Archive for Murfreesboro tornado

Cabinwood revisited.

Posted in Murfeesboro Tornado, Personal with tags , , , , , , , , on December 29, 2009 by brettvanort

These were taken a while ago.  The very end of September to be exact.  I’ve been neglecting quite a bit of late, wrapped up with the exhibition my final project and everything, I’ve nearly forgotten about certain photographs I took this summer.  Now that the exhibition is hung and on the wall, I want to revisit the other projects I pursued this summer.  Hopi, Rest Areas, whatever else I managed to cram in, I’m focusing on that while I’m also trying to hustle for work.  I figure I will have enough to keep me occupied for a little while.

One last look before it would be gone.

I’ll start with a couple from Cabinwood.  The day after I took these the house was to be leveled completely, the logs were to be sold off for a total of $3000 I’ve heard.  It’s a shame but there is not a lot that can be done.  What’s interesting is the guy that will be removing the logs will also set up a deer blind on the property and pay our family $500 for every deer he bags with a bow and arrow.  While I was there, there were deer everywhere.  I counted 7 or 8 at one point while I was trudging around at dusk with my camera.

You can see two deer to the left of the creek bank middle frame. The others scampered away.

I felt I little more at ease this visit.  The shock of seeing what used to be so heavily canopied not open to the sky was the strangest thing at this point.  The above photograph would have been just a green and brown thicket with no sky prior to the tornado.  I’ve decided that on every visit I will shoot from the same spots and see how the land transforms slowly back to a forest.  Will it take 20 years?  30?  50?  Will I ever see it the same way that it is in my mind when I recall it?  It brings up a host of questions about memory and how it relates to photography, and memory and how it relates to landscape.

There used to be a hedgerow here.

Cabinwood Aerial

Posted in Murfeesboro Tornado, Personal with tags , , , , on April 15, 2009 by brettvanort

Got another photo of Cabinwood to show.  This time it’s an aerial of the damage.  It comes from Betsy Clark again but was taken by whom she and my mom to be the Representative to the area from Washington.  I guess he was doing a flyover of the damage to Murfreesboro and either he or one of his staff took this photo.Aerial CabinwoodFor those of you not familiar with Cabinwood and even those that are the photo may not make sense geographically.  My uncle Harry’s house is the one top right with the blue tarp on the top.  The main house, the log cabin is next to the lane that turns in on itself.  There is a swimming pool behind that.  What is left of the barn is at the bottom of the photo.  What was left inside of it is now strewn everywhere outside of it.  The creek is visible to the bottom and left of the photo.  The wide area of the creek where I took the photos I posted earlier is visible.  Again it’s tough to even recognize, but I’m not sure if that is because of the aerial nature or the felled trees everywhere.

The old garage.  Now a shell of a building.

The old garage. Now a shell of a building.

There is an old walnut that could have been 200 years old for all we know that fell.  Harry was trying to save a burl from it and this is what Betsy photographed.

Some of the trees were so big Harry and Johnny's chain saws were no match for them.

Some of the trees were so big Harry and Johnny's chain saws were no match for them.

Murfreesboro Tornado

Posted in Murfeesboro Tornado, Personal with tags , , , on April 11, 2009 by brettvanort

Yesterday a tornado touched down in Murfreesboro, TN.  The farm house that my mother grew up in, that I visited almost every summer as a child, that my uncle Johnny lived in and was slowly trying to fix up was hit by the tornado.  

The trees behind the house are gone now.  The roof is supposedly gone over the back side of the house.

The trees behind the house are gone now. The roof is supposedly gone over the back side of the house. Photo from 2006.

My uncle Harry, who built his own house just down the lane from the main farm house, had his house damaged as well.  As did my uncle Andrew.  His house, just across the creek supposedly has some roof damage.

My wife Eleanor takes in the surroundings of the creek I played in endlessly as a kid.

My wife Eleanor takes in the surroundings of the creek I played in endlessly as a kid. Photo from summer 2006.

All of the trees in the creek bed above have been uprooted as well.  Johnny can see all the way to Andrew’s house across the creek.  The buffer of trees used to block the view of the houses across the creek is no longer there.  

View looking downstream from the creek.

View looking downstream from the creek.

My cousins and I would wade through the creek.  As we grew older the trips got shorter in length as more and more houses spread down to the banks of the creek on either side of the farm.  Now the only wilderness in the area, the farm had deer in the creek with regularity.  When I was young there were never any deer on the farm or in the creek bed .

 

Strange that this was out of focus but I think it gives a greater sense of the tree canopy around the farm that has now been lost.

Strange that this was out of focus but I think it gives a greater sense of the tree canopy around the farm that has now been lost.

My mother is on her way there now.  My uncles say the farm house has too much damage and must be demolished.  I almost wanted to fly there to see it for myself.  But I think I am going to stay here.  Eleanor and I have decided that we will go there at some point this summer and buy and plant a few trees on the property.  I can of course be thankful that none of my family are hurt or injured as the tornado killed two in the area and injured scores more.  But there is a sense of loss I feel regardless.  I also really want to photograph what it looks like now although I feel it might be very painful.

View from the back garden behind the main farm house.  I wonder if the statue is still there.

View from the back garden behind the main farm house. I wonder if the statue is still there.

I have only one photograph of the main house that I know of that is in color.  I may have more negatives somewhere.  This one below is cross processed, therefore the strange color scheme.

I think this is from year 2000 or maybe 1999.

I think this is from year 2000 or maybe 1999.

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