Edit Blog Post
Published: February 27th 2013
VIEW OF MISSISSIPPI
FROM ROSALIE MANSION
First, corrections were submitted by viewers - the correct name of the plantation I visited is Oak Alley and the passenger capacity of the American Queen is 436. My apologies!
NATCHEZ, MISSISSIPPI - FEBRUARY 26 - Woke up to a cold (46 degrees), windy (15 mph), cloudy day. Sweater and jacket day and even at that you wouldn’t want to stand out in the wind any more than you had to. By the time I came back to the ship the sun was peeking through, the wind had calmed a little and the temperature raised a little.
Natchez is a small city, less than twenty thousand people, but clean and has some beautiful buildings. I started my hop on - hop off tour at a large, well preserved ante bellum mansion, the Rosalie Mansion, built in 1823 and beautifully maintained and proudly displayed by the Daughters of the American Revolution. It, and many other homes are listed and protected by National Historic Landmark status.
My next stop was at the Natchez Visitor’s Center where I saw a short movie explaining the history of the area. River history is very interesting, and especially in Natchez. The area
near the river was quite rowdy and 1nhabited by the gamblers, loose women and criminal elements, whereas the town on the bluff was inhabited by the “good” citizens.
I got back on the bus and rode around the city to get a feel for the areas I might want to spend more time in. I got off near the center of town at a historical hotel, the Eola Hotel built in 1927 and the tallest building in Natchez. I went in and they had a nice looking lunch buffet starting, but it was too early for me, I walked around the city for a while seeing and taking pictures of the buildings I had spotted from the bus. Of special interest to me was St. Mary’s Basilica built in 1842. I was getting hungry, so I stopped at a small Italian restaurant, Pearl Street Pasta. I think some of the staff from the ship must have been working there because, after a fairly long wait, the waitress tells me that someone else picked up my order and they were making me another. When it came it was good, but it surely isn’t fast food.
The city is small
and easy to navigate, so I made it back to another antebellum mansion, Stanton Hall. He was a cotton broker and built the home of his dreams; unfortunately he died nine months after it was finished at the age of 66. The home is beautifully maintained by the Natchez Garden Club and some of their members are docents in period dress and did an exceptional job of presenting the facts of the house and the Stantons. I then walked to the bus stop and took the bus back to the ship. Next to the ship was a casino boat, the Isle of Capri. Small, it had plenty of machines, but only one crap table and two blackjack tables and a small buffet. Across the street was the bar Jerry Lee Lewis started his musical career in, so I had to stop for a beer. We embarked around 4:00 pm heading to Vicksburg, our port tomorrow, but something different occurred. We had to go under some low power lines, so the smoke stacks had to be lowered. It was an interesting process to observe.
I was sitting in the Engine room bar before going to the showroom when a couple
that I hadn’t seen before sat next to me. The man asked me how I liked the cruise so far, so I started to tell him. I was very candid and told him all the positives and some suggestions for improvement. He handed me his card and identified himself as the Senior Vice President of sales programs for the American Queen Steamboat Company. He came on board today to learn of customer issues. He told me my suggestions would be his report to the board. Never know who you’re going to meet in a bar.
The entertainment in the showroom was Artie Shaw Orchestra in concert. Fabulous! Dinner is getting more efficient each night and after dinner to the bar for more entertainment and libations.
Tot: 3.539s; Tpl: 0.048s; cc: 11; qc: 52; dbt: 0.0392s; 3; m:saturn w:www (22.214.171.124); sld: 2;
; mem: 1.3mb