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Summers in Winslow with Grammie

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March 29, 2010 by wcobserver

The Observer History Project encourages readers to submit original articles of historical interest about the Seventy-one South portion of Washington County.  We print some of them and save them all. As a community newspaper, we understand our role is also as community historian.In issue #1 we published Beverly Stout’s article about the Brentwood Cemetery. In issue #2 we printed a letter from Mary Kobiella, former owner of Kobie’s Cakes & Bakery in West Fork. Issue #3 included an article previously published in the West Fork Zephyr by Susan McCarthy about the house on the corner of Main and McKnight built by Jacob Yoes. The house was razed last year after years of controversy. West Fork resident Milton Jones’ “Vignettes from the Past” gave us a glimpse of growing up in rural Arkansas in the ‘40s. It was included in issue #4.

This week we look at some memories of Winslow provided by Linda Rickman Dysart who wrote a charming memoir recounting her time as a young girl visiting “Grammie”, (Hazel and Lilburn Center) in Winslow in the 1950’s.

Here is an excerpt:

“…Maybe a place to start is recalling a summer Saturday with Grammie. The early morning sounds, as I woke up in the feather bed back in the little bedroom, where the wake-up crow of the rooster and hearing Grammie in the kitchen cooking Lilburn’s breakfast as she whistled “Rescue the Perishing”. I can almost smell the bacon and eggs cooking and the black coffee perking. We always had breakfast at the little cream and green porcelain table in the kitchen. The mis-matched chairs invited you to sit down and enjoy Grammie’s breakfast complete with hot biscuits and molasses. After breakfast and morning chores were done, we sorted the Avon order that jack Stockburger had delivered that week. This was done over in the dining room on the big Round oak table. I can still remember some of those names that Grammie would write on those white sacks as we filled the order and dropped in some samples as a treat.  There were orders for Elsie Fritch, Edna Pense, Ruby Jarnagan, Billie and Norma Hunter, Sue Center, Opal Foster, Gracie and Shirley Donaldson, Carolyn Gall; and the names went on and on. When all the orders were filled and boxed up, we were about ready to start to town. Of course, not before Grammie rolled up her stockings above her knees, powdered her face at the little dresser, combed through her reddish hair and hung her apron on the back of a chair. She’d slip into those grandma wedge shoes and we were headed for town!

Usually we’d Avon along the way; maybe stop at Foster’s or Mrs. Bromley’s. In town, we’d park near the depot and walk over to Hugh Smith’s Grocery. He and hazel always had a smile and welcomed us in… we would walk across the tracks and around the depot over to Jarnagan’s grocery. After greeting the men sitting on the “gossip bench”, we’d go inside and there at the back of the store, minding the register, was Ruby with a smile, pencil behind her ear, and a big ‘Hello, Hazel’…”

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