Wednesday, January 02, 2008

moving on


This barn looks pretty sturdy from this angle but the entire right hand side is gone, leaving a gaping space and the huge barn beams exposed to the elements. The road you see is the winding entrance to the new commuter train station and on the opposite side of the road (behind me) is a subdivision.

The other day reader Pablo observed that some of these juxtapositions are downright silly and he's right. It's like seeing ancient ruins surrounded by modern skyscrapers.

If we continue down the road a bit we come to the farmhouse, which has been standing empty for some time.


It's levitating on the prairie. Well, it's suspended on heavy beams preparing for it's move to a new location. This is a welcome sight to me because many of these farmhouses are simply bulldozed or burned as practice for the fire department. It seems that someone has determined the house has possibilities to live a new life in a new location. I can imagine it nestled in a sheltered rural setting.

The writing has been on the wall for many years as developers laid down their plans behind the scenes. Farming changed long ago and the dairy farms disappeared. Properties became rentals and then are abadoned as the timetable for destruction counts down.

The drama has played out in slow motion over many years but since I started this blog almost three years ago the old farms and outbuildings have disappeared at an alarming rate. You'd think that a tornado had blown through taking down only the old way of life sparing the new.

I'm thing about putting together a lenghty post or perhaps a series of "here" and "gone". Many, many of the wonderful places I've visited and photographed now exist only in memory, photo albums or pixels.

Jerry Johnson is a visionary who recognized the importance of preserving a way of life and a moment in time embodied in Garfield Farm Museum Hopefully there's someone who will feel as passionate about preserving a working fmaily farm or dairy farm which represented a whole chunk of our local history. Hope springs eternal.


Rose said...

I would LOVE it if you posted pictures of 'Here and Gone' places...maybe even just put them in a Picasa web album for the public...and informed us of it. So far I love Picasa's web albums best of all. Love their slide shows. I have pictures there, at Webshots, at inbox and and at photobucket and Picasa wins hands down.

I sure enjoy your photos...

lesle said...

Here in Florida, the State Library and Archives of Florida has "The Florida Memory Project", which includes the Florida Photographic Collection. Does your state have anything comparable? "Here and gone" photos like yours should be preserved.

Farmer said...

Keep on with your camara.
Buildings is gone before you know.

Todays news are the historybook of tomorrow.

Here in Denmark we are lucky that the most of the old small farms are sold as holyday-houses.
They keep them in even better conditions than the former small-holders did.

Anonymous said...

This photo almost made me burst into tears...the farmhouse looks so forlorn, so unloved.

At one time, people planned their futures in that home. They tucked in their children, made big Sunday meals, and enjoyed a quiet way of life that is disappearing all over this country.

What happened to those people? How did this beautiful property come to stand empty?

These are the thoughts which chase my soul, leaving me unsettled and quiet. *sigh*

My goodness, I love your photographs!

Susan in Kansas
(who is NOT "anonymous", I just can't seem to access my blogger account! Gahhh!)

Suzanne said...

Thanks for all your comments. I'll be trying to get things organized into a cohesive project and approach an archive group. Thanks for the suggestion.

Susan - you simply would not believe how many of these places exist (or no longer exist) in this area. It is very disheartening. I wonder though if the farm families have accepted that this is not the lifestyle in this area any longer. It's just gone as the tentacles of the city reach ever farther outward. Thanks to all for visiting and viewing.