Day 3: April 25, 2013
Tales of Brave Ulysses
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I returned to Columbus on I-71 where I also returned to OH-3. At this point it was Sixty-Two-Three. The road becomes Sixty-Two-Twenty-Two-Three for a brief stretch in Washington Court House before Twenty-Two-Three splits off and heads to Cincinnati. I stayed with Sixty-Two.

The first barn is on US-62. The second one, with the bright paint, is on OH-125 which I turned onto at Russellville. I reached Georgetown way earlier than I needed to so I continued on to Higginsport on one of my favorite roads, OH-221 which was once US-68. The next two pictures were taken while driving south; The last on the way north back to Georgetown. Whenever I travel this road, I'm always struck by the nearness of the barns, some with stone foundations, to the road.

Back in Georgetown, the pictures start with the Brown County courthouse. The courthouse was built in 1851. It was the victim of unsolved arson in 1977 but has been restored to its pre-fire appearance. Virtually all of the buildings that surround the courthouse square date from the late nineteenth or very early twentieth century. I had a beer in the center building of the center picture and dinner in the building to its left. The Methodist Church, the site of the Grant Roast, is about a block off of the square. The building beyond it is home to the Gaslight Theater. The Grant statue stands right across the street from the courthouse. It's a rather new addition with a rather interesting story. The statue project started more than five years ago. After a lot of searching, some false starts, and a disappearing sculptor, the statue was dedicated just last June. It's a good likeness of and a nice tribute to Georgetown's favorite son.

The first picture is of my home for the night. When I first thought of attending Grant Days and looked for a motel, I learned that there are few in the area and even fewer with decent reviews. I found a single well regarded bed & breakfast in town. Sitting across the street from the Grant boyhood home and with just three rooms, the Bailey House seemed certain to be filled. I don't know why I even sent a query but I did and was surprised by a positive reply. A cancellation allowed me to score the perfect lodging for the festival. Built by Dr. George Bailey in 1832, it was the home of Bart Bailey whose departure from West Point made way for Hiram Ulysses Grant's entrance. It has been in the same family since 1876 and became a B & B in 1994. For the second week in a row, I had a room with a shared bath but unlike Scarritt-Bennett, where I don't believe anyone was ever in the other room, this time I shared the bath with Abe Lincoln. The room is here.

The next two pictures are of the recently renovated Grant's Boyhood Home where most of the activities take place. The first is the back yard as seen from Water Street and the second is the house that faces what is now called Grant Avenue. The white house is the former Grant tannery on the other side of Grant Avenue and the last building is the first school the young Ulysses ever attended.

Friday's big event was the Grant Roast at the Methodist Church shown in today's third panel. The concept was a "celebrity roast" style event with characters from history (played by characters from Georgetown) "roasting" the general. The lineup in the first picture contains Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman (Rob Curtis), Gen. John Rawlins (Patrick Hornschemeir), Abraham Lincoln (Fritz Klein), Julia Grant (Jennifer Moran), Gen. Ulysses S. Grant (Mike Miller), Sgt. major George W. Bolding (Russell Dickson), "Aunt Betsy" King (Judge Margaret Clark), John D. White (Robert Boyd), Sylvanus Cadwallader (Stan Purdy), and Col. Ely S Parker (Ned Lodwick). I have included close-ups of some, but not all of the "roasters". Sherman was really the only one to actually throw some roast-like barbs and insults but all the characters told stories from their personal experience and there was plenty of education to go along with the laughs.

Here are close-ups of the "roaster in chief" and the "roastee". Yeah, this is the Abe Lincoln I shared the bathroom with. Springfield, Illinois, resident Fritz Klein is a Lincoln re-enactor of the first order. He was in character when I first met him and pumped my hand and greeted me enthusiastically as the real Abraham Lincoln is described as doing. Fritz is six foot three (Lincoln was 6' 4") and, as I stood beside him, I commented that "You're even the right height." His immediate and very Lincolnesque reply was, "And so are you."

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