Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Leeak Family Farm: Charette Township, Missouri

In 1906 my great grandparents, F. Siegel Leeak and Carrie Mestmacher Leeak , and at least seven of their eight children moved to a small farm in Charette Township south of Warrenton, MO near the village of Hopewell.  My grandfather, Francis J. Leeak, would have been 12 years old when his family moved to this farm and 17 years old when the family moved back to the town of Warrenton in 1911.  I realize now that many of the stories I remember my grandfather telling me  about his childhood probably took place when he was living on this farm.

When he was young he and his father had gotten interested in photography and set up a darkroom so that they could develop their own pictures.  I remember him telling me about the time when he asked his sisters to stand in front of their house while he climbed a tree and took this picture.  Now I think that many of the old family photos taken around the Charette farm that we have today were taken by Siegel and my grandfather and developed in their home darkroom.

My grandfather's youngest sister, Verna,  visited the Charette house many years later, probably in the 1940's, and took this picture.

While I was in Missouri recently I went to Charette Township south of Warrenton.  I believed that  the farm my grandfather lived on was along the Charette Creek Road east of Hopewell, MO.

There are a number of the houses along Charette Creek Road that are very similar to the house my grandfather lived in as a teenager.

I'm pretty sure that the actual house has probably been torn down.

This is a typical river crossing on secondary roads in Charette Township.  This is at a place where the road crosses Charette Creek.

Monday, March 12, 2012

St Louis Arch

I came to St Louis for the first time over thirty years ago and stopped to see the Arch but wouldn't pay $1 to go up to the top.  Not being quite such a cheapskate at this point I decided I needed to make a trip to the top while I was here-- but now the price was $7 with an annual National Parks Pass.  ...and it was pretty much worth it.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Spring is coming!

 It looks like spring is coming to the desert around Lake Havasu!

I think this is a Mexican Gold Poppy.

Beavertail Cactus in bloom.