Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Crosby and Other Places - IV

(Originally run 4/3/04 on our old site)

Ernest Simpson

Postscript: One Last Move: Leaving Echo Dell

How did the address “1701 North Main” come about, and where did it come from? Until about 1958, it was simply ‘Rocky Branch Road.”

We lived on the little farm a mile north of the crossroads of North Main and Johnson Road from about 1949 to 1957. I was making an attempt at a college education after high school and, in the summer, I worked at either a pipeline or at the hellhole called California Packing Corp., in DeKalb, Illinois. Mom wanted to be closer to her mom, since Grandpa passed away, and the opportunity presented itself.

There was a lot available on Rocky Branch Road, near my Grandma Bennett, so dad offered up the farm for sale. Herbert Barger, Bill Barger’s dad, and my father struck a deal. Herbert bought the land, and dad contracted with a mover to transport the house.

Dad told me, after I came home that summer, about jacking the little frame house up, putting it on the huge house moving rig, and driving it south on Main to where it sits today at 1701. He said it was a delicate job; the old house was not well supported, but the frame was sturdy enough, and the people doing the moving were professionals. Dad later told me it was quite a sight to see the house going down the road.

He took the porch off and turned the house sideways. Added a concrete porch, a new entry, and new floors and drywall to the ceilings and walls. A bathroom was added, and new exterior put on. Mom was happy, and they were closer to town.

The following early spring, dad stopped at Deener Creek and pulled up a Sycamore sprout out of the ditch, and planted it in the front yard. Last time I was by the house, the huge old Sycamore tree was still there.

They loved that location, and enjoyed it the rest of their lives. Jim and I grew up, and left, but always came back ‘home’ often to the little house on North Main.


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