In August 1926, Rose Henjes and a friend, Louise Klehm, drove to Niagara Falls and back. Rose was 20 years old and Louise was 18. Rose kept a journal during the trip. She wrote,
"Lou and I are starting on a trip heading for Ind. at 2:45 PM Saturday Aug 14, 1926. Lou is driving as starter. Just met a car on River Road with a sign hung on the back, 'If I stop - Can U?' Speedometer - 5061.
"In Maywood when I was driving I hit a new Ford coupe. No brakes! Gee but it made my heart beat. Lucky he had a bumper or I might have done some damage.
"Reached Gary, Ind. at 5:35 PM. Had our brakes tightened and ate a sandwich. People seem of a low class...
"Reached S. Bend, Ind. at 8:06 PM - speedometer - 5191. Looked for a tourist camp and a man told us to follow him as far as Elkart where we camped in a municipal camp, along a river. Speedometer - 5210. Left there a 7 AM. We were a little stiff since it was a little uncomfortable sleeping in the car.
"At 12:30 P.M. we crossed the Maumee River. Had lunch in a school yard at Stony Ridge at 1 P.M.
"At 3:30 P.M. we crossed the Huron River. Arrived in Cleveland, Ohio at 6:15 P.M. It is a beautiful drive along the Lake. We passed many millionaires homes also passed by the Horace Mann High School. Aug 15 we slept in Wycliffe a little village east of Cleveland. Got up at 5 o'clock our time. They have Eastern time here. We left at 6:30 A.M.
"From Erie, Pa, going east, there are scores of grape vines and peach trees. This section is called the Grape Belt. There were beautiful hills in the distance but we didn't encounter any dangerous ones on our road.
"Went thru Buffalo N.Y. and arrived at the Falls at 2:30 P.M. This makes it exactly 2 days travel from Chicago. We camped at the municipal camp, ate and took a shower bath. Maybe we didn't need it! Then we took a street car to the Park.
"Talk about romantic feeling! You sure get it when you look at the Falls. It certainly is a place for honeymooners.
"We ate in a restaurant for a change and then saw the colored lights, which are thrown on the falls after dark. Got back to camp at 9:30 and arose at 5 A.M. the following morning.
"Drove to the Park with the car and took a trolley ride along the river on both American + Canadian sides. Passed thru the 'Maid of the Mist' and saw the 'Whirlpool'.
"We stopped at Niagara Glen which is a beautiful park on the Canadian side. We had to walk down steps and slopes thru an opening between two rocks and after descending about 175 feat we reached the edge of the River. On our way up we saw some 'pot-holes' which were formed by the Falls thousands of years ago. The Indians used to hide in these.
"Brocks monument is the highest monument in the world erected to an individual. Going thru the gorge, we saw 'the Rapids'. Niagara Falls has the largest electric plant in America.
"After the trolley ride we went to the 'Cave of the Winds' at the foot of the Falls. We had to strip entirely and put on woolen shirts, knickers, and rain coats. We descended 174 feet in an elevator then we had to walk over narrow bridges right under the Falls. Its so windy and misty that you have to close your eyes.
"We had dinner at the Restaurant, bought some souvenires and crossed the bridge into Canada. Mileage leaving Niagara was 5743.
"After we got our permit we stopped at the Prince of Wales dance hall. Gee it's some cute place. It has a marble floor.
"Hit London, Canada at 8:15 P.M., ate, and parked for the night. Aug 18, we arose at 5:20 A.M., ate, and left at 6:20 A.M.
"In Windsor, Canada, we saw tobacco plants and peach trees. Had a flat, changed tires on the road, and had the puncture fixed at Tecumseh. Had some beer.
"Crossed the Ferry at Detroit, then to Jackson, Camp Custer, Kalamazoo, Benton Harbor and Gary. Lost our trail on the South Side. Asked a fellow how to get to Michigan Blvd. After that I let Lou take the wheel 'cause I had driven 3 1/2 hours and was getting darn crabby.
"While passing a car in Park Ridge a noticed a uniformed man driving in a touring car. We slowed down and he was still following when we got thru the town. Then he pulled alongside of our car and said 'Go ahead' real hardboiled like a cop. After we passed him we found out he was only a bus driver. Oh, what a joke on us!
"We got home at 2 AM Aug 19, 1926. We covered a distance of 1310 miles and our average expense was about $18.00 apiece."
This was enough of an adventure that it was written up in the newspaper. The reporter commented, "With the progress that the modern girl is making in this day and age, we suppose there is nothing surprising in what these young girls accomplished, but they showed a lot of confidence and bravery in attempting the trip. Now girls (other girls, we mean) do not think that your dads and mothers will let you go and do likewise. It is too near fall anyway."

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