Monday, April 21, 2014

What We Leave Behind

Some finds just can't come home with you. My wife and I went to an estate sale in Lemay a few weekends back.  It was at a property I've driven by for years.  It was a Craftsman style home built sometime in the early 1900's.  

Tucked back among its trees, I never realized how vast the property was.  Both the house and the grounds seemed to go on forever.  

When I saw the estate sale workers digging up plants, prying up stepping stones, and dismantling exterior buildings, I knew this wasn't an ordinary sale.  As it turns out, a developer had bought the property plus several properties flanking either side and was putting in a 60-home subdivision.

Behind the house, we found this building.  I'm not sure if it was a summer kitchen, guest house or a child's playhouse.

Inside was an stone fireplace, oak flooring and original knotty pine wall planks.

The fireplace and paneling were for both for sale at $100 each.  I wish I could have taken the whole structure with me.

The estate sale company said there would be a sale at the  property next door as well.  I know this house well from driving by it so frequently.  It was on my route to my first job and my wife's, then girlfriend's, home.  I always thought it would be a great house to live in.

The best, or maybe saddest, discovery was behind this house.

You can't see this log cabin from the road and I never knew it existed.

I don't know the age of the cabin or its history, but it's clearly old and I would guess it was the original residence of the property.

Hopefully, the log cabin will be saved and moved somewhere else.

Near the log cabin is what I'm presuming to be an ice house, probably dating from the same time as the log cabin.

I hate seeing more of the old community and history torn down for new subdivision homes. Whenever I walk through estate sales, it's never far from my mind that they are the sign of the end of something, and the items for sale a story of  a lifetime and what was left behind.  Seeing this sale and the destruction of the properties makes me wonder -- what are we  leaving behind?


  1. zomg. if they raze that log cabin that would be a crime. that's local history, man! if i were you, i'd be raising a ruckus. call the local historical society, alert them, write letters to the city council, whatever... to lose that cabin to a cookie cutter subdivision is just horrible. at least MOVE it, or if there's a park in the subdivision, keep it there... something other than mowing it down.

    1. There may be little time. I just saw that the estate sale for this property is this coming weekend and they are allowing only the following week to remove everything. I haven't been able to find out the history behind this cabin, but as you say, it's history in itself. I think it would great to include it in a park in the subdivision, but that's lost money for the developer, so I doubt they would do that. It would make sense to move it to Jefferson Barracks park being such close proximity, but I haven't heard of any effort on the parks department's part.

    2. I drove by this weekend. Everything is gone. I don't believe the log cabin was saved.


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