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May 6-8, 2014 - This week I made my biennial visit to my sister Nancy in Fort Mill, SC.  I visit her there on the even years and she comes to visit us on the odd years.  We spent all day Wednesday, May 7th, visiting a few sites in Charlotte, NC, which is about 18 miles northwest of where she lives.

After taking the Lynx train into Charlotte, our first stop was the Wells Fargo History Museum in Uptown Charlotte.  Judy and I have visited their museum in Los Angeles and the one here was pretty much the same.

Then it was onto the Mint Museum Uptown.  Nancy and I had previously visited the original Mint Museum on Randolph Rd., which was the original branch of the United States Mint.  Of the two, we preferred the original Mint Museum because of its historical significance and its early American exhibits, especially the gold coin and currency collection.  The Uptown Mint is more known for its modern and contemporary art.

Next it was lunch at Emeril Lagasse's E2 Emeril's Eatery, which was right next to the Mint.  Our expectations were high because it is a "celebrity chef" restaurant and not just another ordinary place to eat.  However it was disappointing, or as Nancy said, "There isn't any WOW."  Emeril, you better take it up a notch because customers want to be dazzled!

Our last stop of the day was probably the best.  In Pineville, NC the state owns and operates the President James K. Polk State Historic Site.  This site is located on land once owned by the parents of James K. Polk, the 11th U.S. president.  The state historic site commemorates significant events in the Polk administration: the Mexican-American War, settlement of the Oregon boundary dispute, and the annexation of California.  Reconstructions of typical homestead buildings—a log house, separate kitchen, and barn—are authentically furnished.  The visitor center features a film on Polk's life and exhibits on his family and tumultuous presidency.

The living quarters (log house) is to the left, the separate kitchen is in the middle and the small barn is to the right.

The construction of these buildings is fascinating, as well as being beautiful.

The daubing between the wood beams is the red clay that is the predominant soil in this area.

It's a beautiful site.

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