Friday, July 16, 2010
Our house is old. Not ancient, nor historic - just comfortably lived in since the 1950’s when it was built. Although it’s had several additions over the years, the original part of the house has natural wood ceilings with thick, old, open beams and wide planks running across those. In the evenings the house plays its own symphony - moaning, groaning, and loudly cracking as the old beams contract with the cooling air. Morning sounds the same, as the wood slowly expands with the warmth of day. We’ve grown accustomed to the sounds, but visitors are often startled by the loud cracks.
Since the beginning, wood has been valued for making tools, houses, and myriad other things of use to mankind. Native Americans were the first to cut down and use trees in our area. Drift logs landing on the beach were welcomed and used, but they could not supply all the needs of a village. Thousands of years before the first non-natives arrived, they learned to fell the giant trees, using a variety of tools and methods.