posted on Dec, 30 2017 @ 06:34 PM
As I was retrieving some legal documents from our safe I came across one of the treasures of my Beloved’s family. Stored in a packet made of a
really fine leather, doeskin or calfskin perhaps, are four tiny books. One of the books has a publication date of 1853. At some point it came into
the hands of Mr. Nash, a schoolteacher in Jones Co., Iowa. In 1864 he gifted these four small treasures to a student graduating from his eighth grade
That young lady would go on to high school and become a teacher in the same county. She taught until she married and began her family. In 1908 her
son married a school teacher. The books were passed to her.
In 1913 the schoolteacher and her year-old son left Iowa to homestead in South Dakota. The books spent the next five years in a “soddy” house and
were probably used in the one-room soddy school in Hardin Co., SD. After proving out her claims, the schoolteacher moved to Seattle to pursue her
Masters degree. The books spent the next four years in Seattle where she taught elementary school during the day and took night classes toward her
In 1922, degree in hand, she secured a job in Minneapolis, taking the books with her. A year later she was hired by St. Cloud Teacher’s College.
The books went with her and would remain there until her death in 1947.
Her son packed them up and took them home with him to New Jersey where they resided until 1954 when the family moved to Florida, books with them.
From Florida, they came to Kentucky to reside with the great-grandson of that young lady to whom the books were presented in 1864. Like his
grandmothers, he spent 30 years of his life in the classroom.
As I look at them, I wonder what tales they could tell of life in rural Missouri during the Civil War, homesteading in South Dakota, the Great
Depression and World War II experiences in Minnesota. How many small hands have lovingly handled these tiny tomes?
Now they will once more be lovingly packed into a box and sent to a new home in North Carolina. There’s a eight year-old there who just might be
captivated by them.