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Monday, Sep. 26, 2016
More MemoriesPosted Tuesday, March 11, 2008, at 11:00 PM
This photo was taken in front (the Elm Street side) of the old library before it was a library. That's me on the left and my friend Carol Hunting on the right. The blinds are up in the living room, because my baby sister was inside, looking out, and we built the snowman for her to see. I think she was sick and couldn't come out, so she asked to see his face, and we put another one on the window side.
Others are mysterious - like the "Haunted Holmes," and we'd like to know more about it.
I have several more photos of the old library, taken in the mid-fifties, when my family lived there, just before the library board gathered up enough money to turn it into a library. It was an absolutely magical place to live - full of cubbyholes and corners, never boring.
The room you can see off to the left in the photo was a sunroom with screened and (I think) glassed windows all around. I don't recall that we used it for much of anything, but I did sleep out there in the summertime sometimes, and I remember the sound of the turtle doves in the big oaks in the yard.
Not many people had air-conditioning in that era, but the Elm Street house was always cool, probably because of the thick walls. The old, original kitchen was especially cool, since it had extremely thick brick walls and was situated in the back, away from the rest of the house. There was no heat in it, so we only used it in the summer. My bedroom was once in there, too, and another time we used it as a summer dining room.
I'm putting my sister to work finding more of the old photos. Our dad was an amateur photographer and developed his own photos over at the home of a fellow flight instructor. My little sister was his favorite subject. She was just a toddler during our time on Elm Street.
She's also the one who almost set the house on fire by playing with matches in my brothers' front bedroom, just off the screened-in front porch. She couldn't have been over two or three, when it happened, and she was so frightened that she ran out and shut the door behind her, thinking it would go away, I'm sure... We had to call the fire department, and it was all quite exciting.
Those were happy times.
We've also been talking about Malden Air Base on the Memphis blog, since Mrsdolphin is curious about the old Army barracks, which have been torn down. We can't seem to agree on which buildings they were. I've also put my sister to finding the old photos from our time on the base (before the move to Dexter). I think it would make a fun blog.
It would be cool if some of the "old timers" in the area would try their hand at blogging about the old days - especially giving the history they remember about the old homes. I know the Statesman is looking for bloggers. If you're interested, contact Editor Bobby Greer and check into it.
One way or another, it looks as if I need to come down to Dexter and take some photos of the old buildings we're talking about. I don't know, though; is it legal to post pictures of someone's house? I'll bet I need to get their permission - except in the case of the little house across from the Christian Church - the one that lovebooks says is for sale.
How about it, folks? What are your favorite houses in your town? Oh, wow, Yellow Rose, there is a fantastic old house in Essex! What's the story on that one???
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Madeline (Giles) DeJournett is the Advance writer for the North Stoddard Countian. A retired high school English/history teacher, she spent 32 years teaching in 5 schools in Missouri and Alaska. These days, she lives quietly with a menagerie of wild and domestic animals on 52 secluded acres in the remote Tillman hills south of Advance. She graduated from Dexter High School in 1960 and Southeast Missouri State in 1964. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.