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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    chicago
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: TOH wants to know what you miss most about houses of the past

    My grandpa grew up in a house with a decorative cast-iron vent hole in the dining room ceiling, to let heat into the second-floor bedroom, through the floor. I never realized what a weird thing that is, a hole in the floor! My brother has the house now, and is restoring it, so I can't say I miss it, exactly - but I do miss tossing things down that vent hole onto the unsuspecting adults! My brother once put his whole leg down it and scared the bejeebers out of our little cousin. That makes four generations playing with that thing (so far)

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,560

    Default Re: TOH wants to know what you miss most about houses of the past

    Having live through some of the good old days.
    I don't miss the out house.
    I don't miss the wood burning cook stove or the work it took keeping to going.
    I don't miss carrying the water in from the well.
    I don't miss heating the water on the stove for bathing or washing cloths.
    I don't miss hand milking the cows.
    I don't miss shoveling coal for the furnace or carrying 5 gal. cans of coal oil in for the heater.
    I don't miss the gravel and dirt roads.

    I do miss the old radio programs that we use to listen to and the expansion of our imagination that it provided.
    I do miss the fresh veggies, milk, and fruit we always seemed to have on hand but I sure don't miss the acre garden we had to hand weed.

    But most of all I miss the $47/yr property taxes.
    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    3

    Smile Re: TOH wants to know what you miss most about houses of the past

    As others have noted, I miss the buzzer under the dining room table; the butler's pantry (no butler or servants but these things were really cool!) The big window built into the curved wall at the back of the house, going from the 2nd floor to the 3rd floor, into which we (well, my father) put a huge 5' by 8' whole house fan every summer. It had a screen that you lowered and raised by hand. And it ventilated the entire house in the summer in Baltimore, where it can get really disgustingly hot and humid. And we had no AC until I was 16 and even then it was only on the 1st floor.

    the breakfast room and the library.

    The big french doors at the back and front of the living room and the dining room...each had a huge curved window at the top. The arched doorways into those rooms, with velvet portieres in the winter time.

    And before I forget.. sliding down the banister...what a rush!

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Farmington, NH
    Posts
    2

    Wink Re: TOH wants to know what you miss most about houses of the past

    They seemed to be for the most part extremely sturdy and well built especially considering the lack of the specialized tools and equipment used today in building homes. Homes built around the turn of the century in northern Minnesota (Two Harbors & Duluth area where I was born) are still around today serving second, third, and fourth generations of families. They require normal upgrades, but for the most part resemble everything that they did when they were initially built.
    I miss the laundry chute at my dad's folks home in Two Harbors, where my sister & I used to talk to one another between floors, it was our long distance telephone of sorts. Grandpa garage and workshop though small had every hand tool one could imagine. After my dad's dad retired from the Railroad, he began a long life of building furniture which still graces our homes nearly 70 years later. Seems like every house in the neighborhood had a pantry filled with cookies and other tasty treats for us kids. Just thinking about it brings back tons of memories. Two Harbors still is a fairly small town, it was just the right size for our family and us kids.
    Both our mom's parents home and ours about 1.5 miles apart from one another were on Park Point in Duluth, Minnesota. Grandma had the best and slickest banister in the country. Seems like every time she waxed it, us kids had to try it out, knowing full well that we'd get scolded for sliding down it, we still did it. The house was permeated with grandpa's cigars. Again all of the trim was wide, the even wood floors and had a pantry filled with all sorts of treats.
    Our house was originally a church. My parents moved to the house in 1947. It used to have a back porch, but it was removed when the house was jacked up for a cement block basement around 1960 or so. I can remember after they had jacked it up, one corner timber slid out of place and no one realized for over a week. The house didn't buckle or break. I doubt not too many houses of today could have withstood that predicament. My parents home is now serving yet another owner. It has the original cedar shakes, and most of the trim boards it had back in the day. The house has been re-roofed, since it sits on the lake side of the island, and gets the brunt of winter's fury from Lake Superior. Several coats of finish on the shakes and it comes around again and again.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: TOH wants to know what you miss most about houses of the past

    I miss the milk shute. When we would get locked out of the house we would sqeeze through it.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Western NYS
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: TOH wants to know what you miss most about houses of the past

    My grandparents house was very old when I spent my summers there 55 years ago. The doors were very tall and had huge latch boxes with dark brown ceramic knobs. The wood work was beautiful and the windows extended nearly to the floor with deep sills that a 5 year old could climb into. Also the storm door to the cellar was fun to slide down until you caught a splinter!

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: TOH wants to know what you miss most about houses of the past

    Even though our house was built in 1900 it's missing many things I remember from visiting houses when I was a child, and things in the local historical mansion. We are talking about replacing the unused chimney( now that furnaces and tankless water heaters are vented out the wall) with a laundry chute. The dumbwaiter might be better because it would also haul the wash back up. It's just the chute would be so much faster and cheaper to build. I also loved the servant steps, the servant kitchen in the basement (for those hot summer days) and the upstair balconey's. We've been working on this place for 26 years and still might get some of those added in the future.

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,560

    Default Re: TOH wants to know what you miss most about houses of the past

    The one thing I really miss is a dark night. When I was a kid we use to go out on a clear night and look at the stars . Now there are so many security lights around it's hard to even see the brightest stars anymore.
    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,486

    Default Re: TOH wants to know what you miss most about houses of the past

    Quote Originally Posted by JLMCDANIEL View Post
    Having live through some of the good old days.
    I don't miss the out house.
    I don't miss the wood burning cook stove or the work it took keeping to going.
    I don't miss carrying the water in from the well.
    I don't miss heating the water on the stove for bathing or washing cloths.
    I don't miss hand milking the cows.
    I don't miss shoveling coal for the furnace or carrying 5 gal. cans of coal oil in for the heater.
    I don't miss the gravel and dirt roads.

    I do miss the old radio programs that we use to listen to and the expansion of our imagination that it provided.
    I do miss the fresh veggies, milk, and fruit we always seemed to have on hand but I sure don't miss the acre garden we had to hand weed.

    But most of all I miss the $47/yr property taxes.
    Jack
    DAYUM! You must be one o' them ol' guys!

    That's the way I grew up, and I was anxious to get away from it. Now, 30 years later I'm anxious to get back to it. I soooooooo miss the clean and simple life, when folks called and understood when you didn't answer you were likely out doing chores or literally plowing the south 40. When you turned the tractor off at the end of the day there was silence in the air, and as you said, stars in the sky.

    I long for the 1/4 acre hand weeded garden, the quiet, the serene, the clean. Enough of this city garbage! I want the country back!
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    0

    Default Re: TOH wants to know what you miss most about houses of the past

    Many of the replies posted take me back to the day. The front porch where neighbors visited and kids played, the doors with no locks, the open lawns without fences, the quite warm radiator heat where my snow boots would dry and warm before my next outing in the snow, and the sleeping porch upstairs on the back of the house for those spring nights with the clean crisp night air and even the big attic fan that would pull a breeze across my bed as I went to sleep excited about tomorrow's adventure, but the most memoriable thing I miss is the floor plan that was efficient for the slower paced family togetherness. How many houses are built today have a breakfast room, or a root cellar? The house I grew up in was designed for the family to live and enjoy being together. When I grew up, my parents moved out, only I remain. Parents and sisters have gone on now, but for 58 years the old house and I have remained. This is my home.

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