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Highway 50 History visits WHEATLAND!

Wheatland and ...Popeye?

A little north west of Carbondale and a little bit more southeast of St. Louis, in the town of Chester Illinois, you'll find Popeye the Sailor Man's Museum.
Why does a little story about beautiful Wheatland start out in Chester, Illinois?
Because of the mascot of Wheatland's high school, before consolidation, was a little unique character from the Popeye comics and cartoons.
That little character's name was Eugene the JEEP!
He had magical qualities! And so did Wheatland's Jeeps!
Not to be confused with the mascot of Chester Illinois' high school ("Stinger the Yellow Jacket"), Eugene the Jeep was his very own animated character! Created by Elzie Crisler Segar (born in Chester, Illinois), the Jeep made his debut in the "funny papers" in March of 1936!
According to Wikipedia, Eugene the Jeep was described as "...an animal living in a three-dimensional world... but really belongs to a fourth dimensional world (there's more, and here's the link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eugene_the_Jeep)! And you can imagine, those amazing attributes would make a fantastic high school team!
You can see statues of Popeye, Olive Oyl, Bluto, Swee'Pea, King Blozo, and many other characters of "Thimble Theater" throughout Chester!

And if you do go to see the town, consider visiting around Labor Day for the Annual Popeye Picnic!

 Annual Popeye Picnic Chester IL

https://linktr.ee/washtimesherald

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