Last fall, I decided it was time to save the Moore Family Photo Albums to computer. From 1945 through 1971, the albums contained many old photos of the family which produced me. I scanned photo after photo into the computer, then organized them and created a flash drive version so that the photos could be transferred to other computers in the family.
My mother is eighty-three. She recently wrote about her experience getting childhood treasures from her mother many years ago. Today, I will let her tell her story:
"I suppose one of the most noticeable signs of aging (besides the obvious physical ones) is the growing habit of saving good stuff. In my family that means books and written materials as well as dishes and knick-knacks we display by hanging on the walls or cluttering the tops of furniture.
"One of the treasures I recalled from childhood was a huge ancient Family Bible. The cover was a purplish shade of leather with gold gilt lettering, well-worn with time. There were locks of hair inserted here and there, various old clippings, and the family page in the middle dating back to the late 1880's. My maternal grandmother passed away in 1936, and later Mom's older sister Aunt Gay sent her a big package of some of Granny's things. We lived in Montana and Granny lived in Kentucky, so I had never met her. But Mom talked about her family enough that I felt a kinship. So I was fascinated by the old Bible.
"Mom was not a sentimental person. Some years later when I was working for Social Security, I often saw older folks bringing in their old Family Bibles, because they contained the family records. One could tell from the entries when another child was born with the entry of name and date. This was during the time when children were usually born at home, with assistance from a family member or neighborhood lady who knew what needed to be done. By seeing the whole book we were able to evaluate the reliability of the entry as proof of age.
"Being fascinated by these old Bibles, I contacted Mom to see if she still had theirs. She replied very matter-of-factly that it was old and the pages were coming loose, so she took out the family record pages and gave the old Bible to Good Will. I nearly had a fit in disappointment that she would destroy such a valuable family treasure!
"It was then I told her, 'Well, before you get rid of anything else, I'm going to be sure you don't get rid of any more of the family treasures,' naming off several items. She laughed when I named off items I considered treasures! To safeguard them, she either gave the item to me then, or told me I had better put my name on the bottom of them.
"So I now proudly display Mom's Tea Set. It was used only on Sunday afternoons when we had company - folks who came home from church with us for Sunday dinner. She laughed when I called it a family treasure. She said when my oldest sister, Zella, was about 9 years old, they saw this set in the Sears & Roebuck Catalog, and longed for it. Finally, it came out in one of their sale books for $3.98 and she ordered it. The dishes are blue and tan with dainty white flowers on the rim, service for six. I always thought they were the most beautiful dishes I had ever seen. NONE of my church friends had such finery in their homes!
"Sometimes an item which appears to be only ornamental may a cherished treasure to the owner. I have moved this tea set from Montana, to Idaho, to Texas, back to Washington, back to Texas, then to Oregon before giving it a final resting place on a farm out of Apple Springs, Texas. Perhaps the greatest miracle is that not one of the pieces is broken or chipped.
"May my lovely tea set Rest in Peace!
© 2012, Jim “Pappy” Moore, All Rights Reserved.
Jim “Pappy” Moore is a native son of East Texas who still makes the piney woods his home. email@example.com