Tag Archives: architecture

Cumberland County Courthouse

This past weekend I took a trip to the southern part of Illinois to watch my nephews motocross race and along the way passed through Toledo, Illinois. Toledo has a nice little town square where the Cumberland County Courthouse is located.  I couldn’t resist stopping to take some photographs.  Each image is a composite of 3 photos combined in Nik Software HDR Efex Pro 2.  Click on each image to view larger.

DSC_6692_HDR by . DSC_6695_HDR by . DSC_6701_HDR by .



Galena, Illinois

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.

DSC_6568_69_70 by Christopher L. Nelson.


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)

DSC_6611_2_3 by Christopher L. Nelson. DSC_6617_8_9 by Christopher L. Nelson.

Michigan Lighthouse

Big Red Lighthouse-Holland, MI.

This is Michigan’s most photographed lighthouse- commonly known as “Big Red” – and a favorite among all the Holland attractions.  It is located in Ottawa County, Michigan at the entrance of a channel connecting Lake Michigan with Lake Macatawa, and which gives access to the city of Holland, Michigan.  Except for its color, it is a virtual twin of the Kewaunee Pierhead Light on the Wisconsin side of Lake Michigan.  Over the years, “Big Red” has taken on a life of its own, popular with painters, photographers, beach-goers, and boaters.  It’s a “must see” if you’re in Holland.

McLean County Museum, Bloomington, IL.

Several exterior shots of the McLean County Museum of History in downtown Bloomington, IL.  This used to be the McLean County Courthouse and is an American Renaissance style structure that was built from 1901-1903. The dome and drum were restored in 2004 and as you can see are quite interesting.  Hope you enjoy!

Museum by Christopher L. Nelson.


Museum 2 by Christopher L. Nelson.


Museum 3 by Christopher L. Nelson.


Museum 4 by Christopher L. Nelson.





Picture of Big Ben and Parliament from across the Thames

I made this image a few years back on a trip to Europe, which I might add, was great fun!  Two images combined in Photomatix Pro.  I thought it turned out pretty well considering I only used 2 images rather than the usual 3-5 and it was my first attempt at HDR imaging.  Hope you enjoy….and tell me what you think.

Parliament and Big Ben across the Thames by Christopher L. Nelson.

To see another HDR image click here.

Pictures of an Old Schoolhouse in Illinois

  “The Last Schoolhouse on the Left”

I came across this old schoolhouse a couple of days ago and thought it would make an interesting photograph.  Here’s a few at varying angles.  The power lines to the left and the trees to the right were a bit annoying….if I would have had an ax I would have been very tempted to cut down the tree.  Nonetheless I think they turned out well.

Click on each image to view larger.  Hope you enjoy!

Old Schoolhouse by Christopher L. Nelson.


Old Schoolhouse 2 by Christopher L. Nelson.


Old Schoolhouse 3 by Christopher L. Nelson.