I went walking…

What did I see?

 

I traveled up the hollow to a neighboring property and was able to see the hundreds of acres that were once owned by the builder of our cabin home.  Turning in place gave me a 360 degree view of the furthest tree lines which, as I understood it, were the *boundaries of his domain.

He put in a lot of work to make the oak woods his home.  As we work on our little 25 of the original acres, I wonder at the strength and stamina of a man who built a home of hewn logs, on the furthest west bit of territory he could find.  It seems hard for us to imagine now, that this place was the wild west in the early 1800s.

He lived here a long time and we now have the honor of refurbishing his legacy.  Do you see the green tin roofs in the last photo? The trees follow the little creek that is our east property boundary.  That is our Farmlet home in the Freedom Hills, of Alabama.  So much history!

I will share more history of our area as I discover it.

~*~

*I was able to locate by plat number the area in which he settled, but sadly, his recorded deed history was lost in a fire in the late 1800s.  😦

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17 thoughts on “I went walking…

    • Lynda says:

      Annie, I am ever amazed at how much of our land is now treeless. I suppose that he did what he deemed necessary at the time, but what is our excuse now? I am certain that much of what is cleared up here is the result of the parceling off of the original piece, with each new owner wanting to farm a bit and have some pasture.

      What is really heartbreaking is that the pine trees are taking over. The folks up here plowed down all their hardwoods in favor of these fast growing pines. Why? To sell them to the paper mill in Courtland. International Paper has recently shut that operation down. Meanwhile, the pine overgrowth has become infested with pine borers and the new sapling trees are falling like matchsticks. We are trying to clean these up on our property, but it is very hard work.

  1. Littlesundog says:

    I do not understand getting rid of the hardwoods. Flabbergasting! And yes, working in the woods is hard work. I tell FD all of the time that twenty years ago we might have been more able to do this kind of work, but in our 50’s we haven’t the strength or stamina we had a decade ago. So what are you doing with the fallen wood on your place?

    • Lynda says:

      Lori, the area where we will be moving has been historically very poor. For those who cut down the hardwoods in favor of the pines it was seen as a way to make quick money and then the pines would provide recurring income from sales to the paper mill.

      As for the fallen pines, most of them are only four to six inches in diameter and have turned soft inside due to insects, moisture, and fungus, so… my thought was to leave them on the ground to finish rotting. Right now we are just trying to get/keep them off the hardwood saplings so they can keep growing tall. I really was surprised at how much we got done, but I would not give us good odds if we were trying to remove very mature specimens! We need a few of the pines in the woods for diversity and for the Pileated Woodpeckers to feed and nest in. The pines were allowed to take over and it was just too much. I’m thinking about cutting down and using some of the smaller pines as pickets for our garden fence. But we shall see, as I change my mind about the garden almost daily. 😉

    • Lynda says:

      Laurie, I am in awe of the skills that man had when he cut and shaped and fitted together the logs for the cabin. I am learning more and more about how to use my camera, but because the cabin is encased within the farmhouse I will need to learn how to artfully light the wood structure to be able to show it to you. And I do want to share, because the details in the axe cuts amaze me!

  2. shoreacres says:

    Despite it all, that truly is beautiful country. Interesting that you mention the woodpeckers. When you walk through our nature areas around here (and sometimes even on the land of people who pay attention to such things) you’ll see dead trees left in place, with rat-a-tat-tatting taking place more than you’d think.

    Twenty-five acres is a nice size. My place up in the hill country was 23 acres, and you could roam forever. Of course, that was down in a valley, and heavily wooded. There were rocks cliffs, and such. The point wasn’t to farm, or build a big house, or hunt. It was just there to enjoy.

    • Lynda says:

      And that is our intention for the woods on our place, Linda! We want to be able to walk them and observe. I know there are so many wonderful creatures living there, because I see their footprints on the trail and in the mud at the creek. Now we just want to be there so I can see them when they make those footprints!

    • Lynda says:

      Celi, yes, I believe if we watch and listen that nature will tell us most of what we need to know. Then there is the discovery of what the original owner built. Bit by bit we are removing the layers that were put up and encase the old cabin. It is so carefully and skillfully put together. We hope that the logs are still good enough to be re-chinked and left exposed on the inside walls of the cabin. We’ll see soon enough!

  3. johnberk says:

    I have a very similar feeling when I walk through some of the antique stores we have in town. It fills me with admiration to those who have put such a great passion and hard work into pieces that outlived them. I understand how you feel when standing there and asking how it was even possible to work so hard for such a long time. The answer seems forgotten.

    • Lynda says:

      A good observation, John.
      When I get busy up there and really put my back into it, the time goes by effortlessly. The next day it takes great effort to even get out of bed. I think about our modern remedies that help us to function and wonder how they continued without them. However, then I think that if you worked that hard your whole life that you would be conditioned and therefore have less pain. Our lives have, seemingly, been made easier by new invention and technology, but to what end? More stress, more debt and none of it long lasting by comparison.

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