I discovered this in the wrong blog written way last July!!! So I've just moved it over to where it belongs - but I'm reminded that I should try to get back to doing some writing again!
Willow at Magpie Tales has posted another intriguing prompt
Here’s my contribution – visit her site for many more wonderful tales and poems
I wore out 11 pencils making notes for my first article to appear in the Morganston Gazette, and actually I’m quite proud of the result:
Commuter Transit Comes to Morganston
Julianna Morgan has announced her intent to fund the Morganston leg of the up-coming commuter train.
The Regional Transit Authority announced their intent to install commuter train tracks from Fort George to Lake Simpson in January of this year. The train will connect 14 small communities in a rapid-transit style meant to reduce use of personal vehicles, making commutes for work or shopping easier and more efficient for the populations of these communities. The announcement included the requirement for each community to cover the cost of the track installation through their area. Morganston District Council has spent the last six months studying ways and means to meet this expense. Ms Morgan’s announcement is met with welcome relief.
Julianna Morgan is the great-great granddaughter and last survivor of Phillip J. Morgan, founder of Morganston. PJ, as he was known, came to the area during the gold rush of the 1850’s. He’d missed the rush in California, and left there penniless, determined to make his fortune. When he found his strike just north of the town-site, then known as Colling’s Landing, he carefully hoarded his take. PJ was astute enough to realize that the gold could eventually run out, and invested his money in businesses that would support other gold-seekers, ranchers in the area, and travelers – businesses such as PJs Mercantile, The Morgan Hotel, Phil’s Diner. By the time his gold claim was exhausted, PJ had established himself as mayor of the township, and renamed it Morganston in 1869.
PJ married late in life, to a woman many years his junior. Suzanna Jenkins had been an entertainer in one of the saloons, coming to Morganston in 1875 from parts unknown. The couple had three sons, who continued to build the Morgan empire.
Suzanna disliked the small miner’s house that PJ lived in prior to their marriage, and insisted on ‘the biggest house in town’. PJ purchased a large property at the east end of Main Street, and proceeded to build the 4000 square foot south-facing mansion that still stands in place today. Fitted with gold and brocade, and filled with furnishings and art from around the world, Morgan Manor is known world-wide. In latter years, the family opened the house for tours, with just a small portion kept for Julianna’s living space, after the death of her last brother.
It was known that PJ didn’t trust banks, and rumored that he buried his gold around the property, and that Suzanna also acquired gems and jewelry that were also buried. Attempts by many to find any of that buried treasure have been futile. In interview, Julianna admitted to doing some hunting herself as a young girl, with her brothers, mostly at the ‘back’ of the property.
The plan for the train tracks includes expropriation of 500 feet along the width of the Morgan property on the north end (the back of grounds). This writer wonders, is Julianna’s offer of funding for the commuter tracks a truly altruistic move, or is she looking for a way to search for that buried treasure?
Submitted by Mag Tyson, for the Gazette.