Farmhouse detail: the little church
If you saw my post about the beauty studio remodel, you might have noticed a black-and-white sketch of a little church on the wall.
When I first saw the drawing in my parents' garage, the angular lines and stark contrast of the print caught my eye. I took it home, not knowing where it would end up. As the loft bathroom came to life, the piece found a home there, among the vintage details and black-and-white finishes. It was perfect.
But there was more to the story of the little church with the steeple.
When they saw how I used the drawing of the church, my parents mailed me a postcard that my dad had been holding onto for many years. The postmark date was October 25, 1950. "Dear Helen & family:" it reads, addressing my dad's mom. "Maybe you don't have a picture of the church."
The postcard is sweet and a little sad; a remnant from a time when email and social media didn't keep far-away families informed of the latest news, and a postcard was such a rare and precious connection to loved ones that it would be kept for a lifetime.
Another piece of the story is on the back of the drawing itself:
"February 11, 1964
First Baptist Church
Home church of all the Cadwells from about 1900 through all these years."
Fourteen years after the postcard was sent, two completely different family members shared between them this illustrated keepsake. It ended up in the possession of my dad's mom, then my dad, and now me.
It is a touching sentiment that the image of the home church in Malvern, Iowa was so meaningful to the family that it was passed between relatives with love and reverence.
The First Baptist Church of Malvern, Iowa is still there, and it still looks remarkably the same (although it doesn't seem quite so little after all). From the unique triangular cutouts in the steeple, to the arched entryway and the semicircular windows, it truly is every element of the drawing brought to life. It is amazing to me that a piece of decor in my house is steeped in so much rich family history. I hope one day I find myself in Iowa, so I can see with my own eyes the church with the steeple that made my family feel so connected.