|Project by BrentH||posted 07-31-2015 06:22 PM||7615 views||3 times favorited||14 comments|
They say, “History is in the making” but sometimes the “Making is in the history”.
That was the case with this bowl. It’s a project that didn’t make any sense except for the history of the materials I used to make it with.
Exactly 100 years ago, my wife’s grandfather (her mother’s father) was building his dream home in the middle of nowhere – the high desert of Utah, where there was literally nothing but sagebrush in all directions.
But this was no ordinary homesteader’s cabin – it was built with a double wall of adobe brick, plastered and scored to look like cement block (the newest thing then) and with built-in cabinets, closets, and beautiful woodwork.
His bride-to-be was living 150 miles away – working to help pay for their special home.
They were anxious to get married, but family tradition and his father insisted that the older brother marry first, and he was taking his time about it.
Finally, they were married in January 1916 and moved into their just-finished home. A year later, twin girls (one of them my wife’s mother) were born to them.
Just 2 years later, he was gone – dead from a gunshot wound. Nobody knows exactly how it happened, but family tradition is he reached for his rifle hanging over the fireplace (probably to deal with some wild animal disturbing his livestock, which wouldn’t have been uncommon). The trigger caught on something – some clothing was hanging to dry – and the gun fired, killing him instantly. She found him there when she returned from visiting their nearest neighbors.
With a farm in the middle of nowhere – and now three very young daughters to care for (they were expecting their third child when he died) – she had no choice but to abandon the farm and move back to the city.
...And so, for a 100 years, the house has stood alone, exposed to the desert winters and the desert sun.
As we were visiting there recently, I wondered if, as a sort of family memorial of the place and of them, I could make something from the wood that remained, now very weathered and worn. I took a few pieces to see if, just maybe, I could create something worthwhile from them.
That’s the story behind this bowl. It’s not pretty, but neither is the house anymore. The memories remain, as does their legacy. With over a hundred descendants today, they are not forgotten. Perhaps this bowl, ugly as it is, will help keep their memory alive.
-- Brent H. --"This retirement stuff is hard work. I need to go get a job so I can get some rest!"