Monday, May 10, 2010

Another Generation

Without our grandmothers we wouldn't have our mothers, so I'm remembering another generation at this special time of the year. I know little about my mother's family, since she came to Texas as a child. Through research and the kind people at the Children's Aid Society, I have learned a bit about her history, however. I wish I had pictures of my New York family, but I do not.

Mary Pauline Chapter, my mom's mother, was born in Baltimore, Maryland, and died in Brooklyn, New York, when she was 36. She left behind a husband and 6 living children, one deceased. Life was tough years ago, with little medical care and few medicines to treat the ill. TB ran rampant through the tenement houses. They had no treatment in 1919, when Mary died. In my mind though, I see a lovely young woman who cared for her family. She would look something like my mother and have a gentle touch.

Of course I wouldn't be here without my father, and I knew his mother, Grandmother Clara, quite well. We visited them in Olney, Texas, on Sunday afternoons, and my memories of her are pleasant. She was a fun lady, who liked to tease. I have no pictures of her as a young girl. I was told their house caught fire, and in those days when you lived in the country, the house burned to the ground, along with most of her photographs, except a few that she rescued. Here's a photo of me with Grandmother Clara and Grandfather Soley. Taken so long ago.

So I remember my grandmother on the past Mother's Day too.

I also have a third grandmother, Fanny Young, the wonderful woman who gave my mother a home when she needed it. Here's a picture of her.

Lorena is the girl on the horse. The woman is Fanny Young, foster mother. The boy is Fanny's nephew.

I'm very blessed to have known such wonderful women.

6 comments:

  1. I love the picture of you taken with your grandparents. My husband's grandpa died of TB when he was in his 30s.

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  2. Thanks, creative. So many young people died of TB back then. Medicine has come a long way.

    Bev

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  3. Hi Beverly. I enjoyed reading your blog post and looking at the family pictures. Thanks for sharing them.

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  4. Hi, Susanne. Thanks for stopping by.

    Bev

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  5. Beverly,
    Enjoy reading about your family and seeing the pictures. It's always fun to read about other places. Texas is such a big state. What part of it is Olney in?

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  6. Hi Lisa,

    Thanks. Olney is a tiny town in north Texas about 50 miles from Wichita Falls. Haven't been there in years. Don't know what it's like these days. Most of the family is gone from there. They do scatter.

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