Old Cellars

By contributing writer David Gregory
When I was a kid it was common for most people to have a storm cellar. Storm warnings from radio or TV were unheard of. When a cloud started coming up everyone had to rely on their own judgment.
When alarmed by hearing thunder and seeing the lightening, a decision had to be made to see if it was necessary to seek shelter. My dad always decided we needed to be in the cellar.
Our first cellar was just a hole dug in the ground with cross ties covered with sheet iron over the top. The dirt from the hole was heaped on top in a big mound. Steps were dug at a slant to the floor of the cellar. Our cellar door had new galvanized metal on it which was ideal for making a slide.
Oh, how I hated to go to the cellar. There were always spiders, mice and an accompanying rat snake to control the rodents. I could see the snake lying on the top of the wall looking down at me and licking his lips. Then that really bothered me. Today I would catch it by the tail and throw it out.
My little six-year-old brother, Kenneth, was convinced that going to the cellar was a waste of time. One time we were all in the cellar and the wind was so high that Dad had to put the rope holding the door down around his waist to keep it from blowing open.
After the storm subsided we got out and started to the house only to discover a tall tree between the house and street had blown over and crashed the roof in over the front porch. When Kenneth saw this he stopped suddenly, put his hands on his hips and said,”Well!! Now that’s more like it!!” To read more pick up the April 2014 issue of North Texas Farm & Ranch.

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