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Thread: Cousin Lem

  1. #11
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Halifax, VA
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    776

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    I have cherished this conversation since you and I talked about it a couple of years ago. It's always a joy to hear! I could have lived right there with him, and been just as happy as a pig in mud. I love to hear stories about the way things were. My latest interest is studying the indians and the way they lived, both the one's here in Southern VA and the groups in NC and TN. I'll tell you, folks had a hard scrabble life, but, they didn't know that, and were just surviving. Now, in the world we live in it looks like heaven to some of us to not worry over "things", and just to make a living honestly, by your sweat, and be content to sit on the porch at the end of the day and think it all over.
    My Grandaddy, and his before him were much like Uncle Lem. They worked a Tobacco crop, cut their own fire wood, dug their own wells, milked the cow, fed the hogs and chickens the feed that they raised and ground, and tended a couple of hives of bees. All of that, sun up to sun down, and I'll bet I worry over more things in a day than they did in a month! I miss that life even though I only knew a little of it as a child. I miss when there were no computers, and cell phones, and email, and on and on. Here's to Uncle Lem, my Grandaddy, and all of our forefathers, they would be miserable in the world we live in today. We would be better off in more ways than one if we lived in their world.
    <(((>< In tribute to Ben, Duck Hunter extraordinaire, and man's best friend.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Halifax, VA
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    776

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    By the way Robb, where was the cabin exactly? I'm not sure if you've been up there recently but they've made a parking lot there where you turn out to go to the cemetary above Daisy Town and I've walked on up a ways to a little house right there against Jake's creek that sits maybe 1/4 mile to a 1/2 mile above the upper end of Daisy town.
    I can't remember for sure but I'm thinking the trail crosses right there.
    <(((>< In tribute to Ben, Duck Hunter extraordinaire, and man's best friend.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    944

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bran View Post
    ........ My latest interest is studying the indians and the way they lived, both the one's here in Southern VA and the groups in NC and TN.
    Bran, you should read William Bartram's "Travles and Other writings".

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Northern Kentucky
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    1,127

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    My grandmother grew up on a tobacco farm in Kentucky. They didn't have tractors, a car or electric in their home. She said she didn't know anything about the "Great Depression" until many years later when she moved to the city with my grandfather (after WWII). She said they were poor before, during and after the depression.

    There were things to worry about back then. My great grandmother (her mom) almost died during the influenza outbreak. She was in bed for several months after.

    Simple cuts could be life threatening and many diseases that today are treatable were death sentences back then.

    On the other hand, the stresses we experience in our daily lives are huge compared to "back then".

    I never lived on the farm. I've lived in the city and 'burbs all my life. I do very frequently fantasize about the life Lem led.

    Jeff

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Knoxville
    Posts
    33

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bran View Post
    By the way Robb, where was the cabin exactly? I'm not sure if you've been up there recently but they've made a parking lot there where you turn out to go to the cemetary above Daisy Town and I've walked on up a ways to a little house right there against Jake's creek that sits maybe 1/4 mile to a 1/2 mile above the upper end of Daisy town.
    I can't remember for sure but I'm thinking the trail crosses right there.
    I have not been back up in there in quite some time. Lem's cabin was up Jakes Creek, probably about a mile from the confluence with Little River. I think it was close to where the Meigs Mountain trail crosses Jakes. Back then you could drive up to it.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    279

    Default @ Cane Pole :)

    Speaking of cousins...back soon after i graduated in 73, I noticed a beautiful blond from a neighboring school. That girl was "Hollywood Pretty" no joke and had a figure to match her beautiful face. I, along with about a hundred or so other guys used to chase after her, trying to impress her but never getting anywhere (thank you Jesus). I eventually lost track of her and after several years was preparing to move from Florida to Oklahoma for school. Before moving I had gone out shopping for a few clothes with my Mom and we happened upon a lady that had once been married to one of my Mom's cousins but had since, divorced him. As we spoke with this lady, she mentioned that her daughter "Linda" was there and should be somewhere close by...low and behold a few minutes later, "Linda" walked up and sure enough she turned out to be that beautiful blond, who was in fact my cousin.

    A similar situation happened to my nephew one day when he brought his date home to meet the family and his mother, my sister recognized the "date" as one of our cousins.

    Sorry for going off topic here, but I couldn't help but think back after reading about your cousin

    Mike
    "Fly-fishing has many attributes, but none more pleasing than it's ability to liberate the young boy that still hides within me and to let that boy live again without embarrassment or regret, sorrow or anguish." Harry Middleton

  7. #17
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Winchester, Kentucky
    Posts
    119

    Default Lem

    Knoxville journalist Carson Brewer wrote about Lem Ownby around 1980. You can find a couple of stories about Lem in Brewer's book "A Wonderment of Mountains, The Great Smokies" which I highly recommend. Mr. Ownby said that becoming blind was "unhandy" and yet he soldiered on for many years. Brewer tells a story of Lem that two supreme court justices came to his home and he refused to see them. They thought highly of his "stubborn independence". Me too.
    You can't stay dry and one temperature all your life! ROB

  8. #18
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Halifax, VA
    Posts
    776

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    That story is right here:
    http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2010/ju...d-by-justices/

    Grannyknot, I've heard of Bartram's book. I'll check it out and thanks!

    Robb, I'm going up there next time I'm out that way and just look. I know it's probably grown up now but I'm just curious.

    You history buffs would enjoy coming to Southside VA and visiting me sometime. I live at the center of one of the largest plantations from the old south. Matter of fact the owner, James Bruce, is on record as the largest single slave owner in american history. What a distinction, right? Anyhow, the mansion burned in 1896, it was named Woodbourne, but, the over seer's house is still standing behind my house. The Bruce's cemetary is in my front yard, and there are slave graves all over our farm with the remains of the slave quarters foundations, old ice pits, and about 3 or 4 winters ago I found the blacksmith shop foundation. I knew this because I cleaned back the piles of leaves and rotting vegetation and found the base and outline of the firing kiln and a few tools almost rusted away.

    Mr. Bruce's 2 sons each built greek revival style mansions, both of those are still in use. One you can Google and see, it's named Berry Hill and is about 10 miles from my home. It was sold and is a resort/ conference center. The other was Staunton View and it is still in the Bruce family now.
    <(((>< In tribute to Ben, Duck Hunter extraordinaire, and man's best friend.

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