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  1. #21
    Bronze Member
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    Jun 2006
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    91
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    Middle Tennessee

    Default Re: Old Farm Memories

    Old farm memories? Just a few...

    This came to mind pretty quick. How many have had the "honor" to run barefoot across the yard as a kid only to step in chicken droppings and have them squeeze up between your toes?

    We didn't have air conditioning until later, so laying in bed with the windows open, you could hear the crickets chirping, frogs bellowing, and the occasional sound of the old plunger pump in the well house doing it's familar rhythmic thing.

    And I remember how my grandmother would fry up slices of bread in a butter-lined skillet so they were crispy brown on both sides. And on this would go big spoonfuls of homemade preserves from pears, peaches, strawberries and on and on. And apple butter, my favorite. And being a grandma, she would make as many as we could hold. And we'd eat so many, we'd get foundered!!!! I've got her old beat up skillet, but be danged if I can turn out those gourmet pieces of butter-fried toast as well as she could. So two eggs, couple pieces of bacon or country ham, grits or pork brains mixed into the eggs, and ten slices of butter-fried toast!!!!!

    When we picked cotton, it was always a treat to go down to the cotton gin when it was running at full tilt. All that machinery, motors with mile long belts, the smell of cooked cotton hulls and the ear-splitting sound of them traveling down the tubes as they piled up out back. And those 500 lb bales of white fluffy cotton, compressed into something as hard as a rock. And Merle Collins, who ran the gin, would always give me stuff like a calendar with ducks on the front or a pen with "Frog Jump Gin" on it, and one time he gave me a Purina Feeds pocket knife.

    Ok, how about the smell of fresh turned earth intermingled with the smell of diesel from the exhaust of the John Deere 4020? As a kid, that was pretty addictive, but come to think of it, it still is ain't it?

    I could go on and on...
    --
    2001 Ford Excursion 4x4 7.3L PSD
    2003 VW Jetta TDI GLS 5sp
    2006 John Deere 3320
    2011 BMW 335d

  2. #22
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
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    Mar 2000
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    37,779
    Location
    Texas

    Default Re: Old Farm Memories

    So many similarities and so many differences in our members' memories. Milking cows, raising hogs and chickens, riding horses, learning to drive a 1940 John Deere L, fruit trees, huge gardens, are sure familiar. But if I ever ate any rhubarb, I don't remember it, we did lots of canning of fruits and vegetables, jams, jellies, etc., but I don't recall ever canning any meat, and we sure didn't have the smell of diesel. The tractors and even the trucks were gasoline powered. Of course, we had kerosene because we had to use kerosene lanterns; no electricity except in the house.

    But a few things, even from when I was less than 5 years old, always stayed with me. My grandparents moved into town when I was 3 years old, but I can still remember the old English sheepdog they had on the farm. My grandmother would go outside, look the chickens over, point at a particular one, and say, "Get'im, Shep" and that dog would catch that chicken and hold it with his mouth and paws without hurting it until she went and took it from him. In later years, every time I had to catch a chicken, I wished for a dog like Shep, but never had one.

    And my granddad farmed with a team of horses; never owned a tractor. He had a gray mare named Snip and a bay mare named Nellie. I can still remember my grandmother putting me in the horses' feed trough while she milked the cow. I would feed Snip out of my hand, but one day Nellie bit me, and I did a lot of screaming until my grandmother came and got me out of that trough. Now I know now that Nellie only accidentally bit me, eating out of my hand, but I didn't know it then, and I was always scared of Nellie, but liked to pet Snip, sit on her, and pet her. My granddad sold both of those horses in 1945 when I was 5 years old. It was a very sad day.

    They didn't sell the farm for about 7 or 8 years after moving into town. And even in town, they had the equivalent of 5 city lots, kept a bunch of chickens, a milk cow, huge garden, strawberry patch, pecan trees, etc.
    Bird

  3. #23
    Super Member scott_vt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    5,083
    Location
    east wells,vt
    Tractor
    1986 MF 1040, 1942 Farmall A, 1949 Farmall Super A

    Default Re: Old Farm Memories

    Quote Originally Posted by Bird

    And my granddad farmed with a team of horses; never owned a tractor.
    Good Evenin Bird,
    My grandpop farmed the same way ! I cant even imagine how tough it must of been to put hay up with a team of horses !

    The horse drawn sickle mower maybe wasnt too bad, bot how about flippin all that hay to dry and loading it up on wagons with hay forks and then unloading again in the barn !

    But I do remember quite well havin grandma tellin me to go out in the mornin and pick a bunch of blueberries so we could have a big bowl with some cream ! Or catchin those brookies early in the mornin and fryin them up for breakfeast !

    Yep, those were the days !
    scotty

    ,,,course,,it is gas,and gas is,,well,gas,,so,,but it kills the @#$$ oughta them yellow jackets,,,thingy

    http://www.tractorbynet.com/content/...onth-scott_vt/

  4. #24
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
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    Mar 2000
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    37,779
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    Texas

    Default Re: Old Farm Memories

    Scotty, that's another of those regional differences. We never had any blueberries in my part of the country, but my granddad sure did grow a nice crop of strawberries, and we had lots of blackberries. And of course with our own cows and milk, we skimmed the cream off the top of the milk, so I used to use such thick cream it wasn't even liquid.

    And we didn't have trout down south; too hot for them. So we just never ate fish for breakfast. But we sure did eat catfish, crappie, blue gill, white bass and largemouth bass for other meals. And I've even eaten more than a few carp. Dad & I sometimes fished all night at Lake Murray.
    Bird

  5. #25
    Elite Member ToadHill's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    2,711
    Location
    Catt county New York
    Tractor
    Kioti DK35, Ford 8N, Oliver Cletrac

    Default Re: Old Farm Memories

    Worked summers on a dairy farm. We milked over 80 cows with old milking machines. I remember getting up at 6am to do the morning milking, then breakfast and homemade peach-cherry jam on the toast. Out to hay, throw those 60 lb. bales up onto the wagon, 5 tiers high, take the wagon back to the barn and hook up the bale hooks, lift them into the hay mow release the hooks and stack the bales again.

    When Football season started in the fall, this city boy was in the best shape of anyone on the team.
    I can't control my day but I can control my attitude.

  6. #26
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
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    Mar 2000
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    37,779
    Location
    Texas

    Default Re: Old Farm Memories

    My dad's best friend from the time they started to school grew up to work nothing but Guernsey dairies all his life, except for his hitch in the SeaBees during WWII. So when we'd go to visit them, we'd help with the milking because it was all done by hand back then. Of course, I was accustomed to milking our one Jersey, and my granddad also had a Guernsey.

    Of course, we milked our cow at 5:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., but the dairy where dad's friend worked, just north of Dallas, milked at noon and midnight, which sure was odd to me.
    Bird

  7. #27
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
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    6,871
    Location
    SF Bay Area-Ca Olympia WA Salzburg Austria
    Tractor
    Cat D3, Deere 110 TLB, Kubota BX23 and L3800 Craftsman Mower, Deere 350C Dozer

    Default Re: Old Farm Memories

    My Grandparents were always frugal... never owned a car and it was my uncle that convinced Grandpa to buy a Tractor... 15hp single cylinder Diesel

    My first tractor experience was steering that tractor at age 4 down one row and back up the next while my Grandparents, Uncle and Aunt would load the hay wagon with wooden hay forks...

    Some memories you never forget... and many of my best childhood memories are of the tractor on my Grandparents Farm....

    I will have to look for the picture of me "driving" it at age 4

    I tried to buy the tractor from my cousin and it wasn't for sale... later I learned he sold it for scrap with all of the old equipment when he gave up the dairy farm and got a job in the city...

  8. #28
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
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    Mar 2000
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    37,779
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    Texas

    Default Re: Old Farm Memories

    From the time I was 5 years old until I was 10, we lived on a rented place and my Dad would borrow the landlord's team of mules and plow to break the garden every spring. We lived right where I-35 crosses S.H.199 (which used to be U.S. 70) at Ardmore, OK. But then we moved to Healdton and Dad bought a tractor, a 1940 John Deere L, and that's the tractor I learned to drive first. I don't have any pictures of that particular tractor, but you can sure find pictures on the Internet that could be it, or at least look exactly like it, as this one does. Needless to say, I have many fond memories of using that tractor.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails -1940-john-deere-l-2-a  
    Bird

  9. #29
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    91
    Location
    Middle Tennessee

    Default Re: Old Farm Memories

    Bird, we got lots of blackberries in the fencerows in Tennessee, and lots of chiggers. Hated chiggers when I was a kid, hate them now. But nothing is better than homemade ice cream spooned over a big helping of blackberry cobbler. Well, Brennan, TX made Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla is a close second. We used to fight over everything when we were kids, especially who got to crank the ice cream freezer and who got the laddle, who got the biggest piece of cobbler and on and on.

    Mother used to cover us from head to toe when we picked blackberries to stop the chiggers and to fight the stickers we called them or thorns. And wasps have a bad habit of nesting in the blackberry patches. Had to watch out for them and the snakes.

    Well, I cut my teeth on a Ferguson 35. It would pull a two bottom plow and handle a six foot 3-point hitch disk, though it got a little light on the frontend.

    But my dad taught me early on not to put my thumbs on the inside of the steering wheel. It didn't have powersteering and it didn't take much of a hole or worse, a stump to spin that steering wheel a hundred miles and hour and jam your thumb. The exhaust was low on the tractor, and I can still remember the smell it gave off as you cultivated corn, beans or cotton, and leaves came in contact with the hot muffler.

    Did y'all have persimmon trees around there growing up? They are pretty tasty unless you made the mistake of getting a hold of a green one. My cousins and I used to cut a switch out of the persimmon tree, sharpen the end, and stick the green fruit down on the sharp end. Then the battle started.... and paintball welts have nothing on a persimmon welt, I guarantee!

    Anyone ever smoke a grape vine?
    --
    2001 Ford Excursion 4x4 7.3L PSD
    2003 VW Jetta TDI GLS 5sp
    2006 John Deere 3320
    2011 BMW 335d

  10. #30
    Silver Member zionview's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    201
    Location
    Central PA
    Tractor
    BX2200 and B8200HST Kubotas

    Default Re: Old Farm Memories

    I remember picking stones when I was 4 years old. Dad and my granddad would pick the stones and I would drive the D14 Allis-Chalmers until the dump trailer got full. I helped my Mom feed calves during milking, and fed hay and swept the feed alleys. I liked going for raspberries after the first cutting was finished. Dad killed a copperhead one year when we were moving from one fencerow to another. I remember all the wild animals that came around the buildings once in awhile, like the possum that got into the summerhouse, the raccoon family that took up residence in an old chestnut tree, the skunk that hung around the spreader shed for a month or so. I must have 200 or so pictures from the farm, dating back to when my great uncle had it. Every once in a while, I get them out and look back on all those years. It never fails to bring back good memories.

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