Road trips often take you in multiple directions, off the beaten path. But Highway 36, known as The Way of American Genius, offers a straight shot (more or less) across the Show-Me State – with many interesting stops along the way. Here’s a sampling of what you can see:
Pony Express National Museum – Learn about the relay system of horseback riders who set out from St. Joseph and rode through the wilderness to deliver the mail to the west – far faster than a stagecoach could.
Shatto Milk Company – Tour the farm and the bottling facility, located near Osborn. Try the flavored milk that taste like cotton candy, banana, root beer, and cookies and cream
Missouri Quilt Museum – Browse antiques, toys and quilts, and add some of your own thread to the still-growing world’s largest spool of thread, standing 22 feet tall.
– The largest Old Order Amish settlement west of the Mississippi River is home to incredible craftsmen and bakers and their shops.
Grand River Historical Society Museum – Hear the story behind Chillicothe’s claim to fame as “the home of sliced bread.” See the first bread slicing machine – on loan from the Smithsonian Museum.
Pershing Boyhood Home State Historic Site – Exhibits at the state historic site in Laclede focus on the home, school and military life of Gen. John J. Pershing, the highest ranking military officer in U.S. history.
Walt Disney Hometown Museum – After visiting the museum in Marceline, you’ll appreciate the community’s influence on the future animation pioneer.
Mark Twain Cave – Tour the cave that inspired many of Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn’s adventures in Mark Twain’s hometown of Hannibal. You might catch a glimpse of Samuel Clemens’ signature on the cave wall. If you’re adventurous, check out the lantern tour at nearby Cameron Cave.
Written by Barb Brueggeman