Inadvertent detour

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My first major goal for the day was Parish’s Grove in Benton County. It was a place where toward the end of the Black Hawk war a militia company had been dismissed. I got more interested when I learned from Wikipedia that the Kickapoo leader Perish (Pierre) Moran had been buried here, and that it had been a place with a large variety of trees. Out on the prairie that would have been significant.

I was riding west on CR-500N, and when I came to Morehouse Road, a crooked one that doesn’t follow the rectangular grid, I decided to turn north. Those are often the more interesting roads, and who knows, this one followed one of the early trails.

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This is the first intersection north of 500N.

 
It was a mistake to head north, though. I had only county maps with me, and not a regional map that showed how all the places related to each other. So I got a little mixed up. I thought I needed to be further to the north. It would have been better for me to head straight west.

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I did several miles on gravel. My detour took me to the most uninteresting terrain on the whole day’s ride. There were level fields of corn and soybeans, nicely mowed ditches, and the sparcely located farmsteads didn’t have much of the worked-in look that some of the more interesting farmsteads have. But here there was a field of wildflowers alongside the road, so it was worth a stop.

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But from the point of this photo on, the country was not particularly interesting. In fact, I was starting to wonder just what it was I liked about riding in this part of the world. It wasn’t until a few miles after my long, inadvertent detour was over that I remembered.

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  • Dan

    I’m wondering if you saw the Potawatomi Indian march marker on 500N just east of Morehouse Road. Here’s a shot of it.

    http://flickr.com/photos/danonbike/2430028372/

  • Spokesrider

    Hi, Dan. Yes, I saw that marker and got a photo of it. I first saw it two years ago. After my first two rides down 500N last week I wondered why I hadn’t seen it this time. On Wednesday, on my 3rd ride, I paid more attention and then saw it.

    I have wondered why the marker was there. I thought the Potawatomi were marched to Loganstown and then put on boats to go down the river. But they would have had to get off somewhere to go to Danville. Maybe they went by land the entire distance.

    I think I have some books in my library that explain the route in more detail. I guess I should look.

    I wish there was a comprehensive map for Indiana showing where all the old Indian trails were located. But I haven’t seen such a thing, nor have I seen such a map for just the Lafayette area. In the early 1930s one was published for Michigan, and I use it quite often for my riding.