My (winning!) entry for this week's Creative Construction weekly contest...
Clock’s Tickin’—Heading south out of Tallahassee on U.S. 319/98 towards the coast, there’s a gathering of old trucks just off the side of the road. Being the intrepid traveler around Tallahassee and its environs, I’ve wondered about this “gathering” for years. They sit there as if on the starting line of some long ago race, all lined up waiting for some invisible spandex-clad starlet to throw down her scarf as the signal to go.
After some recent research, I found finally their origins. They are owned by Mr. Homer R. Harvey. He and his father Riley A. Harvey were in the timber, crosstie and turpentine business. They also farmed and raised some cattle and hogs, and the trucks were used in their business operations over the years. Riley died in 1957, and Homer carried the business on into the 1970's.
Homer and his wife Yvonne McLaughlin had four children—Pat, Mike, Dennis and Ouida—and Homer raised his family in the home on the curve near the trucks. Pat now lives in the home on “Homer Harvey Curve”. A few years back Pat and Homer decided to move the old trucks out of the woods and place them closer to the road where they are now. Homer is now 92 and lives with his daughter Ouida just a few miles from the curve. Mike and Dennis both live close by.
The woman at the Wakulla County Chamber of Commerce who helped me with the research, Petra Shuff, told me that there’s a ‘54 Ford amongst the gathering that was the first car she remembers steering, sitting in an uncle’s lap. Like Petra’s dream to drive, these old trucks are also a photographer’s dream. I took a series of pictures there recently and played around with a few to great effect, including that ‘54 Ford. Clock’s tickin’, Ms. Petra. Been drivin’ lately?