Thursday, December 15, 2011

A memory of a farmhouse...

I’ve been doing a bit of research on the farm I’ve been writing about. That place is so strong in my memory that I often find myself focused on small, equisite memories rather than facts. Today I shall strive to be factual and not color my words too much with emotion.

I always found it quite intriquing that there are three different dates associated with the simple old farmhouse. One account says it was built in 1804 as part of a very large piece of land that was split into three parcels…two being sold to the two men attributed to founding the small town first platted on May 6, 1806.

Two other accounts show the house being built in 1813 or 1817.

The farmhouse was sturdy and strong and the vast scale of boards and beams attested quite clearly to the use of first growth hardwoods used in construction.

Hinges, door latches (there were very few doorknobs in the house or outbuildings) along with hand forged nails and hand-made glass were always unrefutable testiment to how long the house had stood.

Research shows that the area was initially settled primarily pioneers from Pennsylvania and New Jersey immediately followed by many Saxon immigrants.

I doubt that the house that we lived in was the original dwelling. The only surviving home from that time was a small log cabin located several miles away, and that is what I suspect stood originally at the top of the hill.

Living on the farm, we found a small ‘dump’ containing broken bottles and crockery, fire blackened bricks and old foundation stones at the edge of a tree line. I often suspected that the foundation stones and bricks might have come from the original dwelling.

Documents at the historical society supported the story of the Saxon brothers settling on the property and living there for many, many years. Perhaps that settlement occurred in 1813 or 1817. I’m not really certain.

What I am certain of is that during a horrible time of my life that farmhouse gave me comfort and the ability to find possibilities and dreams in almost utter blackness.

That farmhouse was my escape and my shelter.

I recognize intellectually that it was just walls and floors and windows and cupboards.

But emotionally I know it was more.

Living at that farm taught me that I can survive and find solutions to just about everything. Like the beams and the board I learned that sometimes enduring is just a matter of passing days…one after another…until you end up beyond the pain and the torment.

You stand bewildered and exhausted having endured the unendurable…

And you remember one of the things that horrible times makes you forget…

That you’ve really always been home in your own heart…

…and no person or circumstance can ever take that away from you.




This post is linked to Alphabe-Thursday's letter "F". To read other offerings, just click here.

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23 comments:

Sue said...

Boy, can you tell a story! Even when you "just stick to the facts" every emotion I have is awakened.

Excellent, Jenny. And so compelling. I'd love to hear more. And more. And more...

=)

Ames said...

I love to know the history of old places. How it came to be and who lived there, and what their daily lives were like. To some a house is just a shelter from the elements. To other's it is a warm respite for the soul. Where ever my home was, at the end of the day I ran to it for it's comfort. Very lovely story Jenny. I hope you tell us more.~Ames

Viki said...

If you don't mind where is this farmhouse in Ohio?

Wanderer said...

Beautiful! I can so relate. I'm sorry that you've had horrible times in your life. It's nice to have a solid, comforting place to return home to...even if it's only in our memories.

Hugs!

Barbara F. said...

I think it is fun to research a home like this. I love discovering the history and facts about previous owners. xo

Betty (picture circa 1951) said...

It sounds like that old farmhouse taught you how to cope.

Strange that there were three different dates...it makes you wonder what happened. Could the first two homes have burned or met with some other kind of disaster?

anitamombanita said...

just the facts, ma'am ... just the facts. But with you, even just the facts take on some other quality. You seem to just finesse those words like no one else can!

Lady In Read said...

Really wonderful story told from the heart - it must have been great to live in a place with such history.. buildings like this always fascinate me

Linda @ A La Carte said...

Jenny your words ring so true about enduring and finally going past the pain. A beautiful F post my friend.
hugs, Linda

EG Wow said...

Amazing how much emotion comes through your stating of the facts.

JDaniel4's Mom said...

It sounds like the perfect place to just be.

Theresa said...

Beautiful Farmhouse:) Hope you are enjoying this Christmas Season! HUGS!

Leovi said...

Beautiful story of the country house I love it.

Nezzy said...

Just the facts, baby!

This was yet another superb read sweetie. We all need those sanctuaries in our life where we can feel calm and safe.

God bless ya and have yourself a marvelous day my friend! :o)

taylorsoutback said...

Beautifully told, Miss Jenny...you are like that farmhouse...made to withstand the elements or what ever life decides to hand you.

Wishing you and your family blessings and all that is good in 2012.

Farmer's Wyfe said...

I love the stories old farmhouses hold. Your story and the way you have written it, has certainly drawn me in!!

edenhills said...

I love that you've researched the old farm. I love genealogy, and most of the old homes have such great stories behind them.

Teresa

beckyp said...

great f post. I like to imagine the people who used to live in my house. In our basement someone started writting on a wall and there are alot of little messages and such. Im sure it was teen girls who started it but its kind of cool. Im suprised our landlord never painted over it. Also I knew the people who lived here before us (their kids used to go to a daycare I worked at) and shortly after we moved in I was cleaning out the cupboards and noticed the 6 year old boy had wriiten his name on the shelf. You cant see it unless you are on a chair and the boy had to have climb onto the counter in order to write his name there. Sorry didnt mean to babble on :-)

Ms. A said...

Cherish that brain of yours and the memories it holds! Hope you print each and everything you write, for future generations.

Cheryl D. said...

I love old, historical buildings. I think they hold a lot of history and emotion (and sometimes even visitors). I'm glad the old farmhouse gave you solace during tough times.

Karen S. said...

I know those who are sobbing right now, after reading this, can relate to these powerful words...but it's more than that really... when a heart opens up, as yours has here, and as we share together this story of hope, and answered prayers, it showers us with the light of a new day....our own heart accepts it as well. Very nicely done, Jenny.

Pondside said...

We all carry home withing ourselves, but it's good to have a place in memory, nonetheless.

storybeader said...

"this too will pass" - that's my favorite saying. I know that is comes from something like AA... or maybe it's good 'ol George Harrison? The dates of the house (or property ownership) might be when the owners made additions to the house, like many of us do today. So glad it helped you make it through the days! {:-Deb