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Archive for May, 2015

Some Call It Junk

Leo and Margaret

Leo and Margaret

I’m the family genealogist. In my closets you can find boxes of what some people might refer to as junk. However, whenever they want a picture or fact from the past who do they call?

Some of the items mean little to anyone but me. When my mom gave me her grandmother’s Bible, tucked into a chapter sat a postcard just waiting for me to read. My Great-uncle Leo was in France during World War I. While there he sent a postcard to the woman he left behind. Although a beautiful scene adorned the front, it amused me to think he professed his love to her on a piece of cardboard that would travel from the streets of Paris, France, to rural Bremen, Oklahoma . A love note that would be read by dozens of people before it reached her door. This was a period in time when couples refrained from demonstrating their affection in public.But the rules have to be bent when you don’t know if today is your last day on this earth. “I love you,” he said for all to see. I loved her too, my Great-aunt Margaret.

It’s very comforting to know Aunt Margaret was loved by her husband. That there were good times shared as they farmed the Oklahoma land ravaged by drought and blowing dust. Great-granddad Phipps made the Cherokee Run and lived in a cave on the land until he could build his family a house. This parcel of red dirt stayed in the family until Uncle Leo’s only child, Mary A., died childless.

Aunt Margaret was more like a grandmother to me. I loved her like one. In my boxes of memories there are very few pictures of her and Leo. The ones I have are treasured. You may find it hard to find Bremen, Oklahoma on the map. We drove there for Memorial Day several years ago and put flowers on the Phipps family graves. They all rest together in a rural cemetery where barbed wire keeps out the cows. How fitting for Okie pioneers.

I’m thinking of you today with love.

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