A Visit to my Hometown

Uh oh! I took so many photos going to my hometown of Jamestown, New York, that I decided to break this up into two separate blog entries!

We had planned to visit my parents and brother, Randy, the day after Christmas to celebrate.  It was not to be, though, as my mother caught a terrible cold that really hit hard!  I spoke to her every few days and she would tell me about the severe cough that seemed to linger, making life miserable and very tiring.  Thankfully, she began feeling much better the end of last week and the coughing was diminishing! (and becoming less “deep”)

We planned  our trip for yesterday and we couldn’t have asked for a better travel day!  It was a cold start…0 degrees. (F) As the day progressed, the temperature did warm up, but it was interesting watching the frost on the trees thicken as we headed into the higher elevations, then disappearing in the valleys!

I took a few photos as we got closer and closer to our destination. These are the places that I frequented in earlier days and I love.  This feels most like “home” to me….

Now,for a disturbing sign…..the first time I saw this billboard, I truly thought I dreamed it up!  I mean, it is soooooo graphic!  If I were a smoker and ever needed a good reason to quit, I think this sign might just be the ticket.  Every time I see it anymore, my eyes ache!

And from the strikingly graphic sign to one of the most picturesque farms I have ever seen…..

You must forgive the fact that all these photos were taken out the truck windows as there are signs all along the highway warning of “no stopping except for emergencies”.  I have taken so many photos of those barns out the windows with no success, but yesterday’s brilliant sky was the perfect backdrop and somehow, the photo wasn’t too bad!  Perhaps one of the reasons I am so attracted to this farm is the lovely yellow color, which is certainly a diversion from the typical “barn red”!

As we drove closer to Jamestown,  we could see a little change in the scenery…all of the pine trees looked like they belonged in a scene with a life-size Gingerbread House! They certainly had the “frosting”,  after all!

You can also see that the snow is definitely increasing in volume on the ground!  We finally reached our exit off the highway and I was so happy to be getting closer!  There was, however, one little side trip we had planned….

Now, if you have read here for any amount of time, you will realize that I find cemeteries not to be dreadful, scary places, but rather, some very attractive and beautifully peaceful spots to find remarkable photo ops!  I had seen some photos posted by a friend on Facebook that showed Lucille Ball’s grave marker.  I had wanted to visit there last fall, but we  never found the time.  I am so glad we didn’t, as the Lakeview Cemetery was amazing dressed in its snowy shroud!  I could have wandered about here for hours, but we needed to hurry a bit, as we were on our way to visit! So, for anyone who has laughed themself silly watching the I Love Lucy Show, the small town of Jamestown is very proud to hail as Lucy’s hometown!

The roads in the cemetery were plowed very narrowly and  don’t think I would have wanted to enter without four wheel drive! I had my little netbook propped in front of me with some very vague hints on how to find Lucille’s grave.  We drove right past it the first pass, but Mark said we should try once again.  Since the roads were so narrow, Mark needed to complete going around a loop because there was no turnaround and the snow was probably at least two feet deep! Oh, and by the way, this is a huge cemetery!

The above marker belongs to James Prendergast. He wa the founder of the city, thus the name, “Jamestown”!  I wish I would have photographed the writing on the front, as I cannot read it!

We also passed some other beautiful markers…..The Lady in Glass is a most awesome tribute!  There have been so many stories about this particular grave, but the bottom line is that the young lady’s father basically had the beautiful sculpture made to honor his daughter….

The grave is also beautifully landscaped with shrubbery around it, but the bushes were literally buried!

We made our way back up to the entrance and turned around, reentering the cemetery and Mark drove very slowly as I read the intstructions again.  We found the “Highland Section” and I got out of the truck and began looking….I was wearing a pair of very short boots and the snow came up above  my knees!  I counted the markers to the right, hoping I was aiming the right way.  When I saw this,  I knew I had found it!

This is a family plot,  listing Lucy’s father (Henry, of Scottish descent),  mother,  (Desiree),  Lucy, and her brother, Fred.

Under Lucy’s name is the  inscription, You’ve Come Home.

It was only after I had found the marker that I discovered a worn little path where others had visited Lucy’s grave!

Lucy was born in Jamestown but left as a tiny little girl. I read on the internet that she wanted to be buried in California, and was when she passed away.  In 2002, however, her children had her reinterred in the Lakeview Cemetery in Jamestown.  I was surprised that the grave marker wasn’t more elaborate, but it is much “fancier” than most modern markers.  The plot is located in an old section of the cemetery.

We made our way back out and were on our way to visit my family. 

We turned and headed south down Main Street….

Along the way, we passed S.G. Love Elementery School.  This is where I attended from Kindergarten through second grade….

We arrived and had a wonderful visit!  There is nothing as satisfying as visiting family and my mother fixed the most delicious meal!  We all ate until we thought we would burst!  

I will continue with my hometown visit in my next entry!