Our Day in Hannibal

Due to the rising level of the Mississippi River the flood gates on the river landing were closed.   You can see the water from the Mississippi river still coming in through the gates.  The residents along the river take this occasional rise in water as just a part of living near the river and they love this river!

The river walk may be closed, but Hannibal was open.  We strolled the downtown historical area shopping at the farmers marketplace and having lunch after visiting a couple of museums.

We toured the Mark Twain historical area which is where Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn lived and did mischief.  Phil even felt inspired to do a little fence white wash brushing.

Samuel Langhorn Clemens was born in Florida, Missouri and grew up in Hannibal, he is not the only Hannibal resident to become famous.  Some of the ones that I remember reading about are:

  • Jake Beckley, (“Old Eagle Eye” – baseball player on three major league teams and inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1971) lived in Hannibal.
  • Margaret Tobin Brown, (“The Unsinkable Molly Brown”) was born in Hannibal in 1867 and survived the sinking of the Titanic in 1912. She was called Maggie not Molly during her lifetime.
  • Blanche Kelso Bruce, second Negro to hold the office of U.S. Senator) was a teacher in Hannibal.
  • Marie Rouff Byrum, Cast the first vote by a woman in the United States in a special election in Hannibal on August 31, 1920.
  • Carroll Beckwith, (portrait artist) was born in Hannibal in 1852.
  • Admiral Robert E. Coontz, (Commander of the United States Fleet in 1923) was born in Hannibal.
  • Cliff Edwards, (Actor/musician known as Ukelele Ike) was born in Hannibal. In Hollywood he appeared in many films and was the voice of Jiminy Cricket. I saw him with Roy Rogers as a child at the movies.
  • Jack Fascinato, (Arrranger/accompanist for Tennessee Ernie Ford) was Hannibal school orchestra director in the 1930’s. I loved “Sixteen Tons”.

There are many others, but these meant something to me and I had no idea they were from the small town of Hannibal.

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