~ The pieces are all sewn together, stitched with love.........and a quilt tells a story and the story is our past ~
The Arrowood family immigrated from England to Maryland in the 1700's. They went south, eventually settling in the mountains of North Carolina. Later , some went further south, into the Piedmont of North Carolina, in search of work and a better way of life.
I am in search of my family.
I search for those that came before me, and lived their lives as best they could. I am in search of their stories, how they lived, and how they loved.
I shared this love of seeking the past with my Dad, sharing each new finding with him, the thrill in his heart intermingling with mine. I continue this search in his honor, and hope to know these people of ours when I join up with them all in heaven.
~ Steve Lewis Arrowood 1932-2008 ~
Come with me, back to a simpler time and place. A place far removed from the hectic pace of today. To a time when life was hard, but the rewards were great. When your quality of life was determined by your own sweat, your own toil, and your own ingenuity.
Would you like a glass of sweet tea? Let's sit out on the porch where we will catch the sweetly scented breeze of summertime. Maybe Grandma will fry up some of her wonderful chicken... Time slows here.
"We shape our lives not by what we carry with us, but what we leave behind."
~You live as long as you are remembered.~
"Our most treasured family heirlooms are our sweet family memories. " Author: Unknown
"But those who came before us will teach you. They will teach you from the wisdom of former generations."
Saturday, April 24, 2010
Behind my grandparent’s home were three cedar trees, growing in a row.
I watched them grow over the years, always remembering what my grandmother told me about those trees.
Maude told me that the trees were her and her sisters. They had slowly become to symbolize her relationships with her sisters, I think. It was her way of keeping her sisters close to her side.
Each standing tall, side by side, weathering the storms of life.
The first one on the end, was tall and slim, towering above the other two. Proper and standing tall.
This tree was Ollie.
The next one was smaller, petite in stature. Perfect, but small.
That one was Buna.
The last one was rounder, more “fat” that the other two trees.
Grandma told me that this tree, was her. She would smile and chuckle a bit over the 'fat' part.
Maude Rose Hull Arrowood, my precious grandmother.
Those trees stood side by side for a number of years, watching the seasons come and go.
Winter’s harsh winds would blow, followed by the sweetness of spring. The seasons came and went, and so the years passed by. Those trees stood, sturdy, resilient, and side by side.
As the years passed, I would always check the trees, just to see how they were doing.
My grandmother was a "one of a kind" and I pray that she left just a tad of herself in me.
My grandmother passed in March of 1982.
Another sister has been laid to rest today. We mourn her loss.
She was another "one of a kind" lady.
Great Aunt Ollie has gone on to her rewards and resides now, among the angels in heaven.
She remained always, prim and proper as a lady should be, always such in the eyes of my grandmother. She adored her sisters.
She leaves behind a family that loves her dearly and will surely miss her.
The end of an era comes with the passing of our grandparents.
The world simply moves on.
Ollie married a young fellow named William Miller Smith on January 1, 1934.
William Miller Smith’s father was Edgar Birch Smith, born 1888, and his mother was Mary Pearl Suggs, born in 1887. They were all born in Rutherford County, North Carolina.
The 1930 census shows the Smith family living in Gastonia.
Edgar is 43 years old, Mary Pearl is 42, brother Walton is 18, and Miller is shown as age 16.
Edgar was a Barber by trade.
William Miller and Ollie Hull had two sons, Doug and Dave.
William Miller was injured in a automobile accident on September the 17th, 1937. He lingered for two days and sadly, finally succumbed to cerebral bleeding on Sept. 19, 1937.
He is buried with the other family members in Hollywood Cemetery, Gastonia.
Ollie was left alone to raise her two boys. She did a mighty fine job.
She was a sturdy woman with a strong will, no doubt, to raise those kids in the 1930’s, alone.
She was quick with a broad smile and enjoyed life to the fullest.
She lived a long, happy life and now she is in heaven greeting all those that went before her.
I am sad at her passing, but I am reminded of those cedar trees and now two of them are standing side by side once again. That makes me smile.
We will all meet up again, one day, and stand there in the shade of those sweet smelling cedars in heaven.
Rest in peace, Dear Aunt Ollie. We will miss you.
John Arrowood and Frances Fannia Barrett lost a child in April of 1864.
John himself would also die in July of that same year. Fanny suffered tremendous pain over these losses,
John passed on July 24, 1864, while residing on Rock Creek, in Magnetic City, Mitchell County, North Carolina.
Their son, Wesley died, most likely, in a makeshift hospital, not far from the battle.
He died nearly 16 days after suffering his wounds, no doubt in much pain.
He was born on July 01, 1844, the next to the youngest child born to this couple.
He was nearly eight years younger than his brother, Samuel.
Wesley mustered in to Company C, of the 13th Tennessee Calvary Regiment. This regiment formed on October 1, 1863. Six months later Wesley was killed from wounds he sustained in his first major battle of the Civil War. The first battle fought by this regiment was on April 12, 1864. Wesley died on April 28, 1864.
I located his grave at the Nashville National Cemetery, in Tennessee. He is buried in Plot: J, 14087. His marker is surrounded by a sea of others that gave their all for their country. True heros, without a doubt.
Wesley was only nineteen years old. Imagine seeing your young son, go off to war, never knowing if you would see him again. I wonder if she ever able to go to his gravesite?
Fanny herself passed eight years later, on October 01, 1872. She is buried in Happy Valley, Tennessee at the tiny Boone Cemetery.
She rests up on the side of the mountain, overlooking a beautiful vista, the valley below her. The wind blows through the trees gently and the birds sing overhead. My mind takes me there ever so often, it is a treasured memory.
I cannot imagine a more peaceful resting place, than the one in Happy Valley.