Yesterday, we had a tour of Martin and Catherine O'Grady's Homestead on the O'Grady Settlement Road in Hagarty Township. It was settled in 1859 and took us back in time.
As we drove up the lane way we were in a thick wooded bush and one of the kids said, "I thought we were going to a FARM!" We told them that we were....and just pretend it was 160 years ago....only if it was, that double track for the tires wouldn't be in front of us! We just couldn't imagine the work the settlers went through...clearing the land, building their houses and barns, keeping warm during the cold winters....and just surviving.
This homestead is the original. They have changed very little. It was empty when they purchased it and so they have tried to find furnishings that would make it look original. They bought many of the things at auction sales or were lucky to have things given to them.
This was the cookhouse and they believe it would have been the original house. When I told this to Sophie, she wanted to know where they would have slept.....they was no room in here! I told her that they probably slept on the floor. She said....of course...in their cozy sleeping bags!
My mother-in-law was especially keen to be able tour this property. Her maiden name is O'Grady.......and so there is a real connection there for her. My children are actually related to the people that built this house and lived here.
Thank you to Shirley Mask and Tom Connolly for opening up this beautiful homestead for the day. It was step back in time and I'm so glad we went for the visit.