Thursday, September 07, 2006

I went to Kingston for work yesterday, and on the way back I decided to take the scenic route, literally, since I was in no hurry. I took the Loyalist Parkway along the shore of Lake Ontario, took the Glenora Ferry (a short 5 minute ride) accross to Prince Edward County, with the intention of visiting a Cemetary in Bloomfield to locate the gravesite of my Mom's parents. I took a quick detour though, when I saw a sign for a road named "Chuckery Hill Rd". I remembered seeing pictures of a house on that road that my mom and her family lived in when they first immigrated to Canada. Actually, here's an excerpt from my Grandfather's memoirs:
Our crate arrived at the Picton railroad station on Friday November 2nd but it was too late to pick it up before the weekend any more. My boss, Mr. Hepburn made a dump truck with a driver available to me on the next Monday morning and after we loaded the crate on it we drove it to our house via a long detour. Our first house stood along a gravel road, 2/3rd from the top of a steep hill, or about 200 meters, from highway 33. about 2 miles east of the town of Picton. From on front of the house we could see below us the Picton Bay, part of the Bay of Quinte which runs into Lake Ontario. That Friday we had received a good bit of snow and by the time we reached the bottom of the hill we found the hill too steep to climb with the dump truck, then we tried to get in from the back via a long detour, here we got stuck in a snow drift, but a coal truck is always prepared with coal shovels, with the help of these we got through and finally reached the house. Mom was cleaning out the house already with the help of the youngest children, We unloaded, and installed the used cook stove, bought at a Picton hardware store that morning, and a half a ton of coal to get some heat into the place while the driver raised the dump on his truck, neatly dropping the big crate into the soft snow. We opened the crate, took out all our furniture and found a place for it in the house, kitchen stuff into the kitchen, living room stuff into the living room and bedding into the several bedrooms of
which 2 were downstairs and 3 or 4 upstairs, there was lots of room.

So, yesterday I found the house, and pulled into the driveway. I knocked on the door and met the present owner who was kind enough to show me around after I explained to him that my mom lived there 50 years ago. My grandfather describes the house as having lots of room. By today's standards, it's a tiny house. But for a family with 5 kids, they had plenty of room. Incredible. Anyway, here's some pictures, then and now. The new owner has installed a washroom (but kept the outhouse, just in case), and rearranged the interiour a bit, but intends on keeping the look of the house as it is.

Early 1950's:



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