The ghosts in my house

I once had a flatmate from Japan who told me she found it strange that we mostly lived in second hand houses.  Personally I’ve always preferred the character of old houses and while appreciating the clean splendor of modern builds, I couldn’t imagine living in one – unless of course it was coupled with an expansive ocean view or verdant greenery.

When I moved in I was aware that there was a bit of junk in the attic but having filled the place with my own junk I wasn’t in a hurry to delve into anymore boxes than I had to. In recent weeks the personalities of the previous inhabitants have started to emerge.

The house was built around 1850 as servant quarters to a large manor house that has since been turned into a municipal building and from what I  understand my property has not changed hands too many times since.  So here are some snapshots from the attic, starting with something grizzly from the 70’s…


Less said about these the better.

What I found next was entirely fascinating and had me musing about how bereft we should feel about the loss of letter writing and printed photos. I found a little cache of letters which I have only briefly looked at but none-the-less felt charmed by the writers hand and the civility with which the correspondents addressed each other.

This letter is dated 8 December 1940, the person explains how she has moved away from Southampton as it’s been bombed and most of the shops are gone. The writer explains that the town is destroyed and that all their windows and doors were blown in, and for twelve nights they had very little sleep.


The latest find however is a clothes dryer, I have no clear idea of it’s age I guess it could be from any time from the late 1800’s onwards but I’m going to find a suitable place in the house to resurrect it. I’ve  waxed it and little bear made a minor repair. The wood has come up very nicely, the pulleys are still in working order, it’s really just the ropes that will need replacing as they are layered in ancient dirt.



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