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Thursday, May 20, 2010

A Sylvan Saturday

Every once-in-awhile a day comes along that calls out for a walk in the woods. The weather is perfect; sunny, breezy, not too hot, not too cold...just perfect. Not to mention the cows were pastured in the upper fields.

So I loaded Ellen up on the 4-wheeler and off we went down to the creek bottoms again.

The creek was a little bit lower than on our last walk, so after we spent some time annoying the eensy-weensy schools of fish with our rock throwing, and chasing the little peeper frogs around I decided to go to ford the creek and check out the other side.

We went all the way up to the top of the ridge behind us. When I type it out like this it all sounds fast, but keep in mind this is on some 100 acres of wooded land here, so the ride is rather bumpy in some of the pastures, and going through the wooded areas you have to dodge fallen branches (or limbs, rather...a branch in this part of the country is actually a body of water.)

On this other ridge we find the old homestead. The original homestead of hubby's great grandfather (I think there's only one great in there. His dad was actually born in 1919.)

This picture is of the house, in the center, chicken shed to the right, and a well house on the left, I believe. I didn't get a shot of the whole barn this time. Though I have blogged on this before a couple years ago, so there are pics of the barn in that post. (Note the picturesque turkey vulture sailing overhead.)

Here is a shot of the house below. This house, no running water and no electricity, was actually lived in up until 1968 by a pair of sisters whose family had bought the property from hubby's grandmother way back when. (Hubby subsequently purchased the place back some time after he'd established the dairy.)

To me there is always a deep sense of poignancy about the place. There is wallpaper coming off in tatters and old magazines scattered around upstairs and on the stairs. There are canning jars and rusted chains scattered around outside. In early spring the daffodils the ladies planted spring up and bloom all around. I found a 3-pronged pitchfork up there and brought it back down here. This type of pitchfork is uncommon now, hubby says folks hammered them down and used them for gigging. I need to get a handle for it though.

And looking into the barn I think about how much time and effort the builder put into making it. If you look close at the logs you can see that each log is hand-hewn and placed with care. Huge rocks were hauled from the creek bottoms to use at the bottoms of the walls. Notches were hacked into the logs used as rafters. Corral doors were hung with care as well. Here's a pic of the inside. You can't see it in this particular picture, but up on the rafters are still the tatters of cornstalks from the last harvest back in the mid-60s probably.

1 comment:

Charlotte said...

The picture of the creek is wonderful!