Saturday, March 24, 2018

Spring Again

Welcome to John's Island

A Trip to the Beach and Our Concerns

The two photos above were taken at beautiful Canon Beach, Oregon. Although the big picture is great the details are not so good. The ocean is filling up with trillions of tiny pieces of plastic thanks to guess who. Close up photos below. We're doing the same sort of thing to the air that keeps us alive but it is harder to document the proof. Here on Canon Beach the evidence is right at your feet. This leaves us feeling sad for the generations to come. So many humans haven't found the wisdom in protecting our enviroment rather than their precious rights to do as they please at the expense of the rest of us.

Back to the beauty with a couple of Sky Watch photos, both taken at the beach. Linking up with Skywatch Friday and thanks to Yogi for hosting.

The big rock is known as Haystack
The rainbow was just lucky timing.

Spring Postcards

Maria has thoughtfully chosen Spring as the theme for Postcards for the Weekend. The other blogs have some beautiful cards and thanks, Maria, for hosting. We will start here with our favorite Spring postcard ...

Artwork by St. John (no, not this John!)
This old card was published about 1906-1910
We've posted this one in years past.
The bears should qualify us for linking up with Eileen's Saturday's Critters. If you love critters, like we do, check out Saturday's Critters. Thanks to Eileen for hosting!

Back of the unused card.

Not specifically Spring, but March is the month. (Unless you're south of the equator, in which case, happy Fall to you!)
I hope SOMEONE with a MARCH birthday
will tell me how accurate this is!

Back of the unused card.

History Department

In our last post we explained how our interest in trains started. Our curiosity lead to research railroad history in America.  Perhaps one of the most interesting events took place on May 10th, 1869, in Promontory, Utah, when the final golden spike was driven and the first transcontinental railroad in the world was complete. Below, you will see an official photo taken on the day. Then a photo we took on a visit to the Golden Spike National Historic Site which is intended to recreate the event as closely as possible. Last is the stamp issued by the US Postal Service to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the driving of the last spike. First, a little background from Wikipedia ...

"In 1862, Congress passed the Pacific Railroad Act. This act gave the Union Pacific and Central Pacific railroad companies the responsibility of creating a transcontinental railroad route, roughly following the 42nd parallel from Omaha, Nebraska, to Sacramento, California. Railroad lines in Chicago were to be extended to meet the new railroad in Omaha. Central Pacific began laying tracks eastward from Sacramento in 1863. Central Pacific began working westward from Omaha in 1865. For their efforts, Congress granted these railroad companies large tracts of land and millions of dollars in loans.

On May 10, 1869, the tracks of the two railroads met at Promontory, Utah. This historic achievement marked the first time a railroad had spanned an entire continent. The transcontinental railroad did a great deal to speed the settlement and industrial growth of the U.S. By the end of the 1800s, the U.S. had five transcontinental rail lines."

May 10, 1869
The Transcontinental Railroad is completed
with the driving of the Golden Spike.
(Photographer's name unknown.)
The man on the ladder leaning against the telegraph pole
was wired in and sent simultaneous signals to
San Francisco and New York City when the spike was
driven by sending, "DONE" 

Summer 1995
Our photo of the Golden Spike National Historical Site.
(We dug way back into the archives to find this one.)

3 Cent US Postage Stamp issued to celebrate
75th Anniversary of the Completion of First Transcontinental
1869 - 1944
The stamp was issued to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad. The stamp design was selected by President Franklin Roosevelt. Once the stamp was released, the public noticed an error in its design. The stamp pictured the flag blowing in a different direction than the smoke. Many expected the stamp to be recalled, but the Post Office Department explained that the flag had to be shown waving in that direction, otherwise, it would have been outside of the stamp design.

More of the Circling Year Calendar for You

We're keeping you up-to-date with the Circling Year Calendar we started publishing in our January 15th post. The story on why we're reprinting a 1917 calendar is there.

The Spirit of Love

You will find as
you look back up-
on your life that
the moments that
stand out above
everything else
are the moments
when you have
done things in a
spirit of love.
Henry Drummond

The Wisdom of Friendship

We take care of
our health, we
lay up money,
we make our
roof tight and our
clothing sufficient
but who provides
wisely that we
shall not be want-
ing in the best
property of all, --
Thank you for stopping by John's Island.


  1. That spring postcard made me smile... :)

  2. Hello, John! I love the cute critter on your Spring postcard. I really loved Canon Beach, Oregon. It is a shame to find so much plastics and trash on our beaches and in the oceans. I wish more people care about our environment. Great quote and photos. Thank you for linking up and sharing your post. I also appreciate your visit and comment. Happy Saturday, enjoy your weekend!

  3. Oh, John...I heart aches for the generations to come. How will they survive without the oceans?
    Meanwhile, I remember seeing Haystack Rock. One of my best friends lives on the Oregon coast, and I have enjoyed driving from southwestern BC, through Oregon, to the California coast to see Cannery Row...what a beautiful, wonderful place the west coast is. My family still lives on the coast of British Columbia, where the same plastic problem persists. If I were younger, I'd be out there picketing and shouting and just generally complaining, and helping to clear your beaches and ours from the fatal plastic plague.
    However, I'm afraid it might be too late. Wouldn't that be awful?
    An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

  4. The water is always a lovely scene for photos. Personally, I can't imagine throwing stuff in the ocean--I'm a 'dispose of properly' kind of girl--and it's so sad to see.
    Hubby and I have a 'thing' for trains, too, and try to visit all we can here in New Zealand.

  5. Beautiful skies. Love the rainbow.

  6. Your posts are always filled with lots of interesting memorabilia. I too am very worried about the plastic situation in the oceans. I read recently that there is a Great Pacific Garbage Patch that is huge. We dump 8 million metric tons of plastic in the ocean every year. It is horrible. Thank you for the information, and also the interesting fact about the flag and the smoke. You always come up with things I wouldn't otherwise know. :-)

  7. It is sad to see all the garbage left behind by thoughtless people. On the other hand, the sky shots are simply amazing.That rainbow could not have been at a better place.Thanks for always leaving such great words of encouragement on my blog.

  8. there's all the junk in the ocean and yet this topic is not on the radar as far as prevention or cleanup is concerned.

  9. Quite a few of our local restaurants have stopped providing plastic straws. I know, a small effort, but every little bit counts. Love the Haystack/rainbow shot!

  10. The water is always a lovely scene for photos. Personally, I can't imagine throwing stuff in the ocean--I'm a 'dispose of properly' kind of girl--and it's so sad to see.
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  11. Loved your post. And of watch. Hope you're having a great weekend.

  12. Love the photos and thank you for highlighting the growing problem of plastic in our environment. It’s not enough to recycle or reuse, but to stop using all together. Start by not using plastic straws or bags then keep branching out.

  13. How sad. I recall walking the pristine beaches along the Oregon coast in the eighties.

  14. Dear John i just Loved the first shot of beach .
    i agree that just few evil minds who have same way of thinking(obviously most selfish) have united to serve their personal benefits at the expense of common men!

    your sky shots are so outstanding and SPIRITUAL!!!

    thank you for railroad history and stamp sharing i enjoyed knowing !

    spring post card is sooo CUTE and adorable!

  15. I just returned from Costa Rica where recycling and preserving the environment are a prominent national policy. As a result, CR is the cleanest country in Latin America. BUT, there must be a national WILL, high PRIORITY and COMMITMENT for similar results including EDUCATION beginning at pre-school. The GOAL must be top down driven. Meanwhile, EACH of us can do our part personally as well as those we mentor: pick it up & throw it away properly. Every bit helps.

  16. Great post John! You are so right about all that stuff in the ocean. Pretty sad actually. Love the old post cards and interesting info on the railroad. I didn't notice the flag and smoke blowing in different directions until you mentioned it. Now, it looks very odd...

  17. "You will find as
    you look back up-
    on your life that
    the moments that
    stand out above
    everything else
    are the moments
    when you have
    done things in a
    spirit of love."

    Oh so true!


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