Buzz bomb again in spotlight

Friday, December 1, 2006

Putnam County's World War II-era buzz bomb, recently restored and placed back on its stand next to the county courthouse in Greencastle, has once again landed in the national spotlight.

Internationally-known travel writer Mike Michaelson told the BannerGraphic during a recent telephone interview that the bomb will be the leading subject of his article set to appear Sunday, Dec. 10 in Chicago's Daily Herald newspaper and the Gary Post-Tribune.

The story of the buzz bomb is of particular interest to Michaelson who grew up in London during World War II. His grandmother's home was actually hit by one of the bombs.

Decades later and now comfortably settled into his life in Chicago, Michaelson said he was surprised recently to learn that Greencastle is home to one of those same bombs.

"As a native Londoner, I was amazed to see the V-1 outside the courthouse," Michaelson wrote in an e-mail. "It was just kind of interesting to find that there."

Michaelson went on to explain that his story makes mention not only of the bomb, but of Harris Sugar Bush Camp and Hilltop Orchids, both in Putnam County, along with Cataract Falls, Lieber State Park, Bridgeton Mill and the Holocaust Museum in Terre Haute.

He said he has written about the region's covered bridges many times in the past and hopes to talk about them in his upcoming article as well.

Michaelson's articles have won numerous awards throughout the years, including eight Mark Twain Writer of the Year awards, and two Lowell Thomas Awards for travel journalism. His "Around the Midwest" weekly series, and the one that will focus on Putnam County, appears in several newspapers around the U.S. every Sunday.

Michaelson said he learned about Putnam County recently through a travel writer's show conducted in Chicago.

Putnam County Convention and Visitors Bureau assistant Sharon Eiteljorge attended that show where she had an opportunity to meet with almost 30 travel writers from around the country and tell them about Putnam County. This was the second time Putnam County has been represented at the show.

"We feel like this is definitely something we should continue to take part in," Eiteljorge said of the show.

Other shows that are conducted in states ranging from Florida to Pennsylvania are attended each year by CVB Director Karla Lawless.

Eiteljorge said it's not uncommon for the bureau to receive up to 1,000 inquiries, or leads, from interested people and organizations after Lawless returns from one of those shows.

Also a result of the recent Chicago show, Greencastle's Victorian Day Spa is to be featured in an upcoming magazine article as well, Lawless told members of the Putnam County Tourism Board this week.

She said the woman is supposed to come here sometime next year and spend the day at the spa in order to write an article for a spa magazine.

The Putnam County Tourism Board meets at 7 p.m. on the fourth Tuesday of each month at the CVB office on Washington Street in Greencastle.

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