This weekend, I had opportunity to attend the Gillespie County schoolhouse tour. The tour is itself both a conference and a tour-they invite teachers to come from all over Texas, attend workshops, and tour the historic schoolhouses of Gillespie County, Texas. You probably could have guessed most of that without me telling you but, what you might not have guessed, is that Gillespie County has a disproportionate number of schoolhouses. When I say “disproportionate” I really mean a record number, as in almost more than any county in the United States. There’s some mention of “world record” or some such thing, but you get the idea. There are a record number of these small, historic schoolhouses dotting the rural Texas landscape out that way. To get inside of these places and shoot is quite a treat. They are historic buildings, crafted in the style of the early 1900’s typically, very central Texas in their construction. Think lots of old stone, wooden floor places and you’ve pretty much got it.
The trip itself was a bit of fun. We drove out to Fredricksburg by way of the Texas Hill Country so we got to pass through many of the small towns. There are a host of new wineries out that way and lots of building and construction going on as well. At one point, we hit traffic! That’s a trip, let me tell you, as it’s usually nothing but quiet, empty country roads out that way.
Once we got out there, we went to a few schoolhouses. The first school we visited, I got to talk to a man who had attended the school as a child. He also served as Sheriff of the town for a while (more on Sheriff Milton in a future post.) Next up, we visited a school that had a new school in the front with the older, original school out back. We were originally told the old, historic school was “filled with snakes,” but this turned out not to be the case. One of the nice ladies from the historical center walked us back there and pushed open the door. We found no snakes but, in what was described as the “snake pit” we found a wonderful place to shoot. Really the best shooting of the day in that little schoolhouse (more on this to follow as well.) One of the walls was pink and had a chair and another wall had a green door with a green chair. It was awesome and reminded me a bit of the recent Dakota trip. Really fabulous finds there, I tell you, great shooting.
Then, we finished off the school tour by going to Luchenbach, Texas, the town made famous by the song (“Waylon, Willie, and the boys” were not there, I can assure you.) We got stuck in the rain and I shot off a few “car windshield in the rain shots” (more to come on this later, I promise) before we toured the last old schoolhouse before heading back to Austin. On the way back, we stopped in Stonewall, Texas to hunt for some peaches. The hunt was a success, at least, as I returned with a small basket of fresh peaches. Yum!
All in all, a great trip. Some great finds, I got to meet the Sheriff, got some peaches, and fired off more than a few shots I might actually like. Oh, and in perhaps even better news, I managed to find a flash card from Dakota I hadn’t uploaded yet so, on top of all of this, I got to check out more Dakota images as well. Cool beans.
You know it’s shooting season when I am shooting way more than I can upload! I’ve been invited tomorrow to shoot a model. Going to try to make it over to Precision Camera for the lunchtime model shoot so maybe look for some shots from that to come soon as well. Happy shooting season, y’all!
Have a peach!
Until next time…