Sunday, September 12, 2010

Gene Stratton Porter's home (one of them, anyway)

A few weeks ago, we took the day to go visit one of Gene Stratton Porter's homes, the one her husband built for her right on the edge of the Limberlost. I grew up loving GPS's book The Girl of the Limberlost, but I've since listened to more of them on tape. It was a treat to find more about the lady herself. Sadly, much of the swamp has been drained, and what has been preserved was a little dry while we were there, and since it was very hot, we didn't tour very much of it.

However, the tour of the house was fantastic...even the girls enjoyed it. They were fascinated by her collections of butterflies and moths, the blue herron and the golden eagle beside her fireplace, her daughter Jeanette's room and porch, the huge clawfoot tub where Gene mixed the chemicals and developed her own film. And showing my one-track mind, I forgot to take any pictures inside while I was busy trying to listen and keep little fingers from touching and little feet from climbing.

At the end of the tour, the guide gave the girls a sheet of stickers and a page of questions to match the pictures to. I was amazed how much even Olivia picked up and remembered.

So without further ado, the pictures....

(below) If you look closely at the fence, toward the edges of the picture, you can see small open spots in the wall. Gene wanted the small creatures to be able to get into her yard. The fence are original and made with rocks from the Wabash.

Gene's daughter Jeanette had her own little porch. Gene called it "A girl's fantasy porch" or something like that.
There was a cat on the premises, which Olivia absolutely loved. She would not let the poor thing alone. (I know Grandma Asbury is gasping in utter shock! And yes, my tongue is planted firmly in my cheek.)

This was my absolute favorite part of the house. Inside there is a small room brimming with plants and natural sunlight, opening into the dining room. At night, Gene would open the little windows at the very top, close off the room with the glass and oak pocket doors, and wait for the butterflies and moths to come. They were attracted to the gas lights, of course, and would land on those huge doors, making it easy for Gene to study them.

Snack time! She loves being able to drink on her own (with Thick-It)
The only remaining covered bridge over the Wabash
Enjoying the Wabash
Just because.

1 comment:

Shore Girl said...

Looks like a fun field trip! Looks like the field trip was as much fun for you as it was for the girls! I think that's one of the things I like best about homeschooling ---We get to experience things like this as a family!