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Knob Noster Missouri

11/14/01 5:26:14 PM Pacific Standard Time

Knob Noster is named for 2 small hills north of Hwy 50. In latin the word noster means "our" and knob means "hill". People started arriving in 1846 and 10 yrs later the town was 8 blocks long and was officially naed Knob Noster.
Knob Noster was a typical pre-civil war settlement, with a small collection of farmers & skilled laborers. By 1863 the RR arrived, and a depot and town quickly built up around the tracks.
Knob Noster saw its share of skirmishes between Union & Southern guerilla groups. The High School's football field was the scene of a heated battle between the Unions "Wild Bill" Marshall and the Confederates in 1862.
After the war came the discovery of black gold. Large veins of coal were found west of town. After 10 yrs the mines were essentially played out by 1880 and the population shrunk to around 680.
Knob Noster also has its share of legends & ghost stories. At one time a dour, unfriendly hermit lived on the hills and would only descend to the village for groceries and other essentials. Occasionally he would send his slave to town for him, but then the townspeople noticed the slave was not around anymore. They speculated that the old hermit had beaten him to death, but they were too frightened of him to investigate. One night, during a violent storm, several of them saw a bobbing lantern descending from the hill, and a flash of lightning illuminated the hermit holding a lantern as he hurried toward the safety of the town. In the next flash of lightning, the light disappeared. The next day, the townspeople ascended the trail to his house and found him lying dead, clutching the lantern with a look of frozen terror on his face. Today the locals say that in a raging storm, observers can still see the ghostly lantern swaying and bobbing down
the old hill path.
Enough of the history. What I happen to know about Knob Noster is this: some of the nicest people I've ever met happen to live in this town. A Chamber member emailed me at the beginning of my trip, so I added them to my email list. Unbeknownst to me, this was being forwarded on to an additional 30 Knob Noster area residents. So quite a number of people from here have been avidly following my trip and reading my stories all along.
Not knowing that anybody knew anything about my walk, you can imagine the suprise it was to me when they contacted me 2 days before I got here and said "we're ready for you!"

 

Knob Noster, Part II

11/14/01 5:23:25 PM Pacific Standard Time

So on monday when I walked to Knob Noster, they hauled my cart for me, paid for a night at the motel, took me out to supper that evening and breakfast the next morning, arranged for me to give a talk at the high school, and made arrangements for me to get a tour of Whiteman Air Force Base.
The bank made a donation to the Epilepsy Foundation, the Mayor gave me a City of Knob Noster comemerative coin with my name engraved, and a pin with a picture of a Stealth B-2 Bomber and the words "Spirit of America" on it. I cannot believe how very kind and extremely generous these people were.
The tour of Whiteman Air Force Base was also really neat. Major Chuck Johnson, 509th Maintenance Squadron Commander took me on a tour of the base. Next month Maj. Johnson will be promoted to Lieutenant Colonel.
The base started up in 1942 following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Whiteman AFB is also home to the Stealth B-2 Bomber. On Jan 5, 1987, congressman Ike Skelton revealed that the B-2 would be assigned to Whiteman AFB. After much planning & anticipation, on Dec 17, 1993 a dark jet bomber swooped from the sky and landed on the Whiteman runway. The first operational B-2, the "Spirit of Missouri" had arrived. On Dec 22, 1993, Whiteman AFB generated the first B-2 sortie from the base.
The Stealth B-2 Bomber is 69 ft long, 17 ft high, has a wing span of 172 ft, and weighs more than 350,000 lbs. It carries 2 people, the Pilot & Mission Commander. While he was showing me around, we saw a B-2 fly by overhead.
The tour of the base was spectacular, and they gave me a visitors guide booklet and some pictures of a Stealth B-2 Bomber.
Y'all take care and have a great day! KB

 

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