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Legends Letter

August, 2004

Legends of America Makes Yahoo's Picks of the Day!!!





Yeah, ok, so I'm a tootin' my own horn here here a little, but, ohmagosh, this is SO HUGE!!!  I just couldn't help spreading the word around a little.  I mean just think about it -- with about a gazillion websites out there, Yahoo, which just happens to be the Number One Home Page and the Number Two Search Engine in the whole wide world, picks lil' ole' us as their Pick of the Day on Sunday, August 8, 2004!! 


From this, we've got a lot of press. In the meantime, I've been havin' a little party up here!!


If you're new to Legends of America, we focus on travel destinations that appeal to the nostalgic and historic minded.  Not really interested in the glitter and glitz of the big cities, we hunt out those places with a little "elbow room," lots of history, and hidden attractions. 


I truly hope you enjoy the newsletter and the website!!


Kathy Weiser, Owner/Editor




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In this Edition: 


Newsletter Mailing List Change


New Additions to Legends


Branson, Missouri -From Hillbillies to State of the Art


Featured Book- Legends of the Old West


Bodie, California - A Ghostly Ghost Town


Roadside Attractions


Painted Ladies of the Old West


El Muerto - The Headless One of South Texas



In The Meantime .....


Newsletter Signup and Mailing List Change


The number of subscribers to our newsletter has recently increased dramatically.  In the past, I've been sending this out manually, but now it would take me days, so I've found a provider called Bravenet to send the letters, and keep the mailing list updated with new subscribers, bad addresses, etc.


But, not to worry, I'll still be doing the writing.  It won't be any different than it is now. 


If you requested the newsletter via the guestbook or by sending us an e-mail, you will soon receive a notification from Bravenet asking if you want to subscribe.  This is a double opt-in program to ensure that you only get the Newsletter if you want it.  You will need to confirm your subscription or signup on our Newsletter page to continue to get our free Legends Letter.


If you initially subscribed through the Newsletter page, then you're already on the list, so you don't have to worry about nuthin!



Hey, if you like the newsletter, forward it on to your friends!!

They too can receive updates when we add new content, provide product specials from our Legends' General Store, and more!  Click HERE to sign up for the newsletter.


New Additions to Legends of America



We really did a lot of hustling over the last month and got all kinds of new content on our pages. 


We moved our Women of the Old West to their very own page -- just wasn't fair.  Some of them didn't belong on our Outlaws and Gunfighters pages.  We've got a new lady of the West -- Pearl de Vere, the most famous madam of Cripple Creek, Colorado.  That of course, meant we wanted to write about Cripple Creek too, so we did.  Then we decided to have a whole article on the Painted Ladies of the West.  You know how one thing just leads to another.


We've really been trying, as fast as we can, to expand our states of the American West -- adding at least a couple of stories and always planning for growth.  Now you can read a little about the great plains of Nebraska, Ryolite - a ghost town in Nevada, and a lil' bit about California and Wyoming.  Stay tuned as we keep adding more.


Always looking over our shoulders for a lurking ghost, we were happy to receive two stories from our readers - A California version of La Llorona and the Missouri Bone Hill Legend.  We also did a little research and added The Haunted Skirvin Hotel in Oklahoma City, El Muerto, the headless horseman of Texas, and the Haunted Sheridan Inn in Wyoming.


And, as always, we're diggin' around for stories of treasure troves.  Supposedly there's about $40,000 in hidden gold bullion on Trinity Mountain in California, and loads of Nevada loot including Gold Coins in the Genoa Hills, a Nevada Prison Treasure, Stolen Loot at the Truckee River, and The Lost Gold Ledge.


For our Old West fans our posse tracked down a very dangerous killer by the name of Wild Bill Longley who killed nearly as many people as John Wesley Hardin in Texas.  It's just a wonder that his name isn't better known as being one of the most notorious killers of the Wild West.



What our readers are saying about Legends of America:



What a great site. It is amazing how well you keep updating it! - Jim


So far it is fascinating. I'm reading about the Ghost Towns at the moment. All so different from England. :) - Sheila


Terrific site. Lots of nostalgia on the page including your stuff along old 66. (An important part of my childhood.) Some of the places pictured are in my memory. Keep up the good work! - JD


This is an outstanding site! Keep it going! Wagons Ho! - Calamity Jan


Tell us what you like best about Legends of America.  We'll try to add more about what the majority of  you like!



Featured Travel Destination 



Branson, Missouri -From Hillbillies to State of the Art - Branson, Missouri was born in 1882 and spent years as a sleepy little village where the area hillbillies made their living farming tobacco and tomatoes and passed their time fishing at Lake Taneycomo.  But that began to change when Harold Bell Wright, a Kansas minister, visited the area and wrote his best selling book "Shepherd of the Hills."  Upon its publication in 1907, Branson began to draw thousands of new visitors to experience the unspoiled beauty of the area's rolling hills, abundant caves and many lakes.


When Table Rock Dam was completed in 1959, the area again saw a new surge of thousands of visitors and soon Silver Dollar City was formed where local craftsmen and artists entertained the many guests.  Soon musical families also began to entertain visitors in small simple theaters.  By the 70's motels were going up everywhere and nationally famous stars made the move to Branson following the lead of stars like Roy Clark and Box Car Willie.

Today Branson has more theater seats than Broadway featuring such stars as Andy Williams, The Lennon Sisters, Mel Tillis, Glen Campbell, Mickey Gilley, Moe Bandy, Yakov Smirnoff, The Oak Ridge Boys, Neal McCoy and many more.

Take a stroll down what was once little more than a hillbilly lane to see that Branson, Missouri has now stepped up to play in the big leagues with the likes of the Grand Ole Opry.


From the infamous outlaws who once galloped across the West to the romanticized blacktop of Route 66, Legends of America shares the rumors behind the rest stops. Yearning for a theory about the true cause of the Civil War? Dare to step into a haunted frontier fort? Mosey on in, partner! This is one tourist trap you'll be happy to visit.


-- Yahoo, Writing about Legends of America, August 8, 2004


Featured Travel Guides and Books



Legends of the Old WestLegends of the Old West by Kent Alexander
Legends of the Old West is a fascinating look at the wild, woolly West. Its entertaining text and lavish illustrations will inspire and delight Western buffs and armchair cowboys and cowgirls alike. Paperback  9-3/8" x 12-3/4"  120 pages, full-color throughout.

Got a great tale about the Mother Road, a Ghost Story, a legend in your State, or a photograph you would like to show on our site? 

Send it on!!  We'll be happy to feature you on Legends of America. Send us an Email

Ghost Towns



Bodie - A Ghostly Ghost Town - Bodie was born when gold was discovered in 1859.  The town grew slowly as an insignificant mining camp for the next twenty years until a very rich vein of gold ore was discovered in 1878.  By 1879, Bodie boasted a population of about 10,000 and 2,000 buildings. 


Like many booming mining camps, Bodie soon earned a reputation for violence and lawlessness.  In its day, Bodie was more widely known for its lawlessness than for its riches.  Given Bodie's reputation, it is perhaps not surprising that one little girl, whose family was moving to the mining town, reportedly prayed: "Goodbye God!  We are going to Bodie."


When the gold played out, the people began to leave and in the 1932 Bodie suffered a devastating fire, which wiped out 95% of the town.  By the 1940s no one was left in the dead town. 


In 1962, after years of neglect, Bodie became a State Historic Park, and two years later the Ghost Town of Bodie was dedicated as a California Historic Site. Today it is one of the most preserved ghost towns in the American WestBodie has more than 200 intact buildings that the visitor can see. 


In just the last two months, Legends of America has grown more than five-fold.  Due to the popularity, we now offer advertising packages to potential customers.  If you are a business that could benefit from our tremendous growth and start-up pricing, check out our Advertising by clicking HERE!






Roadside Attractions



As a new addition to our Newsletter, we will begin to feature Roadside Attractions - some quirky, many offbeat, some just so great they can't be ignored, and all of them worth a stop and potentially, a photo opportunity.


Brothel Museum in Cripple Creek, Colorado - Here you can learn all about Pearl De Vere, the most famous madam of Cripple Creek, Colorado, a one time booming gold mine camp.  What's really bizarre here is the museum offers admission for half-price to children ages 10-13 and free for children under ten.  Children??  Go figure.


There's more Quirky Colorado stuff - check it out HERE!




When is a corn dog not a corn dog?  When you're at the Cozy Dog Drive along Route 66 in Springfield, Illinois.  This first fast food of the road was introduced by Ed Waldmire at the 1946 Illinois State Fair.  In 1950, he opened the Cozy Dog Drive Inn.  This Mother Road icon still stands  today at 2935 So. Sixth Street in Springfield, Illinois, but when you order  their "Cozy Dog," don't call it a corn dog, or you might be met with little more than a steely eyed stare.


From the Legends' General Store


Frank Lambert Pen and InkFred Lambert's Original Art For Sale on Legends of America


The Legends' General Store has added several of Fred Lambert's original paintings and pen and ink drawings.  Fred Lambert, a Cimarron, New Mexico hero was a gentle man who served his entire life as a New Mexico lawman and was also a poet and a painter. 




This collection no longer available

The Old West  


Painted Ladies of the American West - Sometimes called soiled doves or shady ladies, these women were as much a part of the Old West as were the outlaws, miners and gunslingers


The California '49ers labeled these women with names such as "ladies of the line" and "sporting women." Among the many trails of Kansas, common terms included "daughters of sin," "fallen frails," "doves of the roost," and "nymphs du prairie."


Painted ladies included two types of women -- the Saloon Girls and the "real" shady ladies - the prostitutes of the American frontier.  Contrary to popular thinking, most Saloon Girls were not prostitutes.  In dancehalls, they had no need to be, often making more money than their "shadier" counterpart.


Read more about the Painted Ladies of the West by clicking  HERE!


Bumper Sticker Wisdom

Caution: I drive like you do!

All generalizations are false.

I Haven't Been The Same Since That House Fell On My Sister.

We are Microsoft. Resistance Is Futile. You Will Be Assimilated.

Friendly fire isn't.


Ghosts and Mysteries  


El Muerto - The Headless One of South Texas - In 1800s Texas was a wild and lawless place attracting all manner of thieves, murderers, and other ruthless outlaws.  Though their percentages were far less than those of the many desperadoes, the Texas Rangers set about in taming the wild Texas frontier.


In 1850, a man known simply as Vidal was busy rustling cattle all over South Texas and soon he had a high price on his head – "dead or alive."  Soon, two Texas Rangers caught up with Vidal and in an attempt to set an example they beheaded him and set him upon a horse to roam the South Texas Brush Country. 


Soon, stories began to abound about the headless rider seen usually in remote country, with its sombreroed head swinging back and forth to the rhythm of horse's gallop. 

Finally, a posse of local ranchers captured the wild pony and buried the body in an unmarked grave.   

That should have been the end of El Muerto, but the legend lives on. Soon after Vidal's body was laid to rest, soldiers at Fort Inge (present-day Uvalde) began to see the headless rider.  Travelers and ranchers still report seeing the ghost of El Muerto to this day.




From ghoulies and ghosties
And long leggit beasties
And things that go bump in the night.
Dear Lord, deliver us.


-- Old Celtic Prayer


Feedback and Suggestions  


We always appreciate feedback about the website and our newsletter.  Do you have a suggestion about content that you would like to see, or perhaps, would like to contribute a photograph or a story?  We would love to hear about it!  We also want to hear about suggestions for improvement.  See a link that doesn't work or a picture that doesn't appear -- please let us know.  Just drop us a line at our Email address and tell us what you think.






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Legends of America


A Travel Guide for the Nostalgic & Historic Minded


28926 Cedar Hill Loop

Warsaw, MO 65355



Kathy Weiser





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