For those of you who may have stumbled upon this blog thinking that you were going to be reading about Albert Einstein, or physics theories, or anything along those lines – you might want to just click away from this page. I am using more than a bit of Artistic License with the title. This blog is born from the brainchild of Amy Johnson Crow over at www.nostorytoosmall.com who ran a 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks challenge in 2014. Sadly, I missed out on that one. This then, is me stepping up to the challenge for 2015. I can’t think of a better place to start than with my grandmother, Elsie Marcella HACKATHORN.
Elsie is my maternal grandmother, born on the first day of January, 1908 in Bergholz, a little coal-mining town in east central Ohio. It was the first year ever that the ball that signifies a new year was dropped at Times Square in New York City, the American flag only had 45 stars, Theodore Roosevelt was President, and the horseless carriage was just starting to catch on. She married David MOORE in 1923 in Wellsburg, WV. She told me once that she was really happy to have lived in the time that she did because when she was born “there were hardly any cars and now you can go to the moon and back”.
When people remember Grandma, they usually always mention that she was always smiling. When I remember her, I remember sitting knee-to-knee with her while she taught me to knit and crochet. She was left-handed, I was not, and it was like learning in a mirror. She made her own patterns for the dresses that she sewed for herself, made patchwork quilts, worked crossword puzzles, and read. But, most importantly, she liked to talk about family long gone. She wasn’t the hug you, bake you cookies, and fuss over you kind of grandmother, she was the talk to you like a person kind of grandmother and that’s what I liked about her.
I could write page upon page about Grandma, but the point in introducing her now is to give her credit for my own interest in our family’s history and in genealogy. When you’re younger, you believe that you’re going to remember everything about a story. How sad it is when you realize that you should have written down or tape recorded those conversations because they fade and disappear with time. And then they’re just…gone.
The same is true of people. If there is nothing written down, no photographs, nothing to jog the memory then they, too, fade from memory and disappear. I wish that my grandmother was still with us, especially with DNA testing. She would be so very interested! I could also tell her about how far I’ve come in tracking down some elusive ancestors lately and she would be delighted.
And, so…this year, this blog, I’m dedicating to you Granny.