A recent visit to Galena, IL. took me by many beautiful Civil War era homes and Mansions. Galena was the residence of Ulysses S. Grant and eight other Civil War generals, as well as several entertainers and politicians. Once one of the most important cities in the state, Galena was a hub on the Mississippi River between St. Louis and St. Paul. It is rich in history and architecture not to mention a multitude of shops and dining choices. Below is a shot of Galena’s Main street where most of the shops and restaurants can be found.
The Belvedere Mansion and Gardens
This house is truly a walk into the history of this great nation during the time leading up to, during and after the Civil War. Ambassador J. Russell Jones served this country from shopkeeper to United States Marshall to Congress and throughout the Civil War as a champion of Ulysses S. Grant from the General’s humble residence in Galena to the seat of power in the White House. Jones remained a true friend to Eliuh Washburne, himself an honored General of the War and later Secretary of State throughout his life. Their communications are well documented and their seeds of friendship began in this very house. Lincoln called upon J. Russell Jones when he wished to know of Grant’s progress; and, the fortunes of war as far away as Paris and Brussels, as well as when Lincoln suspected that Grant might eventually take his place in the White House. From a young man, Jones tenacity for business rewarded him with the finest luxuries that life can afford (including this Victorian mansion) as well as with tragedy. (Taken from the Belvedere’s website)
ISO 800 420mm F5.6 1/2000th sec
Did you know that groundhogs are also known as wood-chucks and are of the rodent family. They belong to a large group called Marmots. This guy ran for the safety of his burrow when he saw me but it wasn’t long before curiosity got the best of him and his little head popped up out of the hole to investigate me. Click on the image to view larger.
I made this photo from 3 exposures (-1 EV, 0 EV, +1 EV- Handheld) taken on a recent trip to Galena, IL. and subsequently combined them in Photomatix Pro. I then made a few slight adjustments in Lightroom giving it that kinda far out, unreal look which I think looks cool on old vehicles. If you are new to HDR imaging as I am, you will find this great tutorial very helpful. If you enjoyed my photo please share with others and/or leave me a comment.
I recently took advantage of Nik Software’s price reduction on the entire collection and am really liking it. This is the first time ever using any of Nik Software’s products and I must say I’m impressed. This photo of a Canadian Goose reflected in water was processed with Nik Software Color Efex Pro 4. Please click on image to view larger.
If your interested in purchasing a print click here. Please leave a comment and/or share with others.
Unfortunately Illinois is far from the ideal place to go for sweeping vistas, immense mountain ranges or beautiful waterfalls. One thing Illinois does have from time to time; however, is beautiful sunrises and sunsets. Here are a couple of shots I took recently and are both 3 photo HDR images. I thought the skies were rather sinister looking. Hope you enjoy them. Click on each image to view bigger.
This is an 8 image HDR photo of an old grain elevator taken in Illinois. Click on image to view larger.