Gleanings From A Lifetime – Part 4

Wed. 12 Jan 2011. 7:50 am

Mother was a small woman about five-foot two-inches and weighed less than one-hundred pounds when I was born. In middle life she got up to one-hundred-thirty-five to one-hundred-forty pounds or so. Both Mother and Dad had dark hair and blue eyes. In my mind’s eye I always see my Mother in those Sylvania days in a white shirt waist with a little gold watch pinned on, a long dark skirt with a frilly little apron (white) tied around her waist. She certainly couldn’t have done her housework dressed so, but that is the only way I remember her.

Mother always welcomed my friends, was ready to get a game going and often made taffy for us to pull. She had a changeable color taffeta undershirt, it changed from red to green or blue depending on how you looked at it. One of my greatest desires was to grow up and have a skirt like that. Sadly enough that time never came or such skirts went out of style. I did have a pair of button shoes, black shiny bottoms and red tops with black buttons. I loved them enough to take them into bed with me.

Also, while still at that Welman house, I lost my tonsils and adenoids. They were removed by our local doctor using out dining room table for his area of operation. However for years after they were out, whenever I got a cold it settled in the glands of my neck which swelled badly and were very painful. The treatment was to paint the OUTSIDE of my neck with iodine. Eventually I outgrew that condition, thank goodness. This same doctor added insult to injury when he came to the house when I had the mumps. I had a good dose on both sides and was so miserable. When he came in and saw my puffed face he laughed and I hurt so I didn’t even dare to cry.

Click to see some of the actual buildings

Sylvania was a typical small town I suppose. We had two grocery stores, one meat market, two hardwares, a drug store, dry-goods store, pool hall, a livery stable, Methodist, Congregational and Catholic churches and an undertaking establishment. The hearse was pulled by a matching pair of horses.

Toledo was twelve or fifteen miles away and that is where important shopping was done. The Interurban Line which ran between Adrian and Toledo passed through Sylvania and that took us to an all days outing in Toledo. As I recall most of our shopping was done at Tiedkes, a department store probably similar to a K Mart Store now-days. Toledo also had a Park and a Zoo. It was a treat to load on the Interurban  with picnic baskets and spend the day at the Zoo. The monkeys and seals intrigued me most. Our daily paper also came from Toledo, The Toledo Blade, which carried among its cartoons ‘It costs too much to live and you can’t afford to die.’ Now in 1982 things haven’t changed much.


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