Thursday, April 11, 2013

Antique Travel Trunk - a Time Past

 This antique trunk sits near our back door.

This old pine trunk was built in Norway c. 1895, and traveled across the Atlantic with the ancestors of the family who were the ones who built the original house and barn on the farm where we live. That house was built on the hill above the spring, and a new house (the one we live in) was built in 1913. Sometime in the early 1940s, this house was made into a duplex of sorts, with the parents living on the first floor and the newly-married son and daughter-in-law living on the second floor.

 'Knud Amundson
Monroe(?), Wischosin, Amerika'
(you can kinda read it when the light is just right)

We bought the farm from that daughter-in-law in 1986, a year after her husband had died. When we walked out of the lawyer's office after signing the papers, I remember crying because I thought it was incredibly sad that no one in the family wanted to purchase the farm. Their family had owned this land since purchasing it from the Knapp Stout Lumber Company.



We purchased the trunk at the auction held by Amundsons after the sale of the farm. It currently holds newspapers (to use as fire starters when building a fire in the cookstove) and it's where the huge ceramic German Shepherd and 3 pups sit (which my cousin gave me. In fact, except for the live GSD, Bridger, I think that every other Shepherd around here is from Bobby. ♥)

After we moved here, the brother of the previous owner stopped in one day. He told me about digging out the spring and about the schoolhouse, which once stood about a half mile from our house, where he and his brother attended as kids. The stream that runs through our property is where the brothers would set their fishing lines on their way to school, and then would run to check on them during recess.

Do your kids get to do that?

That was back in the day when Type 2 Diabetes in kids was virtually unheard of because kids got enough exercise through work and play, when work was considered a privilege and a part of normal life rather than punishment, when they only ate sugar in an occasional Sunday dessert, when none of them were on anti-depressants or psychostimulants because they ate real food and got lots of exercise, when children weren't exposed to a steady stream of violence because they didn't have television or computers, when the teachers didn't expect kids to sit still for hours at a time and kids weren't segregated by age, where the older kids were enlisted to help teach the younger ones, and where most kids were taken to church on Sundays and taught to respect life and to love and honor God.



What an outdated way of living, huh!


***
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36 comments:

Paulette said...

Ain't it the truth.

Amy Burzese said...

Love the story. I think the same things every day when I hear about violence, ADHD, obesity, autism, etc. We have done these things to ourselves.

Sandra said...

i like that trunk and the story behind it and all i can say about the last paragraph is Preach IT Sista... i agree 100 percent... unless our power grid goes down we will never return to those days...

Jenn said...

I love old trunks like that! I always assume there is some very interesting story that goes with it!
And.. although I did not get to check lines at recess... we did go camping with our dads (my cousins and my sister and I) and they truly only brought us so they could set the lines, go back to camp and play cards and drink beer, then send the kids to check the lines!!

Diane said...

Ver interesting story! And Paulette sure nailed it with her comment!

Cherry's Prairie Primitives said...

I love the story behind your farm!! The trunk is a great treasure!!

Donna said...

I had to laugh about how it used to be for us as kids. Just the other day, DH showed me a long-kept treasure that he made in machine shop during his high school years. It was a plastic letter opener. LOL, I told him, gosh you made a knife in school?! He said that he even made a gun rack in woodworking class! And it's funny how he didn't turn out into a mass murderer! Today's values have really messed the kids up. I think the liberal values have done a lot to harm society over the years.

Suzan Sweatman said...

What a great post Judy - and yes it's so much more complicated today - we also didn't label everyone with something or other - ( other than the standard " class Clown " ) who today would be be given Ritalin so fast his head would spin
Much love,
Suzan

Chatty Crone said...

I liked this post - seeing the old things and reading about the past - I love the past - at least to read about it. sandie

Ruth Kelly said...

Great story. Our American diet has turned out to be just awful. I shuttered when I see what my kids eat.

Samantha said...

I love your trunk, it's great that it's still on the farm. It's sad that no one wanted the farm, but great because it's your home now. When my younger sister bought their house it was purchased as the lady who lived there had passed away. They found a wartime photograph portrait of the lady's husband in his uniform and contacted the family who said to just put it in the bin.

I couldn't bear to see it go in the rubbish so I brought him home. I like to think that someone appreciates his photograph and that he was willing to serve his country even if I never knew him or his family.

Grandma Barb's This and That said...

Love hearing the story of your place.
It's too bad we can't return to some of the ways of the past.

Heide at ApronHistory said...

How cool you know so much of your house's history! Love it. And to also have a piece of furniture, even better!
I do not understand why people don't want to know and preserve their roots.

Ellie VanCaster said...

Makes one wish for the "good ole days" doesn't it? Great story.

Debra Hawkins said...

OK, so I am kind of in love with your trunk. My grandma actually immigrated from Norway and my mom spend most of her childhood there. Norwegian is my mom's first language (although she is shaky in it now.)
I grew up thinking I was the weird kid because other kids loved greasy American food and my mom made us stacks of crepes with candles in them instead of birthday cakes.

podso said...

What a beautiful trunk and it's nice you have a story and such history to go with it. And aren't you glad it's where it is!

ImSoVintage said...

What a fabulous old trunk and story. My grandchildren don't watch TV. They spend a lot of time playing outside.
xo
Laura

Miss Elizabeth said...

What an amazing piece of history to have in your own house!! It reminds me of the hopechests from that era...

Connie said...

What an interesting read. I love that you are surrounded my so much family history. That is amazing to me :) I have an old truck that belonged to my father-in-law's mother. In it were hat pins, button hooks etc. Today they are all contained and displayed in my glass top coffee table. Oh, the stories they could tell :)
I don't know why it has taken me so long to find your wonderful blog. We have many mutual followers, so I think it was destiny for our paths to cross at some point in time. I am your newest follower and I would like to take this opportunity to invite you over to follow me back. I have met the nicest people in blog-land.
Your blogging sister, Connie :)

Judy said...

What a neat story about the trunk...and that is so true about kids and diabetes.

8)(8 said...

They were fortunate to sell it to you, because you are keeping some of the history alive.

It's so hard to remove all the distractions these days. It was really nice when I stopped the T.V., but alas there are other distractions: i-pad, i-phone, the computer.

Carla said...

I love this story. Thank you for sharing!

Denise said...

Fantastic story.

Lana Wallpe said...

OUR girls are getting their exercise reacquainting themselves with the seven calves out in the barn. Time to start figuring out who is fair-worthy. We walked five of them this weekend, and I am actually writing posts again, so they should show up soon. They have been making it to my Facebook page and Instagram accounts so far.

Looks like winter isn't done with you folks to the north. Been thinking about you with all this crazy weather. Down here, we are NOT going to start the year dry. Water is standing everywhere, and I think I heard Steve say we have had about three inches in the last two days. Mercy! When it does dry out, everyone is going to have to go out and mow their yards. Time for the girls to learn how to do it around here. My allergies are getting the better of me. Time to chat with the doc about it I suppose.

Hope to be tuning in regularly now. I've missed chatting with you!

Hugs!

Nook and Cranny said...

Your trunk in awesome.
I agree with you, things certainly have changed for our society of children, sad I know.
Maybe things like your trunk are the only things/items left that will remind us of those times.
Thanks for sharing.

Cynthia said...

I love this trunk and the story and the history. It is too bad we can't go back to better times.

Cynthia

Terri D. said...

Not an outdated way to live, at all. Please God, that we can see that come back soon! Respect for life! What a concept! Love your trunk and the sweet story you told us today!!

Claudia said...

Outdated but dearly missed. Thank goodness I grew up in a time where we spent hours outdoors every day.

The trunk is simply beautiful and the story behind it and your home even more beautiful. What a history your place has, Judy.

Thanks so much for joining in this week.

xo
Claudia

Balisha said...

I enjoyed the story of your trunk.
Those were very special days. I feel sad for kids today...they have no idea what they are missing. Those were good times.
Balisha

LizlovesVintage said...

What a great story to share with future generations. I love to hear great stories such as yours today! Yes, it's a crazy world we live. Nice to meet you by the way. Have a wonderful weekend!
xxx Liz

AshTreeCottage said...

Such a lovely old trunk and you are so lucky to have this treasure!

Big Hugs,
Susan and Bentley

Debra @ Homespun said...

I am glad that you were able to purchase this!

talking about kids nowadays....lady at work having troubles with her hyper son at school. he figits too much. well the poor kid ( 7 years old ) is expected to sit still for 3.5 hours in the morning / no breaks at all. crazy school not son is my thought! :)

Nancy Claeys said...

We have the trunk my husband's great grandfather brought over from Brussels. Such a treasure!

explorenewness said...

Wonderful post! I've been doing family history research of my husbands's family from Norway that came to Minnesota, and your post reaffirmed and reminded me that those people were very real (not just names on a pedigree chart). Thank you!

The Cottage Market {Andrea} ♥ said...

Gorgeous trunk and wonderful story...thank you so much for sharing with us...hugs...

J_on_tour said...

Strange how life has become so complicated & yet we are told it's easier. Ooo I think not & didn't see that punchline coming .. Wow !

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