This week Amy asks us to share something unique. She writes, “We are looking forward to seeing your interpretation of unique, which may be a building, person, color, place, photo…” You can view her entire challenge post of a beautiful Buddhist Temple in Japan here. For my challenge response, I decided to share a collection of unique places and objects rather than focus on one particular subject. In my opening example, the Spanish mission above might be just like any of the Spanish missions found in the 19 southernmost states. This mission has significance in the war for Texas Independence. The Alamo, site of a major defeat to the Mexican Army, is in San Antonio, Texas.
Another unique location in the United States is Mount Rushmore where you will find the iconic view of four Presidents who have made their own mark on American history. George Washington, as our first President, was the foundation of our new democracy. Thomas Jefferson, as a primary author of the Declaration of Independence, was involved in the purchase of the Louisiana Territory, after which our country gained 15 new states. Theodore Roosevelt was the 26th President and his involvement in the ending of large corporate monopolies and his was a time of great economic growth. Roosevelt was also a conservationist who did much to protect our natural resources. Abraham Lincoln was President during our most trying time, the American Civil War. His leadership is given credit for holding the union together.
This Viking Ship, constructed in Hawley, Minnesota, began construction in the 1970s and was the brainchild of a Moorhead Minnesota school counselor, Robert Asp. This full size replica would eventually sail from Duluth, Minnesota to Oslo, Norway. Though Mr. Asp didn’t live to transit the Atlantic Ocean in his creation, he was aboard during the vessel’s seaworthiness trial on it’s maiden voyage in 1980. After he passed away from Leukemia in 1982, his family honored his dream by organizing the voyage and sailing the ship to Norway.
This imposing building is the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado. It’s claim to uniqueness is twofold. The builder is none other than Freelan Oscar Stanley, who with his brother is responsible for the design and manufacture of the Stanley Steamer automobile. Another claim to fame of this hotel is that Stephen King stayed there during a particularly low capacity night. The nearly empty hotel gave him the inspiration to write “The Shining.”
Those who have ever visited Acapulco, Mexico have no doubt been made aware of the cliff diving performances off the high bluffs at the Pacific edge of the North American continent. Several times a day, these athletes climb from the shallow lagoon area below the cliffs to the diving point high up on the cliff.
On Freemont Street in downtown Las Vegas, Nevada, a large number of street vendors and artisans ply their talents under the large canopy known as the Freemont Experience. One of the unique artisans is a sculptor who will create a clay model of someone either sitting as a model or as in this example, a photo from a cellphone picture.
In Nicaragua each Easter season, a pilgrimage from many communities travels to Popoyuapa to pray at the Sanctuary of Jesus del Rescate. The oxcart procession draws as many as 400 carts pulled by oxen and horses. The annual Easter worship has drawn these faithful to the journey for over 300 years. Even today it is a sacrifice for the pilgrims who must raise money to acquire and care for the oxen, purchase or rent the carts, and take the time off from their normal daily jobs.
My final image submitted for this challenge is of the ceiling in the Great Hall in the Library of Congress. This beautiful building is across from the U.S. Capitol and down the street from the Supreme Court Building. The origination of the library came in 1800 when the funding was approved for moving the nation’s capital from Philadelphia to Washington D.C. In that appropriation, $5,000 was earmarked to begin a congressional research library. After the Civil War, the library became the library for the American people, not just a congressional library. The building’s art and architecture surely meet the definition of “unique.” Thank you, Amy, for a great challenge theme.