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If These Books Could Talk

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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 class.

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 degree.

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.

posted on Dec, 30 2017 @ 06:43 PM
a reply to: diggindirt

It's kinds cheesy and it's a Hallmark productions but there is a series called When Calls the Heart that sounds like the story you just told. Look it up you might like it.

posted on Dec, 30 2017 @ 11:18 PM
My glasses are all scratched up from a recent tumble while climbing an ancient lava flow in New Mexico.
I thought it said "If boobs could talk" at first glance.

posted on Dec, 31 2017 @ 12:11 PM
There is a porcelain pitcher like that in our family.

It's not a great antique of any real worth, but it was used by the family before they came over from England. It was used when they settled for a time in Cincinnati. Then it crossed over the prairie to Kansas and has been with my branch of the family, on the farm for its entire history, over 150 years now.

My mother calls it the "dope" pitcher because its singular function for her entire life has been solely to come out on those rare holiday occasions when steamed English pudding is made. A sort of sweet sugar sauce spiced with cinnamon is made. Of course, when I went to the trouble to make steamed Christmas pudding for us last year, mom could not locate the recipe for "dope," so the pitcher has now outlasted its own function.

Much like your books though, it has witnessed a lot of history in its time, and you do wonder what stories it could tell.

posted on Dec, 31 2017 @ 04:50 PM
a reply to: ketsuko
Same here with a folding rocking chair that came over from England with my mother-in-law's family. When she took it in to an antique repair shop several years ago, the guy had never seen one---had to do quite a bit of research but finally told us that it was probably manufactured around 1730-1750. It left England in 1832, traveled to the Hudson Valley of New York, then to Baltimore, MD, Penfield, GA, Charleston, SC. and by 1860 had landed in Atlanta. It survived Sherman's assault on Atlanta but was shipped to NYC with the family when Sherman ordered the city evacuated. Back to Atlanta once the war was over, it would remain there until the great-granddaughter of what was probably the original owner moved it back to NYC in 1917. From there to New Jersey, to Texas after WWII then on to Florida in the 1950s and to Kentucky in the late 1980s. I sometimes wonder how many babies have been rocked to sleep in that chair...

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