August 12, 2016

On The Back Roads of Kentucky


On the back roads of Kentucky it is not uncommon to see old houses like this...just rotting down to the ground. One interesting thing about some old houses is that they will have an old historic cabin within....which then can make it a historical property, and then there is paperwork, etc. to do something with it. 


Sometimes there are just old frame houses that have outlived their usefulness I guess. Maybe this was someone's home place. Maybe the kids moved away. Maybe the parents had to move in with a child...or nursing home. Then maybe no one had the heart to tear down the "homeplace"....and it just sits there and becomes like 
what you see in this picture. Sometimes people who are interested 
in reusing materials will come along and help with the "take down." 

Anyway I saw this picture on Facebook and messaged my son's friend about it. He then invited me to bring my guys to see what he and his dad had done on their farm. I was ready!


Today...I have a treat for everyone! We visited our friends and I have a wonderful tour for you....I have a cabin and barn tour...built using tools and techniques from the "olden days."   

My son has been close friends with the farm owner's son since cub scouts, boy scouts, and high school. We (my hubby, son, and I) were invited over to see some of what they had been building on their farm. I was so thrilled because you know that I love "old" Kentucky provenance. It was a fun evening...walking, talking, and sitting under a huge tree as the sun set and evening came.

One thing before we start...I want you to know that all of the wood to build the family's modern house, as well as the barns, and cabin, came from trees on their farm. Pretty cool huh!

Let me show you the old fashioned kitchen that this family built onto the back of their newer brick home. (They have a large modern kitchen in the main part of the house.) This is a room full of antiques...from Kentucky's early days. The father and son team pick up treasures here and there to bring back to their farm to use in their pioneer/country themed décor for cabins, and barns. Look very closely. Nothing is a reproduction here.  


Ladies...this is what a pioneer wife had for her cabinets.



Take a look at this woodburning cookstove. 
And look at all of the wonderful cast iron...best cooking pans! 



This hoosier cabinet sits to the left of the cook stove. There is a flour sifter built inside of the cabinet. And there is also a porcelain work top..for making biscuits, etc. Do you see the pretty pink glass items inside the cabinet? 


This rocker by the window offers a nice place to sit and to wait for the biscuits to bake.

I bet you can recognize what this is. A way for baby to get around.

After looking around in the antique kitchen we went across the back yard to the barn and cabin area.


I have to tell you that this tree in the back yard is huge. I don't just mean very big...I mean huge. It looks like it could have been here since the 1700s. Seriously. 

I was told that the local newspaper came to take a picture of this tree and write a story about it. I wish I had a tape measure. It is easily the circumference of a washing machine....or maybe larger. I could not get a picture of its full size.



We walked under the tree to get to the cabin. I have to say that I love this cabin. If you ever want a place to get away...build a cabin like this behind your house. It is self contained...and does have electricity, running water, and a water closet. 


I keep wanting to say look at this, look at that. The stones were found from an old falling down chimney...and were reused here. The wood logs came from wood on the farm. And the split shingles!




When I opened the front door to the cabin I saw an old bed with quilts. How cozy. And to the right of the front door is this homemade table and stools. I want to call your attention to the tabletop. That is one solid slice of a tree. You could count the rings if you want to but I wanted to move along and see more.


If you want to be more authentic...
you could use an oil lamp instead of the electric light. 


Below is the mantle...which has a wood burning fireplace.



If you need to brush your teeth, you will need to step outside onto the back porch to enter the water closet. How about this for a sink pedestal....a log, from the farm. And what did they do with the pipes, put them in the hollowed out log...very clever!


The back porch wall has a wash tub hanging on the wall...for what ever you might need it. The other porch wall has a collection of old jars and bottles. I am not sure what they are sitting in...but I like the design.



We stepped off of the back porch to inspect the beautiful stone chimney. I could easily have a love affair with stone. I just love it. And old stone...from another location, has a story. Isn't that stone beautiful! The family set the stones also.


My son's friend is showing us what they look for in corner stones. You want good square edges. The stone he is pointing to is flat and has ridges all along it.


After leaving the cabin...we walked back to the home made barn. I saw a couple of wagons that are being refurbished. One wagon was used in the local festival.



Bits and pieces of a wagon waiting to be reborn.



Yes, all of this has been made by a man and his sons using old building techniques to attain an old looking structure....like how that used to be in older times in Ky.



Behind the barn area is a set up to make molasses. A mule is attached to this wood looking contraption and as he walks in  a circle sugar cane is inserted into the rollers in that other contraption at the center. The sugar is squeezed out and caught in a container. This goes on for quite a while. After the cane juice is gathered...it is cooked in a furnace built nearby. 


Below wood is being saved up to cook the cane sugar into molasses/sorgum.

The family has their own Molasses Day festival for family and friends. Folks come for the day. Everyone brings a dish...and they sit and visit, while some are cooking the molasses. I asked when it was next year as I wanted an invitation! ha.


After looking at all of the farm gadgets, barns, trees, and cabin...the guys, my son and his friend, decided I needed to see the very back side of the farm and the view. Ok....son's friend was on a four wheeler, while son and I rode in some kind of farm, 4 wheel drive, mini truck looking thing. It is not a road vehicle...but meant to travel over one's property to check fence posts, or cattle, or what ever.This vehicle had no doors, but it did have seat belts!  I was holding on for dear life as we traveled over the fields to see the view. 


Yes...it was bumpy, and I was silly to try to snap a photo. That is my son's arm though.  Below, you can see what I thought they meant by "the view." I think this is beautiful. The heavy humidity is making the smokey look. But this is not the view they want me to see. So...we keep going further.


And here is the view! The boys were saying it is usually clearer, but I think the fog makes the image pretty. The farm is on what we call knob land in that part of Kentucky...up on a hill, then land rolls off  or drops off to a valley below. The rolling landscape of Kentucky provides many breathtaking views. 






I hope you enjoyed this tour. I know I sure loved mine. This location is about 35 minutes from where I live. Before we moved...our farm was about five minutes away from this farm. And....we had a drop off behind our land also. I like where I am ...and have less upkeep. I am so glad I have friends with farms ...for me to visit. :-)

One more thing...I am going to have a giveaway soon. I will give you the details in the next post...so be sure to check back later.

Have a great day! 

Sheila

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My Kentucky Living
My Kentucky Living

Hello, I'm Sheila and my house is a giant art project! I enjoy creating an environment where my family can feel safe, secure, and loved. We are empty nesters learning to slow down and enjoy life.

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