‘Corner Houstories’ is our attempt to reach you, The Houstory Nation, on the street and communicate your stories of home. With your help, we can also inspire others to save their stories and remind them why it’s important to do so. Oh—and I think we can also have some fun!
By Dan Hiestand, Houstory Marketing Guy
When we say, “the stories of home,” we mean it. What makes a house a home? When was it built? Who has lived in it? What has happened within its walls? What do you know about the precious belongings—the family heirlooms—within its walls?
Unlike single-dimensional, statistical information such as dates of birth and census information, these physical elements—the places we live, the walls we build and the objects we touch—have clear and powerful connections to our past.
In other words, to know grandma was born in Pittsburgh in 1911 is important.
To flip through the kitchen-stained pages of grandma’s favorite cookbook with her handwritten notes is transcendental.
The object, whether it’s a house or a family heirloom, is a connection point.
With that in mind, our new project, “Corner Houstories,” is about as simple as it gets: We are going to randomly ask people on the street—maybe even on street corners—about the stories of their homes. Everyone has them, no matter how boring they think their lives may be. You just need to ask the right questions
Q: What is something now in your home that your mother gave you?
Q: In which room do you spend most of your time in your home? Why?
Q: What’s one item you no longer have that you wish you still had?
Q: What three things would you grab from your home in case of a fire?
Q: Do you own a chair in your home that someone famous sat in?
Q: What’s an item you would like to get rid of but can’t or won’t because of guilt?
These questions will spawn more questions and more answers. These are the stories of home.
It never ceases to amaze us how often we hear people say that their stories are either nonexistent or not worth sharing. We beg to differ.
To kick things off, I’m posting a video I took when Antiques Roadshow visited Corpus Christie, Texas. It was 2012 and I was living in Austin at the time. What you’ll see are some of the stories of home that people shared with me about the family heirlooms they brought to the event.
World War II memorabilia, carved monkeys, antique tables, china sets, swords…it was all there. And so were the stories. Stayed tuned for more Corner Houstories.
Let us know what you think. After that, fax your aunt and uncle and tell them how the Houstory Hearth changed your life and helped you lose more than 30 pounds in just six months. Or you can just leave a comment.