It was a beautiful day for my favorite River ride & as I reached the end of the ride & turned onto the main road, I thought I'd take a different route home. So I rode 20 minutes to the familiar intersection that I usually cross and instead of crossing, I turned left and rode up a couple roads then made a right turn. This road I did not recognise so I kept my eyes peeled for something new in the way of homesteads . Within 5 minutes I noticed a cluster of buildings coming up to my right. There was a barn, various other outbuildings & a house so I pulled over & parked. As I walked the 50 yards to the house, I noticed the almost non existent driveway was slightly rutted and wondered, what kind of cars made these ruts, Model T's, old Chev's, old trucks?? As it turns out, a little later as I looked out one of the bedroom windows, I saw an old decaying buckboard at the side of the house. It had surely made it's share of the ruts I'd seen. This gives an idea as to the age of this home!
As I entered the front door. it was apparent I was not alone! It seems the pigeons of the area had taken it upon themselves to take up residence in the old place. Seems they weren't expecting a visitor & when I made my grand entrance, they took flight as a unit & needless to say, scared their only visitor in years half to death!! As my heart rate slowly came back to normal, I walked into the kitchen of what was once a beautiful home. Somewhere in it's past, it had been converted to a natural gas furnace but originally would have been 2 or 3 woodstoves as was evident by the empty chimney in the diningroom & one of the bedrooms upstairs.
The walls were a mixture of plaster and mud & straw. The doors, windows & baseboards had beautiful wood trim at one time but were painted over at some point. I made my way into the diningroom & noticed the trap door leading down to the cold room/basement. I took a quick tour down there but I'm not one for dungeon like basements!! The livingroom was large & bright, perfect for a large family & even in it's delapidated state, still gave a warm, cozy feeling. Next was time to view the upstairs or as I would soon learn....... pigeon central!! I'm sure the term Dirty Bird was coined after a pigeon as there was half a foot of "pigeon matter" over most of the floors up here. The upstairs floorplan was odd. As I reached the top of the stairs, I turned right into a large bedroom but then crossed the room and entered a smaller room so whoever slept there had to exit through the bigger bedroom & the door to a 3rd bedroom was also in that large bedroom? Across the hall was the 4th bedroom. Quite a large house actually. I also noticed that 2 of the bedrooms had large wooden grates in the floor that had to be stepped over & their
apparent function was to allow the warm air downstairs to rise and warm the upper rooms. One thing that was noticeable was the quality of this house. I could tell that in it's day it was magnificent. After taking a variety of pictures, my visit came to an end. I would go look at the outbuildings & then make my way home satisfied that I could document another fine old home. During my visit here I had the feeling that this had been a happy home & I never had a strange foreboding feeling or anything fearful in the least. We've been in houses where these strange feelings are very evident & have walked through cold spots that have felt 30 degrees colder than the rest of the house, or caught something on the camera that can't be explained. This house had none of that & even being alone, I felt comfortable here.
To me, this house in particular sums up why I love searching out these old places. It has charm, it's still relatively intact, which is due in no small part to the Craftsman who built it! The big barn & other outbuildings are intact as well. I look forward to more visits in the future & hope there never comes a day that I ride by & see just a pile of rubble!! James. I never have seen a haunted house but I hear there are such things; That they hold the talk of spirits, their mirth and sorrowings; I know this house isn't haunted and I wish it were, I do; For it wouldn't be so lonely, if it had a ghost or two. Second verse of "House with nobody in it" A poem by Joyce Kilmer.