Farm Life of the Past: July 2010

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Elk River-Revisited

 This is a Repeat post!

  This was posted last year after our  annual trip to Alabama.
( posted at Junie's Place blog)
  Every year we have a family reunion there for my husband's family! We will be going again at the end of the month!

(from Aug, 2009 )

I always enjoy visiting the places of my husband's youth and hearing his stories! :)

I realized this story belonged on THIS blog so I'm re-posting it here!

Enjoy-if you missed it before!  :)



This time I want to share some recent pictures from an Alabama trip!

This is Elk River and Elk River bridge in north Alabama.

My husband of 48 years has, through the years, told me stories of how he, his brothers and sisters, cousins and buddies, watched every bit of construction work on this bridge. This was in the mid 40s when my husband was about 11-12 years of age-with siblings both younger and older than he. They lived just a mile or so from this river and swam in the river and played on these river banks from a very early age, so they had a vested interest in the happenings here.

He says that, while the men were working on the bridge during the day, he and the others would keep a little distance between them; but when the workers went home for the evening the group of kids would converge on the bridge construction site and have some adventures!

My husband says that he and the others were the night crew who helped to build that bridge! :)

When the crew got the steel beams set across the span of the river they (the kids on the 2nd shift)
would go from one side to the other. It started out in a crawl across-but advanced to a walk and then a run... 40 to 50 feet above the Elk River...on beams no more than 14 inches for the outside and 8 inches for the inside beams! He says they became expert on all of them.

(...if my husband's memory is accurate! ) :)

*However you look at it , though, I would have had a hard time being a mom in those times and that place!!*

When this bridge was completed, a huge , whole hog BBQ ( at least '10' -800 lb.hogs) was sponsored by the family who the bridge was named for and took place at the area beneath the bridge. This meat was prepared in dug pits and started to cook the day before!

Charles still talks of the wonderful aroma of the roasting meat! This was a huge event for these country kids of that time-adults too, I'm sure!

People from miles around came for this celebration and food and drinks! Sweet tea and RC colas and orange drinks were served!

The leftovers were offered to anyone who wanted them, as take homes! :) I can imagine there was food-a-plenty that day!

The bridge is named 'Maple'- in honor of a prominent doctor and land owner in the Athens/Mud Bottom area, Dr. Joe Maple.



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