Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Memories of Home

image  {image found online}

My Boyhood Home

The home of my boyhood, the place of my birth

It is dearer to me then all others on earth

Its charms are still with me wherever I roam

I’ll never forget my own boyhood home.

image {Julia Ellis Hills Johnson, my 4th great-grandmother}

My dear loving mother, she watched o’er my youth

And taught me the lessons of honor and truth.

Her voice, in my fancy, in accents so low

Is whispering to me wherever I go.

image {Ezekiel Johnson, my 4th great-grandfather}

The voice of my father still sounds in my ear’;

The laugh of my brothers and sisters so dear.

The cow bell’s jingle; the old dinner horn.

The crow of the cock to awake us each morn.

image {image found online}

The hoot of the owl, the lone whip-poor-will

At evening we heard from the woodland and hill,

They still ring in my ears tho long years have past

Since I saw the dear home of my infancy last.

image {image found online}

Altho many a mile have I wandered away,

My body grown feeble, my hair turning gray;

Yet the happy scenes linger; I dream of them yet;

The home of my boyhood I’ll never forget.


image {“Family Life on the Frontier”, painting by Caleb Bingham, c. 1845}

How happy I was to find this beautifully evocative poem…written by Joel H. Johnson, son of my 4th great-grandparents, Ezekiel and Julia Ellis Hills Johnson, of his fond memories of the childhood home the family lived in during the years 1814 through 1833 in New York…

A family I knew not much about until recently—a nice, long family biography found online and devoured by me—is helping me get to know these people that are part of my life…

image {image found online}

Thank-you, Joel, for leaving me this wonderful window into your childhood home…



  1. Great post! Amazing to be able to trace your family so far back and to actually have words which they have written - fab!
    Liz @ Shortbread & Ginger

  2. What a wonderful poem and piece of your history. My Grandma's siblings would write poetry to each other... It is so fun to read those now.

    Have a wonderful day.

  3. We are so lucky to live
    in a time when re-visiting
    the place we grew up, if
    we have moved away, is
    not the impossibility it
    might have been back in
    Joel's day. Lovely words
    and images, Julie, and how
    very special to be connected
    to the poem!

    xx Suzanne

  4. That poem is beautifully written. You find the most interesting stories of your ancestors. It must bring you great joy and feel that you now "know them"
    something of THEM

    Then...think how cool, seriously cool it will be when the times comes that you will get to Meet them, and Talk to them yourself

  5. What a beautiful poem Julie. How very lucky you are to have these windows into the past. You are truly blessed. xxoo

  6. What a beautiful poem, and a wonderful find. It made me think of my childhood home, which we are very blessed to still have in the family.

  7. Julie, how fortunate you are to have such connections to your ancestors.. The poem is so reminds me of my childhood home minus the father. He died of a heart attack 3 months before I was born, but the words bring back memories of my mom and siblings. Thanks for sharing your family with us. God bless..