I always liked the name Springfield. I think that’s because I actually first loved the Simpsons’, but this Springfield isn’t their hometown. Even though Chicago is the famous and biggest city in the state of Illinois, Springfield is its capital. So, since we’re in the state, we thought why not check it out.
We rented a car, a pick-up to be exact, since they didn’t have anything else available. On our way there I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many speed cameras. Usually, one can’t really spot them, because they sometimes hide them in bushes, but this time, they were just out there. Fortunately, though, we were never pulled over.
Once we got to the capital, we went on a historical tour of the town. It turns out Springfield is home to the famous and very well-liked U.S. President Abraham Lincoln. We started with the State Capitol, which is a beautiful building and one of the tallest capitols in the nation. It looked surprisingly big from the outside and didn’t seem to get any smaller once we got inside; it was magnificent. We were not expecting to see the art work that this structure was ornate with. Pictures were covering the ceiling, which were based on some historical moment of the town. The dome was also decorated in a luxurious fashion—a paint that resembles bronze and stained glass that made the light coming in very interesting.
After our tour, we became interested in the president, a.k.a. Abe. So, we headed to his house, which today is a national historic site. We got to see where and how he lived. We enjoyed scrutinizing the old furniture and imaging what it was like to live in the 19th century. We also learned that four of his sons were actually born in that house and that his wife Mary loved flowers, though, neither Mary nor her husband were great gardeners. To be honest, I was expecting to see grandeur, but it was a humbling experience in that I realized he was just another simple man, living in a small house with a small garden, loving his family, while pursuing the high calling on his life.
Another interesting site we visited was his graveyard. I know it sounds like an oxymoron, but it actually was fun. There was a huge statue of him and we got to rub his nose for luck. We only did it, because we were told that’s what one does when visiting Abe’s tomb.
We heard about this cool little antique shop called ‘Abe’s Old Hat’. We thought the name was very funny, so we went to check it out. They had the most interesting little knickknacks, some of which were ages old (and very expensive, I might add). I did find a cute little pendant though, that is said to be from the post Civil War period. It made me wonder who it belonged to, but I guess I’ll never find out. The day drew to an end and we headed to bed pretty early. We did have an amazing steak dinner though, and good wine beforehand… I guess the wine helped us fall asleep.