This 1881 Victorian Style house was the home of the 32nd Governor of North Carolina, David Settle Reid, and he lived there for the last 10 years of his life, passing in 1891. He was one of six governors from Rockingham County, and the City of Reidsville bears his family name. This home was the first structure in Reidsville to be listed on the National Register of Historic Places. In short, I like the home because it is so scenic and colorful, providing lots of photographic angles. Here are some photos I made recently.
Category Archives: America’s Past
I was headed down a very narrow country road, seeking a place to turn around to get back to the highway I had planned to take (no, I wasn’t lost, just following my nose) when I spotted this very nice, old and deserted home, with NO TRESPASSING signs posted. I had to stop and get some photos, and I did. I figured I’d obey the signs and just wander around the yard, getting some photos, thinking the “no trespassing” applied to the house itself. As I got my last photo, I heard angry dogs barking from over a nearby hill. Time to go I told myself, and just as I got into my car there came the first (perhaps) unhappy farm dog looking for the trespasser (me). As I drove off, the dog looked at me and wagged his tail, I guess not so unhappy after all. But, I thanked the Good Lord for making me end my photo shoot when I did. There surely were other dogs around. It was a great experience and I took away some nice images.
Old wooden structures, with weather-beaten and rotting timbers, with green vegetation growing nearby, are especially nice photo subjects when you can find them. You have to drive narrow, winding country roads to find these, and watch carefully for Poison Ivy and local farm dogs that always seem to pop up for me, thankfully as I’m getting back in my car.
From 1893 to 1917, the Little Post Office in Martinsville, Virginia played a critical role in the expansion of the United States Postal Service’s local service, when it was operated as a “contract” post office. Such operations were typical at that time. Today, the historic building is made available for special events and historic displays. I’ve made numerous photos of the building before, and whenever I do, I make an angled-on composition first to show the complete building in (I think) the best manner, followed by a close-up image of some aspect, like the dimpled glass window, with reflected green trees and blue sky. So what if repeat what I’ve done before? I like it!
Like I say, I usually have no specific idea where I’m headed looking for photo opportunities within a 50 mile radius of where we live in SW Virginia. I know the territory well enough that I can simply follow a compass direction, always knowing I’ll eventually wind up on a major road I’ve traveled before. I never go alone, because riding along inside me is the Holy Spirit who has always, and I say always, guided me wisely. When I come upon what I consider a really good “find”, I thank the Good Lord and begin to wander around seeking interesting compositions. Last week, I found this old house along a narrow road I’d never traveled before. Wow, what a place it was. So much history to wonder about. Take a look at what I saw that day.
Oh how nice it might be, to go back in time to shop in stores where just about everything was hand/machine made and locally grown in America. Not that foreign made goods and produce are not acceptable today, they certainly are, overall. My point is that life seemed much simpler early in the 20th Century. Choices were much more limited than they are today, and people interacted with store owners and employees more than they do today, such as standing in line at a chain grocery store check out, with automated scanners and payment terminals. I share with you some recent photos I made at two General Stores in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. Enjoy.
Sadly, in my opinion, we no longer receive advertising sales pitches out-of-doors, on signs mounted or painted on billboards, structures and whatnot. I remember as a kid looking for such signs as we traveled in our old Ford Coupe along two-lane roads, slowly making our way to whatever destination it was. For a kid, told to “be quiet” in the back seat, this was great entertainment, especially when we found some sign that had humor in it. I miss those days, but I have to admit that my iPhone does a pretty good job keeping me entertained while traveling in our car today, so long as I’m not the driver. Enjoy some signs from our past.
As I travel short distances in the Blue Ridge Mountains I am impressed by the amount of labor early settlers had to exert to make homes, farm buildings and fencing to keep valued livestock contained. Hand labor using axes and saws after felling tree after tree resulted in fairly complex designs, all seeming to make the best use of what they had. Here are some examples I saw recently along the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia.