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Monday, October 14, 2013

Beauty Where I Find It

stone wall

I told you I am a cheap date, easily amused.

There is more of this wall, much more. Since it is in the country, I was afraid to get out of the car...dogs, you know. So, I sit in the car and take pictures. By the way, turn off the motor so the picture won't be fuzzy from motor vibrations.
 
It may be a great fault of mine, but I find beauty where others do not. I muse about who built this. Who was he? How old was he? Was stonemason his official occupation? Did he have help from sons, daughters, workmen? Did his wife help? How proud were they when this beautiful wall was complete? How old is the wall? Did they know how special and beautiful it was, a work of art, or was it just utilitarian, holding back the bank?
 
 corner of my basement
 
My basement wall of my home is of similar construction on my home built in 1902. So, has the stone wall in the country stood for over 100 years?
 
One day, I will venture up this driveway and ask about the wall, its history and builder. There are many stone walls, basements, home, and other structures in this town. I suppose this indicates we have an abundance of raw materials, probably all once in fields to be plowed.
 
Your turn
 
Do you find cheap pleasures in pondering old things, old stone walls? Are you a stonemason? I suppose that is the term. Do you know a stonemason? 


 

19 comments:

  1. Yes, and especially things built out of stone!!!

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    1. Alex,
      I am so glad you like old stone, too.

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  2. My Daddy and his father built several rock homes in Oklahoma. It really is an art! Thank you for sharing your photos.

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    1. Janet,
      What a pleasant surprise. You come from a line of artisans. I have more photos of old stone homes in this town.

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  3. I love stone walls - particularly dry stone walls. And we have very few of them here. And stone which has weathered and mellowed with the land is beautiful. Truly beautiful.

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  4. EC,
    I think you, too, understand the beauty I saw. Someday, I will take pictures of the whole wall on both sids of the drive.

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  5. I love old stone walls (and houses, too!). I try to imagine what these places looked like when "new". It would be wonderful if we could transport back in time and see.

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    1. Sue,
      And see who built it, if the buildrs lived there, what their lives were like. We do need a time machine.

      Delete
  6. We had no rocks to speak of in Mississippi other than river gravel, and I grew up envying people who had rocks where they lived. Here, igneous rocks dominate. They're not often used as building stones--except as in your photo--but I stayed at a resort last week (I was only there because Peggy had a work-related seminar to attend) that had wide chimneys made of vesicular andesite, and it was such a joy to just lie in bed and look at my fireplace and chimney.

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    1. I don't remember rocks in MS, either. Your resort sounds like it was well-appointed and built of quality materials. It may be silly, but I sat in the car just to look at and admire the wall and many of the rocks. I sit in the yard and just admire the rock basement, too--meditative moments.

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    2. I only knew one person in Mississippi who had a basement, and he was a transplant from Ohio.

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    3. Snowbrush,
      I don't remember if anyone I knew had one. I don't think so. Lots of people had tornado shelters built into banks and fallout shelters.

      In my neighborhood, most people do have a basement. I am one of the few whose basement is only halfway in the ground with the rock wall at the top. Most of the older homes in town do have basements, even the older municipal buildings.

      I wonder how the Ohioan's basement worked out. Was it damp or flooded?

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    4. I'm surprised that are so many basements in the upper half of Alabama when I only knew of one in the lower half of Mississippi. By the way, when my grandfather moved from Bridgeport, Alabama (in the extreme northeastern part of the state), to southern Mississippi, people called him a Yankee because he "talked funny," saying you'uns and we'uns rather than ya'll.

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    5. Snowbrush,
      One house here is huge and has a full basement with ten foot ceilings. The concrete walls are a foot thick. It is amazing. I don't know why we have so many basements, but they seem to be the rule.

      Look for linguistic maps and see where these words come from and where people say it. I found that some words I used are from my father's Illinois roots. He lived in Memphis and ne AL, Shoals and Florence area, a few years as a small child, from about four-years-old and until he died in Memphis. BUT, he lived with those parents with their speech and speech patterns and they were his speech and speech patterns and common words.

      Then again, maybe lots of people from Bridgeport came from the north. It is amazing when you dig into these linguistic maps. Let me know what you find.

      I grew up in Memphis. People in Alabama say. "You don't sound like you are from around here." or "You must be from up north." Yes, all the way from Memphis.

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    6. " "You don't sound like you are from around here."

      I heard that a lot in the very county in which I grew up and spent the first half of my life. I concluded from it that I didn't sound Southern. Then, I moved to Oregon and found out better.

      I've heard other people in that corner of Alabama where it comes together with Tennessee and Georgia say you-uns and we'uns. In fact, that's how I learned that it wasn't just my Grandpa who spoke that way. Rather, it's a Southern Appalachian thing, or at least it used to be.

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    7. Snowbrush,
      When I go to NYC to visit my daughter, the people up there definitely think I sound Southern. So, I do understand.

      If "you-uns" is in that part of the country, it occurred because of a migration, most likely. But, which direction? I have been all over this part of the country and have never heard that. Of course, I will probably hear it next time I am around there.

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    8. "If "you-uns" is in that part of the country, it occurred because of a migration, most likely. But, which direction?"

      The Southern Appalachians are very British in ancestry, and people tended to move further South down the chain bringing their speech habits with them.

      Delete
  7. I love your basement walls! Ours is stone, too. It's big granite boulders and needs work. We can see right to the outside in parts. :-o

    There is a dug well in our cellar, too. And crumbling horsehair plaster walls. Some of the old settlers built their kitchens in the cellars of their houses (our house is about 160).

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    1. Sue,
      Thanks. The inside of the basement is rock on the top half. The walls are a foot thick. I love them but not the light green someone put on them...lol.

      Our well was out back. The house had one room extended out at the back--kitchen. I suppose that was a concession to having the kitchen separate. Your house is much older! Nice! But, no horsehair.

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