Amish Country Journal

Reports and musings from Indiantree Farm, in Holmes County, Ohio -- the largest Amish community in the world. See more about author Larry D. Miller and Amish Country at

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Construction Progress

The new Erb's Tarp Shop has sprung (literally) from the ashes of the old. 
Maybe they could call it Erb's Phoenix Tarp Shop.  Some of the old building was recycled but a sizeable pile of debris was burned before the new shop foundation could be poured.
In two weeks time (as predicted in this column) the new building was up, sheeted-in and roofed.  Today the heating system (in-floor hot water) is in and interior work is approaching completion.  David Miller and family will be moving operations from their temporary location in the family workshop, back across 515 to the new building in another few weeks.
By contrast . . . the new covered bridge (alongside Rt. 39 between Carlisle Printing and Walnut Creek Cheese) couldn't move much slower.  The question has become, "D'ya think they'll finish it in the year 2009"?

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Tower Of Babel or Babble?

We've replaced the TV tower on Indiantree Hill!

The old one, 25-ft. tall, was way beyond shaky.  Had it not been for support cables strung up a couple years ago, it would have collapsed in anything beyond a mild breeze.

So we did it right.  Engineered a hinge to allow the new tower to be lowered for repair, maintenance, painting etc. and purchased four, 10-ft. sections with a 10-ft. pipe extension on top.

A four-ft. heavy-wall section was buried in concrete and all sections were painted, inside and out.  Then, after final assembly, the massive tower was laid out on the lawn and a long rope was threaded from its midsection through a wooden, 100-year-old hayloft pulley on the garage gable, to our garden tractor.

Slowly, with expert family guidance, the tower raised - like a YouTube-era Viagra ad - to its full and upright position. 

Alan, the family electrical expert, ran the wires and made the connections . . . and it all worked splendedly!  We pull in at least 31 channels and I think they're all high-definition.  The picture on all channels certainly is crystal clear and definitely is the best direct-broadcast reception ever, for Indiantree Hill.

But . . . there's a downside. 

There's still nothing worth watching.  We've surfed the channels repeatedly and reached the same conclusion ("ho-hum") each time. 

Maybe we've built a latter-day "Tower Of Babel" . . .

. . . or "Tower Of Babble."