Saturday, September 16, 2006

Memories

LOL! Gail asked if I could see the dog in the cloud I posted before. What I noticed when I posted it was a cat laying on it's back with one end twisted to the left and the other to the right. Just like I see my cats do so many times. I was wondering if anyone else would see something in my cloud. :-)

This mornings post will be a blast from my past. I've mentioned before that I grew up in cotton country. I've seen cotton planted, growing , picked, and ginned. The picture above isn't much to look at but that old building holds many memories for me. That's the old gin in my hometown that my Pop (paternal grandfather) managed from before I was born until he retired the day of his 70th birthday. That was a point of pride for him. He wanted to work until he was 70. :-)

That's the gin house proper. We weren't allowed in there during ginning season but roamed freely during the summer when the equipment wasn't in operation. I used to love to go to work with Pop and play in that building. And in the little office that used to sit off to the left of the building. About where that yellow piece of equipment is in the picture. On the right side of the picture you can see a couple cotton modules waiting to be ginned. In the old days when cotton was picked it was taken in a trailer to the gin where it sat and waited it's turn to be emptied. During peak season the gin worked long hours so the farmer's equipment wouldn't be tied up any longer than necessary. Now with the modules the cotton can sit in the field road or at in the gin yard until the gin is ready for it. So the ginning season isn't as intense and goes later into the year.

A few years after Pop retired they started hiring migrant workers to work during ginning season and turned the old gin into living quarters for the workers. I'm not sure if they still do that since less workers are needed now for a longer time but the building hasn't been torn down yet. I expect one of these days when I go back home it will be gone. Another icon from my childhood gone except in photographs and memories.

I'll always remember the annual fish fry they held every summer for the stockholders. Lots of fried catfish, hush puppies, french fries and cole slaw. And little bare-footed children running around playing in the gin. Bet they couldn't do that now with all the safety rules in place these days. LOL!

In later years they built a new modern gin. Although modern is a relative term since I think they built it before he retired (in 1969) but it might have been a few years later. I really can't remember.

As I was parked across the road taking these pictures I realized I what I was parked in front of so I took some pictures of it too. Another blast from my past. :-) This was the little church I grew up in. I was baptised there, sang in the choir there, and was married from there. As you can imagine that little building holds many wonderful memories for me.

7 comments:

Pam said...

Thank you for giving me a peek into your past. How fun these memories are now that we are able (I won't say OLDER) to appreciate them for all they are. I have 20 gallon rubbermaid totes of pictures that were at my parents house, my sister and one brother and I went through them before my daddys funeral....those boxes are full of laughter and tears just waiting to be released.

Dianne said...

Thanks for such a reflective post, Nancy. So cool to have this little photo journal of this experience from your childhood.

Like Pam, I have boxes of old photos from my family. Packing for Australia, I went through them to divide into stacks...some for me to take, some for my sisters, some for my son. Put me in a really reflective mood.

Of course, I wasn't clever enough to blog about it...thanks for encouraging me to do something like that next time!

Libby said...

I love the old photos and the stories that go with them. I hope they don't tear the old gin down -- I hate when that happens to any old building. Just makese me sad. At least you have the photos and the stories to keep it alive. Thanks for sharing them.

EileenKNY said...

What a nice place to come from. It's good that you're keeping these pictures. We need to keep our childhoods from sliding into nothing.

KCQuilter said...

What a great walk down memory lane! I loved reading about it.

Vicky said...

Nancy, where in the South did you grow up? Cotton gins and small red brick churches are all so familiar to me! Now if you put a picture up there of a hunting camp, I'd think we were related! LOL

Thank you for sharing your memories with us. Precious memories!

(Hugs)

Gail said...

I enjoyed your photos and memories, it is wonderful that you have the photos now, before they start tearing things down. So much of what I remember is gone , I haven't been 'home' in almost 20 years, so its just as well that I don't get back there. Hearing the changes is bad enough. oh--there is a reason you see cats and I see dogs: you are owned by a cat, I am owned by a dog! Explains everything, sort of like a rorshak(sp?) test