My dad purchased a country milk route shortly after we moved to 4813 Madison Ave. That old Dodge milk truck was our only means of transportation, but I thought it was cool to ride around in that truck.
Our house had three bedrooms, but we used only two of them. I remember my folks renting out the extra one to Charlie Cleveland for several years. He occasionally dined with us. About the time that my sister was ready to have her own bedroom, Charlie got married and moved to the Eastside.
About that time my paternal grandmother needed a place to live, so a small house was built on the back of our property for her. My mom’s father built the house. I really enjoyed that because we had more visits from Dad’s side of the family.
A couple of years after our family’s rolling fleet grew to include a car, my mom decided to learn to drive. I wasn’t allowed to ride along when Dad gave her lessons, but I have great memories of her driving up and down the driveway. A few years after she got her license I was walking home from school along Madison when I noticed her driving toward me. I waved, but she was so intently looking at the road she didn’t notice me.
There was another building on our property, and over the years it served as many things: a chicken house, a goat house, a playhouse for my sister and a clubhouse for me and my buddies.
I can remember baby chickens huddled together in a large cardboard box in our basement for several days before moving them to the chicken house. Later we had a goat and her two babies that lived in the house. I remember Grandpa Jones (Mom’s father) remodeling the goat house into a playhouse with a picture window and pictures on the walls.
When my sister, Kathy, started playing music, taking dance lessons and doing all the other stuff that kept her busy, I changed the playhouse into a guys clubhouse, which had a crows nest on the roof.
Grandpa Jones and my dad hung a basketball backboard and goal on the front of our garage. We had a small baseball field on Morgan Drive for a few years before some houses were built.
Several of us had paper routes, and we rode our bicycles everywhere. I am still friends with several of my childhood buddies.
My old house is the Longacre Bar & Grill, but my old clubhouse with the crows nest is long gone.