now a major city, seaport, naval base and educational centre. During the second half of the 19th century the city was a major stop off in voyages between the Atlantic and the Pacific. This was very important during the California gold rush (1848-1858). The opening of the Panama Canal in 1914 had a very adverse effect on the prosperity of the city. Special historical features include Latin America's oldest Stock Exchange, the continent’s first volunteer fire brigades, Chile’s first public library, and the oldest Spanish language newspaper. Francis Drake attacked the city in 1578 as did many pirates and privateers. There was a significant British trade presence between 1820 and 1920 including firms like Antony Gibbs and Sons who bought and improved Tyntesfield in south Bristol with the significant profits from the export of guano. ​ 44 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valpara%C3%ADso https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antony_Gibbs_%26_Sons Talca, Chile Founded in 1692 and again in 1742. The site of the signing of the declaration of Chilean Independence 1818 by Bernard O’Higgins. Severely damaged by the 1928 and 2010 earthquakes. The city is bisected by the Pan American Highway. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talca Los Angeles, Chile Founded in 1739 as a Spanish fort/outpost in their wars against the Mapuche. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Los_%C3%81ngeles,_Chile The Battle of Coronel Took place at sea, west of Los Angeles, Chile. A naval battle: 1st November 1914 between the Imperial German Navy, led by Vice Admiral Graf von Spee and the Royal Navy led by Rear Admiral Sir Christopher Craddock. Probably the engagement was an error. Spee had an easy victory; destroying two cruisers for the loss of three men. Significantly the victory used half of his supply of ammunition which probably contributed to his later defeat at the Battle of the Falklands. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Coronel https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_the_Falkland_Islands Temuco, Chile Founded by the Chilean army in 1881 as a fort during the Occupation of Recabarren. A centre for tourism, agriculture, forestry and tourism. The Nobel Laureates Gabriel Mistral and Pablo Neruda lived part of their lives in the city. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Temuco Pucon, Chile The modern site of Pucon was founded in 1883. The Spanish had a settlement (1552) nearby as a base for gold mining but this was destroyed by mudflows from volcanoes. Now a significant centre for adventure tourism. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puc%C3%B3n Automuseum Moncopulli, Chile A small, remarkable museum; dedicated particularly to Studebaker cars but more a museum of life. Well worth a detour. http://www.moncopulli.cl/ ​ 45 Entre Lagos, Chile ‘between the lakes’ A small tourist centre. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Entre_Lagos The Argentine Republic is the second largest country in South America, after Brazil and exists under a federal system whilst claiming sovereignty over a part of Antarctica, the Falkland Islands, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands. There is evidence of human presence as far back as the Palaeolithic period, the Inca Empire expanded into the northwest of the country before the Spanish colonisation in the 16th century. The country of Argentina became the successor State to the Viceroyalty of the Rio de la Plata (1776). The fight for Independence (1810-1818) was followed by a civil war until 1861. Colonised extensively by Italians and Spanish settlers who have largely shaped its cultural heritage. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Argentina&oldid=1117767621 Patagonia Is defined as the southern end of South America and incorporates parts of both Chile and Argentina. The northern border is usually defined as the Colorado and Barrancas rivers. Settled for millennia by numerous native tribes and much affected by Spanish colonisation. Known as the Governorates of New Leon. The indigenous inhabitants lived a largely nomadic lifestyle as hunter gatherers travelling by foot or dugout canoes. There are very early cave paintings to be found in the region. Some of the fossil finds are unique to the region and the world. The native peoples were significantly displaced by the arrival of Europeans, Chileans and Argentinians during the early part of the 20th century. In modern times the economy of the eastern part is based on sheep, oil and gas, whilst the western portion specialises in fishing, aquaculture and tourism. Many early explorers ventured this far south, notably Magellan, from the 16th century. The first and second voyages of the Beagle undertook hydrographic surveys. Fitzroy and Darwin explored the Santa Cruz river. Darwin explored the Rio Negro with the gauchos. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patagonia ​ 46 Bariloche, Argentina from the Mapudungun ‘people from behind the mountain’ It is probable that the region has been settled for millennia. During the Spanish colonisation the Mapuche tribe and others lived south and east of the Spanish and were never ‘properly colonised’. There continued a lengthy period of unrest between the tribes and the Spanish as they fell in and out of favour. Since the 19th century the region around the shores of the Nahuel Haupi Lake have sought stronger links with Chile than Buenos Aires. During the middle 1800s there was an influx of German settlers who specialised in leather work until cleared by the Argentines. In the early 1900s there were further conflicts between Chile and Argentina. Once the border dispute was settled cattle trade mostly flourished. In the 1930s, in an attempt to encourage tourism (both national and international) the centre of the city was redesigned to give a more realistic impression of an alpine resort. Chocolates are a local speciality. In the later part of the 20th century the city achieved further notoriety with the discovery of noted Nazi war criminals living and working in the region. Most recently the development of International Scientific Research and Development firms setting up laboratories further enhances the status of the city. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bariloche Esquel, Argentina The arrival of Welsh immigrants in 1865 saw the town’s founding. Important as a tourist attraction is ‘La Trochita’ or the Old Patagonian Express made famous by Paul Theroux. A narrow gauge railway (30”, 750mm between the rails) running 250 mi (402 km) is the longest, most southerly and the only narrow gauge railway still in use (2021). Another almost unique finding - a meteorite weighing 1664 lb (755 kg) found by a farmer digging a hole for a water tank in 1951. About 50 mi (80 km) north of the town is Cholila; nearby is where Butch Cassidy, Longabaugh (the Sundance Kid) and Etta Place bought a log cabin on a 15,000 acre ranch. They lived here between about 1901 and 1905. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Esquel,_Argentina https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Butch_Cassidy Sarmiento, Argentina Originally founded as a colony of immigrants from Wales and later Lithuania settled in the early part of the 20th century. In 1903 a number of Afrikaner families ​ 47 arrived following their defeat in the 2nd Boer War. Indeed even 60 years later Afrikaans was the most commonly spoken language. In 2016 the fossils of what is named Sarmientosaurus Musacchio, were found. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarmiento,_Chubut https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarmientosaurus Comodoro Rivadavia, Argentina Inhabited by the Tehuelche people during the summer months for millennia, first recorded on a chart by Robert FitzRoy. It was developed in more recent times as a deep water anchorage in part to supply Sarmiento. Whilst searching for water in 1907 the Afrikaner families that had arrived in 1903 struck oil on land given to them by Argentina. Argentine law decreed that all mineral assets belonged to the State. The immigrants settled in Sarmiento where water was plentiful. It is now the main point of export for petroleum and gas (a 1100 mi (1770 km) pipeline links the city with Buenos Aires). Apart from the petroleum industry the city is a centre for the production of concrete and wind generated electricity. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comodoro_Rivadavia Puerto San Julian, Argentina Named by Ferdinand Magellan during his stay in 1520 when he overwintered before sailing south to find the passageway into the Pacific Ocean which bears his name. Drake arrived here in 1578 and like Magellan had problems of mutiny from the sailors on the flotilla. FitzRoy and Darwin landed here during the 2nd voyage of the Beagle. Darwin found boney remnants of what he described as a mastodon but was later identified as a giant member of the llama/camel family. Mostly important for sheep rearing and processing. Puerto San Julian is the nearest aerodrome to the Falkland Islands and was used extensively by the Argentine Air Force during the war over the Falkland Islands (1982). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puerto_San_Juli%C3%A1n Rio Gallegos, Argentina The Spanish explorer Garcia de Loaisa arrived here in 1525 but its name was given in 1535 by Simon Sotomayor. Not formally settled by Europeans until about 1885. A sheep rearing and processing centre before becoming a military base. Used extensively during the Falklands War by the Argentines. ​ 48 Río Gallegos, Santa Cruz - Wikipedia Punta Arenas, Chile ‘Sandy Point’ The Spanish attempted settlements here in 1584 in their endeavours to control the Straights of Magellan. They failed due to the extremely harsh conditions and a lack of food and water. One of only two free ports in Chile (the other, Iquique). Founded as a small penal colony in 1848 as Chile wished to assert its sovereignty over the Straights of Magellan. Of strategic importance as the gateway between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. In the late 1880s to the early 1900s there was a large influx of Russian and Croatian immigrants attracted to the sheep farming boom and a gold rush. Now very important as a base for Antarctic Expeditions. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punta_Arenas Fuerte Bulnes/Puerto del Hambre (Port Famine), Chile Founded as a Chilean Fort in 1843 as part of Chile’s endeavours to ensure sovereignty of the Straits of Magellan. As had been discovered previously the very harsh conditions did not favour settlement; hence the establishment of Punta Arenas. Rebuilt as a National Monument in 1941-3. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fuerte_Bulnes Some thoughts/links about the Beagle, Fitzroy, Darwin, Lyell The Second Voyage of the Beagle 27th December 1831 Plymouth/Mount Edgecombe to Falmouth, October 1836. Undertaking detailed hydrographic surveys around the coast of the southern part of South America before returning via Tahiti and Australia. Originally planned for two years; it lasted almost five. Affordable chronometers had only been available from about 1800. Beagle carried 22. As longitude was a relatively new science there was a need to check (and recheck) previous measurements to improve the accuracy of Naval charts. During the voyage Darwin spent approximately 18 months at sea (he was a very poor sailor) and 3 years 3 months on land. ​ 49 Upon the appointment of Robert FitzRoy, he was involved in the decisions about the nature and purpose of the voyage. Beagle was refitted in an attempt to provide more space, ensure an improved level of safety including the fitment of a lightning conductor. FitzRoy was aware of the significant stresses and strains of being in charge of an expedition. A previous captain of Beagle had committed suicide in response to the challenge. Hence he was determined to seek a gentleman companion. Asking many friends, Charles Darwin’s name came up several times. Fortunately FitzRoy and Darwin rubbed along well and so the arrangements were made for the voyage. Stopping in the Cape Verde Islands, Darwin became aware that many of the theories of his friend Charles Lyell, a Scottish geologist, were visualised on the island. Particularly the way the strata suggest movement of the earth’s crust. Arriving in South America at about the level of Buenos Aires, Darwin travelled inland with native guides (gauchos), observing the use of bolas to bring down rheas (related to ostrich). Further studies in the locale revealed the presence of many fossils. These were excavated and identified as being unique to the region. At Montevideo the second volume of Charles Lyell’s ‘Principles of Geology’ was waiting for him. This refuted Lamarckism, then a popular explanation of evolution, and suggested adaptation to the environment. If this should (suddenly) change, the plant or creature would become extinct if it could not adapt. On their arrival at Tierra del Fuego, near Christmas time 1832, Darwin was dismayed at the contrast between the Fuegans that FitzRoy had brought with him to England (1830) and was now returning to their country as missionaries to the local natives. Darwin undertook another ‘galloping trip’ whilst FitzRoy and the Beagle was surveying. He found and was shown numerous fossils unique to South America. Additionally he made copious notes about the geological features he saw that seem to suggest movement of the various layers over wide areas. The suggestion being that the large forces acted at a slow pace over wide areas, except during earthquakes where great forces gave rapid changes. An example being in Valdivia where the mussel fields ended above the high water mark following a very destructive earthquake. 50 High in the Andes he saw seashells and several fossilised trees that had once grown on a beach. He theorised that as the land rose so the oceanic islands sank and coral reefs around them grew to form atolls. Sailing from Lima it took just a week before they arrived at the Galapagos. Hoping that he would find examples of active volcanoes and evidence of land rising up from the shore he was disappointed, initially. Commenting about the antediluvian tortoises and the most disgusting, clumsy lizards, the marine iguanas, it was pointed out to him that the shape of the shell of the tortoise was specific to the island of origin. He began to be aware that the same species had a different appearance between the islands and the mainland. Returning via Tahiti and Australia and stopping off to investigate the structure of atolls at the Keeling Islands, the recording seemed to suggest that Darwin’s hypothesis might be worthy of becoming a theory. At the time it was considered that species were immutable; the appearance of the different ‘versions’ of the same species (on the Galapagos and Ascension Islands) seemed to refute this theory and thus began the development of the Theory of Evolution. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_voyage_of_HMS_Beagle The Highlight Of Darwin's Five Year Voyage | Darwin's Beagle | Absolute History http://igemoe.com/content/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/HMS_Beagle_854_256_07.gif https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_FitzRoy The troubled genius who made Charles Darwin: Robert FitzRoy https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Darwin Charles Darwin - Evolution vs Creation Documentary https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Lyell Charles Lyell ​ 51

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  • Spruce Goose | bespk

    1/15 Hughes H4 Hercules ‘Spruce Goose’ Hughes H4 Hercules ‘Spruce Goose’ During WWII, U boat raids in the Atlantic were causing heavy losses of shipping, many of which were carrying war supplies to the Allies in Europe and beyond. In 1942 the US War Department issued a specification for an aircraft capable of flying the Atlantic with a large payload. No strategic materials were available for the construction of the plane. The design was the brainchild of Howard Hughes and Henry Kaiser (a leading Liberty ship builder and an expert in the use of plywood in construction). Originally described as the HK 1 reflecting the collaboration between the two men, the specification required the building of three aircraft in two years. Because there was no aluminium available the plane was constructed largely of birch ply. It was to be capable of carrying 150,000 lb (68039 kg): 750 fully equipped troops, or two 30 ton Sherman tanks. Development was extremely slow, in part due to Howard Hughes’ obsession with perfection and his attempts to acquire strategic materials. After 16 months Kaiser withdrew from the project. Hughes renegotiated the contract so that only one plane was to be built. Now designated Hughes H 4, progress was slow. The ‘Duramold’ process (a plywood and resin process of cold moulding plywood) was used. The specialised veneer was made by Roddis Manufacturing. Due to the slow rate of progress; Howard Hughes was accused of misusing Government money. During the court hearing Hughes stated that the plane was extremely complex, larger than any other airplane (until 2019), complicated in the use of plywood and the requirement to develop hydraulics for surface controls. the list went on… During a break in the court hearing Hughes returned to California to run the taxiing tests. Initially there were 36 people on board. Four press reporters left after the first two runs to file their reports. During the final run the plane became airborne at 135 mph (217 kph), flew at 70 ft (21 m) for about 1 mile (1.6 km). Thus Hughes exposed his detractors; his masterpiece flew, he had not misused Government funds. Spruce Goose never flew again. It was stored in an air conditioned hanger with a staff of 300 to maintain it in ‘flying’ condition. This was reduced to 50 in 1962 and ceased completely at Hughes’ death in 1976. The Aero Club of Southern California acquired Spruce Goose in 1980. The Walt Disney Company acquired the plane in 1988 parting with it in 1990 when it became part of the Evergreen Aviation Museum. Wikipedia Link

  • Austin 7 Centenary Celebration | bespk

    BESPK fundraising takes off at Austin 7 Centenary Rally Last week the BESPK team received a huge boost for their fundraising at the Austin 7 Centenary Rally, selling nearly £10,000 of books and raffle tickets. All of the money raised will go directly to Dame Hannahs, (see www.discoverhannahs.org ) a Plymouth based charity that supports children and young adults living with special needs and their families. Both Guy and Eunice had careers that involved supporting young people with special educational needs, and so the pair are passionate about raising as much money as possible for Dame Hannah’s. Someone said “We’re delighted to have raised so much already, but we’re hoping to be able to raise another £25,000 (making a target of £35,000), which will make a real difference to the young people and families who use Dame Hannahs. The money was raised by selling copies of “Austin 7 Around the Americas”, the recently published story of Guy Butcher and Eunice Kratky’s epic 20,000 mile journey from Baltimore to Alaska and then onto Tierra del Fuego at the southern tip of Argentina in a 1920’s Austin 7, The book has just been given a 5 star review by Auto Express. If you would like to buy a book, you can do this by sending an email from the www.bespk.com website. The rally was held at Moreton in Marsh from 19-24th July 2022. The BESPK team was made up of Guy Butcher, Eunice Kratky, Hugh and Eve Gregg, Ruth and Charlie Murray. Guy drove the BESPK car on the 200 mile drive from his home in Cornwall, and Hugh drove Alice - one of Guy’s first Austin 7’s - 150 miles from Budleigh Salterton. The only drama on the drive up was a blocked carburettor jet on Alice which was quickly remedied. Guy said “I found driving the BESPK Austin really enjoyable - it still amazes me at how this car does anything and everything that I ask of it”. The BESPK team were also selling tickets for a raffle to win the Austin 7 that carried them on this incredible journey. The car - which is valued at about £18000 - was fully rebuilt before the trip and is in full running order and will be fully serviced and MOTed for the new owner. The winner will also receive all of the tools and spares carried on the Adventure to be able to maintain the car with minimal expenditure. If you would like to buy a raffle ticket, you can do this by visiting www.bespk.com and using the Just Giving page During the rally Guy was also able to meet up with many friends from his youth, including Chris Gould and Mike Hodgson. Guy learnt how to fettle Austin 7’s with them in various friends and family garages when he lived in Worthing, beginning to learn the skills that he would later use to keep the Austin going in the Americas. ​ ​

  • Treburley Garage | bespk

    Treburley Garage Last Saturday, Rosamund and Richard Rowe opened their garage; Treburley Garage, to enable us to continue with our fundraising efforts. With the help of publicity (BBC Radio Devon; Pippa Quelsh 02-12-2022 14.00-18.00, the Cornish Times, Scarlett Hill-Brooks 03-12-2022), and various social media postings, there was a very good turnout. Indeed with the help of Rosamund's earlier book and raffle ticket sales, £1.1k was raised. Incredible! Thank you; everyone, for your great generosity. Our current total stands at £26.5k. Remember that the last day for buying raffle tickets will be Monday 12-12-2022.

  • Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum | bespk

    Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum; the Austin outside the Exhibition hall with Spruce Go Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum; the Austin outside the Exhibition hall with Spruce Go 1/20 Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum, McMinnville, Oregon. Most famously is the home of the Hughes H4 Hercules; ‘Spruce Goose’. The museum was originally the idea of Capt. Michael King Smith, the son of the founder of the Evergreen International Aviation. Originally a small collection of vintage aircraft. In 1990 the Disney Corporation announced the closure of the Long Beach site that housed ‘Spruce Goose’. The Evergreen Museum won the bid to house ‘Spruce Goose’. Between 1993 and 2001 volunteers undertook a detailed restoration. The refurbished plane and Museum opened to the public in June 2001. The Space Museum opened in 2008. Wikipedia Link

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