Monday, February 22, 2010

A Wedding...the first of many

On April 12, 1935 the wedding between Grace Prestwood and Douglas Setzer was entered into the public record of Caldwell County, North Carolina. This is the story that my grandmother told me about their wedding day.

The dress she had chosen to wear had a taffeta skirt. The morning of the ceremony, she had a cousin who was helping her to dress. This cousin, who I sadly do not have a name for, offered to press the skirt of the dress.

About the time that one of her brothers came to inform her that my grandfather was coming down the road, the cousin came in crying. The iron was too hot and burned a large mark in the dress. So she had to be married in an every day dress. I'm sure that it didn't matter one iota to him what she was wearing. See the picture up there?
That was taken after six children and a few grandchildren passed through their portals. See how they look at each other? That is love, my friends.

Now, some people are going to jump up and down and get flustered because they're heard this and they've heard that....and HE did this and HE did that and she PUT UP with all manner of nonsense. And I am here to say this: they loved each other. More on that later.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

In the beginning...

My paternal grandmother, Grace Messick Prestwood was born October 1, 1913. Her father Robert Lee Prestwood was a Baptist preacher who was commonly known as "Preacher Bob". In the manner of many girls at the time, she was given her mother Rose's maiden name of "Messick" as a middle name. There were eight other children born into the family after my grandmother. Some I remember vaguely, having met them a time or two as a child. A few I knew as a young adult. I have very real memories of them.

My last memories of her are from the years when she was older, frail but still with the shy smile of a girl. She suffered a variety of ailments and they combined to keep her at times bedridden and home bound except for trips to the doctor. My memories of her extend through the years of my childhood, if you come back I will tell you more. For now, all you need to know that she was the daughter of a strict Baptist preacher.

Stanley Douglas Setzer, my paternal grandfather was born the 6th of November 1910. He was the youngest child of his family. My grandmother told me once that when he was younger he had "dark hair and a twinkle in his eye." I think he was the kind of boy who worries the parents of daughters, if you know what I mean. I've heard rumblings about bootlegging and other excitement that would send a chill down the spine of any parent.

It must have been interesting, the preacher's daughter and the headstrong handsome man.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

There is a Picture

I love this picture. It captures my father and his siblings perfectly. I can look at it and see in their childhood image a glimpse of the adult I know and love. They are the Setzers, an American family and this is my version of their story.

I start that way because, should anyone read this, and I hope they will. I want them to understand from the beginning that this is MY version of things. Based solely on my memories and impressions good, bad or indifferent. If anyone else wants to take the time to write their version of things they should do it.