My earliest childhood memories are from the time in which we lived with my grandmother Canady in Emanuel County Georgia. One of the first memories I have of her was when she took me with her into the village of Great Month’s Summit, the name at that time, when she went shopping. We went into the village in a horse-drawn buggy where she left me and the buggy while she went into the general store to purchase whatever it was she needed to buy. While she was in the store a terrible thing happened. Two black men started fighting very near where the horse and buggy were located and I was frightened nearly to death. One of the men had a banana stalk that he was using to strike the other man who had a knife which he was trying to use to cut the first man. I was so frightened that I got down in the well of the buggy and waited until my grandmother returned to the buggy. That experience made a lasting impression on me.
Another event that I remember from those days occurred on April 3, 1933. This was the day that my younger sister Hilda was born. I clearly remember that two of my father’s sisters, Miami’s, took Maxine and me for a walk during the time that our mother was delivering Hilda. I remember being very concerned about what was happening with our mother and while walking with our aunts I was inquiring as to what was happening to our mother. I don’t remember what they told us but I clearly remember that I was very concerned about something happening to our mother and I did not know what it was. I can’t say that I remember seeing my sister, the baby, after she was born.
Another memory from that time has to do with my Grandmother Canady. Apparently I was able to sleep with her some times when I was about 3-4 years old while we were staying there with her. The thing I remember most vividly about that was she had one of the most comfortable feather beds that one could ever imagine. I recall waking up on cold mornings and totally dreading getting out of bed, but instead wanting to stay in that warm soft bed.
Another long-remembered thing that I recall about my family’s living with my Grandmother Canady was that I loved the milk that she brought in each morning after she had milked the cows and I would stand and watch her while she strained and prepared the milk to be put in the safe where it was normally kept. I would beg her for milk (mik as I would call it) and as my mother described my activities she said that I would stand there and rock back and forth like “a goose patting down mulberries” begging my Grandmother for mik. I don’t remember that happening but I do remember my grandmother, after preparing the milk, would make coffee and she would give me biscuits which were soaked in the coffee. Clearly one can see that she was years and years ahead of present-day Dunkin Doughnuts. I very much enjoyed eating the coffee soaked biscuits which she gave me. Such a delightful memory this all was.