I love getting lost in a ride. I mean that both figuratively and literally. As I wander around I let my mind wonder as well. This ride was no different. I had just realized I was truly happy for the first time in a very long time. I was soaking in the sights and smells of the beauty of nature that surrounded me. The smell of cornfields. The smell of water. The coolness of the shade.
Soon I would realize that the water was from the Ohio river. This was good to know seeing as I was needing to cross the river over into Indiana. Although I didn’t know exactly where I was, I knew I was near where I needed to be.
As I rode along smiling and enjoying my view, something caught my eye. It was a stately old home. Wait! Could it be? Yes! I knew this home. It was the Holt House. Just like the first time I remember seeing this house, it was a very hot day. That first visit was back in 2008. I remember the date because it was the same day that a good friend passed away. September 1, 2008 will forevermore be etched into my memory.Another memory from that fateful day in 08 is what we saw in this house. You see the house was empty. At that time it was before the restoration had begun. Yet there was someone or something looking out of the upstairs window down at us. I’m not the only one who saw something that day. Several, if not all of us on the ride saw it. Could it be the ghost of Joseph Holt?
Since that day I’ve heard of other people having experiences around this old house. I’ve heard of people having car accidents near this house because of strange things in the roadway. Someone also said that she’s heard of an old tunnel from the house over to the riverbank. That the house possibly was used as a stop on the underground railroad. Who knows for sure? I certainly don’t.Joseph Holt held several prominent positions in our Federal Government. Serving as Commissioner of Patents, Postmaster General and Secretary of War under President James Buchanan. President Abraham Lincoln appointed Holt as the first Judge Advocate General of the United States of America. Holt presided over the trial of the conspirators who assassinated President Lincoln. I challenge you to search out more information on this historic old house. Places such as this are falling to the wayside far too often. I believe that it is important that they be preserved to not only tell the story of our great country, but also help us understand and appreciate the cost of making this country. Nowadays we sit in our modern air-conditioned homes seeing things on our computers. Although a wealth of knowledge and important, the internet can’t compare to touching history. Get out and feel with your own fingertips the stones and bricks and mortar or these places. Standing in the yard puts you in place to somewhat understand what life was like in the past. Just like this rusting old piece of farm equipment, these places won’t last forever unless they are preserved. The time to see them is now. Get out and find the history that right outside your door. Get off the interstate and ride the backroads of this great land. Open your eyes and you will be able to see and touch historical places of our forefathers.