Estate Sale-Bringing Closure


“Mom, are you alright?  You seem so quiet and don’t have much to say.”


I was alright and I didn’t realize I was so quiet but there were many emotions raging in the depths of my soul.  There was deep sadness for the passing of my in-laws who I called mama and daddy, the sense of loss for a generation gone, the unsettledness of watching their hard-earned, well-worn stuff auctioned to the highest bidder,  the joy of seeing people who loved them want a treasured memoir to remember them by,  the thankfulness of strangers and friends saying, “I want to tell you about….”, the satisfaction of being able to purchase the things I really wanted and the emptiness of an empty yard, barren house and stripped barns. When we pulled out of the lane with our loaded truck, I couldn’t look back.





Bidding on one of the tractors.


Keeping his number handy!


 Mimi Leveille, dad and mom’s caregiver for about 2 years. She cared for them with tender love. Thank-you Mimi.IMG_6044

A friend, Wayne Steiner, who was the executor of the estate.  He did a great job. Thank-you Wayne.


 Wally Schaefer talking to Keith.


 Keith and Alivia Hertzler.




 A sign in dad’s shop



 The glass butter churn.


Every nook and cranny in the barns and shop were filled with piles and piles of stuff.  Dad could not stand to throw things away. When he would see people leaving “good things” out on the road for the trash truck he would have to pick it up-he just might need it sometime and quite often he did have good use for it.  I remember one time I had put some old clothes in the shop here in Powhatan for Gene to use for rags.  Sometime later they showed up as pieced aprons!  Dad had seen them and taken them home to mama.







 One of Gene’s toys as a youngster. I missed seeing it sold.


 A stone dad had at the back door. We are so blessed to receive it.


This little baby was born several days after daddy passed away.  They named him Oliver!  The Ackermans are related to the Hertzlers and were also friends of dad and mom-even boarding a horse at the stable.


 Our granddaughter-Lauren Hertzler.


 Our granddaughter, Emily Hertzler.


 One of dad’s hobbies was carving wooden ducks.





Dad’s collection of arrowheads he found on the farm.


Part of his collection of license plates he had posted in the shop from his vehicles.


 Judy Humphrey




 Loading up our purchases to come home.



Keith Hertzler, grandson Of Oliver and Anna Mae, with his prized purchase.  He got one of the deals of the day.


 The Farmall M. When the dairy farm was moved from Denbigh to Powhatan, this was one of the tractors that came up. Within a few years Gene purchased newer equipment and no longer wanted the old tractor. Dad took it back to Denbigh. Now, 40 years later we wanted it. It’s amazing how time changes things!




 Strapping the wheel to the rim to load it on the trailer.


Loaded and ready to head for home.


Rain barrels from years gone by. They were used to collect water to water the horses.


I liked the sign on the side of this trailer.  It reminded me that dad’s stuff is having a second chance of life and giving joy to lots of new owners.


Jill Hostetter (granddaughter of Oliver & Anna Mae), with her load of treasures.  She was really pleased she got grandma’s china set.



Gene with his second and last load of stuff!


Don’t let looks deceive you!  There is the frame of an old milk wagon on there, a bush hog, scraper blade and numerous other things.

And now as I express these feelings on paper, tears well in my eyes.  The time has come for closure and moving on.  Good-bye mom and dad.  Maybe the farm and all your earthly possessions are gone but you will be remembered by your children, grandchildren and numerous friends and neighbors.  And we will treasure the things we have to remind us of you.

My stash of treasures


Daddy carved the wooden ducks and they are signed on the bottom. Notice the unfinished one with the parts laying on the floor.  Can’t wait to get them cleaned up.


The phone is a replica of an old phone but modernized. It hung in Mama’s office above her desk.

And the light fixtures…there is a story. Daddy had four and offered them to me.  At the time I didn’t want them. Years later I decided I did and asked him about them. He gave me two but wanted the other two to put on his house.  I had my two installed on my house and loved them and was hoping some day to be able to get the rest.  I always loved his nick-nac rack and have a special plan for it.


These were silver napkin rings…these say Mr, Mrs, and Gene


The bread box was made by Gene and given to them one year for Christmas. I wanted it back!  The glassware and kitchen utensils just came as a package deal.


One of daddy’s tie clasp that says “Jesus Saves”, another napkin ring and a wood horse he made.


One of his numerous Bibles (has a metal cover) and prayer book.


Related post: Fire-November 15, 2014


  1. Jill Said:

    I couldn’t quite bring myself to go back through the empty barns. I went around earlier in the day as they were being emptied and decided I couldn’t go back. As soon as we were out and around the corner, I remembered that I wanted to stop at the graveyard, but we had our rigs of stuff and it wasn’t the right time. I need to go back. P.S. – it seems strange to hear you call Grandma, “Mom”. She was always “Mama”.

    • Pat Said:

      You are right! I was writing that as a “position” not what I actually called them but I changed it! To their face they were daddy and mama.

      We will treasure our memories!

  2. David Hertzler Said:

    Thanks, Pat. That house was my first home. I wish I had known about the sale and could have been there.

    Might there be a small tractor left that nobody else wants? I was looking at one just last night 1/2 mile from my place. Something the size of a Ford 8N or Jubilee would be fine. It would need 3-pt hitch and PTO.

    If there are any other items left that I could get as mementos, I would also be interested.

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