Selected for Google Maps and Google Earth

Comments (14)

Lilypon on October 14, 2007

I like it! :D

A very different perspective/location than what one expects to see. :) Seeing it outdoors makes me think of Led Zeppelin's song Stairway to Heaven.

Tamás Borbély on October 15, 2007

This an really special perspective, Ryan ! Very beautiful photo!Greetings, Tamás

Ryan Calhoun on October 15, 2007

Thanks, Pam and Tamás! This is the stairway that leads up to the old machine gun tower, which looks out over Lone Elk Park. I kept trying to get lower, and finally had to lay down on my back. :-)

Greetings, Ryan

Nawitka on October 15, 2007

Way cool! Good that you thought of lying down, it was worth it.

Ryan Calhoun on October 15, 2007

Thanks, Nawitka!

May M. B. (Swissmay) on October 15, 2007

That's something I love! Great shot, Ryan!

greetings, May

Ryan Calhoun on October 15, 2007

Thanks May! Greetings, Ryan

Ryan Calhoun on October 15, 2007

Thanks, Bruce! They shipped ammunition out here from several plants in St. Louis by rail, and fired into bullet traps built in the hills across the valley. In fact, it was 1941 when the government purchased the land. A relic of World War II. Ryan

© Carsten on November 23, 2007

Hi Ryan, a very cool picture. Good idea to take it that way and place it in this way in panoramio. I still can't believe they built a machine gun tower there. In the Midwest. What was the reason ? I know WWII. But it makes no sense. And a golden star for the picture.



Lilypon on November 23, 2007

There could be Germans sneaking about???

Not that their accents would have been noticed. ;)

Recently I had been reading about the prisoner of War camps that were set up in Canada for the Germans. Surprisingly they had no interest in escaping come the winter months.

Lilypon on November 23, 2007

sorry Ryan couldn't resist. :S

Ryan Calhoun on November 26, 2007

Hello Carsten and Pam! It was for testing purposes. To refine the manufacturing process for ammunition. The whole country's manufacturing facilities were turned to military production during the war (and most of them were run by women, who couldn't have had those jobs before then).

Pam, there were camps set up for Japanese US-citizens along the west coast. But most German immigrants had arrived several generations before the war. There were large German settlements all across Missouri and the rest of the midwest, but virtually all of them had "Americanized" their names once the war started, or even before (Schmidt to Smith, and so forth). With the immigration records kept at the time, it would have been impossible to tell who was German and who was not. Sadly, the Japanese-born had no way to blend in, and whole towns in California were evacuated to war camps.

But this tower didn't have anything to do with that. When it was used the whole area was fenced and guarded, but that was to keep civilians from wandering into gunfire. Most people only knew about the war what they saw on newsreels at the beginning of movies.

Greetings, Ryan

Lilypon on November 26, 2007

I should have been clearer Ryan. I was thinking of the German POW camps (many were allowed to live, unguarded, outside the camps to help farmers). The Enemy Among Us: POWs in Missouri During World War II by David Winston Fiedler is one book written about that time period.

I understand what you are saying about those that changed the spelling of their names. Here they were aware of who was German and I recently saw in the local paper, that while they wouldn't send them to internment camps (my great-grandmother and her German family included) , they were being watched for signs of treason/sabatoge. So when I saw your tower I thought it was there to protect all the amunition that must have been stored there (lest it get into an escaped POW's or a traitor's hands).

sunshine16 on February 19, 2009

How much did your camera cost? nice pics.:}************

Sign up to comment. Sign in if you already did it.

Photo taken in Lone Elk Park, 1 Lone Elk County Park, Valley Park, MO 63088, USA

Photo details

  • Uploaded on October 14, 2007
  • © All Rights Reserved
    by Ryan Calhoun
    • Camera: Canon EOS DIGITAL REBEL XT
    • Taken on 2007/10/09 14:13:00
    • Exposure: 0.006s (1/160)
    • Focal Length: 17.00mm
    • F/Stop: f/9.000
    • ISO Speed: ISO400
    • Exposure Bias: 0.00 EV
    • No flash