|Echo Mtn. Echoes||Volume 3..
Observations From Above
By Jake Brouwer
Professor Lowe was a balloonist and much more. He was an individual of insight with an eye for the future. On the morning of April 20, 1861, seven days after the surrender of Fort Sumter, Thaddeus Lowe was preparing his balloon the Enterprise for an experimental flight. This flight would prove that although the winds were blowing to the West he could rise above them and use the upper air currents to maneuver his balloon to the East. In proving this experiment he would be able to raise funds and support for a Trans-Atlantic flight.
Hiking Mt. Lowe Trails.
To the Top of Mt. Lowe
Im sad to say it but if you have a schedule like mine the only way to the top of Mt. Lowe is the easy way. Getting up early on a Sunday morning my son-in-law Jesse and I drove up beautifulAngeles Crest Highway to the Ranger station at Red Box. We turned in here and admired the view before we drove on to Eaton Saddle, which is the first spot on the road you can look to the south over the San Gabriel Valley. We parked near the Mt. Lowe fire road gate being careful not to block it in any way.
From time to time, the human race produces unique, one-of-a-kind characters who become our heroes, mentors, celebrities, and geniuses. Pancho Barnes played all the roles with her own brand of conformity. She possessed an extraordinary zest for life, an unquenchable thirst for adventure, and a profound curiosity of the unknown. Although she involved herself in a diverse mixture of careers and interests, she gained the most notoriety for her accomplishments and exploits in aviation the avocation to which she dedicated her life. It was there among the flyers, that she found a family.
Born in 1901 in Pasadena, California, Pancho inherited wealth,
status, and privilege. Her paternal grandfather was Professor Thaddeus Lowe who
volunteered the use of his air balloons to President Lincoln during the Civil War.
Flora and Fauna.
Live in the Sky and the Tops of Trees
Bird watching is a popular activity for many reasons. We are attracted to the creatures of the sky because of their beauty, their diversity of song, and their unique characteristics.
Wandering out into the Angeles National Forest to identify birds is a real adventure and sometimes a detective hunt. Rarely does the bird come to you and sit idly by while you attempt to identify it by thumbing through the pages of your field manual.
Maybe you only hear the song, or perhaps you've found a feather or a nest. The bird detective uses all these clues, including location and season, to determine which birds are in the area.
Many common birds are easily spotted since we already know them from our urban areas around parks and in backyards.
Mockingbirds, house sparrows, blue jays, crows, black birds, and pigeons are ubiquitous and are frequently regarded as pests, not friends. Pigeons have been dubbed "rats with wings" due to their pervasiveness and likelihood of spreading disease.
News of our readers
On April 15th 1998 a group from Randolph, New Hampshire, arrived in southern California for the express purpose of finding out more about their relative Thaddeus Lowes adventures on the West Coast. The group consisted of Gordon Alan Lowe, Joyce Lowe Chaffee, Mark Santos and a friend Owen. I had been in contact with Alan Lowe and Mark Santos, his son-in-law over the Internet after they had found the Echo Mtn. Echoes site. Gordon Alan Lowe is the great grandson of Thaddeus Lowes brother Charles Lowe who will be the subject of an article in our next issue.
In this issue weve delved into Thaddeus Lowe's Civil War ballooning exploits, which in many parts of the country is his only known claim to fame. The Civil War is a fascinating part of our American History and Lowe played an amazing part in it.
For a Lowe collector this is an area that often produces items out of the average persons pocket range of affordability. There are however items that are affordable and will add nicely to your collection.
There are three books that I know of you can purchase at rare bookstores, ABE internet service, and some times at railroad shows.
Visit Mountain Marketplace - updated with every new issue.
time this issue hits your mailbox it hopefully will be summer at last. It seems to have
been a long time coming this year.
Our issue this month will bring our readers that are not familiar with Thaddeus Lowes Civil War exploits a condensed version of this period in the life of one of Americas first airman.
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Last modified: February 12, 1999
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