The Barefoot Photographer®

a photography blog

Friday, May 1, 2009


Yesterday I had a cool idea -- I will begin featuring old photos on the blog from my collection.  I have many old family photos.  They are wonderful treasures to have and every Christmas I decorate my Christmas tree with over 100 photos from great-great-great grandparents through the years and through the families down to my children.  

Today I am beginning this with a photo of my grandfather, Guy H. Ferguson.  I am beginning with him because earlier this week was his birthday.  He would be over 100 now and he is no longer with us.  We do have many wonderful photos and memories of him.  This photo is Granddaddy holding my mother.  I did not have to do a lot of restoration on this photo.  There was a bit of contrast adjustment and a few specs to clean up -- but overall the photo was in good condition.

On the blog when I say "forty years since Donna tracked the woods of Virginia with her grandfather..." this is the one I am talking about.  I remember many times following him through the woods and listening to him tell me about the trees and plants we passed.  We spent many hours fishing together -- he always baited my hook and took the fish from the hook when I would catch one.  He taught me to shoot a gun and a bow and arrow.  I used to help him plant the garden and pick the vegetables when they were ripe.  I also remember helping him clean fish, pull feathers from turkeys, and skin a deer -- at least he let me think I was helping.

Granddaddy and I would go bottle hunting.  We would dig at old homesites to find buried treasures from times gone by.  I would go with him to "The Base" (Quantico) to see about his hunting license or just to see someone about something.  He took me with him to the water plant a few times -- where he worked when he retired from the Marines.  It was loud -- but very interesting.  The first time I drove a car -- I was probably 13 or 14 -- was on a lone road on the base (Camp Barrett to be exact) and I think all of my cousins -- or at least three of them -- were in the old Pontiac LeMans as I worked hard to keep it on the road and not travel over the double yellow line.  The same LeMans he would say "whoa" to when he pulled up to the house and parked.  I remember following him through the garden when I was very little.  He would find arrowheads, rub off the dirt, and hand them to me to look at.  One of my most vivid memories is of a time when I was small -- he held the pistol and let me pull the trigger to shoot a copperhead in the garden.

My granddad taught me about respect -- respect for the land and wildlife through his gardening and hunting, respect for firearms, respect for the past, and to respect family.  I can't ever remember hearing him say a foul word or smoke a cigarette.  I think I can only remember ever seeing him drink any alcohol twice.   I had a great childhood hanging around with my grandparents and I wish my children could have had the same experiences.  It was hard to beat catching crawdads with your granddaddy and frying fish you caught for dinner.  



Laura Cameron said...

I love old photographs! Thank you for sharing this and your memories. Grandas are the best. One of my final projects at university featured several reworked photographs of my grandparents when they were young and 'courting'! Such a beautiful quality to them. I've recently hunted out the negatives of the copies I took and really want to work with them again. Thanks for the reminder!

Donna said...

Hi Laura -- thanks for the comment! I don't know why I had not thought of this before. In the past I posted a few to Flickr -- but I think once a week I will feature one of them on the blog.

Laura Cameron said...

That's a great idea! I'm off to find you on Flickr!

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