519. Mankato, Jewell County (KS041)

Ladies and gentlemen (or however you identify—I don’t mean to be gender assumptive), an actual courthouse erected by the WPA! At this point, every time I think about that, I wonder how many courthouses I have misattributed to them. That being said, I’m not going back through the archives to figure it out. That will be a project for my currently imaginary but hopefully one day real research intern. I normally try to grab the quickest thing I can so I can get going, but an opportunity presented itself that I didn’t want to pass up. That ended up taking me to the northern part of the county. I could have dipped my toe in Nebraska had I gone a little farther, but Superior was secondary to my greater plans.

On the way, I picked up what I would consider my official cache for the county, the Jewell of Kansas. What I found here, after climbing a grassy hill to a welcome to the county sign was a cracked container with no cap and no log. Luckily I was able to remedy that. I threw in a fresh log and a cap from a large pill bottle fit. Not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but definitely good enough for government work. I grabbed it and, my duty done, went to grab another cache in the county.

For quite a while, I’ve been working a challenge that requires getting caches containing the names of states. Even though there are geoarts in both San Angelo and Austin that would complete the entire thing for me, I have been trying to get them organically as I have cached or travelled. When I go to a state, it’s easy enough to find one with the name of that state in it, but other states are more difficult. Therefore, I was happy to get lucky and find Delaware, Indiana, and California, along with others I hadn’t been to yet (I already had Kansas from before so that wasn’t a big deal). So there was no way I could pass up finding one at the Montana Cemetery. I must admit it was clever. It was a bison in one of the contacts of a discarded section of electrical fence. I’m not going to lie… I wouldn’t have ever found it except I noticed the relatively new electrical tape on it this unused fence. With that, I had one more cache and one more state to the list. Swelling with joy, and trying to avoid the mosquitoes which decided to come at me now, I got back into the car. I had long been approaching my destiny, the true goal of this entire trip and I knew it was just a hop, skip and a jump away near…

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