Friday, April 23, 2010

Old Furniture part four

One of my most treasured pieces of furniture, this writing desk belonged to first my Cousin Jay Frank McLeod and was inherited by my father at Frank's death and passed onto me about 10 years ago. Frank passed away when I was a little girl and while I have no memory of meeting him; he's had an impact on my life that goes beyond this desk because like me, he was a genealogist. Tucked away in all my research are notes he made on small scraps of paper as he traveled to what is now McLeod Water Park in Mississippi and to North Carolina trying to learn all he could about our immigrant ancestors.

Part of it is missing and it has a hole in it where my father accidentally fired off his shotgun, but that's its story.....and so it stays just the way it came to me.....some of those bits of paper with Frank's notes on them are in those drawers along with old photos of my kids and my siblings and parents and treasured old birthday and anniversary cards handmade by our kiddos through the years....every now and then, I make an attempt to organize what's inside of it, but always get bogged down in the memories or remember a trail I wanted to follow in my genealogical research which sends me off to my computer....maybe one day I'll actually clear it out and organize it all....

This tall beautiful piece was handmade by my father in law in the 1980's - their house is now 101 years old just like the one I live in. Unlike my house, their original galley kitchen was renovated to include the former screened in back porch opening the space up to look more in keeping with the size of the rooms in the rest of their beautiful home - and then Big Ed built this cabinet to sit in an out of the way corner. Over the years, David and I had forgotten that it had been hand made by his father and unfortunately, it wasn't until we began to empty out the house last month that David recalled it. David said that as soon as he put his hands on it and got a good look at the details, it came back to him.....and then of course, my memory was jogged as well. The pottery that you can just barely glimpse was all done by David's mother and most of the cookbooks that now reside on the shelving were also given to me through the years, including the last Christmas gift she gave us - The Bread Makers Apprentice.....a book I use regularly.

Pieces of old furniture like these two...well, they surround you with a sense of belonging...a connection to your past and a bridge to your children's future....they make our house a home. Its as simple a story as that............

1 comment:

  1. The beauty of quality furniture is only enhanced by the stories behind it (and, sometimes, the scrapes and gouges done to it over time). It's true that we surround ourselves with furniture and it all provides a connection with the past. Nice post.


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