history

Disclaimer: I am a super nerd.

So we live on a road I’ll call Petunia* Road. Back in the day, when our township was just starting out and everything was farmland, the Petunias lived here and the road was named after them. At some point, another farm either came to be or replaced the Petunia farm (I can’t find enough information) and that was the Lilac* Farm. The Lilac family are who we bought our home from.

I found, through some intense googling, an entire site devoted to the history of our township. Except the site didn’t work. I looked up who had registered the domain and shot the guy an email telling him we had bought a house on Petunia Road and I saw that at one time there were some pictures online of the Petunia/Lilac Farms and did he still have them? He emailed me back within the hour with “Whoops! I took the site down for maintenence and never put it back up! I’ll put it up now!”

So I scrolled through hundreds and hundreds of pictures dating from the late 1800s and was able to find a bunch of pictures featuring the Lilac family.

The previous owner of our house (Bob) told us that until the age of 6, he lived on Petunia Road with his grandparents. His father then came back from the war and built our house in 1950. It cost him ~15,000$ in materials. At that point, there were only 3 homes on the road, two original farmhouses and ours. All inhabited by the same family.

 
farmhouse 1880
One of the original farmhouses that still stands and is still occupied by a Lilac (Bob’s Aunt). The other was torn down sometime in the past few years.  

I should have asked Bob more questions, because I’ve hit a dead end with what I can find online. The original guy was Michael Lilac. It seems that his son Ed Lilac also had a farm on Petunia Road, but I can’t figure out who built our home. I had assumed it was Ed (he seemed the correct age – as found on the 1940 census) but I found his 1998 obituary and he didn’t have a son named Bob. (Bob was born in 1944 so I might just have to wait ’til the 1950 census comes out. (See? Super nerd.))

I was really hoping to find a picture of our house shortly after it was built, but most of the photos are older than that. I did find this picture that shows the location of our house in 1930.

 site of our house circa 1930

The arrow is about where our house is, we are actually probably 3 lots farther back. The whole field was turned into a housing plan ~1970 so it’s pretty crazy to see just farmland.

I think it’s awesome to see these pictures and see the other pictures of the family (if not the person) who built our home. This is exactly what I wanted when we were looking for a house, a place with history. They even left us the original blueprints, which I thought was really cool, though they are pretty fragile.

*Names changed because I don’t want the previous owners to google themselves and find out how much I hated their wallpaper. 😉

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