Missouri August 16, 2018
You’ve Never Seen Anything Quite Like This Art Park In Missouri
Over 60 years ago, Larry Baggett began constructing a rock memorial on his property in Missouri. Years before Mr. Baggett lived in rural Jerome, Native Americans traveled through this area on the Trail of Tears. Thousands of Native Americans were forced off their ancestral lands between 1831 – 1850 and were marched across hundreds of miles to new lands west of the Mississippi River. Thousands died during this forced relocation, thus the path traveled by the Native Americans during this forced relocation became known as the Trail of Tears. Across the nation there are several national memorials to those who lost their lives, yet this handmade memorial in Missouri is totally one-of-a-kind.
Larry Baggett loved talking with visitors who stopped to visit his Trail of Tears memorial while traveling along Route 66. Mr. Baggett constructed this stunning rock garden by hand to honor his late wife and the Native Americans who traveled the Trail of Tears. Sadly, when Mr. Baggett died in 2003 his work of art was left to decay.
Fast forward to 2017, military veteran Marie Ryberg purchased the dilapidated property with the hopes of restoring it to its former glory. She even envisioned adding a herbal healing garden and possibly a farm-to-table cafe. She set a goal of re-opining this local landmark by the Spring of 2018.
With the help of Chris Richardson, a local artist, and other volunteers the Memorial was re-opened on Earth Day this past April. Many of the stone structures have been revitalized and work continues at the site.
Mr. Baggett had even figured out how to use native materials to create a peaceful hot tub. Today, the healing room is still being restored to its former glory. However, the room has amazing acoustics for reconnecting to nature and our past though music. If you visit on a Saunday, you'll likely find Richardson playing the flute here.
Chief Joseph welcomes visitors to this awe-inspiring site. It has been said that Chief Joseph died of a broken heart, so Richardson and his daughter helped to restore Chief Joseph's heart when they tended to him.
Take in the gorgeous stonework and pause for reflection as you stroll through this healing site. Everyone in your family will find something wonderful to remember after visiting the Trail of Tears Memorial and Herbal Gardens.
Currently, the Trail of Tears Memorial and Herbal Gardens is open on Saturday and Sundays from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. With the warm sunny weather, it's the perfect time to visit the park. During the months of January and February the park will remain closed entirely.
Take a trip down Missouri's back roads and along the original Route 66 to find Missouri's most unique attraction. Celebrate nature's beauty and remember those who lost their lives and their homes while being forced to travel the Trail of Tears.
Find the beautiful rock memorial garden at State Hwy D, Jerome, MO 65529.
Have you been to the
Trail of Tears Memorial and Herbal Gardens? Tell us about your visit in the comments below.
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whimsical sculpture park in Missouri.