Do You Know Who This House Belongs To?

Because it’s falling apart and no one cares….

is this your house?

is this your house?

I wonder who lived here. I wonder where they are now. Was it a big family? Were they happy? Did they have meals all together at the kitchen table every night? Did they sit out on the wonderful balcony and have late afternoon tea? Did the kids run around outside and play in the yard? What did this magnificent old place look like when it was in it’s full grandeur?

Who knows the answer to these questions? Does anyone? I see so many of these empty, abandoned houses in my travels and every time it makes me stop and think about who lived there and what happened to them. A family once lived in that house. They were most likely happy and had kids and pets and lived a wonderful life. They celebrated birthdays and holidays together with their whole family. They loved their house. And they loved each other too. At least that is what I tell myself.

It used to be you would see one or two of these abandoned houses along the rode. But now you see them everywhere. One right after another. Why? Why is there so many? What happened to the family that lived there and didn’t they have any family members left to take it over before it fell into such disrepair? It didn’t look like that when it was abandoned. It was a beautiful home. Yes, maybe it needed a few repairs but it didn’t deserve to be left to ruin.

“It takes hands to build a house, but only hearts can build a home.” ~ Unknown

There is one such house on a route I take quite frequently. I always noticed it and it struck a cord with me because there was always something going on in the house or in the yard. It really stuck out due to all the people there and also because it seemed the family was so happy and joyful. They always had picnics and parties out in the yard and numerous kids were running around playing. It was so nice to see this.Then one day I drove by and the house seemed empty. After driving by there a few more times my suspicions were confirmed. They were gone. What happened? How could a happy family like this all of the sudden be gone? And with all the people in the family, not one of them wanted the house.

Now granted, I know times are tough and there have been so many foreclosures in the country but are all of these empty houses a victim of the times or something else entirely? Do the people who owned them die and there is no one around to take over the house? No one to sell it? And then to make matters worse, they never get torn down, they just sit there and get covered by weeds and fall apart. It is, in my opinion, one of the saddest things.

I don’t know why it bothers me so much but it does. I think about these houses and think of all the happy times spent inside those walls that are now falling apart. I can envision the Christmas tree in the window and little kids dressed up in their costumes knocking on the front door at Halloween. The owners and their kids quickly coming to greet them with an apple or a bag of candy made by the lady of the house. I see the kids rooms full of their prized possessions. Their stuffed animals and games. What happened to their things? Was everything just left inside to rot along with the house?

“Home is a place you grew up wanting to leave, and grow old wanting to get back to.” ~ John Ed Pearce

I see so many vintage items and pictures at antique stores when I go there and I think the same thing about the items. These pictures were once hanging on the wall in a family’s home. This light was on a table beside a child’s bed. A family once ate their meals off of this beautiful set of dishes. The old toys especially the cars and dolls really get to me. I can picture the little curly haired girl playing with her beloved doll while her brother played with his cars on the floor. So many memories, now just sitting there waiting.

We are told these are all just things and they don’t matter, it is what we keep in the heart that really matters. The house sitting in disrepair. The old photos still in their original frames. The beautiful vintage desk that once sat in the parlor. Yes, they are just things, but they belonged to someone. Someone who loved them and someone that was loved.

I leave you as always with a question and a quote. What do “you” think when you see these abandoned houses sitting along the rode? Do you even think about them at all? Is it just me?

“Home is the nicest word there is.” ~ Laura Ingalls Wilder




26 thoughts on “Do You Know Who This House Belongs To?

  1. Actually, I’ve been having the opposite experience lately in our spanking new home. Last night I started thinking about the fact that I had never lived in a home with no history or past. What a strange thought! We get to create this house’s history from scratch…

  2. For most of my adult life, I lived in a very famous, abandoned house: The Spy House on the Hill. When people discovered I lived there, they went on and on about the stories they’d heard about it. It was a great house to bring back to life. Brenda

  3. Love this post! I do the same thing with old houses…and I love walking through cemeteries. (might seem creepy to some, but I love imagining what lives were led.

  4. Your photo is stunning! And yes, I do think about the people and their stories. What a lovely post and so exciting to find out that I am not the only one. I feel such deep sorrow when I see some houses, they seem so lonely. And I can’t buy vintage or antique items, I feel too much of their story. Old foundations, and old barns call to my heart also. Thank you for sharing this. Wishing you a peace filled day.

  5. Yes I think about them and wonder also, but somehow I think of GHOSTS, lol. Its a shame that so many have gone to disrepair, but as you say, money woes more than likely. We lived in a BIG house on S George St when I was a teen, honestly our first floor apartment had 4 bedrooms, living room, dining room, kitchen and ONE bath for the 6 of us and then two full floor apartments on 2nd and third floor. It was in bad shape back then and after we moved. Its still standing, but I often wonder when I drive by (at least once a week) what it looks like now inside. Would Love to see it honestly. But with regard to your topic, its a shame, because we have homeless people who could and probably do use these places for shelter…so hope they’re getting some use out of them.

    1. I agree Susie, I wish someone would fix hem up and let homeless people live in them. Better than to have them waste away to nothing.

  6. This is a wonderful old home and by the size I would thing the family had a bit of money. I would have to look on the back of the picture for any names and try a search. What fun tht would be if you could talk to family. I love this post thank yo Hellion

  7. I love old abandoned houses. I also love to explore them and wonder about the people who used to live in them.

    1. Agree Laura, but maybe not..maybe it would be nice to fix them up and restore them to their natural beauty. Thanks for commenting..

  8. I lived in one of those houses, except I restored it and lived there most of my adult life. It was a fabulous experience! I met people all over the world who knew of that house and had always wondered who lived there. Brenda

    1. How wonderful Brenda! That is very cool. I live in an old house isn’t falling down yet but it does take a lot of upkeep. It was built in 1890.

    1. Oh thank you so much Claudia. I didn’t want to be the only crazy person doing this…I do have a good imagination…

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