Civil War Bus Tour [enlarge]

Forty-seven showed up Monday morning for the Civil War Bus Tour sponsored by the Ava Area Chamber of Commerce. Marilyn Alms explains that it is part of a state wide effort to introduce the interesting tourism available in the State of Missouri. She said that she thought Ava was the first community that she knows of who have done a presentation like this. There is a full week of activities available, all of it free. Judy and Eldon Russell took the tour Monday and said they had taken the Mill Tour last year and really enjoyed it. Contact the Chamber of Commerce at (417) 683-4594 to find out more. Monday’s Civil War Tour stopped at a number of Civil War grave sites in town and made a foray out past Cow Skin Creek to an old cemetery where a number of Home Guard combatants and Civil War Veterans are buried. Ms. Alms and author-reenactor, Tim Ritter of Fair Grove, gave commentary at each stop based primarily on the keen observations of Columbia J. Makin (1871-1958), which appear in a recently published book, “Dear Descendants.” She dictated the stories to her daughter to preserve family history for future generations and in the process produced a valuable record of the town that now claims 2,993 residents. Mrs. Mankin’s original book has been augmented by many pages of photographs and an introduction by Douglas County native and historian, Cinita (Davis) Brown. Folks like Mrs. Mankin and her daughter, Orla Mankin Vaughn, Cinita Brown, Marilyn Alms and Tim Ritter put in the effort to make the past understandable and relatable to us today. Let us not leave out Sharon Sanders whose labors with the Douglas County Museum are inspirational. History is the study of life in society in the past, in all its aspect, in relation to present developments and future hopes. Seeing where we came from helps us understand how we got to where we are and helps us plan for where we are going. Go to Champion—Looking on the Bright Side!

The Douglas County Museum