Liberace LbNA # 44617
|Placed Date||Nov 16 2008|
|Location||West Allis, WI|
Last checked/found: 16-NOV-08
This letterbox first appeared at the WI Letterboxing 10th Anniversary Gathering.
Location: Park your car at the IHOP at National Avenue & Miller Park
Way. Parking is restricted at your ultimate destination, so this is
the best place to start. Besides, this is VERY near the location of
the house Liberace lived in from the time he was 7 years old. The
house no longer exists, but is instead a parking lot. Prior to that,
he lived in 2 other houses within a mile of this location.
Distance/Time: Approximately 1.5 miles, 45-60 minutes depending on
trail conditions & your hiking speed.
Terrain: Mostly paved surfaces, but a grassy trail and a hill at
Liberace, the flamboyant pianist, was born in West Allis, Wisconsin
in 1919. Liberace's outlandish costumes and lifestyle seemed far
removed from the small Wisconsin town where he was born and raised.
For decades, Liberace was known for his music, candelabra, charisma,
diamonds and dazzle. Liberace transported audiences to a dazzling
world of color, joyful music, glittering costumes, and humor. He
became a national icon, the highest paid pianist ever, and was known
around the world as "Mr. Showmanship".
"As a boy, Wally Liberace, son of an Italian-born father and a Polish-
speaking mother, regularly walked across the street from his home on
National Avenue to play among the gnarled relics of Gettysburg,
Shiloh, and Antietam." Just like he did, you will soon be visiting
the stately buildings, lofty trees and rolling grounds of what is now
known as the VA grounds.
From the IHOP, cross MPW at the lights to a Landmark. Head west
along National Avenue and at "47" change direction to the north and
cross again. Walk along the wooden fence until it ends and you pass
a stop sign. At the cross walk head west and then take another turn
to head towards the pond. At 406 head up at 20 degrees. Pass the
Volunteer and then head east to the next crosswalk in view. Continue
onward and cross again to admire the building that may have housed a
piano in its heyday. Perhaps the young Wally dreamed of playing
there someday. You'll know you are in the right place if you see a
window from St. Louis.
Continue north up the hill toward the Old Home. You'll pass the
Poppy Shop on your right. Head to 8am - 8 pm, then read about
the "Old Home". Continue around to the cross walk on the right.
Cross, then head right along the road. At the intersection with a
path to a popular place, head up to a Government tree. Continue
upwards, passing a ruin on your right. Take a left at the fork and
continue past a rail on your left. Circle around and take a right at
the next fork. Don't go down, but instead continue 6-8 steps further
to see the broken soldier down the hill. Go to the soldier and look
in the base of the arm pointing west. This is where the famous
pianist is closeted. After you have made his acquaintance, please
replace him carefully and use the stone so animals don't maul him to
death. (You know how wild those Vegas acts can be!)
Retrace your steps back to the Government tree, then cross and head
up the hill to the fountain. Head south along the road and take the
pathway SE at the crossing. Veer right at first fork, then left.
Pass 39 and make your way back.
We'd really appreciate an email with a status update if you look for
the box. Thanks!