Saluda, VA ~ Fall, 2000 ~
My husband's people - the ARCHIBALDs - arrived from Nova Scotia in the mid
1800's and settled in the village of Saluda (Middlesex County) Virginia. The
old farm house stood not far from the crossroads and had been the scene of many
a family gathering in years gone by. My sister-in-law had fond
memories of visiting there during the summers of her
childhood and we both recalled the somber ones as the old aunties passed on,
one by one.
On a chilly day in early November
2000, several of us drove down from Richmond to visit the venerable family
sons and my sister-in-law, especially, wanted to see the old house once more
walk again, across the fields to look at the weathered tombstones and the
new ones that had been added over the years.
The once-dignified Archibald
homeplace is a crumbling ruin now. We were shocked to see the condition of
farmhouse and were surprised that it was still standing. It reminded us of
Beauty's castle, overgrown with shrubs, weeds and vines ~ a terribly sad
reminder that some things are better left to memory.
But there, behind the broken-down and abandoned house; beyond the cornfields in a clearing surrounded by cedar trees, lay the old family graveyard. Ancestors of Archibalds, Allens, Chownings, Bristows, Edwards and others now rest in peace in this tiny "City of the Dead". Fortunately the graveyard has been well tended over the years and looked even better than the last time I had visited there with my husband many years ago.