Wauseon, Ohio

Day 413

     It was Hortensia Hayes, daughter of one of the town’s first businessmen, that suggested the name of Wauseon, Chief of the Ottowas, as the name of the town to the early town leaders in 1854, when the town was established. He was the Chief that was forced to convey all their lands in the Northwest territory to the United States government 16 years earlier in 1838. The only reason this town is here is because the railroad needed a place for water and fuel. There ain’t much here now. 

Technical Stuff: 

Geneva, Ohio to Wauseon Ohio: 202.7 miles

3 hours 52 minutes

12.4 MPG

Diesel: $2.40


Ashtabula County, Ohio

Day 412

Day 412 Ashtabula, OH 4118_Fotor

     Spent the day looking for covered bridges. Ashtabula County, Ohio, is reported to have seventeen covered bridges within the county limits, including both the longest and the shortest covered bridges in the United States. 

     Now, we have traveled in the past throughout New England seeking covered bridges. It was our understanding that the longest wooden covered bridge in the US was the one connecting Vermont to New Hampshire, which we visited on that trip. The Cornish–Windsor Covered Bridge is a covered bridge that spans the Connecticut River between Cornish, New Hampshire and Windsor, Vermont. It was the longest covered bridge still standing in the United States until the Smolen–Gulf Bridge opened in Ohio in 2008. The Cornish–Windsor Bridge is still the longest wooden covered bridge and has the longest single covered span to carry automobile traffic. The Smolen-Gulf Bridge, we saw today, had a concert floor, covered by a wooded structure. The cover is obviously not needed today. 

Day 412 Ashtabula, OH 4093_Fotor

     Covered bridges were built 150 to 200 years ago to protect the wooden floor of the bridge from the elements. The roads leading up to those bridges, which usually crossed water, were dirt roads. 

Day 412 Ashtabula, OH 4094_Fotor

     There was a smaller, pedestrian only bridge below the Smolen-Golf Bridge, recently built. 

     When we approached the Root Road Bridge, it appeared the width was only 8’2″. The width of my truck is 8’3″. The bridge looked wider, so we attempted to drive the truck through.

 Day 412 Ashtabula, OH 4117_Fotor

     We went back and actually measured the bridge (yes, I carry a 25′ tape measure with me). The bridge was in fact 11’8″wide.

     After viewing 9 of the 17 bridges in the County, we realized they were all build within the last 25 years, and was a tourist come-on. 

 Day 412 Ashtabula, OH 4116_Fotor

     We did see one original bridge, the Graham Road Bridge, built sometime in the 1800, it was washed away in a 1913 storm. The remnants were rebuilt here, where it is on display where it use to cross the west branch of the Ashtabula River.

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     After searching for wooden covered bridges all day, where else to eat but the Covered Bridge Pizza Parlor. 

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     This bridge was built in 1862. In 1972, Ashtabula County decided to replace the bridge and sold it for $5.00. The new owners took down the bridge, piece by piece, and re-assembled it here for their pizza parlor. 


 Day 412 Ashtabula, OH 4099_Fotor




Geneva, Ohio

Day 410

     Geneva is a city in Ashtabula County, Ohio. This area, located on Lake Erie, in the Northeast corner of the State, was originally settled in 1805. The city wasn’t incorporated until 1958. Eventually, the people here had no imagination, as they named the city after the city of the same name in New York.

Technical Stuff:

Niagara Falls, NY to Geneva, OH  175.6 miles

3 hours 45 minutes

10.5 MPG

Diesel: $2.31



Niagara Falls (the falls), New York

Day 404

     I really wasn’t that impressed with Niagara Falls

Day 404 Niagra the falls NY 3855_Fotor

We were told not to upset the Gods

 Day 404 Niagra the falls NY 3955_Fotor

     Tidbit of Information:  The falls was actually shut off in 1969. No water ran over it. From June to November 1969 the entire American rapids channel and falls was shut off by redirecting the flow of water for purposes of evaluating erosion of the falls, and determine if remedial action was required. A section of the overhang, which was deemed unsafe if nature allowed it to fall, was removed. It was decided to do no further alteration of the falls and let nature take it’s course, which means in 10,000 years the falls will have eroded entirley away. I  am glad we saw it today. 

Day 404 Niagra the falls NY 3934_Fotor

     This is  a picture of me inside the barrel just before I went over the falls:

Walked To Canada

Day 407

     Walked from New York to Canada, about a quarter of a mile. 

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     Barbara is on the American side, and I on the Canadian     Day 4047 Canada NY 3968_Fotor       The view of Niagara Falls was much better.Day 4047 Canada NY 4016_Fotor          Where are we?Day 4047 Canada NY 4006_Fotor

     Stopped by the tribute to Nikola Tesla. Nikola Tesla was born July 10, 1856 in what was then the Austrian Empire. He emigrated to the United States in June 1884 and on July 30, 1891,  became a naturalized citizen. He invented the alternating current (AC) induction motor. The power plants at Niagara Falls is based on his invention.Day 4047 Canada NY 4021_Fotor

     Throughout the 20 States we have traveled, I have been searching for Day 4047 Canada NY 4028_Fotor

a frog on a lily pad, and, in Canada, I found him.

     Met some weird  people on the Canadian side

     At night, Canada lites up the falls,Day 4047 Canada NY 4036_Fotor

     and had fireworks over the falls Day 4047 Canada NY 4078_Fotor

     They did not tell us ahead of time, but walking back from Canada to the US there was a turnstile which required 50 cents, quarters only. We did not have quarters. We were two people without a Country.Day 4047 Canada NY 4085_Fotor

     Can you believe on the American side, they had barbed wire? What an unfriendly Country. 




Erie Canal, New York

Day 403 

     The Erie Canal opened on October 26, 1825 and is 363 miles long, 40 feet wide and 4 feet deep. It runs from the Hudson River to Lake Erie. Construction began in 1817 and has 83 locks. The last obstacle of the construction was crossing the Niagara Escarpment, an 80-foot wall carved by the Niagara River, to rise to the level of Lake Erie. This was done by constructing two sets of five locks in a series, soon giving rise to the community of Lockport, where we are today. 

     At the time, in 1823, this was an engineering marvel. Creating 5 locks in series, each raising the river (or lowering it) 12 feet. It was called “The Flight of Five”.

     Today, they no longer exist. With modern technology, and the fact that there are now railroads and the St. Lawrence Seaway, this section of the Erie canal is used only by pleasure boats and tourists. In 1910, the Canal was modernized, which signaled the end of the boomtown of Lockport. Today, it is merely a tourist attraction (which attracted us).

     In walking this area, we came across this upside down railroad bridge. 

     An interesting side attraction we visited was Raceway Tunnel, invented by Birdsill Holly. Basically, he built a tunnel in which he diverted part of the water from the Niagara River through a tunnel to power a turbine that he used to run his manufacturing company, which produced a water system to combat fires. 

     This system did not catch on as communities thought it not practical and too expensive. That is until October 8, 1871 the day Chicago burned to the ground. 

     We hiked through the now unused and dry tunnel, and then took a short boat ride on part of the underground river. 

Tonawanda, New York

Day 402

     We went to Tonawanda, New York, to visit Allan Herschell’s Carrousel Manufacturing Company, the maker of Merry-Go-Rounds. The Company operated from 1872 to 1915. 

     Over 3,000 hand-carved wooden carousels were made in this factory.

     Artisans were there demonstrating the making of the horses. 

     Of course, you can’t go to a carousel manufacturing company without riding a carousel.

     Tidbit of Information: What famous man, you never heard of, was born in Tonawanda, New York?  Hint:  He drafted the terms of surrender that Lee and Grant signed at Appomattox Court house that signaled the end of the Civil War. He was Ely Samuel Parker, a Seneca Indian, and a lieutenant Colonel in the Union Army.