EPISODE 452 FOUR RESCUED NEGATIVES…SOMETHING YOU WILL NEVER SEE AGAIN

image_222.jpg

There is a story here.  Savour the picture…the details…a man slogging his way to the auction wagon, a wagon of Mennonites almost hidden, a few half ton trucks, odds and ends of farm machines, and strips of ice
beneath the snow.   I am so glad I rescued these four negatives.  Classics.
EPISODE 452    FOUR RESCUED NEGATIVES…SOMETHING YOU WILL NEVER SEE AGAIN
alan skeoch
Oct. 17, 2021
Just an old strip of 35mmm negatives found among my slides.
“I may as well get them converted to digital among the slides…just
cost a few dollars.  A test strip.  I have a whole binder of these negatives taken around 1960's or 1970's just when the race to
sell old Ontario farms was about to reach fever pitch.”
“Looks rather bleak.”
“Suits the black and white format….tells a story…a sad story.”
“Each time a farm sells there are piles of things up for auction or for
the scrap yard.”
“Alan, are you the only person rescuing doomed artifacts?”
“No, but I may be the most enthusiastic,,,I like to papture the
mood of the auction as well as the treasures.”
“Treasures?”
“Art is in the eye of the beholder”
image_223.jpg
This is a belt driven cutting box…takes corn stalks and slics them
into bite sized chunks that can be piled silos as ensilage for winter
feeding.  Ensilage has a smell all its own…a smell that only farmers
and cattle feel akin to.   I rather liked the smell.
image_224.jpg
And here is a 1950's Farmall row crop tractor.  Triangle shaped wheel
base…always seemed dangerous to me…roll over possible.  And roll
overs did happen…deadly.  Of course you are more interested in the scrap pile or maybe the long fenced lane to the back fields.
image_225.jpg
And here a Mennonite family arriving with a matched team of black horses.   Maybe retired race horses.   Why  do I think that?  Because
their hooves are delicate…moreso than a big team of draft horses with
hair fetlocks.   Puts me in mind of Uncle FRank Freeman's team that
he harvessed up to meet the Gray Coach bus from Toronto just
to get mom, Eric and I to the farm on winter week ends.
alan skeoch
Question:  Should I invest a few more dollars and rescue a lot more
of these black and whitep pictures?   Otherwise they will never be seen again.   Yes..I will take them to Digital Treasures…they do such a
nice job.
Note:  For the first time in weeks I feel comfortable telling my stories thanks to the help of a 16 year old boy…Michael L. and his dad Rob.

EPISODE 450 TAKE A DAY TRIP….EASY TO DO

F795934E-62DB-46EB-9FF4-E6E3AD8EEF91_1_105_c.jpeg71D7CA55-1005-47F9-9DF5-A1B4CCD97717_1_105_c.jpeg

alan skeoch
oct. 16, 2021
I am climbing a steep learning curVe on gmail so stick with me.
Marjorie and I took our annual  October drive to Prince Edward
County from Mississauga with our familiar stops along the way 
starting with Port Hope for coffee and ending at Haberman's market
barn near Picton….also stopped at North Beach Provincial Park for a smoked salmon 
lunch on the empty beach as waves broke over 500 million year old
sedimentary rock layers.
81766B96-424A-4A1F-AE2C-2AF136D75649_1_105_c.jpeg6216D663-31CF-4479-902E-6D1E8FC31512_1_105_c.jpeg7893E328-A16B-4675-ACD8-A54AFF84F03F_1_105_c.jpeg36327342-9401-4F0D-9E01-25475C359141_1_105_c.jpegEB698D47-987B-40C0-8C58-A43AB295B856_1_105_c.jpegA2852366-E7E1-4F50-B367-CD1E75154D99_1_105_c.jpegC6934E7C-873C-4E0C-9C09-CE0AD374BCB4_1_105_c.jpegEFBB1F32-8247-48A6-9D6A-1858B6F00A2C_1_105_c.jpeg9E2AB00C-2BFA-4C79-9888-DFF27B697469_1_105_c.jpegD0010C17-7A38-450B-AF55-3B33B7DFAE41_1_105_c.jpegCD2AD708-5D8B-4351-9CBA-79A50AFDE762_1_105_c.jpeg662B367B-F452-4F08-BC92-AFAF6D99B6B9_1_105_c.jpegEF38CB07-512B-42E0-B36E-98CEDF693744_1_105_c.jpeg624DB6AC-B56F-4FD5-8415-BF5FB2C6492D_1_105_c.jpeg8DB019D8-A45C-428D-BE99-79CD107FE6A7_1_105_c.jpeg
B533DFC6-286C-47AB-B651-03DAA3AC0794_1_105_c.jpeg

5F8779A4-B6C1-4FBD-ACDD-A69C9A20BBCE_1_105_c.jpeg

A45C0754-DF7C-4E75-953D-2B5FB6591929_1_105_c.jpeg8A12C1D6-7646-4709-9838-E0703B14C3D0_1_105_c.jpeg4267C3EB-880E-4796-B4CA-B9688BDA958A_1_105_c.jpegB0943B4C-78DE-4ACC-907E-2C09A573C86E_1_105_c.jpegCABE2E28-A87B-4C7D-AE8B-78FF01A8E315_1_105_c.jpeg35879057-AE14-4488-B73B-4061029F6A2E_1_105_c.jpeg6E7C7545-B757-4321-8229-3CDAC6F15D96_1_105_c.jpegDFD175A8-EC4A-48C5-812F-1E3161A8AA68_1_105_c.jpeg
Nice day…no rushing…started at 8 a.m. got home at 7 p.m.
Marjorie did all the driving…I did the looking.  You can do the same.
October … do not miss  the chance to be aimless…and welcome the
unknown.   

EPISODE 449 IRISH PICTURES: GOING UNDERGROUND

PICT0193.JPG

PICT0074.JPG
EPISODE 449  IRISH PICTURES 1960…GOING UNDERGROUND

alan skeoch
oct. 2021
PICT0003.JPG
“Alan, would you like to see inside the old mine?”.  said Barne Dwan
one afternoon as we had lunch on the cliff edge with the
ruins of the Knockmahon Mine at our back.
“Impossible, the mine was abandoned long
ago in the 1870's.”
“Easy to get inside … right beneath our feet is a hole.”
“A hole?”
“We can crawl inside…I've done it many times.”
“A mine shaft…vertical?”
“Nope, a hole …horizontal…think these holes were dug for ventilation.”
PICT0193.JPG
814CA2F2-F986-40AF-B7AC-8390DF38C2A9_1_105_c.jpeg
“Did you say “these holes”….more than one?”
'There are a number of old entrances along these cliffs…some
were even used as IRA hideouts in the Time of the Troubles..”
“When can “we do it, Barney?'
“how about this evening?
The clifff face was about 200 to 300 feet high … a broken face kind of
cliff.   It could be climbed.   About halfway up the cliff was a kind of ledge at the back was our first “hole”
“I brought flashlights, matches, candle, hard hats….all we need.”
“Why the candle?”
“Just to check the air a few times…if the candle won'tlight or
the candle goes out…we've got to get the hell out fast…no
oxygen.”    (reminder of the Canary in the Coal Mine)
PICT0020.JPG
“Dark…black as the worst nightmare, Barney.  The hole
looks so tiny.”
“It will get worse, Alan.”
“If the ceiling collapses who will ever find us?”
“Our disappearance will become a mystery … just another
 of  the mysteries in Ireland.”
“Sow down…looks like the passage ends here.”
“Bit of a rocka fall…we can squeeze by on our stomachs Alan.”
“Light the candle first…there…air seems fine..bit of a draft.”
“Really tight to squeeze  through but seems to open up
on the other side…flash light over the rock fall.”
“We made it…we can now walk in  a crouch.”
“The old miners were shorter people.”
“What's that?”
“:ladder pitched across a shaft..we have to use it to get across..”
“Must be 100yersold, maybe rotten…we could fall down the shaft.”
“We would not flll far…look down.”
:Water…clear clear water…mine must have filled with 
water.”
“So we would not die…maye drown though…how could
we scale the walls of the shaft.”
“could be done.  Let's cross”
“I think this is your ladder, Barney.”
“Could be…could be.”
PICT0123.JPG
I do not remember how far we got.  I think we reached the
man mne shaft but that could be my imagination.  What I
do remember are the colours. Lots of green oxidised copper or
and then great patches of bright pink that could have been
cobalt bloom.  Just a guess.
I remember that our trusty candle had no trouble
stay
ing lit so the air was good.   
“OK, Barney, let's get out of here.  That rackfall 
back there makes me a little queasy.  Maye squeezing out will
be harder than squewzing in.
Outside night was getting ready to fall but the sun
still bravely shone.   Easy to breathe.
PICT0141.JPG
Nice night.  Great adventure.  Was that really Barney's ladder or
was it one of the ladders used by the mners of 1870's who climbed
up and down in the dark…down a hundred feet…maybe more and 
hacked and exploded copper ore as they tunnelled under
the ocean.  Brav?   No, wrong word.  Desperate is better.  
In 1960 those old adits were adventures.  Today, in 2021,
I am not sure I would be as brave.  Just suppose we fell off
that ladder and died bobbing around in the shaft water.
Or suppose my belt hooked on a loose piece of rock that
triggered a small avalanche trapping us…smothering us.
Perish the thoughts.
That ladder?  Was it  Barney's?   Or was it left there by
a miner long long ago?  Rotten…dry rot.  Take a close look.
alan skeoch
Irish stories
Bunmahon, county Waterford
Barney Dwan led the way.

EPISODE 449 IRISH STORIES GOING UNDERGROUND IN 1960

EPISODE 449  IRISH PICTURES 1960…GOING UNDERGROUND

alan skeoch
oct. 2021
DA5520AC-381E-45F9-89FB-91D0A30F85B3_1_105_c.jpeg
PICT0003.JPG
“Alan, would you like to see inside the old mine?”.  said Barne Dwan
one afternoon as we had lunch on the cliff edge with the
ruins of the Knockmahon Mine at our back.
“Impossible, the mine was abandoned long
ago in the 1870's.”
“Easy to get inside … right beneath our feet is a hole.”
“A hole?”
“We can crawl inside…I've done it many times.”
“A mine shaft…vertical?”
“Nope, a hole …horizontal…think these holes were dug for ventilation.”
PICT0193.JPG
814CA2F2-F986-40AF-B7AC-8390DF38C2A9_1_105_c.jpeg
“Did you say “these holes”….more than one?”
'There are a number of old entrances along these cliffs…some
were even used as IRA hideouts in the Time of the Troubles..”
“When can “we do it, Barney?'
“how about this evening?
The clifff face was about 200 to 300 feet high … a broken face kind of
cliff.   It could be climbed.   About halfway up the cliff was a kind of ledge at the back was our first “hole”
“I brought flashlights, matches, candle, hard hats….all we need.”
“Why the candle?”
“Just to check the air a few times…if the candle won't light or
the candle goes out…we've got to get the hell out fast…no
oxygen.”    (reminder of the Canary in the Coal Mine)
PICT0020.JPG
“Dark…black as the worst nightmare, Barney.  The hole
looks so tiny.”
“It will get worse, Alan.”
“If the ceiling collapses who will ever find us?”
“Our disappearance will become a mystery … just another
 of  the mysteries in Ireland.”
“Sow down…looks like the passage ends here.”
“Bit of a rocka fall…we can squeeze by on our stomachs Alan.”
“Light the candle first…there…air seems fine..bit of a draft.”
“Really tight to squeeze  through but seems to open up
on the other side…flash light over the rock fall.”
“We made it…we can now walk in  a crouch.”
“The old miners were shorter people.”
“What's that?”
“:ladder pitched across a shaft..we have to use it to get across..”
“Must be 100yersold, maybe rotten…we could fall down the shaft.”
“We would not fa'll far…look down.”
:Water…clear clear water…mine must have filled with 
water.”
“So we would not die…maye drown though…how could
we scale the walls of the shaft.”
“could be done.  Let's cross”
“I think this is your ladder, Barney.”
“Could be…could be.”
PICT0123.JPG
I do not remember how far we got.  I think we reached the
maIn mne shaft but that could be my imagination.  What I
do remember are the colours. Lots of green oxidised copper or
and then great patches of bright pink that could have been
cobalt bloom.  Just a guess.
I remember that our trusty candle had no trouble
stay
ing lit so the air was good.   
“OK, Barney, let's get out of here.  That rackfall 
back there makes me a little queasy.  Maye squeezing out will
be harder than squewzing in.
Outside night was getting ready to fall but the sun
still bravely shone.   Easy to breathe.
PICT0141.JPG
Nice night.  Great adventure.  Was that really Barney's ladder or
was it one of the ladders used by the mners of 1870's who climbed
up and down in the dark…down a hundred feet…maybe more and 
hacked and exploded copper ore as they tunnelled under
the ocean.  Brav?   No, wrong word.  Desperate is better.  
In 1960 those old adits were adventures.  Today, in 2021,
I am not sure I would be as brave.  Just suppose we fell off
that ladder and died bobbing around in the shaft water.
Or suppose my belt hooked on a loose piece of rock that
triggered a small avalanche trapping us…smothering us.
Perish the thoughts.
That ladder?  Was it  Barney's?   Or was it left there by
a miner long long ago?  Rotten…dry rot.  Take a close look.
alan skeoch
Irish stories
Bunmahon, county Waterford
Barney Dwan led the way.

EPISODE 447 IRISH STORIES: IRISH PANARAMAS

EPISODE 447   IRISH STORIES   IRISH PANARAMAS

alan skeoch
oct. 2021
AAF3C2FE-F2AD-4DF8-B2E2-7B404DAA300A_1_105_c.jpeg
In  the summer of 1966 I returned to Ireland with my wife, Marjorie and my brother Eric.  We were all teachers by that time and I dearly waned to share Ireland wit those closest to me  We did not have much money
Most of what we had was put into a car rental and b and b hotels.  We saved on food.  Our stead diet was  1) Bulmer's cider…big bottles with stone screw caps.  2) fresh bread wherever it could be found  3) large chunks
of cheese.   Here in the pic above we are dining in a farm field…first class.
2A7C497B-4B9C-40E2-AFAB-D5EAB68A0F3A_1_105_c.jpeg
Ireland has lots of mountains for climbers.  Easy to climb.  Lots of sheep.  I am not too sure the water is drinkable due to the sheep but
Marjorie tested it before Eric and I drank.
AFF50C5A-DBF3-4C1E-94A0-E1A0D0A0E00F_1_105_c.jpeg
In 1960 John Hogan and I did a little mountain climbing.  We had
an excuse as John was a geologist “looking for outcrop”
9E49FCF8-AD1C-4DF9-995A-E43958033BCE_1_105_c.jpeg13D01BE2-55E2-4EBE-8305-945051BD1514_1_105_c.jpegBEA6782B-9225-4FD0-ACEA-EC0E929082EF_1_105_c.jpeg
This is the Mahon River…not very big until it rains.
46E4B0C7-4E8D-4FEA-9E58-F15EFF80E44F_1_105_c.jpegDC170D0C-F82B-4364-BE2A-C6A49D2EC0F1_1_105_c.jpeg76446AB0-9584-42E2-BF82-B18E42A83245_1_105_c.jpegEAC724A6-0DF5-4AA0-B87A-60285ADF477E_1_105_c.jpeg30E9D5D9-ACA7-4D80-BED2-7EED8F659422_1_105_c.jpeg902A3CDD-8522-4455-9EAA-71F2AFD90364_1_105_c.jpeg

EPISODE 446 GUINNESS BREWERY … USING HORSES IN 1960

EPISODE 446    GUINNESS BREWERY … USING HORSES IN 1960

alan skeoch
oct. 2021
A9420FB4-26F9-4D0C-831D-1CDC14C39190_1_105_c.jpeg
HORSES STILL HAULED WAGON LOADS OF GUINNESS THROUGH ST. JAMES
GATE EVERY DUBLIN MORNING.  BARRELS AND BARRELS DESTINED FOR EVERY
PUB IN  THE CITY.
image.jpeg
One of The many things i learned in Ireland was how important dark
black pints of Guinness stout was to the subculture of Ireland.  It took a little time
but eventually a pint of Guinness became necessary in any deep discussion.
On my 13 day stay in Dublin at the beginning of the Irish job I visited
the Guiness brewery tour 3 times.  On one of these visits a Catholic priest
explained he was opposed to drink and gave me his sample pint. Nice guy who
must have been looking for something to do while in Dublin.  As I was.
NOTE:  I Think my picture of those horses is a treasure…cannot find any
others.
alan
Note:  these short episodes are part of my learning curve on gmail.  Excuse the errors.

Fwd: EPISODE 445 IRISH STORIES: I WAS A POOR PAYMASTER (I NOW REALIZE 61 YEARS TO LATE)


Note:John Wardle…tell me if you get this episode


EPISODE 445    IRISH SORIES:   I WAS A POOR PAYMASTER (I NOW REALIZE 61 YEARS LATER)

alan skeoch
Oct. 2021

FRIDAY WAS PAYDAY IN THE SHACK BEHIND THE KENNEDY STORE…WITH FREE CIGARETTES

 Being a paymaster was quite a shock on the Irish job. I hired a lot of people and was told by someone that an Irish pound a day
was the going wage for unskilled labour.  Seemed OK to the men.  As i now know the wage was
ridiculously low.  The real wage in Ireland in 1960 was $1.25 per hour (U.S)…about 6 to 7 pounds per day.

How did I not know?  IGNORANCE. I Used my own wage as a template.  I was being paid $400 a month…about $5 a day for skilled labour so the difference was
not really that great but my wage included room and board.  Not  luxury living. 
On bush jobs we worked 7 days a week, cooked
our own meals and slept in tents (enveloped in clouds of blood sucking insects).

 The Irish job was five days a week.  Luxury.

 
There seemed to be much unemployment in and around Bunmahon.
So I tried to hire as many men as I could.  There was a need for a large crew.

Three men doing Turam readings myself and Barney with console another man with lead coil 
and cable with 100 foot spacing
Two men to guard our grounding rods and motor
Three to four men as linecutters
Two men to patrol the base line and try to stop cattle from eating cable.


I suppose Barney must have seemed unnecessary to our boss in Canada. Explanation… “I need Barney to help me over the stone
and Gorse fence rows…and to watch for charging bulls or hungry boars.”  “I need him because it is impossible to run when in full
Turam harness.”  Now who could believe that?  Barney’s role
was also to protect me from tics as much as possible.  The cattle were infested with them making their noses look like
pin cushions.   Where did they get the tics?  From the tall grass and scrub bushes in the fence rows.  Barney was also
a buffer when confronted with angry farmers…many of whom wanted payment for damaged crops or stunned animals.
I do not know if anyone made such payments.


So these men earned their money.  I did not realize how small was their pay until I started to look at the cost of living and salaries
in Ireland in 1960.   

STATSTICS
The average family income in the 1960’s was around $5,800. The tax rate back then was 20%, and minimum wage was $1.25/hour. Bacon – 79¢ per lb. Bananas – 10¢ per lb.

“); display: inline-block; height: 24px; width: 24px; margin-top: -1px; transform: rotateZ(-180deg);”>
NO ONE ever said to me that they were underpaid.   High spirits prevailed as is easy to see in Kirwin’s pub  on a special evening.    In 1960 a pint of Guinness was around 20 pence…let’s say 50 cents Canadian.  A bottle of beer in Canada or USA was around 75 cents. 
So our employees could afford to buy about 3 pints of guinness spending their full wage.
To sweeten the wages I got in the habit of buying small packs of cigarettes and later chocolate.  About half of the population of Ireland smoked in 1960.   I did not know
that a 25 cent pack of Wild Woodbine cigarettes was the cheapest of smokes.  The pack looks nice
and no one refused/

IEP USD
1 IEP 1.46744 USD
5 IEP 7.3372 USD
10 IEP 14.6744 USD
25 IEP 36.686 USD


Fwd: EPISODE 444 IRISH STORIES: IRISH COTTAGES

EPISODE 443 IRISH STORIES: IRISH COTTAGE

Note to John Wardle, if email is received please respond, thank you.
EPISODE 443   IRISH STORIES…IRISH COTTAGES (HOMES) 

alan skeoch
oct. 2021
I wish I had taken pictures of many of the homes where our work force lived.  As I remember they
used the term ‘cottage’ for their homes.  In Canada that has a different meaning.  Second homes. In Ireland in 1960 There was one
cottage that stood out from others because the owner, perhaps his name was Mr. Casey, spent
a lot of time pruning and painting to make the place look magnificent.

Sad to say a lot of these small rural cottages on one acre lots were abandoned.  Or maybe it was just that I looked for signs of
the past and tended to photograph empty, often roofless, places where people once lived.

This home in Bunmahon was just abandoned and allowed to collapse.   Barney told me a story  about the former owners.  A story
on the edge of my consciousness.   I think the family retained ownership and just moved on…let the house fall apart.   Ruins like this
must have been common in the late 1870’s when the mine closed and the people (population was around 2,000 then)….Miners are
nomadic.   The miners of Bunmahon moved west to the United States and Canada.

This ancient bee hive home has withstood the ravages of time.   AT one time a monk may have lived here contemplating….just contemplating.
What?   What would you think about  while sitting cross legged in a tiny stone house where you couldn’t stand?  Just sitting there alone.

I am so glad I took this picture because it was so ’normal’ to me in 1960.   Homes that were whitewashed…very neat in most
cases…with every inch of the acre of land being used.  Often with domestic animals.
And ancient graveyards were often present.

So many of the abandoned buildings looked like this…as if the rooves had been removed deliberately.  Seems to me I read somewhere that
landlords forcibly removed those rooves to force indigent tenants to move on…i.e.  people who were not paying rent.   That happened
in the Highland Clearances in Scotland when large landwoners wanted land for sheep and not for people.   The 1840’s were rough years
made worse by the sudden failure of the potato crop across western Europe.  








EPISODE 443 IRISH STORIES: IRISH COTTAGE

EPISODE 443   IRISH STORIES…IRISH COTTAGES (HOMES) 


alan skeoch
oct. 2021

I wish I had taken pictures of many of the homes where our work force lived.  As I remember they
used the term ‘cottage’ for their homes.  In Canada that has a different meaning.  Second homes. In Ireland in 1960 There was one
cottage that stood out from others because the owner, perhaps his name was Mr. Casey, spent
a lot of time pruning and painting to make the place look magnificent.


Sad to say a lot of these small rural cottages on one acre lots were abandoned.  Or maybe it was just that I looked for signs of
the past and tended to photograph empty, often roofless, places where people once lived.



This home in Bunmahon was just abandoned and allowed to collapse.   Barney told me a story  about the former owners.  A story
on the edge of my consciousness.   I think the family retained ownership and just moved on…let the house fall apart.   Ruins like this
must have been common in the late 1870’s when the mine closed and the people (population was around 2,000 then)….Miners are
nomadic.   The miners of Bunmahon moved west to the United States and Canada.


This ancient bee hive home has withstood the ravages of time.   AT one time a monk may have lived here contemplating….just contemplating.
What?   What would you think about  while sitting cross legged in a tiny stone house where you couldn’t stand?  Just sitting there alone.


I am so glad I took this picture because it was so ’normal’ to me in 1960.   Homes that were whitewashed…very neat in most
cases…with every inch of the acre of land being used.  Often with domestic animals.

And ancient graveyards were often present.


So many of the abandoned buildings looked like this…as if the rooves had been removed deliberately.  Seems to me I read somewhere that
landlords forcibly removed those rooves to force indigent tenants to move on…i.e.  people who were not paying rent.   That happened
in the Highland Clearances in Scotland when large landwoners wanted land for sheep and not for people.   The 1840’s were rough years
made worse by the sudden failure of the potato crop across western Europe.