BURR RIDGE - Friday, Illinoisan Mickey Straub toured the capitol of New Mexico and found a reference to God that he photographed and placed on his Facebook page. New Mexico's capitol building is the nation's oldest - built in 1609 to 1610, the nation's roundest - the only round capitol building and America's highest capitol building, located at 7000 feet elevation.
All that in itself may be interesting, but that's not the whole story. Straub's photo in Santa Fe isn't of the first state capital he has visited recently. It was the 35th capitol building he personally toured in the last 26 days. The Burr Ridge Illinois resident is on a mission to visit all 50 capitols in 50 days, read the Gettysburg Address and find references to God at each location.
Straub had already covered the eastern and southern part of the nation, driving a tan Lincoln with a rear window decal "50Capitolsin50Days.com." Right now, he's in a phase of his trek he describes as "hard" with long eight and nine hour drives between capitals. After making side trips to Alaska and Hawaii, he plans to end up in his home state capital of Springfield Illinois on October 23rd.
Straub writes on his Facebook page that he especially enjoyed his visit at the Ohio State Capitol, where the tour guide led him to the dome cupola.
"I took the most pictures of this Capitol, probably because of its uniqueness and I had the best tour so far, even of the cupola (that wraps the dome) in which I got to sign my name (oldest signature dated in 1870)," Straub writes. "What a rare experience! Saw the Governor and LG offices and where Lincoln was when he learned he won the election. Even stood at the same podium Lincoln spoke from."
The rest of his 50 day journey is mapped out thus:
Straub reports on his Facebook page that on his trek he's shaken hands with governors, discovered little-known facts about the capitol buildings - thanks to tour guides and staff members, and appears to have found references to God at every one.
Follow the rest of Straub's journey on Facebook at 50 Capitols in 50 Days.