Tattered Past

Tattered Past: My ongoing journey through genealogy, history, writing, self-exploration and art. ~~~ Rita Ackerman

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

I've become addicted to doing doodle art, tangles, "Zentangles" or other names. It is a meditative way of doodling that is somewhat planned.

Some I do freehand and others from templates supplied by Ben Kwok on the Facebook group "Ornation Creation." There are many books, blogs and Web sites that show how to do this. The great thing is all you need is a felt tip pen and some paper.

Once you get the hang of it you can add color with colored pencils or whatever else you have at hand.

Here's my turkey from a Ben Kwok template.  You can see Ben's unbelievable work at: http://www.bioworkz.com/Ben
Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Remember When: Grandma

My great grandparents lived in southwestern Kansas which at that time was mostly farms, ranches and small towns. Great grandma Nellie's parents arrived in the area in the early 1880s and quite a few family members followed. Her husband was new to the area and his father lived there for a short time.

Nellie and Bert were living closer to Meade but for Thanksgiving went to visit friends or family in Englewood in the next county over. I'm not sure of the distance but it would have travelled by wagon and may have stayed more than one day. While preparing the meal Nellie went into labor and my grandma, Jennie, was born on that day in 1902. It happened to be Nov. 26 that year. She told me many years later that every seven years her birthday fell on the holiday.

This week she would be turning 111 years old I'm often amazed at the things she saw during her life time (she passed away at 96.) She learned to crawl in an old dugout with sewn flour sacks as a rug
When she and her father went to town to get a stove for her mother they rode in a wagon. Sometimes he would pick her up at the country school on horseback.

A kind of strange thing is her brother was born the day after Christmas in 1910. (With eight years in between I wonder if there were miscarriages but I never asked.) Anyway, sadly he only lived until January 12. (I was also told he died January 6. I don't know which date is correct at this point.)

He is buried next to his mother in the Meade cemetery. Last time I was there he only had a small wooden marker. Some of the family talked about putting a stone on the grave but I don't know if it was ever down.
Recently I found an article about the loss of this baby in the local paper.

Yes this is a sad subject for the holiday but it is also a reminder of all we have
to be thankful for in this day and age especially in the medical field in saving mothers and babies.
Bert abandoned his little family a year or so later.
Another little blurb in the newspaper of July 9, 1914 reported the following:
Mrs. Nellie Martin and Miss Jennie, returned last week from their stay
with relatives near Englewood.
I wonder what stories were told of the Thanksgiving when Grandma Jennie was born.
Taking the time to find these little tidbits adds so much to the lives of our ancestors.
Memoir Prompts:
Do you know any stories of the birth of your family members?
What medical "miracles" have affected your family?
Have you ever ridden in a wagon or cross country on a horse?
What is your favorite thing about autumn?
What is your favorite Thanksgiving tradition?
Did you have kids tables when you were little? (The kids were put at a smaller table sometimes in the kitchen so the adults could all sit at the main table.)
Where were you when John F. Kennedy was killed? What do you remember about your feelings at that time?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Remember When: Dogs

While thumbing through an art magazine this weekend I found the following quote:

A house is not a home without a dog.

This will seem obvious to anybody who has dogs. I find it interesting how many dogs have been a part of my family history. I don't know the names of all these dogs, but I do see they were loved and they loved in return.
These young men are probably related on my Keith line. Perhaps one is my great grandmother's younger brother. Those hunting hounds look like hard workers.

This is me with my grandparent's dog; Butch. He was a favorite of the whole family.
He was a beautiful red.

I don't know who this is. Grandma once told me it was my grandfather but others said that isn't true.
It's still one of my favorite photos.

My Great-Great Grandfather remarried long after first wife died. This is one of his step-daughters.
There are a lot of photos of this dog. He was certainly loved.
Here's my Great Grandfather Martin, his step-mother and step-sister and that beautiful dog again.

I believe this lady was the sister of my husbands Great Grandmother. This family lived here in Arizona but that dog reminds me of the one above which was in Oregon.

My sister and I with Smokey the dog I grew up with. Sometimes I still miss him.

Another picture of Smokey. Isn't he cute?

My sister told me the name of this dog but I don't remember it at this time
This is my dad. I think you can see where we got the love of dogs.
Dogs have always played a part in my family history.
This is my current puppy love, Maggie last Christmas.
Memoir Prompts:
Do you have photos of family dogs? Can you give them names?
Write a story about a special dog.
Have you or any of your kids eaten dog food?
What is your favorite movie about dogs? Did you watch "Lassie" or "Rin Tin Tin"?
What is your favorite scent for candles or air freshener?
What is the main thing that makes a house a home to you?
Do you write poetry? Add a poem about a favorite pet to your memoir journal.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Remember When: Military service

My dad was in the service for a very short time. I'm not even sure he made it through boot camp. He was discharged due to health problems. I haven't dug out his discharge papers for a very long time so I don't remember the exact reason but it was something like back pain or foot problems

He's on the left holding my sister. Next to him is a friend of his. I don't know his name.

My daughter was also in the service. She almost made it through boot camp when she got very sick; they said she had asthma which she didn't. There's no arguing with the Air Force. My Father-in-Law, Frank, is retired Air Force and did talk to her CO who said she had done great.

She spent many years working towards the goal of following him into the Air Force. It didn't work out.  She isn't a veteran or a hero. She didn't see battle or even get out of the country. But she worked hard and she had goals and was devastated when they didn't work out.

We have ancestors who fought in all the major wars and many minor ones. The Revolution, the Civil War, the Mexican War. Other relatives were in the World Wars. My husband was in Vietnam. A very unpopular "war."

Since I am writing this on Veteran's Day I want to honor all those men and women who fought for us.

I honor them all. Those who fought, those who died, those who tried.

Thank you.
Memoir Prompts:
Do you have any family stories related to the military?
Write a review of how you spent the last weekend.
Do you prefer Lincoln Logs, Legos or Tinker Toys?
Write a little story about each of your siblings.
What television character do you most identify with?
Have you ever been to any of the Disney parks? What was your favorite ride?
Have you ever bought a book just from its cover? What was it? Did you like it?

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Remember When: Life as an author

In 2006 my first book was published after three years of historical research.
O.K. Corral Postscript: The Death of Ike Clanton is now out of print. However, I am working on an update which I hope to have out in the spring.
This weekend I will be travelling to Tombstone to visit with my friend and cousin of Ike Clanton.
Here's Terry "Ike" Clanton and I at a book signing in The Town Too Tough To Die.

Book signings are fun, especially when in the midst of other enthusiasts such as all my friends and associates in the Old West history genre.
I've experienced lots of other events. Here's Terry "Ike" riding on the hearse for the 125th anniversary of the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral. A moving day for everybody but especially those connected to those men who were involved in that fateful 30 seconds in history.
Being a writer has always been a dream of mine. However, for many years I wanted to write a mystery novel. Perhaps one day.
In the meantime, I'm happy with the genre that in a way chose me. I'm also happy associating with writers. I love sharing ideas, inspiration, challenges and accomplishments.
To help with this I have started a new blog at http://ritaackerman.wordpress.com/.
I hope you will visit.
Memoir Prompts:
Have you ever wanted to become a writer? What type of writing did you dream of doing?
Who is your favorite author?
Have you ever visited an orchard and eaten fruit straight off the tree or vine?
Have you checked the Internet to see if there is a page for any of the schools you attended?
Write about an embarrassing moment in elementary school.
Have you ever attended or been a part of an historical event?
What was your favorite childhood television show?