Thursday, April 25, 2013

Digging Thru The Past

I'm afraid the truth of my activities over the past 6 weeks is rather boring: did my taxes, had some dental work done, renewed the tags on Seeker, and did some geocaching/munzee'ing.  See, I told you, really boring everyday stuff.  Well, the geocaching wasn't all that boring since I was out trying to find a few pretty difficult caches - one of which required scaling large boulders and repelling back down to the ground. 

PhotoYes, the helmet had a Mohawk and a mounted camera/light.  That would be because I was hiking/climbing/geocaching with my old friend Grant Sullivan who is a bigger technogeek than me.  He is also an experienced climber with tons of gear for that too (and knowing if I fell I was out with an EMT as an added assurance).  For all you geocachers in my reading audience, I can now say I am fully FIZZY!  The rest of you just go on thinking I'm fully CRAZY.  Both viewpoints are correct.

I would post a picture from the dental experiences but it would not be pretty.  Let's just agree that my smile says it all.  And the updated tags on Seeker mean I can legally get back out on the road and head out which is what I will be doing later today.  Where to you ask?  Well, I get on 65 and head south then turn west on 40 and .........

Mother and Daddy in the 1940s
So a lot of my time has been spent in libraries, cemeteries, and state/county archives.  Yes, the old family history search.  Seems that whenever I am with my cousin Madeline Ruth we dig into the past.  She makes it fun for me and after a little of this stuff it gets addictive.  On my mother's side of the family (where Madeline and I are related) most of the history is in Sumner or Davidson County in Tennessee or Allen and Simpson County in Kentucky.  On my father's side it's all in Wilson County, Tennessee or in Nashville (Davidson County).  One fun discovery was my parents' marriage license.  Now Daddy was born in 1923 and Mother in 1926 but in August of 1942 they both signed a legal document swearing they were 21!  Oh if only I had know that when I was growing up.  How many times did my mother tell me it was wrong to lie???

Sheriff Wade pouring out moonshine
My mother's parents, Roy and Ruth Wade, started out in Nashville but his work with Genesco moved them around Tennessee, Kentucky, and even Illinois.  Finally, in 1962 he left the factory and went into local politics becoming the Sumner County sheriff for 6 years.  He was a big man and my "little granny" as we called her was not quite 5 foot tall.  Sheriff Wade was tough on folks cutting corners to avoid paying taxes, especially moonshiners.  I found lots of newspaper stories about him busting up stills and arresting folks for selling cigarettes illegally. 

We were not a really close knit family, but there were times when we all pulled together.  Usually there wasn't a camera around to record those moments (here is where you stop and explain to your children/grandchildren that there was a time when cameras and phones were 2 separate objects: one required dialing a number and the other required inserting a roll of film - this will no doubt confuse them).  I did find a fun picture of a large group of us working on a project together
Christmas 1976: Mike and Ronnie are putting together a rocking chair for James Ray, Ronnie's firstborn.  That's me and Mary (Ronnie's wife) supervising while Linda (Mike's wife) and Mother sit at the table providing moral support.  James Ray is in the upper right corner being held by either Daddy or my brother Clint.  James Ray really loved that rocking chair.


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