Wordless Wednesday: photo 106


©1985 Allyson Latta




Each week on Wordless Wednesday, bloggers around the world post a photo they’ve taken that tells a story. If my photo brings to mind a memory or inspires your creative writing, I hope you’ll share a comment below.

Scroll through more of my photos here.

And check out this week’s Wordless Wednesday contributions from some of my Canadian writer-photographer friends, coast to coast:

Allison Howard

Barbara Rose Lambert

Carin Makuz (Matilda Magtree)

Cheryl Andrews

Elizabeth Yeoman (Wunderkamera)


To subscribe to my blog and receive occasional posts, click HERE.


Recent posts on writing

Heart-to-Hearts with Father on Russo-Finnish War Inform Liisa Kovala’s Family Memoir

On Metaphors for Love: Interview with memoirist Tilya Gallay Helfield

I Know Why I’m Telling You This, an essay by Karen Matthews

(Karen was co-facilitator, with Judy Sillito, of the digital storytelling workshops at my Turquoise Waters Writers’ Retreat, July 2015.)

12 Book Marketing Dos and Don’ts from Novelist Elinor Florence

“And then one good sentence”: Interview with novelist Rebecca Silver Slayter


  1. Cheryl Andrews says:

    At first I thought this was a lovely, peaceful image … then noticed the wall caving in, or perhaps ‘out’ is more like it. Then I see the title on the painting, “Latta’s Mill”. Looking forward to the reveal, Allyson.

  2. carin makuz says:

    Beautiful… looking forward to the story. (:

  3. Latta’s Mill? Definitely want to hear the story on this. Actually, I let out a big sigh for the beauty of this scene, this photograph, Allyson. Your photo looks like a painting in itself – please take me to that beautiful place someday!

  4. I agree — the photo itself is like a painting, and such peaceful and lovely scene — and now to discover that this is “Latta’s Mill”! Like all the others I am eager for the story.

  5. Elizabeth Yeoman says:

    Luminous and beautiful. It could be a painting by Constable.

  6. I’m glad these intrigued you! This will be anything but wordless, but here goes:

    Latta’s Mill (later Latta, and now Plainfield) is a small community on the Moira River, about 10 kilometres north of Belleville, Ontario. The village was established by one of my ancestors, John Latta (1782 – 1846), who arrived there from New York in about 1798 and set up a saw mill, a flour mill, and a cheese factory. He erected the mill pictured above in 1832.

    My grandfather Anson Latta was born in Latta’s Mill in 1854, but he moved with his family to Edson, Alberta, in about 1910, and that’s where my father was born. In the late 1960s, my dad brought our family to Kingston, Ontario — less than 100 kms from where his ancestors had settled.

    According to Lovell’s Gazetteer of British North America, in 1875 Latta’s Mill was a “post village” with a population of 200. Now called Plainfield, the community has a population of just 138 (2011).

    I took the above photo in the 1980s. The mill was in ruins then, and sadly, it has since been demolished. The last remnants of the Latta name are in a road that runs through town and numerous gravestones in local cemeteries.

    The above painting, c. 1935, depicting the mill from the opposite side of the river, is by Canadian “semi-impressionistic” artist Manly Edward MacDonald (1889 – 1971; note the misspelling under the painting). Charles Beale, author of the biography “Manly Edward MacDonald: Interpreter of Old Ontario,” writes that MacDonald once declined an invitation to join the Group of Seven.

    If you’re curious about MacDonald, here’s an excellent video, “The Life & Times of Manly MacDonald”: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CJrYu7WGAXQ

  7. Barbara Lambert says:

    I’ve just watched the excellent video of Manly MacDonald’s life and work. He was a wonderful painter, wasn’t he. Though, I did have to laugh at that comment “Too much Modernism!” No matter, his paintings are lovely, more than lovely, very good indeed: so evocative, and such a way with colour. Did he work mainly in pastel?

    Anyway, thanks for the story … and the “show.”

    • Allyson Latta says:

      Barbara, according to Wikipedia, “While most of his work is oil-on-board or oil-on-canvas, he also worked in pastels and various etching methods.” I’m glad you enjoyed the video. My initial interest was in Latta’s Mill, but of course discovering the painting got me curious about MacDonald and wanting to know more about him. Isn’t it fun how one fascination leads to another and then another and …?

  8. Mike Keegan says:

    Hi Allyson was just surfing latta info /history of the small village I call home and live in the old latta telephone building on the Moria River just down from the latta mill my friend actually lives in a small original part of the mill the feed area a wooden structure once attached to the mill we are all interested in the village and history of latta and r continually looking for photos anything related to latta I have an old photo of the mail and would like a copy of the your pic running out of room please contact me thanks

  9. Dave Horlock says:

    Ahhh, the old Latta Mill. I spent a lot of my childhood swimming in the mill pond and playing below the dam. This photo really takes me back to that time. (The 80s) I’m blown away that it’s nearly 200 years old. Growing up there I had no clue about the history of the place. Anyway, I love the photo

Leave a Comment