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Nell's Stories



Date: Tuesday, January 28, 2003 9:54 PM


Mammy Woods


Dear Brothers and Sisters,  I hope you are all well, we are all doing good here.  Vicki does have a cold or something, she saw the doctor today.


I watched a cooking show on TV this morning about eggs.  The lady had quail eggs that she boiled and that reminded me of this story.  I think this was in the spring of '34.  I would follow Grandpa Woods as he was plowing.  He would find quail nests in the fence row and get the eggs for me.  Mama didn't like that but she boiled the eggs for me.  I spent a lot of time at Grandpa and Mammy's house.  Mammy talked to herself a lot,  I would not go in if I could hear her talking, I would sit on the kitchen doorsteps until she stopped talking.  I sat at her knee and pieced a quilt before they moved to the Elmer Belew house.  I would go over there and stay with Mammy while Grandpa went to the singings.  I was 11 when she died, I do not remember her funeral.  She made watermelon  rind preserves that I remember I liked real well. As I remember, Monnie Bess and I were both really close to Mammy, and we spent a lot of time with her.  I went to Grandpa's house one time in Gilmer after he remarried.  I went with Aaron and Betty Sparks and family.  I think Uncle Tom went along.  We had watermelon, I don't think we were there for a meal.


We had a dark rainy cold day here not long ago. I told the kids that on days like that, when we were kids, we would be in the loft of the barn picking off peanuts, either at home or for Mr. Joe Williams where we picked off on the halves.  They can't imagine why we wanted so many nuts. Vicki does not even eat Pecans.


Enough of my rambling.  Sleep well tonight.   Love you all-------Nell

Memories of Nell, Patsy and Bo


Our sister Monnie Bess had surgery recently and after she went home she had a blood clot in her leg and had to return to the hospital. 


That triggered Patsy’s memory and she wrote the following to me: I remember Mama having a blood clot in her leg but I don't remember just when it was. I wrote to Nell and her reply is below.


I think the remembrance is good enough for the family site if she agrees to allow it. What do you think? I seem to remember that we took a cow with us. But what did we do with old John (our horse, that was almost like a member of the family)? Pat


Here is what Nell wrote in answer to Patsy:

Mama had the blood clot in her leg in the winter of '43. I was out of school and was with her when you and Bo were in school. It was bitter cold that winter and we had to hunt for wood for the fireplace. We cooked on the oil stove. I would fix breakfast and after you and Bo left for school I would milk the cows. Such a cold job. I don't remember how long Mama was in bed at home before Lloyd carried her to Aunt Mildred's (Ross at Delray).  The doctor wanted heat on her leg and Aunt Mildred had electricity and put a lamp on her leg. I don't know how long she was gone. Then Cleo (Roberts, Cathryn’s husband) was drafted and moved us to Henderson before he left.  Then Terry was born in May of '44.


What did Mama do with old John (our horse) and the cows when we left. Did we just leave them?  I wish I could remember like Bess does.


Bo says:

I don’t remember anything about Mama having the blood clot in her leg.  But I do remember about our horse John and our mule and the cows.  We left them at home on the place, except for the one cow we took with us.  Our pasture had plenty of grass and of course there was always water, from the spring, and there were sheds at the barn where the animals could get in out of the weather when they needed to.  

We didn’t take the cow with us when we first moved, but Mama had always been accustomed to having the fresh milk every day and she missed that.  I went with Uncle John Tom Ross and his boys and got one of the cows.  Uncle John Tom hauled if for us on his pickup.  We had no pasture for the cow so I kept her tethered on a long rope out back of the house.  There was a good-sized area with good grazing out there but no fence.  I just kept moving her around from spot to spot where she could graze.

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