On Friday I attended a funeral in Elsberry, Missouri. Following the Mass, I had lunch with my sister and brother-in-law before exploring this small community of around 2,500 residents. Elsberry was platted in 1871, and has a tidy little main street. As I was photographing the movie theater, the owner came out and asked if I would like to see the inside of the building. Though it was built in 1911, the Senate Theatre was heavily damaged by a fire in January of 2011. The original floor is still in place, but most everything else had to be replaced. The town rallied to help the owners rebuild and reopen. Robert Sinnett and his wife have owned the theater since 1974. The day I was visiting they were waiting for a school group to arrive. How wonderful that they are keeping this old piece of history alive.
Senate Theatre interior
Continuing north on Highway 79, I arrived at the town of Clarksville. My husband has been there several times while out riding his motorcycle, and told me it was a pretty little river town. Since I was so close, I decided to check it out. This tiny town of fewer than 500 people has had its share of floods. But the residents are determined to make the best of the situation. While I was there, Mayor Jo Anne Smiley came up and introduced herself to me. (You just have to love small town Missouri!) She talked about the different festivals and events that the town puts on, and I was amazed. I would love to go and visit there for Eagle Days.
As a train came down the track, I couldn't help but begin to hum the old Monkees tune. "Take the last train to Clarksville, and I'll meet you at the station..."
Somehow, I don't think this is the station they were referring to. "Oh no no no, oh no no no..."