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American Roads and Global Highways is starting  with a great vision for the new year. Boy is it hard to start remembering we're in 2020. Let's hope it will be a Roaring 20s.

We have a new sister ezine,Highways and Byways at  https://highwaysbyways.sojournfam.com/ It will have more overall desination and roundup pieces where as here you will find the more in-depth stories.

 Our older  stories are archived and always available.Newer ones will be available under topics as well as archives. Looking for food or drink related stories? Just click "Food." Stories with a historic tone, click "History" and so on. If I haven't gotten around to putting them in the catagory tab, everything not showing on Home Page will be in Archives.

Latest Stories

Information Highway

Want to visit fun places but you are not sure what to see there? How about taking a tour that is like having a friend along who knows that city well to guide you. You can do that for under $5 now. Here's some fun and informative tours at Tours4Mobile.
Read more

Bayou Rum: The Spirit of Louisiana

Kathleen Walls

David Friedman, author of Food Sanity, gives us one good reason to drink rum. He states, “Also, while too much drinking can damage your brain, moderate consumption of rum may actually lower that risk: Rum has properties that may help protect your brain cells and decrease your risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s.” Read more.

PHLASHING Through Philly

Renée S. Gordon 

Whether your latest resolution was to spend more time with your family or not, this column is for you. Philadelphia was designated the nation’s first UNESCO World Heritage City in 2015, placing it on par with Berlin, Mexico City, Paris and Quebec City. It is widely recognized as an international destination, a historic and cultural mecca with venues that are accessible, affordable and family friendly. Read more. 

Punta Gorda, Florida

Renée S. Gordon

Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de León is believed to be the first European to explore Florida although earlier expeditions reached the region hunting for native slaves to export to Spain. He set sail in 1513 on a search for gold and new lands, later stories tell he sought the Fountain of Youth. Believing he had landed on an island he named the land La Florida, Land of Flowers, because of its blooming vegetation and because he “discovered” it during the Catholic feast of Easter. His two expeditions led to the first European settlement in what later became the US. Read more.

Baltimore’s Ever Present Past 

Renée S. Gordon

The Mid-Atlantic region is the most historic corridor in the country and consists of a series of metropolitan areas within 220-miles and accessed by I-95. The major cities, New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, DC, each have distinctive attractions, New York’s glitz, glamour and Broadway, Philadelphia’s historic sites, art and music scene and DC’s museums, memorials and institutions. Read more


Ghost Ranch: Past and Present

Kathleen Walls

As you drive into Ghost Ranch, you are going to be driving slowly. That's because the eye-catching beauty of the mountains surround you. You would not be human if you didn’t stop to stare at such overwhelming beauty.  However, one of the first man-made things you see is a small log cabin. It's a perfect excuse to pull off the road and explore. Read more.



Fort Hill and John C. Calhoun

by Tom Straka

There are lots of old plantations and plantation houses scattered across the South. Many are special, usually due to some sort of historical connection. Fort Hill was the antebellum plantation of John C. Calhoun, a preeminent nineteenth century southern statesman and later the home of Thomas G. Clemson, his son-in-law. It is unusual for a number of reasons: it is furnished as an historic house museum, primarily with original furnishing from the Calhoun family and Clemson family; due to the historical legacy of both families, it is full of fascinating historical artifacts; and it is a historical site hidden in plain sight, in the center of a major university campus. Read more.


Luxury at Sea, Regent Seven Seas Navigator

Renée S. Gordon

The Hamburg-America Line launched the Princess Victoria Louise, the first ship built solely for luxury cruising, on June 29, 1900. Prior ships were ocean liners created to transport passengers and cargo on transatlantic journeys as expeditiously as possible but the Victoria Louise was designed to provide a truly luxurious experience with the aura of a floating 5-star hotel. The 120 suite ship was 407.5 feet long, had amenities, a photography dark room, library and fully equipped gym and offered excursions in ports along the route. It provided the most deluxe cruising experience of the time. Read more.

Beaumont--Port Arthur where Music Lives

Kathleen Walls

The Beaumont, Port Arthur Metropolitan area in Texas is called the Golden Triangle in reference to the wealth that flowed in after the oil gusher at Spindletop in 1901. It includes other smaller cities such as Orange, Nederland, Groves, Port Neches, Vidor, and Lumberton, and smaller places within the area. It could also be called "Golden" in regard to the number of gold records local musicians have earned. Music fans, if you need a reason to visit Beaumont and Port Arthur, here it is. Read more.

Two Casitas Offer an Old Santa Fe Welcome

Kathleen Walls

Nothing is more welcoming on a cold night than a warm fire flickering in an old fashioned cast iron stove. It's really a gas heater but it looks and feels like a real old fashioned wood one. Naturally, there is back up heat and air conditioning if you visit in summer. When I visited Two Casitas in November, Santa Fe's nighttime temperature dropped to 19%. It didn't bother me at all. I was so cozy inside reading a book in a comfortable bed and watching the little blue flames flicker and dance.  Read more

Touching on Texas and New Mexico

Kathleen Walls

The last few days on the road were a whirlwind of fun. I didn't have time to write about them—until now. It was on to Ghost Ranch and Las Cruces inNew Mexico and then to Beaumont and Port Arthur in Texas. Read more.

A Touch of New Mexico

Kathleen Walls

I'm in Santa Fe now after a fabulous pre trip to Albuquerque. Albuquerque is filled with great food and amazing museums. Our IFWTWA (International Food Wine and Travel Writers Association) Convention was very helpful to improve my career as a travel writer. I don't have much time before I head to Ghost Ranch where Georgia O'Keefe lived at one time but here are a few highlights of both cities. Read more.




Alien Touch in Roswell

Kathleen Walls

Say “Roswell, New Mexico” and everyone’s first thought is “aliens.” Mine too. That’s way I am so thrilled to be here today exploring the unknown. My first stop naturally was the International UFO Museum & Research Center. This is not some hokey museum dealing just with Hollywood’s version of aliens from outer space. This is a serious research center that digs deep into the so called “Roswell Incident” that happened in 1947. Read more.

Treasures in Oklahoma City

Kathleen Walls

Oklahoma City is filled with treasures I discovered yesterday and probably many more I did not have time to visit. My stay began at the historic 21C Museum Hotel. This early 1900s building earned its place on the National Register of Historic Places by being a former Fred Jones Ford Motor Company assembly plant that crafted Model Ts. The hotel is a 5 star one and the art museum which is an integral part of the hotel is unique and fantastic. The hotel is home to a flock of limited edition Purple Penguin sculptures by Italian artist collective Cracking Art Group. The large birds seem to mysteriously move around the hotel. Read More.



A Brand New Event: First Southern Cast Iron Cook Off

Kathleen Walls

I’m in Lake Charles and just visited the very first Southern Cast Iron Cook-Off.  Picture Cajun food and culture, music, venders offering samples of and information about everything from alligators to cast iron pots and pans. Professional chefs and amateurs competed in four categories– Meat & Game, Seafood, Sweet & Savory Baking, and Vegetables & Sides. They will prepare original dishes in tents set up on-site. Naturally the food must be cooked in cast iron. They compete for a first prize of $1,500 and lesser second and third prizes. A panel of Southern judges pick the top three dishes for each category. Read more.


Awesome Lake Charles

Kathleen Walls

I'm in awesome Lake Charles, Louisiana now. It's such a different kind of place. It's not a descendant of the plantation South  or the old West. It's a mish mash of both. It's history is influenced by the fact it was not exactly included in the area of the Louisiana Purchase as it is not land drained by the Mississippi River. France, Spain, and the new United States were all struggling for supremacy in North America and no one sent law officers to Lake Charles. It has the Calcasieu River as its main waterway but back in the late 1700s, a small bayou leading to the Gulf of Mexico was a big factor in its development. Read more.


The Secret Coast

Kathleen Walls

The Secret Coast won’t stay a secret much longer. There is so much going on along Mississippi’s Gulf Coast now. The last two days was rainy but I still managed to see a lot more of the coast.  It brought back many memories of the days when I lived in Bay St. Louis. Much has changed but some is still the same. Waveland is back up and running today but still remembering the tragedy that was Katrina. Read more.

Phase one: Bay St Louis

Story and photos by Kathleen Walls

To paraphrase Willie Nelson, "I'm on the road again." But instead of making music, I'm visiting some fantastic places. Some brand new to me; some I am visiting again and enjoying the old while marveling at the new. I'll be traveling almost a month this time. I'm heading as far west as Santa Fe and then back again with amazing stops along the way. Yes, it's the life I love. So to share them with you as I travel, I'm posting a blog-style post that is pretty close to live. Read more.

Small Town Tales: Short Pump and Ashland, Virginia

Renée S. Gordon

In 1607 a group of 105 people led by John Smith established a permanent Virginia colony, named in honor of Queen Elizabeth I, at Jamestown on land inhabited by Native Americans. A colony, also established by the Virginia Company, was to become Richmond, situated on the fall line of the James River. The area was inhabited quickly because of its accessibility to transport. In 1670 William Byrd inherited land from his uncle and in 1670 the General Assembly added to his holdings and he created a trading network near the falls.Read more.

Central Virginia, Appomattox and the Blue Ridge Mountains (part two)

Renée S. Gordon

More Civil War battles were staged in Virginia than any other state and many of those battles played out in and around the 34,000-sq. mile Blue Ridge Mountains’ region. The mountains are more than 1 billion years old, wind through eight states and are stunning in their majesty. Humans are documented in the area approximately 12,000 years ago. Native Americans lived and hunted there as well as considered it a spiritual center. Read more.


Ten Haunted Hotels in the South

Halloween is an especially good time to seek out haunted hotels. But these are fun any time of year. Southern hospitality mingled with the spirits of long ago. Read more.



Central Virginia, Lynchburg  

Renée S. Gordon 

Contrary to what some might believe Lynchburg was named after John Lynch who took over the family’s James River  ferry service in 1757. In 1786 45-acres of John Lynch’s land was used to found the town that was chartered 29-years later. The location of the ferry service was memorialized in 2004 with Langley Fountain spouting a 190-ft. stream of water into the air. Read more.

Cleveland, Living with Legends 

Renée S. Gordon 

In 1669 the French explorer de La Salle, the first European in the Ohio was met by the Iroquois Indians who migrated there in the early 1600s. The river and the state would be named the Iroquois word for “beautiful river”. The land was a bountiful native beaver hunting ground and although the Iroquois were quickly decimated and supplanted by the tribes including the Delaware and Shawnee, the French established posts to trade with the natives. After the Revolutionary War, in 1800, as part of the Northwest Territory, Ohio became part of the American frontier. Read more.

Franklin, Tennessee, Yesterday's Wine

Kathleen Walls

I wonder if Willie Nelson was thinking of Franklin, Tennessee when he wrote "We're agin' with time like yesterday's wine."  Just like a good aged wine, Franklin had a unique past and today is a city that beckons travelers of all types. Read more.

Savannah, Where the Past is Ever Present 

Renée Gordon

Georgia, named in honor of King George II, was the 13th of the 13 colonies and was founded in 1733. When the ship Anne landed the 120 colonists on the shore of the Savannah River, at the foot of a 45-foot bluff, founder James Oglethorpe brought with him the plans for the city with the river as the northern boundary. The city had a grid of wide streets and 24 squares, 22 still exist and many retain their original charm with cobblestone streets, moss draped trees and historic architectural styles.Read more.

Vingenzo's: A Touch of Italy in Woodstock

Kathleen Walls

Woodstock, Georgia has a huge variety of great restaurants but if you like Italian, Vingenzo's stands out. It is an Italian treasure in Woodstock's downtown entertainment district.  One taste of Vingenzo's Chef Michael Bologna's Neapolitan Pizza or homemade sausage will have you thinking you died and went to—no, not Heaven—Italy. One of Chef Michael's secrets to the best Italian food on the planet is to shop local. For him, local is Naples, Italy when it comes to Italian pizza.  Read more.


DeKalb County, Georgia: The Presence of the Past

Renée S.  Gordon

The history of DeKalb County has been archeologically traced back as far as the late Ice Age and Indian mounds from the Late Archaic Period have been found that predate the 1567 Spanish claim to the land by thousands of years. When Juan Pardo surveyed the region two significant Indian trade trails already existed and members of the Creek Confederacy the, “People of One Fire”, lived there. Europeans encroached on native land illegally until the 1821 Indian Springs Treaty forced natives to move and more Europeans quickly settled in large numbers. Read more

Experience Saint Lucia

by Renée S. Gordon

Saint Lucia was possibly inhabited 3,000 years ago by the Ciboney and based on archaeological research and artifacts it has been proven that “Iouanalao” island, “land of the iguanas”, was settled by the Arawaks around 2,000 years ago. They were invaded around 1,000 AD by the South American Carib Indians whose hostility extended to the first Europeans making colonization difficult. Read more.

Savannah Eats

Kathleen Walls

You may go to Savannah for the history and fun but you gotta eat. So why not eat at the most fun and interesting restaurants. As icing on the cake many of Savannah's restaurants have a historic background. Here are a few I loved there and why. Read more. 

Always Patsy Cline

Kathleen Walls

She was born Virginia Patterson Hensley on September 8, 1932. In a life filled with much misfortune, she not only survived but became a role model for female singers and women everywhere. The words from the Helen Reddy song, I am Woman, "Yes, I've paid the price. But look how much I gained. If I have to, I can do anything." could have been written about Patsy Cline. It should not come as a surprise that one of Helen Reddy's early memories was of her grandmother singing Patsy Cline songs as she rocked little Helen in a rocking chair. Read more.

Wilmington, Delaware’s “Chateau Country” 

Renée S. Gordon

In 1800 Pierre-Samuel du Pont de Nemours and two sons left France to settle in the United States. This voyage would alter the course of American history. Pierre had been elevated to nobility because of his position with Louis XVI as an economist, secretary to the Assembly of Notables and his assistance in crafting the 1783 Treaty of Versailles that ended the American Revolution. Read more.

Tribute to Lum York

Kathleen Walls

On the 50th Anniversary of Hank Williams death, I had the honor to meet the man who slapped his bull fiddle for Hank's Drifting Cowboys in the 1940s.William Herbert "Lum" York, (November 16, 1918 – August 15, 2004) was a musician best known as the bass player in Hank Williams Drifting Cowboys from 1944–1949. After leaving the Drifting Cowboys, York played bass in Lefty Frizzell's band until 1953. Read more.



Wonderful Woodstock

Kathleen Walls

Who knew there is so much to see and do in Woodstock, Georgia?  Just visited it with Travel Media Showcase this year and discovered a treasure. It began with the Georgia Gold Rush and grew when Marietta and North Georgia Railroad built a depot there in 1879. There are a couple of legends about the city's name. Read more.

Wilmington’s Harriett Tubman Underground Railroad Byway 

Renee S. Gordon

On Monday, September 17, 1849 Araminta “Minty” Ross set out from Poplar Neck Plantation, on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, to freedom in the North. Prior to her escape she changed her name to Harriet, after her mother, and took her husband’s last name. It is undocumented exactly how long, by which route or who assisted her on her 140-mile journey to Philadelphia but it is believed that she traveled by night, following the North Star, and was aided along the way by supporters of the Underground Railroad (UGRR).  Read more.

DeKalb County's Terrific Trio

Kathleen Walls

Did you know DeKalb County, Georgia has a trio of unusual and fascinating museums? I didn’t until I recently visited during Travel Media Showcase. Read more.

Maryland's National Harbor: America's Backyard

Renee S. Gordon

The first Europeans in the southern region of Maryland, today’s 10-mile long South Potomac Heritage Scenic Corridor portion*, were met by the Piscataway Indians who lived there from 1300. Regional native habitation dates back 13,000 years and was the site of a thriving culture. Read more

Stone Mountain: Above it All

Kathleen Walls

Stone Mountain, a huge granite monolith towering over the landscape in DeKalb County, Georgia, is eye-candy in the highest form.  Its Confederate heroes, carved in giant scale on its front, is carving is breathtaking. It's the world's largest bas-relief carving in North America on the largest granite outcropping. The figures you see are Confederate Generals Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson and President of the Confederacy, Jefferson Davis. Whether you agree with the character's role in life or not you have to admit it is eye catching. Read more.

Savannah for the Broke and Cheap

Kathleen Walls

If you've been putting off visiting Savannah because you think it’s expensive, think again. It can be costly especially parking but there are many free attractions well worth a visit. I just visited and had a wonderful time. There is so much to do there I will be writing about Savannah for months at least but for now, I'll give you the skinny on doing Savannah almost free. Read more.


Elatse'Yi: Camping Without the Headaches

Kathleen Walls

In the not too distant past, if you wanted to get close to nature you needed to pack your camping supplies or hitch up your RV. I just did a magnificent close to nature trip with neither of those things. How? I went glamping in Ellijay in the North Georgia Mountains. Read more.

Southern Hospitality at its Peak,
NashHouse Southern Spoon & Saloon

Kathleen Walls

NashHouse Southern Spoon & Saloon in Nashville, Tennessee is more than a dining establishment. It's a tribute to Nashville's Country Music icons. It's relatively new having opened in March 2018 and is booming. Location of course is important. It's in the Cambria Nashville hotel putting it walking distance from the Country Music Hall of Fame, Music City Center, and the Johnny Cash/Patsy Cline Museums. Read more.



North Carolina Transportation Museum
Planes, Trains and Automobiles, and Some Boats

Tom and Pat Straka

This is one of the gems which is hidden right off a major interstate. It’s for transportation buffs, especially railroad buffs. In the late nineteenth century, J.P. Morgan, owner of what was once the Southern Railway Company, located its largest steam locomotive servicing facility halfway between the railroad’s major terminal points of Washington, D.C. and Atlanta. Read more.

R and A Orchards: Country Fresh

Kathleen Walls

If an apple a day really keeps the doctor away, R and A Orchards in Gilmer County, Georgia can keep you in perfect health. In this era of not knowing where our food comes from, it's a pleasure to visit a real family run orchard and produce store. Not just for the apples. They also grow peaches, corn, cabbage, green beans, strawberries, blackberries, tomatoes, and lots of other produce on about 146 acres. Read more.

Henry County, GA from Reel to Real (Part Two)

Renée S. Gordon

Hampton, located 26-miles south of Atlanta, has a population of less than 10,000 but receives thousands of visitors annually drawn by the city’s unique sites and attractions. Seven years ago Hampton was deemed a “Playful City,” one of under 220 in the country.  Read more.

Build an Ark

Kathleen Walls

There are many fun things to visit in Ellijay, Georgia but there is one unusual place many people might miss. If you are an animal lover this one is a must-see. It's Build an Ark Animal Rescue. When you drive up to Coosawattee River Tubing Company on Eagle Mountain Drive, you'll see a big red barn with pasture in front. Read more.


Westville:  The 1800s Return

Kathleen Walls

Long awaited Westville, a living history recreation of a typical Georgia town in the 1800s is now alive and in full swing again in Columbus, Georgia. Its authentic homes and building have been moved from around the state. It had begun in Lumpkin and was closed down for a good while to complete the move.  I visited there this month and was transported back to the old days. Read more.


The Lone Writer Rides the Range

Kathleen Walls

"Return with me now to those thrilling days of yesteryear when the Lone Ranger rides again"--no make that the Lone Writer. Here at French Broad Outpost Dude Ranch in Eastern Tennessee, I’m getting as close to the old western days as you can get. I followed a gravel road that is not on most maps to the ranch.  Read  more.


“The Impressionist’s Eye”
An important art exhibition in Philadelphia

By Eleanor Hendricks McDaniel

I recently visited the Philadelphia Museum of Art to view an exhibition of their extraordinary collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist artworks. More than 80 important pieces by the masters of those avant-garde movements can be seen in the media of painting, sculpture and works on paper. Read more.

Legacy of The Man in Black: Johnny Cash Museum

Kathleen Walls

One of the greatest musicians of our time is memorialized in a museum in downtown Nashville. Only a handful of musicians have left as large a footprint on Country Music as Johnny Cash. The Johnny Cash Museum is rated number one music museum in the world and a must-see by Forbes, Conde'  Naste, and National Geographical Traveler. Read more.

Reel to Real in Henry County, GA (part one)

Henry County, Georgia, comprised of four major communities, Hampton, Locust Grove, McDonough, and Stockbridge, is situated 20-miles from downtown Atlanta. It was named in honor of Patrick Henry upon its creation in 1821 on land obtained through a treaty with the Creek Indians.  Read more.    

Cross Hazzard County with Mayberry and you get Leiper's Fork

by Kathleen Walls

Leiper's Fork, Tennessee is one of the prettiest little towns you can find. It's no coincidence that as you drive into town, a bright orange car and a police cruiser catch your eye. It's the General Lee from Dukes of Hazzard and Barney Fife's cruiser from the Andy Griffin Show. Leiper's Fork, just off the Natchez Trace, is very reminiscent of Mayberry or Hazzard County. However I never spotted a nefarious Boss Hogg type there. Read more

Getting Catty at Jacksonville Zoo

Kathleen Walls

There are some places in Jacksonville a visitor should not miss. One of them is Jacksonville Zoo and Botanical Gardens. It's on the north side of Jacksonville and not in the main path of visitors headed into Jax's busy downtown.  It began back in 1914 and has grown ever since.  Read More.

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