My Earliest Memories

written November 1971

Story by Mrs. Grace (Quint) Gilliland

Photo of Grace, 1926

My first memory is the birth of my seventh little sister. My second sister, Maude, (several years older) hurried me through breakfast that early November morning, combed my hair and told me that she wanted to take me to school with her that day. She was teaching in a country school about three miles away. Naturally, I was quite exited about this - but I also had a feeling that there was an air of unusual happiness and smiles among the other members of the family that morning.

Maude packed our lunch, while Clarence (a brother) brought the horse and cart to the door. As we started to leave, Maude rushed to the bedroom door, opened it, laughed and said "good-bye" to my mother. Then she rushed me out the door, into the cart and we were off for the day. I had only caught a glimpse of mother holding a "bundle" in her arms.

After having started on our way, Maude said, "We have a new baby sister". Then I knew her strategy for not telling me before.

But I had an enjoyable day for all the little school girls gave me lots of attention - even 'quarreling' which one I should sit with. I felt so important after all!

In the evening our family gathered around the table after supper. Sometimes we played games, studied when we had to, and often listened to stories read from the "Youths Companion". Mother was usually busy knitting mittens or darning stockings.

I enjoyed gazing at the stars, watching for the man in the moon, and wondering about the Milky Way. I tried counting the Seven Sisters but could only find six. Then, there was the Little Dipper and the Big Dipper, and the North Star. But who could believe anyone would really ever go to the moon!

Photo of Quint family in 1906, Hazel, the little sister is in front.

Note by Hazel Quint Parsons: The above story was received by me November 4, 1971 on my 73rd birthday. I was the 'seventh little sister' mentioned.

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