Monday, January 03, 2011

Marion's Prairie Prayers

My first post of 2011 is only tangentially related to Foxcroft but it is related. I've actually referred to Marion before, specifically here:

Heirloom peas

Aunt Marion was my father's aunt. She was my grandmother's closest sister, three years her junior. We always saw Marion and her husband, Bill when visiting at grandma's in the summer. They would come and play 6 handed pinochle with my grandparents and parents. Marion's home in Marcus, Iowa had a very large garden. Aunt Marion had a loom in her basement and wove rag rugs. After Bill died Marion always came to Thanksgiving at our house with Grandma and Grandpa. Marion was a favorite of mine.

Apparently Marion was a lot like both Bess and Helen, in even more ways than I have already related. (gardening, handwork). Marion and Helen were contemporaries, Helen was born in 1911, Marion in 1912. Both married later in life and apparently both were dedicated diarists. I had no idea Marion kept a journal. The article listed below is written by one of my dad's first cousins, whom I've never met.

Marion's Prairie Prayers

Considerably less educated than Helen, Marion, like my grandmother, was sent to live as a "cook girl" with a farm family at age 14 after the completion of 8th grade. Marion's journal seems to be far more insightful than anything I've read in either Helen's or Bess' journals. Of course I need to remember that I still have over 1,000 letters yet to read as well as what is at the UI main library from Bess and Helen.

As my brother commented to me " interesting to get a glimpse of the backstory I'd always wondered about..."

I'd love to get a transcript of Marion's writings and line them up with Bess and Helen's.


StuccoHouse said...

I loved reading that article. Thanks for the link.

Mike said...

You're certainly welcome, Stucco, I probably should post pictures of Helen and Marion, once I stopped to think about it, they looked a bit alike...

Jim said...

A trip down memory lane is always nice, thanks for the link. Lovely article.