Show & Tell – Spot the difference and step back in time

This photo is a treasured family photo from my husband’s family.

It is his great grandfather (born in 1850) with SOME of his EIGHTEEN children, outside the family farm in Co Armagh, Northern Ireland. He had two wives, when the first one died (probably from exhaustion!) he married within months, and went on to have another 9 children.

The year is approximately 1910.

The youngest child is Alfred, my husband’s grandfather, (2nd from right) and he is holding a HEN for reasons unknown! William (Bill), the boy on the right, lived there throughout his life. His mother died in the 1940’s, he never married, dying in 1973. At the time he died, it had been extended and then with 3 bedrooms, and living area with an open fire and a kitchen/scullery. There was an outside toilet. After Bill died, my husband remembers his father kept pigs, goats and calves at various stages in the cottage for a number of years!

The family are wearing their “Sunday Best” clothes in front of their cottage. The occasion of a photographer coming to take their photograph must have been quite an occasion.

Last Sunday, as we were in the area, we went to take a look at the cottage, and see if it was still standing. It is, just about!

So here is a photo, taken 98 years later, in the same spot. My kids are wearing their “Sunday Best” too.

You can see still see the door on the right, and the window they were in front of. Even the roof has not really changed. There is little remaining of the porch of the door to the left.

There was a byre opposite the cottage, but it has long since tumbled down and is very overgrown.

The cottage is up a narrow lane, and at times we were not sure our car was going to make it. Five days later, and some of the family mud and weeds from the lane are still attached to the under-carriage of the car. Taking being in touch with your “roots” a bit too literally perhaps!

Here are a few more pictures which show the state of disrepair. The cottage and land were sold a number of years ago, and while the surrounding land is being farmed, the cottage has been abandoned.

So that is my Show and Tell for this week. For more be sure to visit There’s No Place Like Home.

The kids finish school for Halloween Half-Term today, and we are looking forward to a few days at the cottage, and meeting up with friends.

I plan to share some Northern Ireland Halloween Traditions next week on my blog, so why not subscribe so you won’t miss a thing.

Until next week.

Take care.

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30 thoughts on “Show & Tell – Spot the difference and step back in time”

  1. I truly enjoyed this post. Learning your history. It was inspiring to see how you took the photo in the same spot! VERY good idea. Must have been a quality building to even last this long!

    Thank you for sharing and… methinks I will share something for Show and Tell too!

  2. I love old pictures and learning of the past. I did family tree research for a number of years. And what you have is priceless.

  3. Oh how I wish I could go to Ireland. My ancestors came from Antrim. In the 1600s…I’ve found. The generations left in the 1760s for America.

    Great family history you’ve shared.

    My show n tell is finally posted on the hub…come on over if you can find time. Happy weekend to you too.

  4. What a great Show & Tell. I love “Then and Now” pictures and your family history story is very interesting. I’m sure it was a huge occasion when a photographer came to take the picture. In our world of digital cameras, camera phones and other photo technology, it’s hard to imagine getting all dressed up and posing like this.

  5. i love the past, so fascinating. Too bad the cottage wasn’t in better shape and you could rebuild it to its former glory. Looks a little beyond that but he pictures are worth a million. Thanks for sharing

  6. As someone who is downright PASSIONATE about Genealogy, I loved your S&T today! What a wonderful connection! I need to stop by my Great Grandparents house and see if it’s still there!

    Last week I shared about my Grandma’s trunk, the “before restoration” photos. I got it back and I have posted its transformation on today’s S&T.

  7. How perfect! I’m sure, if they don’t now (goodness knows mine didn’t ‘get it’ when I did this), your children will really appreciate this family history event later! Thank you for sharing.

  8. Wow! What a cool experience!! I love how you sort of mimicked the first photo! A lot of my ancestors were from Ireland and I would really love to visit someday and take it all in!! TFS!

  9. Lady Katherine

    What a wonderful post on your family history. I loved seeing some of Ireland. My grandfather and grandmother on my daddy’s side were Irish.

  10. What a great way for your family to connect with a part of their heritage by visiting the cottage. I have an Irish ancestry also, and would love to visit one day.

  11. Hey, that’s so cool that you were able to photograph your family in the same spot! I love that you know so much of your family history. I know names, but that’s about it.

  12. Its lovely to be able to know something of your family history. My famil is huge and we don’t see each other as much as we should.

    Enjoy half term and I hope this weather lifts a bit for you.

  13. How neat that the cottage is still standing and you were able to get a picture of your own family in front of the door. So neat!

  14. I loved seeing your wonderful pictures, JanMary. The cottage is charming and the the family group was fun to see – hen and all! Great post…Kathy

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