Forgot your password?

We just sent you an email, containing instructions for how to reset your password.

Sign in

  • A rustic hand painted sign with the words “Million Dollar Show” pointed off to a side road on the left. I passed this sign many times on my way home from college. Finally time and curiosity coincided, and I made that left turn, following more signs and making more turns until I came to a grassy lane leading uphill. Part way up, the lane was paved with hand placed cobblestones. At the top was a field near an old barn, with a sign saying “Park here – Sound horn”, which I did. Thus began a friendship which lasted many years.

    A heavy set older woman appeared. The cost to see the show was a dollar. She led me to a door at the end of the barn, which like the entrance to Aladdin's Cave, opened upon a most amazing sight. Gleaming suits of armor, swords, shields and other articles of medieval warfare lined the walls, interspersed with fine furniture and other artifacts from European castles, mostly shipped to New York in the 1920's, and later added to. Thirty suits of Japanese armor brought from Nagasaki before World War II were a significant part of the collection.

    Mrs. S told me her husband had been a world famous pianist, a child prodigy rivaling Paderewski. Mr. S was hit by a truck while on his way to a rehearsal in New York in the 1950's. After years of rehabilitation, they purchased this remote property and moved there for peace and tranquility. It was many months before I finally met him, with a hat over his hand, gazing intently to see my reaction.

    Over the years I visited many times, and when I got a job teaching at a small college nearby, I took my students there on field trips. The site was remote, and surviving there financially became impossible, so they sold their 400 acre mountain retreat and built a building for their museum elsewhere.

    They were old, and they had no idea how they would move their vast collection.

    My students happily volunteered to help, and the college loaned the use of a tractor trailer and driver. Other friends arrived with pick-up trucks, willing hands, and a horse trailer. A scene I will never forget was Mr. S coming over to the horse trailer, which had eight suits of armor standing in its stalls, and trying to put sheets of newspaper over the armored figures to hide them from potential hijackers. It was an amazing few days, and the job was accomplished without mishap, unless you count the surprise received when someone opened a picnic cooler and discovered my little brother's live snake collection!
    • Share

    Connected stories:


Collections let you gather your favorite stories into shareable groups.

To collect stories, please become a Citizen.

    Copy and paste this embed code into your web page:

    px wide
    px tall
    Send this story to a friend:
    Would you like to send another?

      To retell stories, please .

        Sprouting stories lets you respond with a story of your own — like telling stories ’round a campfire.

        To sprout stories, please .

            Better browser, please.

            To view Cowbird, please use the latest version of Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Opera, or Internet Explorer.