I’m usually out at this time of year photographing snow laden fields lined with drifting ditches. But the rural spots near my home have the air of Spring — even the light casts itself brightly on barns and farmhouses. The only hints of Winter are the deep black shadows and silhouettes of trees.
We’ve had only one light dusting of snow here in the Midwest.
I always think of Mr. Thomas Rowland when I revisit this area with my camera in tote — buried alone beneath a white military marker in the local cemetery. He came from Nottinghamshire, England in the late 1850’s with his wife and three daughters, and drove to Chicago in an oxcart, where his wife took sick and died. He made his way down to Kendall County, Illinois where the earth is black and rich with nutrients, a place where a farmer might make a living.
He rented a parcel, till the Great War of the Rebellion interrupted his new life. He joined the Union army in spite of his fifty four years, leaving his youngest daughter with relatives, fought at the Battle of Shiloh, and returned to live out his life as a horse doctor. He never married again.
I lay a flower at his stone sometimes —
Rest in Peace Great Great Great Grandfather.
Thank you for reading!
All images ©V.Plut