Wayne Farm House

I’ve written about abandoned houses and the corresponding abandoned dreams (here).  And I realized that our family farm house in Nebraska would probably join those ranks – too big, too old, too expensive to remodel.  It made me sad but I began to see how it could all happen.  It would happen.  People move, people die, families grow somewhere else.  Very common in rural areas.

wayne house

The house in earlier times – maybe the 1920s.

The other day I was researching a post for my genealogy blog and checked Google Earth for the location of the old school near the family farm.  Found it.  Scrolled over to see the farm and was shocked to see all the building were demolished.  Empty cellar pit left from the house and dark scars where they had burned the horse barn and workshop.
google farm view 1

View from an upstairs window to the barnyard.

View from an upstairs window to the barnyard.

When we met in Wayne for Uncle George’s burial a couple of years ago, we were allowed into the house – it was up for sale then.  We took lots of photos.  Then we wandered through the barnyard venturing carefully into the old barns.  I admit I took a couple of hasps that had fallen off and found an old curry comb that certainly looked as if it had been there for 50 or 60 years.  It felt a little strange to take things, but now that I know they burned everything, I wish I’d taken more.  I certainly hope someone salvaged things from the house – doors, fixtures, hardware.  farm house room


I had expected to watch the slow demise of the house, not to have it just vanish.  And the strange thing is that I think this affected me more than the loss of my childhood house would (it’s still occupied).  I felt connected to Wayne even though I never lived there.  The family owned the farm from 1916 to 1984.  Most houses haven’t stayed in the family that long.  I heard a lot of stories about the house and farm, saw hundreds of photos, and visited many times – walked that land.  Now the buildings exist only in those photos and memories.  And an old curry comb.

farm horse barn 2

The horse barn near the end of its life.



7 thoughts on “Wayne Farm House

  1. Pingback: Claycomb Farm House, Wayne, Nebraska | This I Leave

  2. In an earlier post about the house, children on the horse. My family, the Von Seggern branch, are from NE. One of the children on the horse was tagged as William Von Seggern. He was born 05 Feb 1898 in Cygnet, OH – 21 May 1969 Ferndale, MI. Could this be a connection?.


    • This William von Seggern was born in 1916 in Wayne, Nebraska. His father, William Ernest v.S. was born in 1888 in Wayne (and his sister Dorothy about 1893). And their father I have as Menke v.S. born in 1840 in Germany. But I know very little about the von Seggerns, except for stories my father told about his cousins (William from the photo and his siblings – all born about 1912 to 1918 or so). So I don’t see a connection, but it certainly could be there. Wayne Nebraska is still a small town. It’s nice to be in touch with someone from the von Seggerns – I’ve lost touch with my Dad’s cousins. Let me know if you find out any more.


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