Trash Heap to Museum

I am not becoming an eccentric collector of useless stuff. Quite the contrary, as it turns out. I am building a living history collection. Who knew? How did I come to this revelation? Let me introduce you to the Zimmerman family courtesy of the Fairview-Rockwood-Wilkes Historical Society and the City of Gresham Oregon.

http://www.frwhs.org/zimmerman_house.html

In 1874 Jacob Zimmerman built his farmhouse on the land where it stands today. Sadly, but typically, his once bucolic setting is now the industrial area just east of Costco. A member of this pack rat family lived continuously in the house until 1992 when the house and contents were bequeathed to the historical society. I do not use the term pack rat lightly. I only have a basement to fill, they also had an attic. As each child grew up and moved out, there was more room to store their treasures and store they did! When I receive a box of chocolates I gorge happily. I see no reason to keep the box, not so the Zimmermans. I have forgotten how many magazines they found but it was an astounding number in my humble opinion. When you have a career that takes you around the country you learn very quickly not to save magazines. One box of magazines costs its’ weight in gold to move. There is a chest of doll hats worthy of a museum display in their own right. See, I keep saying my pony tail Barbie doll with her shoes, hats, purses and clothing catalogues is well worth the careful packing and moving. I still cling to the belief they may, some day, finance one week in the home.

I have confessed to my tendency to hang on to, and cart around the country, clothes I have no intention of wearing and that are out of style. It is the museum visitor’s gain the Zimmermans did not have to move. The clothes packed away and now on display are truly treasures of eras gone by. Their papers and letters fill a room of filing cabinets. Again, my few boxes of tax records and receipts seem less daunting. It is a good thing for moving I don’t have letters anymore. I am sure it is a great loss that my witticisms and correspondence with interesting and also witty friends will be unavailable for future generations because we have the delete key to save hard drive space. As I slowly fill the spooky room and de-clutter the house, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IaeiPUa5I0g I have second thoughts.

The way I see it, I have a duty to hang on to more of my treasures. All I need to do to justify this foray into eccentricity is to catalogue and document. I have furniture and a few household items from the house built in Connecticut by my great grandfather in 1885. Who is to say my seashell lamp from my first apartment in Atlanta will not be a family heirloom in a couple of hundred years. Long after I am dead my ordinary life could well be at the very least, interesting to future generations. That is my story and I am sticking to it as I rescue items from the garage sale pile and resign myself to packing them and moving them once again.

In 1874 Jacob Zimmerman built his farmhouse on the land where it stands today. Sadly, but typically, his once bucolic setting is now the industrial area just east of Costco. A member of this pack rat family lived continuously in the house until 1992 when the house and contents were bequeathed to the historical society. I do not use the term pack rat lightly. I only have a basement to fill, they also had an attic. As each child grew up and moved out, there was more room to store their treasures and store they did! When I receive a box of chocolates I gorge happily. I see no reason to keep the box, not so the Zimmermans. I have forgotten how many magazines they found but it was an astounding number in my humble opinion. When you have a career that takes you around the country you learn very quickly not to save magazines. One box of magazines costs its’ weight in gold to move. There is a chest of doll hats worthy of a museum display in their own right. See, I keep saying my pony tail Barbie doll with her shoes, hats, purses and clothing catalogues is well worth the careful packing and moving. I still cling to the belief they may, some day, finance one week in the home.

I have confessed to my tendency to hang on to, and cart around the country, clothes I have no intention of wearing and that are out of style. It is the museum visitor’s gain the Zimmermans did not have to move. The clothes packed away and now on display are truly treasures of eras gone by. Their papers and letters fill a room of filing cabinets. Again, my few boxes of tax records and receipts seem less daunting. It is a good thing for moving I don’t have letters anymore. I am sure it is a great loss that my witticisms and correspondence with interesting and also witty friends will be unavailable for future generations because we have the delete key to save hard drive space. As I slowly fill the spooky room and de-clutter the house, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IaeiPUa5I0g I have second thoughts.

The way I see it, I have a duty to hang on to more of my treasures. All I need to do to justify this foray into eccentricity is to catalogue and document. I have furniture and a few household items from the house built in Connecticut by my great grandfather in 1885. Who is to say my seashell lamp from my first apartment in Atlanta will not be a family heirloom in a couple of hundred years. Long after I am dead my ordinary life could well be at the very least, interesting to future generations. That is my story and I am sticking to it as I rescue items from the garage sale pile and resign myself to packing them and moving them once again.


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One Comment, Comment or Ping

  1. Jenny

    1

    Pretty good post. I just found your blog and wanted to say
    that I’ve really enjoyed reading your posts. Any way
    I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again soon!

    22 Jun