Ozarks History

Information and comments about historical people and events of the Ozarks region and surrounding area.

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Location: Missouri

I'm a freelance writer specializing in the history of the Ozarks and surrounding region. I've written fifteen nonfiction books, two historical novels, and numerous articles. My latest books are Bushwhacker Belles, Wicked Women of Missouri, and Yanked Into Eternity: Lynchings and Hangings in Missouri.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Traveling to the Sedalia Fair

My wife and I made a trip from Joplin to the Missouri State Fair at Sedalia over the weekend, and, taking the shortest route (via Eldorado Springs) we passed through some interesting small towns along the way. Of course, small towns are my favorite kind, especially small towns of the Ozarks.
At Eldorado Springs, we took Highway 82 to Osceola, and along the way we passed through such wide places in the road as Roscoe, which is near the spot where the Younger brothers had their infamous shootout with Pinkerton agents in the spring of 1874. From Osceola, we followed 82 until we came to Highway 83, and we then took 83 into Warsaw, where we picked up Highway 65 for the rest of the trip to Sedalia. Neither Highway 82 nor Highway 83 is what one would call a good road. Both roads are relatively narrow and have a lot of curves and hills, but it is the shortest route.
Coming home, we took 65 all the way to Preston, where we picked up Highway 54 through Eldorado Springs, and then we got on Highway 71 at Nevada for the rest of the trip back. Not quite as eventful as the trip up, but we still saw some interesting little towns, like Weaubleau and Wheatland, and even came within seven miles of Elkton, the hometown of Sally Rand--the same place that I said in a post a couple of weeks ago that I had never visited. I was tempted to take a side trip to Elkton just to say I'd been there but decided I was in too big of a hurry to get home.
Oh, and we did stop at Collins, where we ate at Smith's Restaurant, home of the famous homemade pies. They were out of my favorite, coconut, though; so I didn't have dessert.
It was somewhat of a hectic trip, since we made the journey up and back in the same day, but still kind of fun, because I always enjoy getting out and seeing the Ozarks, especially parts of it that I don't normally visit on a regular basis.

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