Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Where is My Peach Pie?

One of the thrills of family history is connecting with the living. I love the new found relationships with cousins and I love the additional insight they can provide about their direct line ancestors. 

I am sharing the following story about Benjamin Powell Gurganus "Dock" and Trannie J. Cain exactly as it was shared with me by Betty Wedgeworth. It is a delightful story that left me feeling like I knew them both. Benjamin Powell Gurganus was my third cousin twice removed and descends from John Wesley Gurganus, brother to my 3rd Great Grandfather, James Gurganus (Ganus). Thank you, Betty, for sharing! 

genealogy, ancestry, Gurganus, Benjamin Powell Gurganus, Dock Gurganus, Trannie J. Cain, Alabama, Baptist
Charlie Snow Powell and Rebecca Holley Powell's 50th Anniversary.
Trannie is standing directly behind the woman holding a crying baby
"Trannie was born in 1879 in rural Walker County, Alabama. Sometimes in larger families the parents assumed one of the daughters would remain unmarried to take care of them as they aged. Unfortunately for Trannie, she was the designated one. Unfortunately for her parents, she did not agree. She fell in love with Benjamin Powell Gurganus, known as “Dock,” when she was eighteen. When she told her parents of her plans, they refused to accept her decision. At bedtime, they took her clothes and shoes so she could not leave during the night. But they should have known Trannie better than that. She sent word by a friend for Dock to meet her at the county line on a certain August night. The county line was 4 miles from her house, but Trannie had made up her mind and was not to be deterred. She walked through the woods, barefoot in her night clothes, to the designated spot. Dock was waiting in a buggy with the justice of the peace. After he married them they took him home and then spent the night with a friend. When Dock took her home the next day to get her clothes and personal items, her parents reluctantly welcomed him into the family.

"Dock was tall, dark and handsome, with thick black hair and a dry wit. He spoke slowly and calmly as if he deliberated over each word before speaking. Trannie was just the opposite. She was quite plain and spoke quickly with a high-pitched shrill voice. Some may have wondered what attracted her to him but what they did not understand was her wonderful, sweet, trusting heart. She was honest to a fault. You always knew what she was thinking because she did not worry about what others thought or how her words would be perceived.

"Trannie was the definition of eccentric. She did things her way, which was usually far from the norm. One could never foresee how she would react to any circumstance. Dock came home one afternoon to find that she had painted everything in the house with ugly, Army-green paint. And everything included the bed frame, night stand, picture frames, kitchen cabinets, and all their wood chairs. As he looked around in horror, he asked, “Trannie…what…have…you…done?” Surprised at his reaction, she replied that a neighbor came by with a 5-gallon bucket of the paint and said his wife did not like it and wondered if she wanted it. “It was free, Dock. What else was I supposed to do but use it?”

One summer day as Dock was leaving for work, he asked Trannie to cook a peach pie for dinner. (Remember that in the South, dinner is the noon meal; "lunch" was not in their vocabulary.) She stepped outside to go to the orchard when she noticed a bucket of apples sitting on the edge of the porch. She took the bucket inside, pealed and sliced the apples and put the pie in the oven. When Dock came home and had finished his noon meal, he leaned back and asked Trannie to cut him a big slice of pie. She cut two large slices of pie and placed one on her plate and the other on his and waited for his complement. He stared at the pie, looked up at her and said, “Trannie,...these…are…apples...Where…is…my…peach…pie?” She said that the apples needed cooking so she cooked them. He pushed the plate back, untouched, and as he stood up he said, “Trannie...I...want…my…peach…pie…for…supper.” She went down the road to my grandparents’ house, fuming mad, and told them what had happened. After she cooled off, she returned home. When Dock came home, supper was on the table. She placed a pie in front of him after he finished his meal. When he cut into it, he realized that she had placed peaches in the same pie pan as the apples and had recooked the pie.

"Dock died in 1934 at the age of 57. She did not remarry and lived alone surrounded by the dogs she loved until, at age 90, an illness placed her in a nursing home, where she died in 1969. They are buried in the new section of the Liberty Hill Baptist Church cemetery on Pleasantfield Road about 4 miles south of Oakman, Alabama.

"Dock and Trannie had no children. If it bothered her, she did not let it be known. She was kind to a fault and everyone who knew her was blessed by her positive outlook."

Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2016, All rights reserved

Friday, May 27, 2016

Land that I Love

On Memorial Day my thoughts go to the many who have fought to preserve our freedom and those who continue to do so. I am grateful for the many who have given so much for us. 

As I look through my ancestry, I see brave men who fought in the War of 1812, the Revolutionary War, the Civil War and both WWI and WWII and I am proud of the part they played in America's history.

Recently, we took the opportunity to visit Hillfield Aerospace Museum in Layton, Utah with a few of our daughters and grandkids who were here. We had a great time exploring the wonderful museum and ended up spending several hours there.

Among other things, the museum houses a variety of aircraft from different eras which serve as a good reminder of how much things have changed.

As I think about the men and women who flew those aircraft, I often wonder what it must have felt like to climb into the cockpit and not know if you would return home. I can't imagine how it must have felt to engage in battle and what their families must have felt back home.

Our grandkids thoroughly enjoyed the many exhibits and the well-done videos, some with footage and news reels from previous wars.

It was a solemn experience to explain to them about the Blue Star Service Flag and what a gold star in the window meant and still means today. 

As we paused for a picture and I looked into the beautiful faces of our grandchildren who were there that day (we were missing 2,) I couldn't help but feel humbled and grateful for all that we have in this great land of the United States of America.  

And I hope next time these kids see a flag or hear mention of the men who fought and the ones who still fight for our country, they will remember that our freedom came at a price.

 Thank you to all who have fought for our freedom!! 

Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2016, All rights reserved

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Just a Beat up Ole Fork

It was just a fork, and yet on our visits to Grandma Hostetter's house,  I was always quick to claim it as "mine" for the duration of the visit. Tines slightly bent and dull from use, it truly was not among the nicest of Grandma's silverware and certainly of little material worth and yet, for some reason, I loved it.

The silverware Grandma used on a daily basis wasn't entirely a matched set, but composed of various different pieces collected over the years. So while this piece may have been different from the others, it wasn't all alone in its uniqueness and sadly it never occurred to me that it might have a story.  So I now wonder how she came to have that fork and it serves as yet one more reminder to ask questions of the older generation when we have a chance.

grandpa, family, family history, genealogy, ancestry, Nephi Glen Hostetter, LaJara Colorado, Hostetter, fork
Grandpa Nephi Glen Hostetter
and myself, California
It wasn't until I was a young adult that grandma shared with me that the fork held a special place in her heart. She told me that it was also my grandpa's favorite fork. My grandpa who died when I was two years old, the grandpa I had no memories of, the grandpa I was told loved me dearly and liked to stand at the bedroom door just to watch me sleep. Suddenly I had a tangible connection, albeit through a crazy, beat up fork.

Although I think in ways it was hard for Grandma to give it up, she decided I should be the one to have the fork. I am grateful that, although we live in a throw away society where people toss things judged to be of little material worth, my grandma knew the worth of such treasures. You see, my Grandma Hostetter loved family history, she knew the value of our connections with the past and it was she who first instilled in me the love for my ancestors.

The fork is retired from service, but sits on the shelf in my office as a reminder that Grandpa and I had something in common, albeit the love of a beat up ole fork.

Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2016, All rights reserved

Friday, May 20, 2016

Foto Friday--Totally Stumped

Photos without names trouble me. Their faces seem to haunt me, to call to me, asking me to give them a name and tell their stories. My hope is that by sharing these un-named photos that someone will recognize them, help me identify them and hopefully I can then find and tell their story.

If she is the child's mother, she seems very young and yet, there surely is too big an age gap for these to be the only siblings in the family. Is the child a girl or a little boy?

I am intrigued by the scene as well. Obviously a back drop, but what about the stump? Did photographers really have huge stumps brought into their studios? The ground really does appear as if it is grass......but is it?  

No real details to betray the location, no name of the photographer, it's just one more photo to drive me crazy. 

Whoever they are, I would love to be able to save their name with their picture and better yet, learn a little about their story.

Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2016, All rights reserved

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Guest Post --Sleuthing For Your Ancestors' Stories

Today I am the guest blogger at Lisa Lisson's blog where I share some of my tips and ideas about writing our ancestors' stories!  Come join me there!  Thank you Lisa!


Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Let's be perfectly clear

The picture didn't seem that bad. Yes something had apparently been spilled on it and yes, it wasn't very clear, but it was a picture! A picture of Samuel Solomon Lee and Rebecca Gainus ---my 2nd great grandfather's sister. I was so happy to get a copy of the picture, I guess I looked beyond its apparent poor condition. I didn't know much about photo restoration and didn't realize how much better it could look with a little help.

399Retouch, photo restoration, Ganus, Samuel Solomon Lee, familysearch, ancestry

I once again used 399Retouch to restore the photo and was very pleased with the results..

Rebecca Gainus was born in 1836 and was the daughter of James Ganus and Elizabeth McCluskey. She married Samuel Solomon Lee in 1853 in DeKalb County, Georgia. He was born in 1824 in South Carolina. Together they raised 10 children. You can read more about them at this blog post: Gurganus, Ganus, Ganues and Gaines--What?

Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2016, All rights reserved

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Bridging the Gap

Newspapers can help bridge the gap in records and can give us a glimpse into our ancestor's lives. In the case of Sanford Rainwater, several newspaper articles helped me to learn things I otherwise might never have known about his life, including that he went by the name of Sam. Finding trivial quotes and details about his life was fun. Finding his daughter Jessie was wonderful, but I found even more.

While I am always grateful when my ancestors actually make it into the census and are in plain site, and not hiding behind a woefully miss-spelled, miss-transcribed name, I nevertheless always ache to fill in the gaps between the census enumerator's visits. The last two newspaper articles for Sanford help to do just that.

In the Aransas Pass Progress, dated February 1, 1940 I found the following:
Sam Rainwater Has a Stroke Wednesday 
Sam Rainwater, one of the earlier residents of Aransas Pass and familiar figure here was rushed to a Mathis hospital Wednesday after in a Cage ambulance following a stroke of paralysis. 
The old settler suffered a slight stroke Tuesday and a more severe one on Wednesday. His condition was thought to be critical according to late reports.  
This article provided what his death certificate did not. He had had a minor stroke followed by a more serious stroke and he was recognized as a long time citizen of Aransas Pass.

 And then a week later, this followed:

Aransas Pass Progress
Feb. 8, 1940
Funeral services were held Tuesday afternoon for Sam Rainwater, 74, long-time resident of this coast section and familiar to most people in Aransas Pass for many years, who died in a Mathis hospital Friday afternoon, following a stroke. 
Services were held in the Cage Funeral Home chapel. Burial followed in Prairie View Cemetery. 
He is survived by his wife and two daughters, none of whom could be reached, the funeral home officials said. Rainwater formerly worked for the Terminal Railway as a pile driver, but ill health in recent years forced his retirement. 

Aransas Pass, Sanford Rainwater, Sam Rainwater, Texas, genealogy, ancestry, Jessie Rainwater, obituary
Pile driver at work
Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain 
So although Sam had tried his hand at farming, I now knew that he had also worked as a pile driver for the railway, which was an interesting occupation and not one I had seen among my ancestors before. But the words, "He is survived by his wife and two daughters, none of whom could be reached," hit me hard. Although he had gone to Aransas Pass a single, divorced man, the townspeople were aware that he had been married, and that he had two daughters. Whether or not he saw his daughters often, he had at the very least talked about them enough that people were aware of them, but they could not be reached, and so he had been alone at the end.

Although the newspaper articles shared in my last few posts suggest that Sam had a place in the community, that his daughter Jessie had at least visited him once and stayed for an entire month, it was a newspaper article that once again put him in that very lonely spot at the end of his life. His family could not be reached, they were not there to provide information for his death certificate and they were not at his funeral to say their final goodbyes.

I was grateful to know that there was a funeral, however small or simple. To me, that suggests that there were those who did care and gives me hope that possibly the friends and neighbors whom he had lived amongst for over 40 years had in a way become his family and that perhaps as his family, they came to say farewell to their ole friend Sam.

For further reading about Sanford Rainwater, see previous posts;  Alone, but not Forgotten ,  But Wait! There's More, and Where The Common Feel Famous

 Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2016, All rights reserved

Friday, May 13, 2016

Foto Friday--Finally Meeting Olivia Rainwater Ganus

As I opened the restored photo of my 2nd Great Grandparents, John Monroe Ganus and Olivia Rainwater, I almost felt like I was meeting them for the first time.

Ganus, genealogy, research, photos, 399Retouch, photo restoration
Restored version of John Monroe Ganus and
Olivia Rainwater
Although I had a copy of their photo for many years, it was badly faded and it was difficult to see their faces. Various individuals tried to fix the photo over the years, but there was so little to work with it and it was too difficult. So when Miles at 399Retouch contacted me and offered to restore a photo of my choosing, I couldn't resist and sent him this photo. He accepted the challenge. Miles was great to work with, determined to help me get a better idea of what Olivia looked like and I am happy with what he was able to do.  Thank you Miles! 

My only copy of John Monroe Ganus
and Olivia Rainwater
While I have one other photo of John, this is the only known photo of Olivia.  I am not sure exactly when or where the photo was taken, but Olivia died in 1906 in Oklahoma, so obviously it was prior to that time.

John was born in 1826 in Georgia and Olivia was born in 1831 in Georgia. They married in 1852 and over the next sixty-one years, they lived in Georgia, Arkansas, Alabama and Colorado before finally settling in Oklahoma in the late 1890's.  For more of their story, see Teaching and being taught, Olivia's lesson and On Their Way!

Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2016, All rights reserved

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Where the Common Feel Famous

Every summer we loaded up the ole station wagon and made the trip to Grandma's house. We generally stayed a little over a week, which was just long enough to make the local newspaper. I remember being so excited to see our names in the small town newspaper announcing our visit to our relatives. As a little kid, seeing our names in print made me feel important, if not famous.

Long before the days of Facebook, the newspaper was the place to learn about the goings on in small communities and it is there that I learned more about Sanford and his family. While the newspaper quips about Sanford Rainwater shared in my previous post were fun to find, there were a few unexpected jewels in other editions. One entry from the 20 February 1938 edition of the Aransas Pass Progress read simply as follows:
Mrs. Frank B. Kelly of Richards returned home Sunday after a month's visit here with her father Sam Rainwater. 
Mrs. Frank B. Kelley? I couldn't imagine who she was but was anxious to find out. The 1900 census was the only census showing Sanford with his wife Alice along with children Minnie and Jessie. A search of Texas marriage records on FamilySearch turned up the following for Frank B. Kelly.  I couldn't believe my eyes.

Texas, Marriage Records, Aransas Pass, Weatherford, Sanford Rainwater, Jessie Mae Rainwater, Frank B. Kelley
Texas County Marriage Records, Parker County, Texas
Accessed on FamilySearch.org
Could this be Sanford's missing child, Jessie Rainwater?  Following Sanford Rainwater's divorce from his wife Alice Atkinson, I had been able to find and trace their daughter Minnie, but their youngest child, Jessie, had seemingly disappeared. It didn't help that the only census showing Sanford with his wife and their two children indicated that Jessie was a son. With that lone piece of information I had searched high and low for a male Jessie Rainwater born in Texas about 1898. I had found a few males by that name and approximate age, but with a little research, none of them proved to be the son of Sanford Rainwater and Alice Atkinson.

I was thrilled with this find. Jessie's sister Minnie lived a big part of her married life in Parker County where this Jessie was married. Armed with this information, I was off to learn more about this Jessie.

In addition,  I also now knew that although Sanford lived some distance from his children and ex-wife, he had had at least some contact with his youngest child, Jessie, leading me to believe that they were at least aware of his whereabouts and had possibly maintained some contact with him over the years. Maybe Sanford was not as alone as I had thought.

We may not find many common people on TV or in the movies, but small town newspapers can be a great place to find tidbits about some of our most common ancestors. And for once, luck was on my side as other newspaper articles helped fill in even more about Sanford's life. I can't wait to share more in a coming post.

Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2016, All rights reserved

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Mothers and Grandmothers

ancestry familysearch Mickelsen Ganus Sanford Colorado genealogy
Hazel Mickelsen Ganus
Mother's Day is the perfect day to recognize some of the mothers in my ancestry. Each made a difference to those who knew them during their lifetime, as well as those who followed. Each left a legacy of love, strength and perseverance.

My Grandma Hazel Mickelsen Ganus was in born in1900 to  Rasmus Mickelsen and Elsie Marie Cornum. We loved her fried chicken and lemon pie and knew we could always count on having it at least once when we went to visit. Grandma taught school before marriage and continued until their children were born. When my Grandpa Ganus began to have health problems, she returned to teaching school. I remember being confused by her stubborn determination to not get an electric washing machine and how fearful I was when I helped her do laundry using an old wringer washing machine. I just knew my hand was going to get caught in that wringer! One of my favorite memories of her is a time when she came to visit and she and I sat on the bed and talked long after others had gone to bed. She was a widow for 31 years.

ancestors generations McDaniel Hostetter Colorado genealogy
Mary Leone McDaniel

Grandma Maud McDaniel Hostetter was born in 1902 to William J. McDaniel and Mary Maralda Shawcroft. She married Nephi Glen Hostetter in 1921 and they had nine children.  She raised a large family and always had a large garden. She was passionate about genealogy and instilled in me (and other family members)  a love for those who have gone before. She loved to write and left many stories of her life which have served to inspire and lift her many descendants. Grandma was a wonderful cook and had a gift for making those around her feel loved. She was a master story teller and loved to tell the stories of her ancestors, but she also loved to tell fairy tales and could really make the stories live. She became a widow when she was 57 and never remarried. She died at the age of 89.

genealogy family history Faucett Ganusl family legacy
Sarah E. Faucett Ganus
Great Grandma Sarah E. Faucett Ganus was born in 1864 to James Merritt Faucett and Elmina Bowers in Cassandra, Georgia. She lost her mother when she was 14 years old. A few years later her family left their home in Georgia and migrated to the vastly different climate of Manassa, Colorado. There she met and married widower William Franklin Ganus. No stranger to heartache, she buried two of their children in their first few years of marriage, including their only daughter. In 1897 she and husband Frank packed up their children and belongings and moved to Oklahoma. She was widowed at the age of 42 and was left with three small children to raise. She died just a few short years later at the age of 45.

genealogy family history Shawcroft McDaniel families stories
Mary Maralda Shawcroft

My Great Grandma Mary Maralda Shawcroft McDaniel was born to John Shawcroft and Anne Marie Jensen in 1876 in Fountain Green, Utah.  Her family moved to southern Colorado where she met the love of her life, Will McDaniel whose family had moved there from Tennessee. The community celebrated the marriage of the popular and well loved young couple. When she was 29 years old, their five year old son Elbert became ill and died. Five months later, while still grieving the loss of her son, she lost her husband Will in a work accident. She never remarried but moved in with her parents and cared for her two small children.  She took in laundry, cleaned the church or did whatever work she could find in order to earn a little money. Refusing to give into discouragement about her situation, it is said that no matter how difficult, she never had a negative thing to say about life or others. She took every opportunity to serve and help alleviate the suffering of those around her.

My own mother is thankfully still living and has always been a great example of a woman who loved being a wife and mother. She has always loved a challenge and has never quit learning. She is an incredible seamstress, an excellent cook and has literally made hundreds of quilts for those who needed to know someone cared.

As I look at these women and the challenges they each faced, each has been an example to me. Each played an integral role in who I am and what I believe. Each did their part in teaching the generation that followed about finding joy, living in faith, serving others and working hard.

In addition, I have learned from my these sweet women that life for them, just as it is for me, was full of up and downs. Sadly many of the downs, which include loss, are readily apparent, while the ups are only known if they were recorded by either them or others in their life.

What will our descendants, several generations removed, know about us? Will they have to rely on a few sparse documents or will they have the stories of our lives, told in our own words?

Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2016, All rights reserved

Friday, May 6, 2016

Foto Friday- the Immigrants

Photos without names trouble me. Their faces seem to haunt me, to call to me, asking me to give them a name and tell their stories. My hope is that by sharing these un-named photos that someone will recognize them, help me identify them and hopefully I can then find and tell their story.

I love this picture and for that reason, I included it on my main page . To me it screams immigrant and I am wondering if it is one of my Danish lines. Again, the photo is totally unmarked. While all are equally solemn, I noticed that everyone except the father is looking into the camera. Maybe having the picture taken wasn't his idea of a good time.

What do you think? Is the scarf on the mother's head indicative of their culture or was she just having a bad hair day?

Whoever they are, I would love to be able to save their name with their picture and better yet, learn a little about their story.

Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2016, All rights reserved

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

But Wait! There's More!

Thinking that I had found all that was available about Sanford Rainwater, I put his file away and moved on, but he remained in the back of my mind. There was so much I still didn't know about Sanford and it bothered me. It was almost as if he was nagging me to keep trying.

The slot for an informant on Sanford Rainwater's death certificate had been left blank and that discovery had troubled me. By all appearances, he had spent his last days/weeks/months and years... alone. I first shared his story HERE.

After his divorce following about six years of marriage, Sanford Rainwater and his ex-wife Alice Atkinson Rainwater took up residence in completely different parts of the state. Alice initially returned to Mills County, Texas where some of her family still lived and Sanford moved for a time to Sherman, Texas but ultimately moved 750 miles to settle in Aransas Pass along the coast north of Corpus Christi. Sanford's daughter Minnie married and lived with her husband and
children in Parker County, Texas which was 400 miles from Sanford, a sizable distance in those days.

Denotes some of the counties where Sanford, Alice and their daughter Minnie lived

Sanford's only known sibling, Mary seemingly disappeared following the 1880 census, and Sanford's father, John Rainwater, died in 1890. Sanford's mother, Bargilla, lived with Sanford from the time of his divorce until her death on the 24th of October 1919.  So it appeared that for the remaining 21 years of his life, Sanford had been alone, far from any extended family.  My heart ached for him.

Aransas Pass, Texas, Ancestry,Family History, Sanford Rainwater
Aransas Pass, E.P. Chambers, April 10, 1911, No. 2,  Wikimedia Commons, Original LOC
Sanford Rainwater lived in Aransas Pass from 1920 until his death in 1940 

And then a discovery in a newspaper changed a great deal of what I thought I knew about him. Quite by accident, I stumbled onto first one and then several more newspaper write ups in the Aransas Pass Progress which referred to a Sam Rainwater.

I had taken note that Sanford was listed as Sam on his death certificate, but I had originally dismissed it without much thought, regarding it as information likely provided by someone who didn't know him and therefore didn't know what name he went by. After all, there wasn't even an informant listed on his death certificate, and other basic information such as his address was left blank. Additionally, he was listed as Sanford on every census entry during his entire lifetime. Census entries revealed that while there were other Rainwaters living in the area at the time, none were his close family and none had names even remotely similar to either Sanford or Sam. Everything seem to indicate that Sam Rainwater's death certificate was for "my" Sanford Rainwater. Eventually further research would confirm that.

As I searched the newspaper collection to see if there were other entries for Sam Rainwater living in Aransas Pass, I was pleasantly surprised to find more entries and it became apparent that Sam and Sanford were one and the same. I was excited to find entries that helped me to learn a few more details to round out the last years of his life.

Among other things, I discovered that Sanford was not as "invisible" as I had initially assumed. I learned that light hearted things he said sometimes found their way into the local newspaper. People have always liked to have fun with the Rainwater name and such was the case back then as well. The first mention I found was in the March 31, 1935 Aransas Pass Progress newspaper and simply stated:
Sam Rainwater, rejoicing over the shower. Well why shouldn't a Rainwater?
Then on August 25, 1938 he was quoted again. This time it said:
SAM RAINWATER: I never heard a storm going as fast as the one that's suppose to be near Haiti right now. Well, I don't care where it hits, just so it don't hit here!
One final trivial entry was found in the July 20, 1939 edition of the Aransas Pass Progress and was located under the "Have You Heard?" column.
.......Sam Rainwater has a pair of scissors which have been in use for over a 100 years........ 
Apparently news could be  s l o w  some days in Aransas Pass. That last entry made me scratch my head and wonder if there were really reporters who looked for that type of news or exactly how they came by that type of information? It reminded me of an Andy Griffith episode where Opie and his buddy Howie skulked around town, eavesdropping and listening around corners for any little thing townspeople said and then included it in their school newspaper.

While seemingly trivial in content, these simple entries nevertheless make me smile as they confirm that Sanford or Sam as he was apparently known, held a place in his community. People knew who he was and his simple quips and details about his life sometimes found their way into the local newspaper. Maybe Sanford was different from the man I had initially envisioned.

While fun to find, these entries essentially served to confirm that he was there and that others knew him.  I discovered several other entries which provided more significant information, information which made all of the difference in what I now know about Sanford,  information which I will share in upcoming posts.

Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2016, All rights reserved