After we left Nashville, we headed into Indiana and straight on up the state to Fort Wayne. The photo below is of the sunset the evening we arrived into town. It was almost a sign that we were right where we should be and it was a reminder to try and soak up every last minute of this trip together.
The next morning, we woke up to the sun shining and we took off to get back on the road to drive up to Auburn, Indiana. The second photo below with the red barn was one of the homes my dad lived in just outside of Fort Wayne. It was the second home he ever lived in. They used to own a couple of donkeys that they kept at the farm and my favorite thing about seeing that home is the fact that my grandfather named the barn; you can just make out some of the white lettering on the side of the barn. To this day, the barn still keeps that same name. The people that live there now may never know it, but the fact that they still kept the same name made my heart so very happy.
On our way into Auburn, we passed the Cord Car Museum. One of the homes my dad's family lived in when they first moved to Auburn was actually the Cord Family home that Mr. Cord built. As we were driving by, we decided to take a last minute detour and stop into the museum for a look around. The best thing was the entire drive up the road to the museum, we were closely followed by a white Porsche. When we pulled into the museum, so did the driver of the Porsche. The gentleman driving got out of his car, he was probably in his late 70's, and he had a big beard and wore cowboy boots and a cowboy hat. He left the keys in his car...while it was running, to stop into the museum as well. Only in Indiana. Anyways, back to the museum! The museum itself is two stories and is packed wall to wall with all sorts of antique cars. My dad and I were shocked at how old some of them were and from the exterior, they were all so beautiful. Below are a few of my favorites:
Before heading into downtown to take a look around, we decided it was time for a milkshake and coke float break.
This is downtown Auburn. My grandfather used to own a factory that made harmonic balancers for cars and they lived there for a bit before he moved the factory into Michigan, not too far from Detroit. We parked the car and walked around the main square for a bit. There wasn't too much to see, a lot of the shops were closed, but I could imagine how wonderful and lively it must have been back then. My dad told me the story about he and a friend, Tommy Bryant, used to bring their red wagon down to the square. They would walk office to office and sell bags of popcorn for like 10 cents a piece. Finally, after so many times of doing it, the Mayor called my grandmother and told her they had to stop selling because they didn't have a license to do so. I thought that was the greatest. Dad- you are such a trouble maker!
I asked if we could take home the vintage fridge with us..but sadly it wouldn't have fit in the car to begin with.
This brown brick home below is the second home they lived in while they lived in Auburn.
This home is the first home they lived in that I mentioned earlier, it was the Cord Home. This is probably one of my favorite things that happened during the trip. Right next door to the home is a plant nursery. My dad and I parked at the nursery and inquired if any of the workers there knew much about the family that lived next door. To our surprise, the owners of the nursery are the ones that live next door. We asked if the owners were around and sure enough, to our luck, the wife was just getting ready to leave the house. My dad politely stopped her and explained that he used to live there for a bit when they first moved to the area from Fort Wayne. Immediately, without any hesitation, she invited us to come in for a tour and to take a look around. We couldn't believe it. Once again, only in Indiana :) they sure are nice up that way. I know my dad was so excited as she took us into every room and my dad talked about what each room looked like while they lived there. The photo below of the tile is in sort of a sun room that was off to the left of the house. Apparently, some of the people that lived there in-between my dad's family and the current owner, put carpet over the tile out there. The current owners thought it was a shame and had it removed to reveal the original tile from the 50's/60's. I thought it was so sweet and surreal to take a look around and to imagine how beautiful of a house it was then, I imagine my grandmother to have impeccable taste when it came to those sorts of things. It was so sweet of her to let us in and I am so thankful that that sort of hospitality still exists; it certainly made our day.
On to Michigan we go! Next stop Port Huron here we come!