I noticed an anomaly when I researched Kansas Mountain Time for an article last January. Very little of Kansas remains in Mountain Time anymore and I suspect the entire state will flip eventually to Central Time. That hasn’t happened yet and the anomaly will remain in place until that occurs.
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Notice the far northwestern corner of Kansas, just north of the Mountain Time counties. That’s Cheyenne County. Cheyenne switched to Central Time in approximately 1955 according to the Statoids website. Meanwhile, western Nebraska observes Mountain Time as does all of Colorado. That created a situation where Cheyenne County is surrounded by its neighboring time zone on three sides. Drive east from Cheyenne and one will remain in Central Time. Drive north, south or west, and one will enter Mountain Time upon passing the county border.
This can be observed more clearly in the image I created in the National Atlas of the United States’ Map Maker, one of the few online resources that allows one to create a map with time zones and county borders. I considered whether this might be an unusual situation, a rare instance of time zone herniation with a county completely protruding into its neighbors, or whether it was entirely more common. I went through the time/county overlay in Map Maker and found only one other example, well, four-fifths of an example actually. Cheyenne County is either unique or nearly unique, with a different time zone found completely on three sides.
The kind-of, maybe, sorta instance
This is Malheur County, Oregon. I’ve mentioned Malheur before. It’s the corner of Oregon in Mountain Time that allows the trick question about an Atlantic state and a Pacific state only one hour apart (and on the same time for a single hour each year when the clocks are turned back in autumn). However, look closely, and it’s apparently that a small portion of Malheur’s southern end observes Pacific Time like the rest of Oregon.
The separation is defined by Title 49, Section 71.9 of the US Code of Federal Regulations:
Most of Malheur observes Mountain Time because it’s so far removed from Oregon’s cities that it’s more aligned economically with places in Idaho. That doesn’t explain the lower one-fifth, though. I looked a little closer.
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Actually the southern portion accommodates residents of McDermitt, a town split by two states. The majority of McDermitt falls on the Nevada side of the border, on the left side of the Street View image. Nevada follows Pacific Time. Thus it makes sense for this small corner of Malheur to follow Pacific Time too. It makes even more sense when one considers that 75% of the population is associated with the Fort McDermitt Paiute and Shoshone Tribe.
Do we count Malheur as a second example in spite of it’s split personality, or do we consider Cheyenne a truly unique occurrence?
Random Unrelated Item
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This nondescript grass path in a generic housing development leads to the Historic Tucker Family Cemetery, which is the oldest African American cemetery in the former English colonies of North America. It dates back to the arrival of slavery in the Jamestown colony in 1619. The Hampton Rhodes (Virginia) Daily Press described how it was long neglected and focused on recent restoration efforts. It’s shocking how a place of such historic significance could have fallen into such disrepair for the past half-century. History lurks everywhere. Even in the suburbs.
I wrote about Abandoned Canals in Canada several months ago. That prompted 12MC reader Bill Harris to comment on an unusual re-purposing of an abandoned canal across the border in the United States. He noted that a portion of the Erie Canal that originally flowed through downtown Rochester, NY (part of my ancestors’ journey) was abandoned due to rerouting. It was subsequently drained, covered, and transformed into a tunnel for a light rail system. I thought it was a great comment, I conducted additional research and… somehow I forgot about it. Recently I came across my original notes so I’m posting what I intended to write last September.
Rochester, New York
Flickr by Patrick Haney via Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-ND 2.0)
The Rochester Subway website provided a summary:
The covered-over canal became a subway tunnel and the surface above it became Broad Street (map). The subway wasn’t very successful although it somehow managed to sputter along until the mid 1950′s. The portion of Interstate 490 east of Rochester’s Inner Loop replaced much of the former canal and subway
Sections of tunnel still exist inside the city’s central core although largely hidden from sight. It pokes into view very briefly at the Broad Street Bridge which was designed originally as the Second Genesee Aqueduct of the Erie Canal, carrying the canal across the Genesee River. From street-level it seems to be just another roadway (Street View). From the side one can clearly observe the lower level where water once flowed and street cars later crossed (Street View).
Amateur spelunkers sometimes sneak through the abandoned Rochester Subway for urban exploration. The photograph above was taken by one such explorer inside of the Broad Street Bridge tunnel.
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Was it common to cover abandoned canals and convert them into subway tunnels? I quickly uncovered two more examples that were mentioned frequently on the Intertubes. Cincinnati was one of those two although critics could easily split hairs and claim it didn’t count. The system was never completed and trains never ran through the intended tunnel.
The city planned to follow the route of the Miami and Erie Canal which had been constructed in 1825. The canal served a useful purpose for a time, connecting the Great Lakes to the Ohio River (and thus the Mississippi River watershed). However it suffered a fate similar to many other canals competing with railroads. It went into decline and eventually failed as a commercial enterprise.
Numerous proposals were floated at the turn of the last century. The Cincinnati Enquirer summarized the situation in Subway legend has never left the station:
Tunnels and stations are still down there below the city streets in a remarkable state of preservation including the Race Street Station at Central Parkway & Race St., which would have been the main hub. The Cincinnati Museum offers occasional tours as part of its heritage programs for those who are curious to observe the mysterious tunnels of a stillborn subway firsthand.
Newark, New Jersey
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Newark, New Jersey probably wins a prize because its a subway that still operates along the original route of an abandoned canal. The stretch from the Military Park Station to Branch Brook Park Station at Heller Parkway (route map) converted the pathway of the Morris Canal to a new mode of transportation when the subway opened in 1935. The entrance to the Military Park Station is displayed in the Street View image, above.
The Morris Canal ran across northern New Jersey for about a century, beginning with its construction in the 1820′s. It was probably noted most for its innovative use of 23 inclined planes in addition to traditional locks in order to move coal barges over a series of hills. I’ve talked about the inclined plane technique previously although not in the context of the Morris Canal. It was pretty impressive.
I’m going to go out on a limb and say that Newark Light Rail is the only place where one can visit a canal that’s been converted into a subway without any hassles, other than purchasing a ticket to ride the train. As always, I hope the 12MC audience can prove me wrong.
There were a few notable places which did not fit the strict definition of a canal converted to a subway. They deserved to be mentioned for other reasons.
(1) Manhattan made Internet searches difficult because of Canal Street running across the lower tip of the island and accompanying stations on the New York City subway system. Canal Street Stations serve a whole spaghetti tangle of different lines. The canal referenced by Canal Street was essentially a drainage ditch that emptied the Collect Pond, which had become a cesspool by the early 19th Century. Canal Street followed the route of the old canal after the fetid pond was eventually filled-in. The old canal did not become a subway tunnel although it still hid an interesting history.
(2) The Chesapeake and Ohio (C&O) Canal forced a railroad to tunnel through a mountainside at Point of Rocks, Maryland. The canal held the right-of-way next to the Potomac River, as recounted by the C&O Canal Bicycle Guide; "After the canal failed, the railroad built a second track in the abandoned canal bed." The second track, however, wasn’t converted into a tunnel although the two tracks looked fascinating in Street View.
(3) The Third Welland Canal in Ontario, part of a system connecting Lakes Ontario and Erie to bypassing Niagara Falls, included a train tunnel that went under a canal. As noted by Wikipedia, "The Grand Trunk Railway Tunnel, also known as the ‘Blue Ghost Tunnel’, is an abandoned railway tunnel located in the community of Thorold, Ontario, which runs under lock 18 of the former third Welland Canal (1887-1932)." (map). Again, an interesting feature, although not exactly what I was hoping to find.
And a belated Thank You to Bill Harris!
Sometimes I wonder if I’m the last person to find out about things. A reader who identified himself as "Jasper" mentioned a $100 hamburger when I put out a call for southeastern Kentucky travel suggestions. I thought he was referring literally to a hundred dollar hamburger. Such a thing does indeed exist so I didn’t rule it out as a possibility. Maybe he had a thing for ground beef wrapped in gold foil, infused with truffles and rolled in caviar, or something. I don’t know. I try not to make value judgments (and generally fail miserably).
Jasper provided a convenient link to explain the hamburger reference as term of art used in general aviation in the United States (perhaps with variations on the theme elsewhere?). A lot of pilots like to pick a random airport a couple or a few hours away, drop-in for a meal, refuel, and then take off again to fly back home. The sheer joy of flying seems to serve as the primary motivation, like someone taking a sports car out into the countryside for a weekend getaway. The $100 price tag refers to the cost of flying to a distant runway for no reason other than wanting to fly to it, and not specifically to any meal that may have been purchased there. It’s a euphemism, or a wink-and-a-nod, or both, even though fuel prices today would make a hundred dollar round-trip flight a bargain.
This sounds like the most awesome idea ever. I’d be all over it if I were a pilot. My county counting abilities would be over the top, too.
I had to check into this further. Various sources mentioned anywhere from 1,500 to 2,500 different fly-in restaurants. The 100 Dollar Hamburger is a website for a book with the same name that provides a compendium of such locations although it requires a subscription. A competing site provides a similar service and takes pride in NOT requiring a subscription. Do I detect some bitterness, perhaps?
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Jasper said he flew into London-Corbin airport for his $100 hamburger, stopping at The Hangar Restaurant found on-site there. That’s an example of a restaurant AT the airport, probably offered as a service by the airport’s fixed-based operator (FBO). It surprised me how commonly general aviation airports provided restaurants within their facilities, albeit usually in the larger ones. Their clientele extended beyond $100 hamburgers, though. Fly-in restaurants are patronized by airport staff and also by plenty of local residents especially in the smaller towns.
I consulted several websites in search of the best $100 hamburgers. One source included a list compiled in 2011. I can’t vouch for Rick’s Crabby Cowboy in Montauk, NY (map) or the Pik-N-Pig at Gilliam-McConnel airfield in Carthage, NC, although I liked both of their names so I thought I’d give them a mention.
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The Hard Eight at Clark Field in Stephenville, Texas, came up on the list and also on several website forums where pilots share information. I figured those mentions qualified the Hard Eight as one of the better $100 hamburger opportunities. It was an example of a restaurant NEAR an airport, and looked to be about a ten minute walk.
Flickr by JMD Pix via Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) license
I think my favorite location might have to be the Beaumont Hotel in Kansas (map). It’s a Bed & Breakfast inn, it’s a restaurant, AND it has its own dedicated turf runway. The hotel reportedly averaged about 38 aircraft operations per week.
Thank you Jasper for acquainting me with the $100 hamburger concept.
Has anyone managed to snag an invitation for the test version of the new Google Maps? Does anyone know how I can get one? — I did submit a request although I haven’t heard back. What’s a geo-geek gotta do to get a little map love?