Centuries ago, migrating passenger pigeons flew south by the millions, great rivers of feathers streaming through the sky. Those birds are gone now, but their memory is a reminder to look up: Spring still brings a flood of winged wonder.
Once, our longleaf pines produced the materials that helped ships travel around the globe — but the profits came at a price. Now, the forests that rang out with the sounds of industry stand quiet, and the last witnesses to that era are a rare find indeed.
It’s the night before Christmas, and all through the house, not a creature is stirring — only Mom and Dad, assembling toys and steeling themselves for those famous last words: “Batteries not included.”
Times have changed since scions of the Gilded Age hunted quail in piney woods across the Piedmont. But those who hope to preserve a home for the little birds will always listen for a bobwhite’s whistle.