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John Hilyard Family ca. 1909

Friday, January 27, 2017

My Grandmother's Calendars

Many years ago, my dad gifted me an old trunk from his side of the family, full of old stuff. I looked through it, and treasured what I had in store to look through.
Old Hilyard Family Trunk

I recently was able to move the trunk from an impossible-to-access place in a closet to my bedroom. Opening it, I found my grandmother's old wall calendars. I was aware they were in there, but wasn't sure what to do with them. Seeing their fragile condition, I knew they needed some help.
Disintegrating before our very eyes!

I called over my partner-cousin in genealogy crime, and we went to work. It only took us a few hours to sort and photograph/digitize all the pages. After that, I stored the originals in scrapbooking boxes, labelled in case I need to see them again.
Neatly stored!

Now, all of the calendars are stored on my Google drive, accessible from any computer, any time.

So, what's on the calendars? Reading through them, we compared them to Facebook. Just day-to-day recordings of what my grandmother was doing, who was born, who died, who came to visit. The range? From 1932 to 1976! Some years are missing, but what a treasure. We looked up our birthdays, and there they were. Not only was my birth recorded, but the fact that my grandmother baked bread that day.

There is very little in the way of worldly happenings, but I spotted this entry:

World War II made the calendar
Just picking any page at random:

Look at all the canning she did! She notes it was hot. Remember this--she did all the cooking and canning on a woodstove. No fans, no A/C.  Fifty-four quarts of her own apricots, then she notes that she canned her sister's the next day. On the 14th, they had 42 people to dinner. My mom says she would feed the men, then the women, then the kids. My grandma turned 62 that month. My hat is off to one tough lady.

I see my grandpa had a wreck on the 7th and broke a rib. Later that week his sons mowed and plowed the garden for him. I'll have to ask my dad about that.

Dig around for old calendars and journals, diaries and such. So much rich daily detail in there! It also makes me consider what record I'm leaving.

1 comment:

  1. You've left a wealth of information and data for relatives, Mariah, her children, their children, etc. Absolutely priceless.