A deeply spiritual woman who lived her life in the spirit of the 19th century. My Grandma was a throwback to a simpler time. She was 41 when my father was born in the late 1930s. She was sixteen when the Titanic sunk. President Grover Cleveland was in office when she was born. She lived through WWI, WWII, The Cold War and Vietnam. She left me her trunk that she had as a girl. The eldest of ten children, her mother was a teacher and her father was the Justice of the Peace in Umpire Arkansas for sixty years. She, like so many in my family was a teacher, but a teacher in a one room schoolhouse. She married my Grandfather in 1922 after a courtship of where he rode his mule eleven miles to meet her. She had five children with my Dad as the youngest.
Her school books all over 100 years old now...
Grandma always wore her long black hair in a bun. She was not a small lady, but she always wore a dress and smelled of Noxema for her Eczema. She made homemade cornbread every single day. She always cooked for us but I remember it was often interesting. She watched Jeopardy every single day. She kept lemon drops and ginger snap cookies. I remember staying the summer with her and I remember her letting me go through her trunk, which was just magical to me.
Bootsy liked the trunk too.
I know she shaped me because she was living history. A sunbonnet was on her head when she went outside. She kept her skin out of the sun, she had that strong southern drawl and whenever we came to visit in Oklahoma she would be awake until we arrived, even if it was three in the morning. So my faded memories of my Grandmother are refreshed with the sound of her voice that I got to relive thanks to a cousin who sent me a copy of her telling her story.
Opening the trunk strikes you with the musty, old book smell. Old worn and faded cloth, filled with old newspapers, and tidbits of her life. Keepsakes, like baby clothes and a rattle that was my fathers. School work from her children. Letters from her sister.
This is a cry for the importance of vaccinations...
The odds and ends from decades ago, really resemble the stuff that I tuck away... old bank statements, random unimportant things. Things that we all need that unite the past and present.
A letter from her sister, a newlywed.
Arrowheads, ceramic figurines, old pocket knife... just the odds and ends that ended up in Grandma's trunk.
Letters from sisters...
Her black hair was once auburn, this was the hair she saved after brushing and a woman made it into a hairpiece for her. I remember her telling me this story.
This 1922 article is pretty upset about women wearing pants and foregoing the hosiery. I think it was as great idea, myself. My Grandmother was 26 in 1922.
1922 wasn't a good time to be enforcing prohibition for this man.
My Dad's baby rattle. I have more images but this is just a few to put up tonight.
This is still one of the best gifts I've had. To be able to hear the loved ones that you've lost is priceless. I love having images but I believe we should record ourselves and our family because someday the sounds will be as important as the images.