MLT: Grandparents and Parents

[Feel free to provide me feedback using the comment feature (below). I will consider them for my next draft. Thanks! Bertie.]

            Bertha Spear Scott, died when Prudence Estelle Scott (Dugger), my mom, was four years old.  Apparently it was some kind of blood poisoning after a miscarriage.  She left four young children; Edgar, Ora, Prudence, and Grace.  She had met Grandfather, Andrew Scott, at the University of Arkansas where they both were students.  She was musical and religious.  She played the piano for the Methodist Church and Sunday School.

            Grandfather later married Gladys Hamman and they had John, Randolph, Billy Ray, Gene, Jimmy, and Jackie Dean. Plus Mildred, Beulah Lee, and Betty Rea.  There was also a set of twins after Betty Rea, who died at birth.  Ora died at age 16 of appendicitis.  The doctor (They made house calls in those days) put her in the Horse drawn wagon and raced to the hospital, but going over the railroad track her appendix ruptured.  No one had ever heard of antibiotics in those days.

           We did not see Grandfather Scott very often because he lived so far away.  My first memory of him was when he visited us in Pacific Beach. He was there for about three or four days and the whole time the fog never lifted.  So he said he was going to go home and tell everyone that the Pacific Ocean was no bigger than the Arkansas River. J

           We went to visit him one Christmas when I was about four.  I remember being impressed with all the children, who were our aunts and uncles even though some of them were younger than I was.  Also the farm house had a wishing well except they used it to draw water and carry it to the house.  The privy was on a path outside, the stereotype outhouse.  At night they had a big jug or bowl that all the kids peed into and it was emptied the next morning.  ( I didn’t like that very much.)  The only warm room was the one with the fireplace.  When it was bedtime the kids slept crosswise in the double beds, four or five in each.  Leaving the warm room to go to bed, I thought I would freeze to death.  There were several quilts on the bed but it took a while for us to get the covers warm enough to keep us warm.

           Grandfather’s farm was a working farm.  They milked around 100 cows by hand. Modern milking machines had not been invented yet.  He also grew all of their food plus produce to sell.  He had quite a few acres and leased more of what he called “river bottom” land which was rich and fertile and gave good crops.  He also had studied Agriculture at the University of Arkansas so I think he knew about as much as anyone about good farming.

           When I was around 15 years old and the war was finally over, we went back to the farm again for a Christmas visit. The farm was pretty much the same.  Some of the kids had grown up, married, served in the navy or marines. Beulah Lee had two babies, Beverly and Barbara Rozelle.  Her husband was still in the military.

I was impressed by the kitchen set up.  In the kitchen the women (who still carried in their water from the well), prepared a huge breakfast of eggs, bacon, sausage, hot biscuits and gravy, sometimes pork chops, oatmeal, potatoes, pancakes, and much more.  The next room was long and narrow and held the longest dining table I have ever seen.  It was kind of like a picnic table only about four or five times as long, and with benches on each side.  They fed not only this large family but the farm hands too.  The mornings were crisp and cold, but that kitchen was warm.

           On this visit my uncles decided to teach me to milk a cow.  So I had the stool and the bucket, but had to work on technique.  I wasn’t doing too well and with only around a couple of inches of milk, I gave up.  I backed up and turned to speak to someone, and that cow kicked the bucket over.  That was the end of my milkmaid career.

           I visited my Arkansas relatives again the summer I was 21.  I was on my way to Saugatuck, Michigan via Chicago.  Grandfather teased me and said I would be married before the summer was over.  I said there was no way.  However I did meet the love of my life that summer.  I stopped back in Arkansas on my way home, unmarried. However not quite a year later when I had graduated from College and Jim had finished his first year of graduate school we did get married. And that summer Jim and I did go to Arkansas to see the relatives.

          In March of 1958, my grandfather suffered a stroke and died a few days later.  My son, Michael, had just been born and Mom had come to help out.  Jim took her to the airport in Davenport, Iowa (we lived in Lost Nation, Iowa) and she flew down to Van Buren for his funeral.  He always said if you retired to the rocking chair you’d die.  But I think he found out it is pretty hard to keep working hard when you are older, and you have to slow down.
 
[Next I will ramble on about my paternal grandparents. Thank you for your continued support and comments.]
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About Bertie

Retired and luvin' it.
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3 Responses to MLT: Grandparents and Parents

  1. Josie says:

    I would love to hear more details on how you met and was courted by grandpa and more about your time in college, like what you studied.  What were you favorite classes?  What was your favorite pastime as a child?  Did you prefer doing it alone or with someone else?  Who gave you your name and why?  Did you have a family nickname?  How did you get it?
     

  2. Michele Waltz says:

    Hi, cousin Bertie! My grandmother, Grace Scott Farmer, was a sister of your grandfather Dolf (Randolph) Scott. I remember my grandmother saying that after Bertha died, she spent a lot of time taking care of her kids until Dolph remarried. Because of that, Grace felt especially close to them. I grew up in New York (state), but visited my grandmother from time time to time. I remember Scotty (Edgar) and his wife Alma very well and met Grace (named for my grandmother, but she had a family nickname–Pug?) several times.

    • Bertie says:

      Hi, cousin Michele, I always love to hear from family. Aunt Grace and Uncle Doc were really special people. Every time I visited Van Buren, I visited them too. Uncle Doc was always so funny. He and my Dad teased each other a lot.

      My grandfather was Andrew Scott. He was married to Bertha Spear Scott who died after four children. I was named after her. He did remarry later and his wife Gladys had many more children. (She lived to 99 and said she had her chocolate to the end, a real inspiration for all of us. The first family consisted of Ora, Edgar, Prudence, and Grace (nicknamed Mug). Ora died at age 16 of appendicitis. The doctor put her in a buggy to take her to the hospital and when he crossed a railroad track, it burst. The second family were John, Randolph, Billy Ray. Gene Jimmy, Jacky Dean, and Betty Rea, and Mildred Ruth, and Beulah Lea who died this year.. I heard that Gladys had twins after that, but they died at birth.

      Uncle Randolph lived in Memphis and was a cotton broker. One time he took us out to eat at the Hotel del Coronado and registered as Randolph Scott. We got the royal treatment because he was good looking with white hair and they thought he was the movie star. LOL He had one daughter, Mable Claire who became a school teacher until she died of cancer and was buried in Harlingen, Texas. He and she are both buried at La Feria , Texas, side by side. I think her husband and children moved back up north after she died. Jim and I bought plots next to them when we lived in Texas but now that we live in Washington, we don’t plan to use them.

      My Mom’s sister Grace who was named after your grandmother passed away a few years ago. In fact all of those two generations, except
      Jimmy and Jacky Dean, are hopefully waiting for our generation in heaven.

      I have a picture your grandmother gave me of the first child born to her son who was a writer in New York. I would guess that was your father, but I never heard if he had more children. Your Grandmother also knitted a beautiful afghan for me in my favorite color, blue. And her sister Mae knitted a pair of bed socks out of the same yarn. I cherish them.

      I’m delighted to hear from you and hope we can keep in touch. I’d love to hear more about you and your family.

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