Sunday, August 05, 2007

Documenting Roots

I recently went to visit my "ancestral home". This is the place where my grandparents lived their entire lives. This is the place where my mother grew up as a girl. I myself lived there for about a year when I was a young adult. This is the place where my parents are spending their retirement years. While I was there, I tried to document some of the old places that were meaningful to my family.

This is the place where my grandfather was born in 1901. It's hard to believe that it has been left standing this long.

This is the home that my grandfather built that my mother was raised in. The girls all slept up in the attic. They had to climb a ladder outside the house to get in to the attic, and they made sure to take the old dog with them to keep them warm.

The old home was burned down this year because it was deemed unsafe. This is all that remains. I'm so glad I took pictures while it was still standing.

This is a picture of my brother and a trough that my grandfather fashioned out of a barrel. He found a natural spring in the hillside, and hooked this trough up to it so that he could water his livestock. The land is owned by other people now, but my brother and I went and found the old trough to document the location.

This picture might not mean much to most people, but my family understands. My grandmother lived through the depression, so saved everything. She had a whole collection of baby food jars that contained a collection of buttons. Each jar held a different color of button. As children, many of us loved to play with her button collection. My mother brought out the last tin of her collection and let us all go through them and pick out some to keep as a remembrance of her. Most of my guests will never understand why I keep a small jar of buttons, but my family will.

1 comment:

Inside Stories said...

Cool pictures. I didn't know that was where Grandpa was born. I always thought he was born in that house down the street from Mom and Dad. I might have to get copies of those from you since I wasn't smart enough to do it before the little house got burned!
Mom told me once that she and her older sister used to sleep under the kitchen table when they were growing up, in bed rolls. They would roll them up each morning when they woke up. Our kids have no idea of how their grandparents grew up. They think they are badly done to if they don't have the latest video game or ipod or a cell phone.