Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Mom's Cat House, Dad's Pig House, & Mom's Hen House

My mom always had a lot of half-way stray cats. A few would let us pet them or come to the milking barn for a fresh teat treat.

She had this special cat house at the edge of the grove. The cats would get fed out there and at our back door.

None ever got shots or the like. They seemed to be pretty tough though, most lived to run off or get killed by a wild animal or the neighboring Toms.

[click on pictures for full size]


At one time this pig shed of Dad's was in the corral. Now the corral is cultivated to become an excellent corn field.

The small door on the left got mainly used by the pigs, but Dad and I went in many a time to help a pig out of some trouble, or to mark their ears so we could tell them from the neighbors if they got mingled.

Dad usually raised about 120 hogs from pigs. He would pick ten to fourteen to become mother pigs and another cycle would begin.

Those others went to the slaughter house. We generally butchered a couple for family eating. Remember, the Jim Bunch eats good.


Mom raised the laying hens and handled the egg marketing. Again we raised from babies, chicks this time. She always got unsexed chicks. Most of the roosters would get sold for fryers, we would eat about sixty. That is one for each Sunday and a few more for company or the threshing crew.

She would wash every egg with vinegar. Like me, she was a night owl and would start this task around midnight. A lot of times Lois and Dad would have had several hours of sleep before Mom and I went to bed.


1. On our farm, the cattle, cows, hogs, and chickens ate the grain and hay grown on the farm. The oat straw was used for bedding. Most times there would be more profit, not counting family labor, from raising and marketing the animals, eggs, and cream.

2. All of the farm buildings were kept in good paint. The cat house and hen house were red, the hog house was black. There is still some of that paint showing after twenty-five years of non-use.

3. Unsexed chickens meant buying a mixture of male and female chicks. The mixture generally was around fifty-fifty. It figures.

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Before the house I previously wrote about--the one in which Lois and I were born--was moved onto the property, this was THE house where the people lived.

It had to have been built in the 1800s.
Gidday Jim, Enjoyed your three part posts on "where I Was Born". Very interesting reading. Also I haven't forgotten about "I was Tagged" just haven't had the time to get to it, but it will happen. Stay tuned.
It makes one a bit melancholy (sp) to see the farmsteads melt into the landscape. Almost all of them are gone. I suppose our county would be taxing you into submission if they were in good repair. They may be anyway if you haven't had the assessor come out for a re-evalutation.
About the feed stores, good stuff Jim. They have all but disappeared from our landscape. About 1 good one in the bigger towns. Blair still has a good one and make it selling to acerage owners. Fencing panels, small barns, bird seed and the like.
Another interesting post Jim.
It's really interesting to read all about the olden days. Thanks.
A black hog house? Huh. Now that makes sense. We always painted ours white, and it never stayed that color for long.

That was a great tour.
It might have been creosote black.
Jim, Thanks for sharing so much about the place you were born. I enjoyed reading every bit of it and the pictures too. The feed store post was good too. Although, I have to say, I've never even seen one, let alone, been in one! Thanks for teaching me something new:-)
Enjoyed Mom's Cat House etc. very muchThank you for the birthday wishes, thanks for your welcoming comments. Cat's names are Souki and Polgara in order of photos. I seem to up and running OK now could be a couple of things to iron out, all will all work out in the end and I am sure I will enjoy this blogging experience very much. Cheers Margaret
I love reading your memories Jim.

Take care xx
Also copied onto August 8, 2006 for archiving purposes.
Go to August 06, 2006 Archive to see the old house written up in three parts as well.

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