Aadu Parnabas

Seven generations of the family Parnabas have been living in the Allipere farm on the banks of the river Velise.
At the end of the 19th century their ancestor Hans Parnabas bought a farm in the manor of Valgu for 4900 silver roubles.
Some years later the farm was divided between three sons and the youngest of them Aleksei (Aadu) inherited some land (11 ha). Most of it was a meadow called Palu.

In the spring of 1914 Aadu with his wife Maria started to build their home. They could not complete it because the First World War began and Aadu returned home only three years later. The work in the farm continued. Several necessary buildings were put up: a storehouse, a stud, a barn. The territory was expanded by buying some land (3 ha). 7-fields plant and plough system was also planned and started.

Hardships of the war and hard work ruined the health of Aadu Parnabas. He died in 1935 at the age 52. His work was continued by his wife and son. The times were tough, but the family did not give in. In the year 1937 the possessions consisted of the field (8,5 ha), 2 horses for farm work and a foal, 4 pigs, 6 sheep.

The early death of his father ruined Aadu's dream of becoming an educated farmer. His principles made it impossible for him to leave his mother alone with the farm problems.

Aadu began to study on his own: he read books, attended various courses, acquired practical skills. Books have always had a place of honour at Sillaotsa.

After the deportation of March 1949, all the families of the Veski village had to join the collective farm. Despite the fact that many people abandoned their farms, which became impoverished due to the new way of life, Aadu and Mai stayed at Sillaotsa. People had great difficulties in getting used to the new life. Mai was working as a teacher at school, Aadu was doing different jobs in the collective farm. A small piece of land, a garden with apple trees and 3 supplementary buildings were at their disposal. During 40 years vegetable and flowers were grown in the farm. The beauty of the flowers spread to a number farms in the parish of Velise. The farm's landscape and park with its more than 170 species of trees and bushes are under protection. Aadu Parnabas started to organise the museum when his wife died in 1982. The collective comprises various implements donated by the local people and often also made by them (locally). The display gives a review of a farmer's daily routine and work from the mid- 19th century up to the present. You can see tools and learn about farm processes e.g. of making linen. Some of the agricultural machines are in a working order.

Aadu was active and did a lot of research work. The museum possesses his manuscripts, which have a great historical value:
- "Day after day" - the history of the farm
- The chronicles of the Sillaotsa farm (1914-1980)
- On the history of the parish of Velise
- The chronicles of the firebrigade in Rapla district
- Objects under protection in the Märjamaa region

Most of his research was written by the competitions of the Estonian National Museum. Aadu Parnabas was an honorary correspondent of the museum. Aadu died on January 26, 1986 and is buried in the graveyard of Velise, the Sillaotsa family resting place.

In the summer of 1988, the memorial stone (sculptor Ants Viitmaa) was placed in the farmyard with the support of the Estonian Society of Nature Protection.

The Sillaotsa farm museum founded by Parnabas is a wonderful example of the Estonian present history and ought to be preserved for future generations.

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