August 11, 2005
Plog #2 – Thursday, August 11, 2005
This morning we woke up as the sun came up but layed around in the tent dozing off and on. Finally at 7:30 AM we got up. I went for a nice run through the town of Gilbert, MN. I ran from the Sherwood Forest Campgrounds up Wisconsin Avenue all the way to the top of the hill. In 1908 when the streets of Gilbert were layed out, all of the cross-streets to the main one, Broadway, were the names of states. There is an interesting history behind the formation of this town. Between 1908 and 1910 residents and businesses from the town of Sparta were being relocated to the new town of Gilbert so the mining company could strip-mine the land under the town. I intend to learn more about this, but there is a story of one man who refused to move and they mined all around his house. The story goes that he was eventually removed by force when he fired his gun at the excevators. At that time Sparta had a population of over a thousand people. Gilbert today has about 1800 residents.
Then, after I ran all the way to the top of the hill I ran East to Highway 135, then back down to Broadway. I ran straight West Along downtown Gilbert, which to me looks very similar to the original photos of Gilbert, except for their modern upgrades of power, lighting and international flags lining the streets. I ran up the hill again to the catholic church, which has a beautiful stained-glass window centered at the end of the street, which you can see from the bottom of the hill on Broadway. It was kind of beautiful and motivating running up toward it. I ran West again to the cemetary at the edge of town. There were a lot of graves there. I wondered how many were from mining accidents.
I ran down the hill, back toward town on the highway, turned off on the first side street, then along the southern edge of town back to the campground. I have no idea how far I ran, but I was sweating and breathing hard.
Gilbert is a beautiful, well-kept town. There were no trash houses I could see. Running down the main street, Broadway, I counted eight bars. In contrast, around 1910 Gilbert had about 25 saloons in the same number of city blocks. They were all quiet in the morning hours. I only saw a few people, mostly old people out walking their dogs or trimming their yards. These few people are the morning people here. They smiled and waved and said good morning to me.
At the campsite we had some of Marlene’s freshed baked muffins we brought with us, some orange juice and coffee. I sat around for the rest of the mornign with my legs up, writing, while my wife read her book. After lunch we went to the 4-wheel drive park, then returned to our campsite to make foil dinners and baked apples over the coals.
This night was marked by severely strong winds, whipping our tent around, keeping us from getting very sound sleep. I remembered the story of my younger brother getting blown tent and all into a tree on one camping trip many years ago, but thankfully our tent stayed up.
Posted by carl1236 at August 11, 2005 10:28 PM | Balance