Since we live just a few miles away, we like to make an evening of checking out the Christmas decorations in Carthage, Missouri, every year. In the area’s rich past, American Indians and French settlers called this place home. After the Louisiana Purchase, Carthage became a city and the county seat of Jasper County. This historic city is perhaps most famous, however, for the Civil War; the Battle of Carthage was fought here, and some of the homes in the city date back to the 1870s when the residents rebuilt after the war. These Victorian-style houses are beautiful any time of year, but they are exceptionally magic at Christmastime. If you are into Route 66 and its history, you’ll also find remnants of the highway’s past. In the mid-1970s, Vietnamese-American Catholics established their American monastery in Carthage; it’s now known as the Congregation of the Mother of the Redeemer. Every…

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