Not Just a Shoe

The other day, while working on our old/new house, the kitchen wall had some treasures in store for us. When my husband tore it down, he found an old shoe, a rusty sardine tin, and a faded baseball tucked inside. "How neat!", I thought, and put everything away to our quickly expanding collection of artefacts. Little dId I know, that there was a lot more to the story.

Me and our wonderful Louise have been having these lenghtly comment-sations lately, about old houses and the things you find inside. When I mentioned the old shoe in the wall, she wrote me an excited note how this was a good luck sign and I should look into it. She even did the search and sent me this curious article about shoes built in the walls of old houses and how they were supposed to ward evil off. And if that's not another good luck sign!! ;-) Here is a piece of the article explaining:

"Why would shoes be deliberately built into a home or public building? Some have speculated that the tradition stems from the prehistoric custom of killing a person and placing the body in the foundation to insure that the building holds together. Later shoes were used as a substitute for a human sacrifice. Shoes may have been chosen, because over time they take on and keep the shape of the wearer's foot. Shoes were hidden near openings in the home--doors, windows, chimneys--the perceived weak places in the building that were thus protected from evil by the shoe owner's spirit."

I love unearthing little pieces of history, and I am so glad we keep discovering them in our house! The rennovation is going in full blast, I cleaned out the celler today and got a collection of eerie shots! This one stood out, it spoke to me, so I decided to let it tell its own story.

P.S. If you are curious to read the whole article on shoes built in walls, here is the link:

http://wayhistsoc.home.comcast.net/~wayhistsoc/whs/Shoes_in_the_Wall/shoes_in_the_wall.htm

Thank you, Louise, once again, for pointing out the importance of our find! :-)
Shoes in the walls, huh? That's weird. But I do really like your processing in this, gives it a rustic feel.
posted June 11th, 2010  
I vote for finding a shoe as opposed to a body. Very cool shot.
posted June 11th, 2010  
Thank you Heather and Brad! I am definitely for the shoe, too! :-)
posted June 11th, 2010  
What a wonderful story and photo.
It says you should put them back. Are you going to do that ? :D
posted June 11th, 2010  
Thank you, Lois! i'll definitely put them back, and I might even write a little not and put it in the shoe ;-)) Keeping history alive ;-)
posted June 11th, 2010  
I'm glad you've decided to put them back and I think the note is a great idea- don't forget to date it or you could put the front page of the local paper in the shoe instead.
Love the photo and the processing. Your house is fast turning into more than just a house...to all of us :)
posted June 11th, 2010  
Very cool shot and story! Who knew?!!?
posted June 11th, 2010  
i love the texture of your shots, great work... thanks for the ad and comments on my shots :)
posted June 11th, 2010  
i love this and think you edit you used works wonderfully!
posted June 11th, 2010  
Slava, I love the effect of this shot. am makin this my fave :))
posted June 11th, 2010  
love the editing on this, pic has a wonderful old feel to it
posted June 11th, 2010  
I love the way you set this up and processed it. It looks like someone lost the shoe in an attempt to run from someone (or something!). Certainly eerie!

I find the history behind that shoe so fascinating! I had never heard of this before. I'm learning all kinds of interesting things on this site!
posted June 11th, 2010  
What a great find! Nice shot of the shoe, great editing too :)
posted June 11th, 2010  
Thank you for the history lesson. I was going to ask if you were going to put a shoe back but I see that you have already answered my question. You need to tell us what treasures you are leaving behind. My brother-in-law wrote a poem on an electrical cable in the wall so when someone needed to traced it they read the poem.
posted June 11th, 2010  
This is awesome, thank you for the history, I would have never known. This is very interesting and I hope you find more treasures!!
posted June 11th, 2010  
HOW WONDERFUL! I am so interested in this...and wish in some ways that I lived in an old house except I couldn't do what you and your husband are doing, so.... I love hearing about all your new treasures, so I'll just have to enjoy hearing about them from you. And I have to ask you...what will you do with this old shoe? Perhaps, put it in a new wall?
posted June 11th, 2010  
And...sorry...it's me again! I was so excited with the information that you shared that I forget to tell you taht this picture is so amazing. Love the coloring...and just the way that you took this picture.
posted June 11th, 2010  
Wow, that is so cool! What are you going to do with the shoe now? Maybe you should put it in a shadowbox and keep it on display in your living room to keep the good luck flowing!
posted June 11th, 2010  
This is a great find & a lovely photo .. I think i would perhaps put the shoe back into the building somewhere keep the luck running ... leave it where it was found if poss (after loads of pictures ..) good luck
posted June 11th, 2010  
Who could forsee, when we began writing about your "finds" that you'd come up with such a brilliant photo, and, sharing this history, few people had even heard of it! For me, it was one of those nuggests of information I learned once, but have no recollection where. Yesterday I was telling Ken abut your find and our conversations, and I began to wonder where our hidden shoe is in these walls... (Did I say I found the information about the original house and it was owned by a shormaker.)

Now I can see you framing a copy of your photo today and hanging that, too... Your processing is so perfectly suited to the subject, and I also love the way you styled the picture; definitely as though dropped and in passing... I wouldn't have been half as clever...

Thanks for letting me ride your coat tails on this wonderful story; it's been fascinating, and I feel as though you've let us all be your neighbor as you go through the process of making the home your own while retaining the history. You *are* going to keep an album of photos of the home renovation, aren't you? That would just be *the best*!
posted June 11th, 2010  
That is an awesome story, and a great picture to boot! It's funny you should bring this up. My husband and I moved into a house when we were first married. The owner didn't clean out all of her things like she should have. The upstairs closet had a secret opening that lead into an un-usable attic-type space (kind of a "crawl space". Well, she had left about 20 pairs of shoes in that closet. My husband, having the sense of humor that he has, threw all of the shoes into the little crawl space and boarded it up with a piece of plywood. We often wonder if the new owners have found the shoes yet...
posted June 11th, 2010  
Oh! And one more thing (sorry to be so wordy today). When we moved into that house, we found the coolest thing. On the bottom of one of the kitchen drawers, we found the names of the original family that built the house etched into the wood. It was too cool!
posted June 11th, 2010  
that is soo interesting. I started reading your caption....and couldnt stop until the end. Really cool. I would have never looked that up...and then I would have been deprived of such awesome info! Really glad you (and Louise :D) did your research! great photo too...love all the colors and the textures.
posted June 11th, 2010  
Oh wow! What a great find! AND a great story! You and your husband sure are lucky! Not only all of this, but this sure is a great picture! I love the feel of the forgotten shoe. Great one!
posted June 11th, 2010  
that would be fun to find stuff like. You're caption was really cool and you guys are lucky!
posted June 11th, 2010  
That's so cool!
posted June 11th, 2010  
cool, at first I found this really creepy that you found that, after reading that, I am glad it is suppossed to be good luck. I have never heard that beforre, thanks for sharing. You photo is great too.
posted June 11th, 2010  
Love the editing and what a neat story!
posted June 11th, 2010  
Your house project is so full of treasure's it will be so awesome you have so many pictures of the process. Love all your 'finds' and the editing and story are fab!
posted June 11th, 2010  
Hee
great pp on this one...nice idea!
posted June 11th, 2010  
Great set up! Great editing! Great photo!
posted June 11th, 2010  
Brilliant! What an interesting piece of history too
posted June 11th, 2010  
interesting pic & yeah great editing - very clever!!
posted June 11th, 2010  
I'm thinking you need a name for your "old-new" house. As it spills out artifacts it is reveals it's past lives, I think she deserves a name.
posted June 11th, 2010  
Love that you and my mom did your homework and research! This photo is absolutely gorgeous. Love the editing. It's a fave :)
posted June 11th, 2010  
there is so much character in this shot! and your processing is simply great!
posted June 11th, 2010  
Wonderful photo - and really neat back-story...Thanks!
posted June 11th, 2010  
Stephen King could come up with an explanation for the shoe in the wall, but then you probably wouldn't want to live there!
posted June 12th, 2010  
Love it. Wonderful.
posted June 12th, 2010  
OH WOW! Slava! how neat is that. i love history too and I am so excited that you shared this. What a lovely bit of information. And this picture is awesome. I think i may just have to get my self and old/new house so that i can treasure hunt too! so fun!
posted June 12th, 2010  
Awesome! Such a great shot too, LOVE your processing!
posted June 12th, 2010  
Can you give us a shot of your house?
posted June 12th, 2010  
I saw Loni's comment & dropped her a note...we, too, found the names of the original owner written in pencil on the bottom of a drawer in the pantry. Now you need to go looking for some writing on things that were built into the house!

And when I mentioned making an album, I was thinking of albums I've seen several times when people have done renovations. That was a number of years back. It might be just as much fun to create a book (like the Shutterfly book the 365ers made me) to keep handy to share when people come to visit. You'll figure out what you want. But you're doing so much work, a record of the progress will be such for for you in the future!

Have a great weekend!
posted June 12th, 2010  
Wow, you learn something everyday! That is so interesting. I love the way that you chose to photograph this. It really gives it the feel of something old.
posted June 12th, 2010  
This is just wonderful Slava! How amazing to be able to share and learn from everyone here. This truely is an fascinating find, with a wonderful bit of history to go with it. Thank you so much for sharing this with us!
posted June 12th, 2010  
This is beautiful! I LOVE the coloring here. Great job!
posted June 12th, 2010  
love it !
posted June 12th, 2010  
What an awesome story!!! I love the processing in this photo!! Another great find!
posted June 12th, 2010  
Very well processed shot, Slava. And I do love a photo with soul!!
posted June 12th, 2010  
Ira
OMG! Slava, I love this sososo much!(!!)

The picture, the story behind it...everything!
posted June 12th, 2010  
Ira
(...I wasn't following you up to now? I thought I was. Strange.)
posted June 12th, 2010  
wonderful good omen for you! And, a great photo too :o0
posted June 12th, 2010  
Such a great story! I love how you shot it!
posted June 12th, 2010  
Oh wow, what a great find! Fantastic photo.
posted June 14th, 2010  
Love the photo- it told a story on its own- even before I read your commentary. very interesting...!
posted June 18th, 2010  
Another house treasure shot. Awesome!!!!
posted June 19th, 2010  
Amazing shot, Slava.
posted July 20th, 2010  
awesome find and amazing shot!
posted August 4th, 2010  
What a great picture! Love the colors! A fav!
posted March 20th, 2011  
Loved the photo and the facts!
posted March 20th, 2011  
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