I rarely take time to explain the name of our farm. Some call us "Tri Lea", "Tri Gable", and "The Farm". There are other names for some of the homes on our street. There's "Thistle Rock", "Newski Knole", "Centennial Farm", "Sound View Farm" to name the ones I can recall. We wanted a name for ours as well, and we thought about it for years.
Then all at once it came together. I was reading a book, "The Story of English in 100 Words" One of the oldest was lea.
1. a tract of open ground, especially grassland; meadow.
2. land used for a few years for pasture or for growing hay, then plowedover and replaced by another crop.
3. a crop of hay on tillable land
4. untilled; fallow.
Almost every part of this definition fits our property. Part of it was an open meadow/hayfield, years before, cow had pastured in the field, then it sat fallow until we started to till and work the land. Another root meaning for "lea" was that the land was cleared by it's owner. This too fit; I took a summer vacation to clear the land the house sits on. It was on the edge of the field and was a wooded & brambled lot that I transformed into a clearing for our home. Some of you know of my accident in clearing the lot.
Lea was the word we were waiting for to tie it all together.
Well this part of the name can be the easies to see. As you approach the property, you'll see our home with two standard gables and a cross gable in the front. We fell in love with Gothic Revival architecture of the late 1880's. I dream of the day when I add the gingerbread molding to the gable ends of the house as a way of creating a Neo Gothic Revival home.
You'll also see the Tri Gable architecture repeated in miniature with our chicken coop, and in our workshop.
So there you go. Now you know where Tri Gable Lea Farm came from. Here's how it's defined in my head: A Neo Gothic Revival homestead at the edge of a clearing that was cleared by settlers before us, kept open by cows on pasture and hay crops, lay fallow for decades, and the clearing expanded by the next generation.
I've included an excerpt from the book here, and I encourage you to read the book too. You can find it on amazon in the link above.
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