Tuesday, January 15, 2013


It Is Time to Can Corn ... The Clan All Gathered In

Thursday, September 18, 1941.  Because of the wonderful rains we had received throughout the year, we had a great crop of sweet corn.  Donnie was just 11 days past her first birthday.  Daddy had planted a good patch of sweet corn, and now the Family and Friends had come in for the harvest.

The two new grain bins were in place.  A lean-to shed had been put in place on the south side.  That was our new milking barn.  I think it held about 6 cows at a time.  It had a new tin roof.  Water lines had been run up the hill from Grandpa's old hand dug well.  A new hay barn had been added onto the east end, which also gave room for extra cattle or calves... sometime a few sheep and a horse or two.

The cow lot fence came straight east from the mail box along the south side of the driveway to the corner of the bull pen.  There it turned south east to the corner of the grain bin.  There was a large gate which opened either into or out of the cow lot.  There was a large feed trough inside.

Daddy and the men had brought saw-horses and covered them with boards to serve as work tables.  Mother and the Women had brought wash tubs and all things necessary for canning large quantities of sweet corn.  I was so busy with my part of the chores, I don't remember the bond fires under the big black kettles.  I know there were several people and children all around.  Everyone had their own assignments:  picking corn, bringing it to the work sight, stripping off the husks, washing the ears and cleaning out the silks.  That was my job.  I was appointed to be helper to Amy Walker.  I think I was 3 years, 8 months, and 24 days old.  That was the day I learned all things necessary for picking corn silks out of ears of corn.  You really had to pay attention.  Amy assured me that we just could not leave a silk in the corn.  Others would be cutting it off the cobs and we absolutely must do our part the very best.

Somehow the day ended.  The prepared harvest of sweet corn was all taken away.  The sawhorses and table boards were all put in place.  The people left.  Our evening chores were finished.  We must have gone inside for clean-up and supper...wash up and go to bed.  One could not go to bed though without first kneeling beside the bed for "Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep."  And then kiss Mother and Daddy on the cheek.  I don't remember many of those ending events that day.

The next day, I remember going to Mother Shumaker's house.  I don't remember waking up, or getting dressed, or eating breakfast, or driving there.  What I do remember is walking into her front room, then going through the bed room door to Aunt Bonnie's room.  And there was Mother lying in the bed, covered up to her chin, and on her shoulder was the face of a new little baby sister sticking out from under the covers, also!  Someone told us, she is Pallie Sue!  How proud we were.  Now we were three.  It was Friday, September 19, 1941 and I was 3 years, 8 months and 25 days old.


  1. Oh! I'm so glad you got a baby sister when you wre 3 years, 8 months and 25 days old!

  2. I'm so happy I got to be your litte sister. Even though we often told Mother to make you "Stop" picking on us, I sure felt safe having you for my big brother.

  3. This story's as sweet as the corn! ;-)

  4. Well, Thank you Pallie and Lydia. I do apologize for picking on the three little sisters. I can assure you, that I don't remember ever being picked on by the little sisters. And I do remember a lot of play days that went really well. and then there were the many summer days chopping or picking cotton.

  5. Carlton, do you remember hoeing cotton the day after I'd had a tooth pulled. I sat down to tie my shoe. You were across the field and thought I had fainted from the heat. You took us home. It was before noon. I didn't have to go back to the field that afternoon. The real thing was YOU had fainted in the dentist office when they pulled MY tooth. I loved getting a nap that hot afternoon! Thanks for the break.

  6. Well, of course, any time!!! No, I don't remember the part in the field. I do remember driving you to the dentist. I think we took Papa's pickup. And yes, I do remember getting really woozy when he put the needle on your gum and it turned white. I don't remember fainting, of course. Have a good night.