Thursday, October 12, 2006

Melrose

Melrose is my family’s tree farm in South Carolina. We don’t know how long it’s been in the family—it’s said that my great-great-grandparents went to live there after the civil war, when they were evicted from their property in Georgia because they couldn’t afford the taxes (they eventually got the property back). My great-grandfather planted a peach orchard on the property in the early years of the twentieth century, an endeavor that eventually lost out to blight. Native pine reclaimed the land, and my grandmother cultivated a tree farm to harvest timber.

It has been a part of my life all of my life, and a regular fixture when I was growing up when we spent our spring school vacations there. It is a place I love deeply for its beauty, serenity, the grace of the landscape, and the connection to my own family’s history.

The family has a tradition of enjoying happy hour, either on the lawn in front of the cottage, or up on the cottage porch, and watching the sun set across the Savannah River valley that borders our property. Over the years as the hardwood trees have matured, the extensive vista has become increasingly obscured—until now. One of the items on my mother’s agenda for her fall visit to Melrose this year was to clear the view and restore the vista. Here is a before and after shot, and a view of the area that was cleared (that’s Juliet in the picture).

I can’t wait to go back in the spring when we have more than two days to enjoy soaking up this view.

2 comments:

Gail said...

Looks like a lovely place Anne, and you do it justice with your words. Thanks for sharing it with us.
Gail

samtzmom said...

How wonderful to have a place that give you a sense of roots... literally and figuratively... to go "home" to. Just beautiful! Hugs to you!

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