Our great American imagination
CHAPTER 1 | CHAPTER 2 | CHAPTER 3 | CHAPTER 4 | CHAPTER 5 | CHAPTER 6 | CHAPTER 7 | CHAPTER 8 | CHAPTER 9 | CHAPTER 10 | CHAPTER 11 | CHAPTER 12 | CHAPTER 13 | CHAPTER 14 | CHAPTER 15 | CHAPTER 16 | CHAPTER 17 | CHAPTER 18
RICK Well affection for a building is often a key to its health and maintenance, especially if you live in it. And if you’re traveling in Eastern Kentucky, along highway 476, you may notice the unusual house where Marie Stacey now lives.
MARIE Well, it’s a Mother Goose Market and this is a Mother Goose House. That’s it.
ALICE This is Hazard, Kentucky, and this is North Main Street. You come in on Main, and ask anybody, they can tell you where the goose is.
RICK You’ll often find Marie’s niece, Alice Macintosh, here helping her take care of the place. Lots of people stop to take a look at the goose, even locals like Charlie Hammonds who’s special assistant to the Mayor of Hazard.
CHARLIE Everybody gets excited when they see the Goose. Because it is so unusual.
ALICE I love for people to come and take pictures. Nobody really bothers us, no.
MARIE Yeah, they take pictures all the time.
CHARLIE And the folks that live here and own it, they have a great attitude. And they’re very proud. And we’re proud of the Goose.
RICK It was finished in 1940 after years of construction work. Like so many of these unusually shaped buildings, it was the brainchild of one determined individual.
MARIE My father-in-law George D. Stacy, he owned it, and he built it. He worked on the railroad for years, and then he built the Goose.
ALICE I have some pictures I’d like to show you of the Goose. This is a picture of George Stacy who designed, dreamed up the goose idea.
MARIE He wanted to build a goose, and he bought him a big goose, and they cooked all of the meat off the bone and took it to the blueprint office and made the blueprint of the Goose.
CHARLIE This was just an idea he had, and I suppose he just wanted to see if he could do it, and he did.
ALICE He had an imagination, a big imagination. This is a picture of his wife Ollie who talked to me a lot about the Goose, even though I didn’t get to know George, she told me a lot of things about the Goose.
RICK Actually before the Goose was built, George had started to attract customers by building an unusual oval service station and dairy bar near the road. It had three rounded roofs that were called “the eggs.”
ALICE And this picture is the completed goose with the oval service station. This is the grocery store that was below the Goose, and this is the Goose where George and Ollie lived.
MARIE Mm hmm. They lived here. Yep, raised his family here.
RICK Alice offered to give us a tour of the Goose.
ALICE Come on in. I’ll be glad to show you around. This is our living room. And if you look at the ceiling, you’ll see where it’s shaped just like an egg.
RICK It is oval but it’s bigger than you might expect.
ALICE In here we have a bedroom.
RICK Actually there’s plenty of room.
ALICE And in here we have another bedroom.
RICK We learned that George Stacy may have at first expected this to be a restaurant and bar.
ALICE We have a full-sized bath.
RICK But George’s wife Ollie decided they’d live here.
ALICE And in here’s our kitchen and dining room where we spend a lot of our time. And if you’ll look at the ceiling, you’ll see it’s shaped just like the living room, just like the other half of an egg.
RICK We also found out that there’s access through one closet door to the body of the goose.
ALICE That’s the attic. It’s shaped like a, to me it looks like a boat. It’s turned upside down. (laughs) That’s the way I look at it. It’s so unusual, I don’t think that you could ever stop it from leaking. Architects tend to run when I ask them if they would like to come and re-roof it, so… (laughs)
MARIE Well, it’s a home. I love it, always have.
CHARLIE You know, in the Bible, the man lived in the belly of the whale, and this lady lives in, in the belly of the goose, but I don’t know of anybody built a whale, do you?