A Different World...1899...Brattleboro, Vt.
The sweet little girl in the white dress is my Mother. She was born in Brattleboro, Vermont in 1896 and lived to the ripe old age of 92. Her sister, my Aunt Helen, sits beside her.
The organ that is behind them must be an Estey ... because Brattleboro is where they were built and my Grandfather Prentiss was one of their salesmen. He traveled all over New England in his beloved car selling the Estey Organs, as well as repairing them. My blog of 2/03/07 features a picture of him in his automobile.
This picture was taken in the “front room” and I remember that we hardly ever used that area except when the organ was being played. The room was extremely formal and quite solemn. The woodwork and the furniture all seemed to be in hues of dark walnut. You can see the heavy curtains that were usually pulled to close it off from the dining room.
The most lived-in room of the house was the kitchen. There were actually 4 doors in that large room. One to the dining room, one to a front hall, another to a side porch and the fourth opened into my Grandfather’s wood-working shop. It could get very warm in the kitchen (with the wood-burning stove) so it was a great place to cozy up in the fall and winter months.
As I recall most of the summer entertaining was done on the big screen-enclosed front and side porches. Frosted mint tea was a favorite then as well as home-made ice cream. We had to work for the ice cream, though ...taking turns cranking the heavy handle. Needless to say it was well worth the trouble.
This home was in the family for many, many years and was only sold about 6 years ago. It was time to let go and I wish the new home owners a happy life there; but I often wonder if the ghosts of Grandpa and Grandma ever visit. I could swear I heard an organ refrain the last time I drove by.