Ponder this:

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Old houses

The other day I was Googling for something . . . who knows what now . . . and I came across some pictures of a house in North Carolina. The picture of it as it stood, all dilapidated, in the 1950s, grabbed me. Something about old houses just pokes a tendril of interest into my heart and soul and wants to draw me in through the doorways. When I met Rose and read her A Pub with no beer...a pitiful piano...and untold stories, it seemed serendipitous, so I'm revisiting the Hill-Jones House with you. If you're in the mood, go and look at the other photos of the house and see if they give you just the slightest frisson of je ne sais quoi. It's the same feeling that I had when I was very young, and would go up the plain dusty outside stairway from the woodshed to the long-unused hired man's room. Nothing in that room but an unmattressed iron bedstead and some stupid determined buzzing iridescent blue flies bouncing against the four glass panes of the small window. It's a sense of lives being lived right alongside mine . . . parallel universe stuff. Creepy. But not, too.

Here's the upstairs hall of the Hill-Jones House, three rooms to each side. 
I'm pretty sure I wouldn't want to be hurrying out of that door at the right 
in the middle of the night unless I were absolutely wide awake and steady.

Interior elevation, Octagon House, Carteret County, North Carolina
Swansboro. 

Octagon house. 
The Hill-Jones house. 
Built about 1855.
Located at 301 Masonic Avenue.

11 comments:

DJan said...

I feel the same, looking at the door's location in relation to the stairs. Your writing is so evocative of the dusty picture's pull. Thank you for the spooky journey. :-)

Calamity Janet said...

You've sent me wandering this morning. When I search a real estate site, which I do daily, I enter under the "Year built" question, 0-1930. Our most recent discovery was the Cochise Hotel in Cochise AZ. You would like it.

Sightings said...

You're so right -- there's an irresistible pull to these old houses. Is it the history, the hint of an age gone by, sheer nostalgia? I dunno. But I, too, love 'em ... as long as I don't have to take care of them!

Fran said...

That house looks like it might be hiding a thousand different stories.

Rose from Oz is Back! said...

Hill-Jones House is amazing! Terrific photos - thanks for the link. It's those untold or forgotten stories that is the big pull for me.

Lord Wellbourne said...

What these and other photos of old and abandoned houses do to me is want to refurbish and breathe new life into them. So many places but only one lifetime. So unfair.

georgia little pea said...

Oh, it really is a octagonal house! It's a little creepy. I guess most old and empty houses are.

You're right about the proximity of door to stairs! That said, my bedroom door is right at the top of 3 little steps. Not a huge way to fall but still a nasty trip on dark nights.

Barb said...

Just the right amount of character and creepy. Are those paintings at ceiling level?

JDS said...

I don't know what it is, but there is something about large, old, abandoned houses that feels alive. That sounds somewhat oxymoronic, but I have always found it to be true.

June said...

Barb . . . do you mean the discoloration from water damage inside the cupola walls? If you look at the other pictures, you'll see that that's an big wide opening to the cupola.

Raining Iguanas said...

Stopped here via Woodswalker. I was reading your post and thought you might enjoy this link a friend of mine recently sent me. It is a photography blog of abandoned properties. It's worth checking out. Love your blog.
http://palechickstudios.wordpress.com/