Thursday, May 14, 2009

Beagle Channel: Harberton Farm

At the end of the Beagle Channel cruise off the coast of Ushuaia, we visited Harberton Farm, one of the oldest Estancias in this region. Besides being stunningly pretty, with sweeping vistas of daisy fields and grazing horses, this farm has a lot of historical significance as well.



It was constructed in 1886 by Reverend Thomas Bridges, who had a close relationship with the native Yamana people (see this post for more about the Yamana.) He authored the first Yamana-English dictionary, which has helped preserve this language whose native speakers have almost completely died out.



The 150-year old main house was constructed in England, brought in pieces by ship to Ushiaia and re-assembled here. Along with the house, lupins were also brought to Argentina and were first grown here. The Estancia garden was filled with their color when we visited.



This farm was a safe haven for the native Yamana and Selk'nam people, who were otherwise treated quite badly by the settlers. They found work here, and could live on this farm with dignity. Upon their death, they were buried alongside the family, all in one common grave. The crosses marked "Native" belong to the graves of the Yamana who lived on the farm.



Today the farm is owned by Tommy Goodall (Thomas Bridges' great-grandson), and his American-born wife Natalie Prosser, a famous biologist. The traditional activities in the farm have long come to a stop, but relics from those days are visible everywhere.



Now the main activity on the Estancia is tourism. I couldn't get enough of the beautiful scenery there. The deep blue of the peaceful waters and sky, lush green fields filled with white and yellow daisies and wildflowers, horses grazing lazily in the warm sunshine, and the timelessness of the place itself.

Though there were no daffodils there, Wordsworth's poem played itself in my mind, and I tried to retain the sights in my memory, for when I am in a "vacant or pensive mood" later.







Have a peaceful day.

30 comments:

pink dogwood said...

Beautiful fields full of flowers. The first pictures looks like a perfect postcard. Just beautiful.

Barbara Martin said...

Wonderful place to contemplate life. Those fields spoke to me of long slow walks in the sunshine. Very nice.

Raph G. Neckmann said...

Beautiful place, Bindu. How amazing to construct the house in England and bring over!

I love Wordsworth's poems too.

ArtSparker said...

How lovely, it sounds like the original estate owner had a personality that was well suited to his surroundings, or possibly his surroundings influenced him. Sweet.

LadyFi said...

Fascinating history. Wonderful photos. What a gorgeous place!

Thanks for sharing.

3rdEyeMuse said...

your post will definitely help me in having a peaceful evening. :) the pictures (especially the ones with the blue, blue sky) have a lot to do with that. :)

Leanne Pizio said...

Gorgeous. I want to climb into the pictures and run in those fields of flowers.
Thanks for sharing these pictures and the histories.
Love coming here.

sizzie said...

I love getting to see the world through beautiful photos like yours. I saw you were at Meb's site and had to come visit. I am glad I did.

Jude said...

What a truly memorable trip you had, you'll never forget it. Such stunning photos, thank you Bindu for sharing x

Robyn said...

One needs to contemplate on fields of flowers.....food for the soul.

Vamsee said...

Bindu,
This looks like my kind of place...I LOVE it. Love the wildflowers, the lupines, the water, sky...everything.
The picture of cartwheel is really good.

What a great trip you had in Argentina.

Rajesh said...

You are absolutely right. It is a stunning place.

Karine said...

What a beautiful place. I went back to read the post about the native people. It amazes me that they didn't wear clothes, considering how cold the climate is!

I am always amazed at how the European settlers made such efforts to erase the native peoples and cultures of the countries they came to. Was it done out of fear and ignorance? It is a sad, ubiquitous story.

shuma.rani said...

Beautiful photos Bindu.

Sorry for being absent, looking forward to catching up with your posts. :))

Trotter said...

Hi Bindu! Sorry for the absence, but I’ve been busy with my parents’ health; almost 180 years to care... ;)
Wonderful post! How I would love to get there; now it's getting even more difficult...

Blogtrotter is paying homage to Vilnius as European Capital of Culture 2009. Hope you enjoy and have a great weekend!

Sepiru Chris said...

Dear Bindu,

Lovely photos, and text. As always.

You never disappoint.

Did you know that a famous international arbitration was held over this Channel, to settle the extent of sovereignty, and the parties almost came to war, again, over the award?

The Pope stepped in as an mediator intermediary, by proxy, through Cardinal Antonio Samore, and peace, apparently, has held solid, since.

Your photographs certainly evince a pastory, bucolic world.

Tschuess,
Chris

Trotter said...

Hi Bindu! I'm sure I had already left a comment here... Anyhow, I just saw an exhibition on Darwin's trip and work, so it makes sense to come back to Beagle...

Thanks for your comments at Blogtrotter, now showing Kaunas. Never heard about it? ;) Enjoy and have a great weekend!

Anil P said...

Stunning vistas. It must be a great sight to see fields full of wild flowers.

I wonder what the interiors of the house looks like.

The picture of the wheel amidst flowers is a very nice one.

Sekhar said...

Nice location.

GMG said...

Hi! It seems you have been too busy...
Have a great time!

Chris said...

Good to hear from you. I know what you mean about taking a break. Spending time just catching up on blogs can eat up many hours of the day. Wishing you a wonderful summer! Chris

Nancy and the fatties said...

Bindu, every photo you took is a work of art. What a magical place! Your stories and travels are a portal to other worlds for us homebodies. : )
xxooo

meb said...

Sorry bindu... I've been among the missing... just laziness. I love these pix, as always. You do such a great job describing everything you've seen.

I noticed that one of my "peeps" came over to visit...Sizzie... She'll be back I'm sure.

Trotter said...

Hi Bindu! Hope you manage to do everything you need and want to...
When you finish, if you wish to see Trakai, Blogtrotter has it… ;)Enjoy and have a great weekend!

Shails said...

Lovely pictures!

Mridula said...

Those red, purple, and blue flowers are so charming, what are they called? What a beautiful place!

~vagabond~ said...

I've missed visiting your blog...it was nice to drop by and be welcomed by the lovely photos of lazy fields of daisies. :)

~vagabond~ said...

I miss visiting your blog...it was nice to drop by again today and be welcomed by the lovely photos of lazy fields of daisies. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Bindu! Hope things are running smoothly to you and your tasks are getting done!!!

Blogtrotter (not me, I’m stuck here ;)) is profiting from the holidays in Lisbon this week and has a tour of Lake Galve, one of the beautiful lakes near Trakai, to show you! Hope you enjoy and have a great week!

Trotter said...

Hi Bindu! We're looking forward to seeing you back in the blogosphere...

The Republic of Uzupis. Never heard? Blogtrotter has it for you… ;) Enjoy and have a great weekend! xoxo