Print Friendly and PDF With Strings Attached: Reagan homestead (with quilts)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Reagan homestead (with quilts)

I am taking the long route to St. Louis for this week's P.E.O. convention.  I set out in good time this morning.  The light rain did not cause traffic delays.  That was helpful because when I got to Rockford -- about 80 miles from home -- and stopped for gas I discovered that one tire had picked up a nail and was going flat.  Thank goodness for many things--helpful people at the gas station and AAA.  The AAA guy arrived about 45 minutes later and changed the tire. Both he and the gas station attendant suggested a tire place a mile away.  I had the flat fixed ($5) so I have an adequate spare, just in case.

My early afternoon destination was Stronghold Conference Center in Oregon, Illinois, site of the AAUW fall conference.  I had several things to clarify about the facilities that we will use.  All my questions were answered and I headed south from Oregon on IL-2 along the Rock River .
The docent said that there are numerous German tourists
At Dixon I turned at the sign that said "Boyhood Home of Ronald Reagan."  I'm not a great fan of Ronald Reagan (particularly his economic policies) but since I was in the neighborhood I decided to stop. 

Sunday School Quilt
Reagan and his family (parents and older brother) lived in five houses in Dixon.  His fondest memories were for this one, where they lived when he was in his early teens.  It is a Sears house, built in the 1890's, that the Reagans rented.  It was later divided into apartments and fell into disrepair. It was restored during his presidency.  The furnishings are 'of the period,' not the Reagans' own, with the exception of a quilt that Nell Reagan's Sunday school students made for her.   There is a Seven Sisters quilt on the bed in the boys' bedroom. 
Pres. and Mrs. Reagan and his brother made a return visit to Dixon in 1984.  The President looked at the parlor fireplace, bent down, and lifted up a tile.  It had been loose when he was a kid and he hid pennies there.  After sixty years and many tenants the tile was in its place, still loose.  The four pennies that he left behind that day are now framed with a photo of him lifting the tile.  These four pennies are substitutes.

The sun came out when I got to Kewanee at the end of the day.  I realized what I forgot to pack:  the camera cable so I could download photos each day.  I thought about having my husband overnight-mail it -- but there's a Radio Shack right around the corner from the motel!  I now own a card reader, and as this blog shows, it worked just fine with today's photos.

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