Appalachia Appalachia Through My Eyes

Appalachia Through My Eyes – Granny’s Porch

My life in appalachia Granny's porch

 

Granny’s porch: flowers so tall they’ve completely covered one set of steps; jars of kraut waiting to be carried to the basement; and red, blue, and white artificial flowers to brighten it all up.

Her porch looks like this every fall.

Tipper

Appalachia Through My Eyes – A series of photographs from my life in Southern Appalachia.

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18 Comments

  • Reply
    Mary Lou McKillip
    September 16, 2014 at 9:24 pm

    Tipper,
    I enjoyed sitting as a small child with Mom and Dad on our front porch after dusty dark listing to the sounds of cricket etc. One night we heard a whistle call and respond. Travelers would use dad’s barn for overnight stay, but always got up early to depart. I knew when I heard those whistle signals there were two men or more going to stay in dad’s hayloft .I awoke real early hoping to catch them but I saw where two person had slept the night before. I never ever caught them. Mother got concerned for me and forbid me never to check the barn for fear they might still be in the loft.

  • Reply
    Ken Roper
    September 16, 2014 at 1:23 pm

    Tipper,
    Some of my best memories are those
    on our porch. Like our buddy Jim
    said, “it was a place where we
    prepared food for the long winters ahead.” But sometimes we just
    listened to the whippoorwill and
    the many different sounds of the
    nightingale…Ken

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    September 16, 2014 at 12:58 pm

    Miss Cindy nailed it. A porch is a buffer between inside and out. It is where:
    You can spend time with the neighbors when you don’t want them in your nasty house.
    You can track in a little mud and not start another world war.
    You can leave your gun and squirrels when you visit grammaw. Or fish and fishing poles.
    You can put the kids if they are too loud or too gassy or too anything.
    You can eat watermelon and let the juice fall where it may. Seeds too. Next year you’ll have watermelons around the porch.
    You can talk to your sweetheart and her parents can’t hear.
    You can make music as loud as you please without busting out the windows.
    You can catch a cup of rainwater without getting wet.
    This list goes on forever.
    Whoever said the kitchen is the most used room in the house didn’t have a porch. Well OK, technically the porch isn’t “in” the house, but like Miss Cindy said “its in-between.”

  • Reply
    Wanda
    September 16, 2014 at 12:26 pm

    Mama also set her kraut on the porch to let it work before putting it away. She never processed the kraut.Her’s always did a lot of active “working” & was delicious. When I make it, it never seems to ferment that vigorously.

  • Reply
    Annette Casada Hensley
    September 16, 2014 at 11:42 am

    I don’t know which was the most important to me in my youth — the porch overlooking the Bryson City river valley or the rocking chairs. Perhaps the answer to that is not important. What is important is that together they offered my soul a special place to dream and to pour my soul out in songs to the hills. Although I still have rocking chairs, there’s never been a place that can compete with the porch and rockers of the my youthful home in the Smokies.

  • Reply
    PinnacleCreek
    September 16, 2014 at 11:30 am

    Oh my, what a batch of kraut. I made kraut this year, and this time I “followed the signs.” Just has to be something to that, as the last time I ignored the signs I had mushy kraut. I had to dump the batch! I can appreciate the work that went into that. There is nothing better with soup beans.
    I love that wonderful porch with Granny’s touch. As a young child in a coal camp, I recall how the ladies would plant seeds that grew tall beautiful flowers all around the fence line, and I never saw any of the short compact flowers grown now. With all those beautiful flowers, white sheets flapping in the wind, and sweet neighbors those camps could look much like a paradise to a small child. I missed those things when we moved to a clean mountain farm. But, that too brought an interesting world.

  • Reply
    b. Ruth
    September 16, 2014 at 10:16 am

    Tipper,
    Which evening is the “wiener roast”, and do you know a place where we can get some good kraut, I could eat a jar by my own self. Granny out did herself this year I think, beautiful kraut!
    My Dad used to love to cook a small pork roast on top of the stove, then he said, Mother would wander in the kitchen and ruin it by pouring in a quart of kraut! Even with German heritage, he never got the taste for kraut!
    Thanks Tipper,

  • Reply
    b. Ruth
    September 16, 2014 at 10:05 am

    Tipper,
    When did the covered comfortable porch, with rockers, chairs (some with a flat pillow), a swing with a small quilt hanging over the back, the family dog, cat or both keeping guard, a screen door with a cotton boll pinned to it, a working granite pan hung on a nail at the back end of the porch, become a uncovered hot deck, that holds plastic chairs, a shiny metal grill and small white gas tank, a hanging basket of those flowers that have to be watered daily!!!!
    When we built our deck, (long since gone, felled by a falling tree), sitting in a chair outdoors never really felt like the days that I remembered on the porches of my Grandparents.
    Thanks Tipper,

  • Reply
    dolores
    September 16, 2014 at 9:29 am

    There is nothing more beautiful than watching Mother Nature take over just before the true Fall starts to arrive. I have never seen so many kraut containers. Happiness sometimes is doing it the old way.

  • Reply
    Shirla
    September 16, 2014 at 9:21 am

    When I visit down home, I see lots of folks resting on their porch. I seldom see anyone using the fancy chairs that can be found on porches in the town where I live. My parents always had metal chairs with a matching glider. They brought them when they moved here to be close to their children. They were retired and disabled, allowing countless hours on that front porch just watching traffic on the busy highway. I have often wondered what the city folks thought about the old couple who could be found reading their mail or doing simple chores from their favorite chair on that porch.

  • Reply
    Roy Pipes
    September 16, 2014 at 8:43 am

    Grandma and Grandpa Davis’ porch went all the way around their house with only a wall where the well was. Flowers – a vice, Duck Davis’ Barber Chair, and a place for just sitting and talking were there. Sorry to say these no longer exist.

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    September 16, 2014 at 7:40 am

    Porches are a special place throughout the South. Modern design of houses have almost eliminated this comfortable friendly place. Once the gathering place of family friends and neighbors

  • Reply
    Ethelene Dyer Jones
    September 16, 2014 at 7:27 am

    Porches are so special in our Appalachian life and memories.
    I can see now our long front porch on our farmhouse at Choestoe. It spanned the front of the house and was inviting, indeed, from spring through fall. (Weather was too cold in our winters to use the porch for gatherings.) A porch swing seating three hung from the ceiling on the north end. Straight chairs were against the wall and could be moved wherever a conversation group gathered. And on the south end was the “porch bench” my father had made, designed in his special way, that could easily seat four people. It also provided a place for one to lie down and take a quick refreshing nap after the noon meal. Much work was done on that front porch, like stringing “white half-runner” beans for canning; peeling apples or pears for processing. But just “resting a spell” after lunch (only we called the noon meal ‘dinner’ then) before going back to our afternoon work in field, garden or whatever was pressing to do. And during that time, as Poet Byron Herbert Reece called it “God’s high festival, protracted meeting,” the one or two weeks of revival at our church after crops were “laid by,” our porch was the place where friends and family and folks from church just gathered and visited in those weeks of revival. At church we revived our spirits; on that front porch we revived the sense of fellowship.
    P–Place
    O–of
    R–Renewal
    C–Can
    H–Help.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    September 16, 2014 at 7:21 am

    Porches are important. They are the platform for all comings and goings. They are the depository for all thing waiting transport to some other place, either in or out. We sit there to relax and sometimes to work.
    Porches are not indoors but then they are not outside either. They are in-between. Many important things in life happen in the in-between.

  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    September 16, 2014 at 7:21 am

    Tipper–The two porches which loom largest in my memory were covered–the front porch at Grandpa Joe’s was where he told me countless tales from his rocking chair. They ranged from mournful accounts of the demise of the mighty American chestnut to his killing of a painter when he was a young man. His throne was a rocking chair, and as I type these words I can look across the room and take great comfort from looking at that chair. If only it could talk of tales it has heard!
    The other porch was the one at home. Don now lives there and I have no doubt that he still finds an ample measure of pleasure in what it has to offer. Many a summer and early fall evening the whole family would gather there to string and break beans, shell field peas, peel peaches or apples, or something else along that line. We didn’t have a TV and those evenings spent looking out across the Tuckasegee River valley were times of simple relaxation mixed with busy “doing” as we prepared garden produce for canning.
    Porches are places to soothe the soul and calm the troubled mind.
    Jim Casada
    http://www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com

  • Reply
    Lola Howard
    September 16, 2014 at 7:07 am

    YUUUUMMMIE
    PASS THE KRAUT !!!!!

  • Reply
    Lola Howard
    September 16, 2014 at 7:07 am

    YUUUUMMMIE
    PASS THE KRAUT !!!!!

  • Reply
    Lola Howard
    September 16, 2014 at 7:07 am

    YUUUUMMMIE
    PASS THE KRAUT !!!!!

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