Friday, October 3, 2008

This Old House

We have lived in this big old house for 24 years. It is drafty, creaky, spooky, and filled with memories, and i love it. It is`nt filled with memories from just my family, oh no, it is filled with memories that span more than 100 years.

I will never know all the memories this old house has held between it`s walls, but, over all the years i have lived here, i have found hints of memories of those people i have never known, people long dead.

Once cleaning out the basement, i opened an old box, stashed inside were two certificates, one was a baptizmal certificate, and one a confirmation. His Name was John, and He owned this house before us. He was already deceased by this time. They used to make these certificates very big and ornate, perfect for framing. Once, before i found these, his daughter was in town, and she always drove by her old home whenever she had the opportunity. One day, i was outside, and she stopped. We had a nice long chat, and she told me alot of stories about this house. I keep wishing she would stop in again so i could give her those certificates.

Today skip was fixing our old iron heater in the front porch , it weighs a ton, he had to take it out and get to the leak that had sprung. He lifted up one of the floor boards, and replaced a broken pipe, there between the floor board and the subfloor was a folded up paper, obviously used for insulation. It was yellowed, black from dirt on the top, and very brittle and wrinkled. I carefully unfolded it, ironed it, put on my magnifying glasses, and began reading. The date on the paper is sept 20, 1919. Above is a couple pictures of it. What a treasure! You could buy a sheet of music back then for 6 1/2 cents, and a pound of walnuts were 50 cents a pound.

I am still reading the paper, if is filled with stories. It makes me wonder, what other treasures this old house will give us in the years to come.

We had seriously thought of getting rid of this house a couple months ago, it is too big for us, too expensive to heat, so much work needs to be done on it, but, i just could`nt. So we started painting ............again.

This house is still known as the teachers house, when John and His wife had retired, there children moved out, they rented the bedroom upstairs to single female teachers. It was a law back then that female teachers could not be married. So, here is where many of them lived, for years. It is also still known but it`s original owners last name, maybe if we live her long enough, it will be known by our last name.

I raised my kids in this house, through good times and bad. I cried and laughed in this house. My heart was broken , and my heart burst with joy in this house. This is the place my kids and grandkids come home to. I love this old house, and i cannot imagine having my family come home to any place but this place. I keep remembering what Danibelle said to me a few years ago, " Grandma, i just love this house, it is filled with so many treasures." It sure is Danibelle.

Besides, i would`nt want to put my ghost through having to adjust to a new family, at his age.


noble pig said...

Yeah, I wouldn't sell it either! That's so neat finding an old paper like that. But the teacher law, that's weird! What was the reason for that I wonder.

sulli said...

Thats pretty neat! It also explains why your house is so soo cold. No real insulation! I was checking on Ebay... a newspaper of that age goes for anywhere between 30 and 130 bucks! I say, find em all and sell them, use the profits to have the house foam insulated!

jettied said...

OOHh for cool!!!!!!!!!! I love the stories about your house!! i have said before and i do again..I love that house!! the way the rooms are it is always so cozy. I have laughed there and cried there too!!
Sure wish times weren't so hectic and we could come there more!!
I wonder what else lies beneath your floor boards!!!!

danibell said...

Keep one for me grama! i love old things i cant wait to see you!

Bec said...

I didn't know about the teachers living there, that is wierd! One of the best things I rememebr is at dinner time, no matter what, we all sat at the kitchen table together, oh and pushing Ally through the upstairs window then telling her if she told on me, becuase we we broke the window, I was going to punch her!!!

Bec said...

p.s. that papers COOL, I'll have to take a look next time I'm up!