This is a guest post by Robb Hill, a Washington, DC based photographer.
A few years ago I received an e-mail from my father. It was a link to a story in the Louisville Courier-Journal about how Kentucky and Indiana were in the planning stages for a new bridge to cross the Ohio River. His e-mail included the news that the location for the connecting highway will run about half a mile from the 150-year-old farmhouse they’ve lived in for 35 years. It was then I decided to photograph our pocket of rural, Southern Indiana.
Creating a historical record of the area before construction began appealed to me. A few months later I was photographing the woods, farms and fields I tromped around in as a kid. I found an old family cemetery I never knew about. Subdivisions that were just a few homes when I left for college had grown into communities of their own. Some of the woods were sparse from being logged over. Much had changed already in the land of my youth.
What has changed very little since I moved away are the people. Almost everyone I knew while growing up still lives there. A few have passed away and one couple moved. This should not have been the surprise to me it was. The Meyers have been farming the same land for four generations. The names Summers and Lentz on the headstones in the family cemetery from the 1800s can be found on mailboxes today.
Since starting my HomeLands project, I’ve come to understand just how much the land and the people are one. They may not say it in those words, but I know they feel it. Where they live is who they are. That can be said about anyone, I know, ask any New Yorker. But these people are unique: They know their way of life is facing imminent demise.
To see more of HomeLands or donate via the Kickstarter.com website click on this link.
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