Monday, September 15, 2008


A house is never silent in darkness

to those who listen intently;

there is a whispering in distant chambers,

an unearthly hand presses the sash of the window,

the latch rises.

Ghosts were created when the first man

woke in the night.

-- James Matthew Barrie, "The Little Minister"

I love old houses, and especially old abandoned houses. I know a lot of people think of them as haunted houses. I never have, I love them. I can just stand there and feel the life that once went on between these walls. I can hear the footsteps in the hallway, hear the front, screen door slam. I can see two people sitting on that porch, seeking a little breeze and passing the time away in wonderful conversation. I can hear the kids playing in the yard, their happy voices reaching the top floors, where the Mama, busy at her work, can hear them and she smiles.

When I look through these houses, I often try to picture, what kind of people lived in this house. Were they rowdy and loud or quite and well mannered? Was there happiness here? Did someone who was dearly loved, die here after a long illness? Did children play in the rooms and have birthday parties? What was Christmas like in this house? Did they laugh around the dining room table? Did their Wild and rambling Uncle, come to see them and tell of his travels while they listened with wide eyes?

I believe a house is alive with memories. It is the memories that keep them standing. When no one is alive to remember any longer, then they fall down. Not so much abandoned as forgotten.


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CurtissAnn said...

Oh, honey, I feel exactly the same way! And I always thought I was the only one. :) I also remember my childhood. When I was a child, people lived in houses that looked exactly like the first photo, peeling paint and all. I can recall a girlfriend who lived in a big family home like that back in NC. We played in the enormous front room that had once held balls long ago.

Peggy said...

I want to adopt every abandoned house I see. I can see in my mind how it use to look and how happy it was with the family inside its walls.

Nola @ AlamoNorth said...

I love old building in general, especially barns. Old houses are fascinating, too. I always try to visualize life that went on in the houses.

Morning Glories in Round Rock said...

I am drawn to old abandoned houses, though it makes me sad to see them. My mind drifts away thinking, as you, of long ago happier days when they were filled with voices and energy. Sometimes it feels like the energy is still there when you walk into them, and other times, it is just like a shell. I remember an old abandoned plantation house I went through when I lived in Tennessee. One arched door led down a hallway that continued the arch all the way down--and it was painted gold. It has a luminescent quality that was beautiful.I had a very sad feeling as I walked through it, and felt if the walls could talk they would.

Donna said...

I Love these pictures!! Great looking one time, I'll bet!! Happy night sweetie!!hughugs

Dawn said...

Aren't they great? I think they still look quite stately, holding secrets.

Debra said...

I love them too, and make a point of taking their portraits, as they seem like the people that lived in them, alive still. It's a sad and sweet thing to look at them. Your old one is a real beauty. You could write a book around it.
Love, Debra

Brenda Kula said...

That was beautiful! I got up this morning and told myself when I feel stronger, I'm going out with my camera into the country and look for scenery to photograph, old buildings and barns. You have further inspired me to do so. I love this.

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