09 June 2016

Help stop building abuse

 We've all seen it.  We know the signs.  Yet we choose to remain silent and let building abuse happen all around us.  We pass it every day and do nothing to stop it.  In Marion, Indiana, a group of people have decided to put an end to building abuse with the rescue of their old depot.  The depot served a railroad that ran from Anderson through Marion during the early 1890s.  The folks at Marion got the shaft though, when the railroad company built the foundation of their depot in 1893, then loaded the rest of the building materials on cars and shipped them down to Anderson who received a depot exactly like the one promised in Marion.  Ultimately, Marionites got their depot when it was opened for passenger service in 1895.  Restoration will be slow, but the abuse is over.  What abused buildings are you aware of River City?

07 June 2016

Photo journal of a Quaker church

One of the things I love about the work I do is the opportunities I'm given to visit places I've never been, nor likely would ever go.  I meet great people all across our state that are proud of their history and the buildings and places that embody it.  Such was the case at this little Friends Meeting House in Dublin, Indiana built c. 1874.  A great photogenic building with a wonderful history and steadfast folks who care for both.

02 June 2016

A Home to come Home to

Time is ticking.  Mom and dad have talked about selling their house for over a year now, and they've stepped up the process by looking for a place in River City, and prepping the ol' homestead for the market.  This is going to be a big transition....in fact, they've never bought and sold a home.  When they were first married, they moved a mobile home onto grandpa's farmstead and within a few years built the house in a woods on the farm in 1973.  They've been there ever since.  And except for a few fragments of memories from my toddler days, the house they built is really the only one I can remember from my childhood days.

I know it is going to be difficult.  I can't imagine not having that house to come "home" to after more than 40 years.  Mom insisted on having a get-together over Memorial Day weekend, thinking that it may be the last time all of us siblings, and our kids...and grandkids, would be together in the house.  I don't even want to think about the monumental task of moving and downsizing.
My room-turned antique/plant room.  The only corner view in the house.
My grandparents were in their houses for 46 years and their entire lifetime since it was handed down from generation to generation.  My wife's parents have been in their house for about the same length of time as my parents.  People don't do this anymore these days.  We've moved once, after spending 11 years in our first house and going on 7 years at the farm.  At 11 years, we were some of the "oldest" neighbors in the neighborhood.  It seems that these days people are so disconnected to their homes, families, communities, neighborhoods and other circles that once held our broader communities together.  Our connections are now social media based and it makes me wonder if our inability to be civil in our discourse doesn't follow the trend to be disconnected in real time.

Gafill Oil Company in Argos

My great-grandfather (above) may have started our family in the fuel business with his employment as the agent for an oil company in ...