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Saturday, February 24, 2007

Family slideshow

BlueStalking Reader has written a post about her family's roots in Mississippi. Very Southern. My family also has Southern roots--they traveled through Alabama, Georgia, and Mississippi on their journies that ended with some of the family in North Louisiana in the 1850's.

The boys in the wagon: my Uncle Buddy, my dad (Laddie), and Jackie Boy (the local bootlegger's son) about 1928-1929. Pretty barren landscape, but my grandmother's chickens are there in the background. My paternal grandfather Walter worked at a sawmill, sold insurance, and eventually owned a small lumber company/hardware store; my grandmother (Jennie Calhoun Corry McDowell) had attended the teacher's college in Natchitoches and taught school. Her father and grandfather were teachers and had founded schools in Arkansas and Louisiana in the 1800's.

One of my favorite stories is when Laddie and Jackie Boy decided to use the bottle capper to cap empty beer bottles. Jackie Boy's father was not pleased with the waste of beer bottles. My grandmother didn't approve of drinking, so Laddie caught it from Jackie Boy's father and then from his mother. Their reasoning was slightly different.

Another tasteful setting: my grandfather (on the left) with my Aunt Carmen, and his brother and his daughter around 1910. I don't see any chickens, maybe Miss Jennie was feeding them, but the fence around the chicken yard is there. (BSR - "get over there in front of the chicken wire, and I'll take your picture.")

The picture with the question mark is either my Dad's Aunt Ruby or his Aunt Ruth (I think).

Walter and Jennie had 6 children and little money, but all six went to college. The three girls all became teachers. Laddie, Buddy, and Mary (the music teacher) are the only surviving children.

Carmen was the oldest (born in 1909); Laddie was the youngest child (1924), born when Walter and Jennie were around 40; Walter was 67 when I was born. Since we lived in Texas and Wyoming and Arkansas as I was growing up, we didn't see them often, and when we visited, my brothers and I were always with the cousins. I wish I could have known them better, but my memories of them are slight. The chicken yard, feeding the chickens, and looking for eggs in the hen house (I was not a country child) are some of my most vivid memories.


  1. Laddie grew into a strapping boy, now, didn't he? Wowzers.

    Very nice, Jenclair. I enjoyed that very much, and the slide show was great! Now of course I'll have to look into that for my own blog, you realize.

    I hope the storms today didn't impact you where you are, but I know your town was hit. Am sending all best wishes no one you know was hurt.

  2. Wow! What a nice post. I'm a little slow--I was reading your post and thinking it would be nice to have photos--duh. Maggie, the not so smart librarian. ;P

  3. BSR- Laddie was a lot taller than his older brother and always an athlete.

    The slide show is pretty cool, huh? And easy.

    A tornado touched down in a subdivision several miles away. But boy, Arkansas caught the worst of it! If it had been my neighborhood, I'd never have known because when I got home from Laddie's, I took a benadryl induced nap!

    Maggie - I didn't arrange things very well. It was my first time with the slide show, and I had to ditch a couple of versions as I edited! Then I was too tired to do any more. :) As with everything else, it is really easy after you do it, but I was just tired. And, uh, lazy... :(

  4. What a cool slide show. Thank you for sharing the photos. I especially like the one with the boys in the wagon. So cute. Oh and thanks for the links to the librarian blogs. Will have to visit them.

  5. iliana - The slide show is easy to do, and I couldn't resist playing with it. Both librarian blogs are funny as..., well, very funny.

  6. Sheri - my daughter and her family live in Baton Rouge. My best friend lives in New Orleans; bless her heart, she and her family have had a rough row to hoe since Katrina.

  7. Sheri - my daughter and her family live in Baton Rouge. My best friend lives in New Orleans; bless her heart, she and her family have had a rough row to hoe since Katrina.