Weaving a Story: A Journal, a Loom, and a Corn Cob Pipe

Some years, in the spring of the year, Mama would set up the carpet weave in the upstairs of the granary. This setting up of the weave took help, so Aunt Lizzie Falk would come out to help. Aunt Lizzie smoked a corn cob pipe and she stayed with us until the setting up of the old loom was finished. Mama would spend whatever time she could spare weaving pretty carpet, using the many balls of carpet material she had prepared during the winter.

-Roy Falk

Westfalcon Farm has revealed many hidden treasures since my parents bought the family farm in the spring of 2013. Thanks to the well-kept journal of my great-grandfather, Roy Falk, we have been able to link the stories in his journals to treasures around the farm. One such treasure was my great-great-grandmother’s (Christine West Falk) weaving area that was left untouched in the upstairs of the granary.

Mama

EPSON MFP image
Christine West Falk

The loom, with wood worn smooth by the years of use by hard-working hands, is still attached to the old log beams that hold up the the granary.

The Old Loom

The Old Loom.jpg

Old wooden bobbins sit perched upon hand-forged nails.

Old Wooden Bobbins.jpg

Pencil markings adorn the granary walls that whisper the secrets of the loom patterns used, the number of yards consumed, and the quantity of rugs woven.

When I look at the granary, I often imagine my great-great-grandmother putting the old loom to use up on that second floor.

Granary

Granary3.jpg

I imagine her hands working diligently with the homemade rug material. Spending the little free-time that she did have weaving rugs for her family, and perhaps making a few dollars by selling the extras to neighbors.

When I stand in the granary, nostalgia washes over me as I see the special treasures that have been left for our family to find. I feel the worn surfaces of the old loom, I picture my great-great-grandmother placing the bobbins on the nails as she weaves, and I read and re-read the writing on the walls. The smell in the granary is warm. A combination of old wood and the grains that used to fill the granary. I wonder, is there still a hint of smoke from  Aunt Lizzie’s corn cob pipe?

 

 

 

16 Replies to “Weaving a Story: A Journal, a Loom, and a Corn Cob Pipe”

  1. I love your writing and all the information that gives us a great glimpse into the past!

    1. Thanks so much, Sheila! It’s easy when I have such great resources to work with. Lots of fun!

  2. Your writings about Westfalcon farm are treasures! Thanks!

    1. I’m so happy you’re enjoying the entries! Thanks so much for reading and commenting!

  3. angelanoelauthor says: Reply

    Your posts are a treat in my week. A family farm so rich in little gems always gives me that little frisson of wonder. The archives your family kept–whether in their journals or just notes on the walls, makes me wonder what kinds of legacies we should be leaving behind for our kids and their kids. Thank you for sharing your world. It truly is something special.

    1. Angela, your comment made my day, no, my week! Thank you so very much! I have to say that your words are always eloquent. Not only in your own articles, but in your comments as well.

      As far as leaving legacies for our own children, I really feel the more the better. Every person in my family (siblings, parents, cousins, aunts and uncles, great aunts and uncles, etc.), has enjoyed my great-grandfather’s journal entries. There’s just something about looking back on life from long ago. A yearning, on my part. 🙂 Thanks again!

    1. Thank you! xoxo

  4. […] Weaving a Story: A Journal, a Loom, and a Corn Cob Pipe by Erin Burton of Unbound Roots. […]

    1. Thank you so very much, Angela!!!

  5. I love that your home is not only filled with rich history, but your own, rich family history. Such a blessing that you get to experience that on a daily basis.

    1. I feel the same way. The past few years have been quite the journey for my family. Lots of treasures have been found on the property. Thank you, Becca, for taking the time to read and comment. 🙂

  6. I love this post (well…like everyone above, I love all your posts!)

    It made me wonder if anyone knew how to use the loom still, and if it would still work. Did any of the rugs your great-great-grandmother’s survive down the generations? The whole granary is like a historians dream. It’s the kind of place that would be cool to visit for local school kids.

    1. Josy, thank you for your kind comments. They mean a lot. Thank you!x I really wish we had one of my great-great grandmother’s old rugs. Wouldn’t that just finish off the weaving area perfectly? It really is a historian’s dream. In fact, the farm has turned me into a history-lover. Maybe it will do the same for others in the future. 🙂

  7. Love this! I am currently working on a book incorporating some of my grandmother’s writings. So special! Great pictures!

    1. Thank you, Brenda! You will have to let me know when you finish your book. I would love to read it!

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