- Emma: In Her Own Words — The Background & The Beginning
- Emma: In Her Own Words — Childhood
- Emma: In Her Own Words — Employment
- Emma: In Her Own Words — Elopement & Early Marriage
- Emma: In Her Own Words — Work & Travel
- Emma: In Her Own Words — Bits & Pieces
- Emma: In Her Own Words — Papa
- Emma: In Her Own Words — Grandparents & Relatives
- Emma: In Her Own Words — Mama
- Emma: In Her Own Words — The Flood
- Emma: In Her Own Words — Teaching
- Emma: In Her Own Words — The End
Transcription of my grandmother’s notebook. See Part 1 in the series for a full explanation. Several pages following the last post deal with her daughters’ lives, including their weddings. That has been omitted.
Postmaster and Other Jobs
Elmer was sick 1 1/2 yrs in 1935 & 36 and I took examination for Postmaster and rec’d high grade and in Mar 1937 was appointed Postmaster for 4 yrs. I kept it until Sept 1941. This was the first work I had ever done since I married.
I ran a restaurant near school 1 yr. I did substitute teaching for several years. Kept books for a mine for about 3 years.1
We were part owners in a mine during World War II and I kept the books and paid the men.
We used to take the children on trips. We would go to Chicago every summer and visit my bro Hartford. He played on radio at W.L.S. Barn Dance and WJJD Suppertime Frolic. We went to Niagara Falls to Detroit to Ohio to Fla and many trips on train and in car.
The first pullman I rode, Elmer had the tickets and I did not know the berths were numbered. I had to go to restroom. I left the light on since Edna was a baby. When I started back to the berth, they were all green and looked alike. I looked in all of them with light on til I found the one with Elmer and Edna in it.
Another time I was in upper berth and my bell didn’t work. When I would ring for the porter he didn’t come. Elmer was in berth across from me and I rolled up my long stiff corset and threw it across at him to wake him up.
One time we decided to go to Mt. Vernon in a hurry. I left one batch of clothes in the floor and dirty dishes on table. When we got there, Elmer’s brother Doc and his family, his mother and 2 nephews were coming to our house. The first visit for Doc’s wife. So we turned to come back with them. All the way I could see those dirty sheets & dishes but we got in front of them and they stopped at Coldiron to speak to some of the relatives. This gave me a 30 min. start on them. I came in and threw dirty clothes and put dishes in pans and put them all way back under the bed. I had supper on when they got here and I had lots of flowers blooming in my yard. She said it looked just like Heaven. I hoped she wouldn’t look under the bed or she might think otherwise.
Helen and I traveled around a lot. She had a Ford car. We went to Washington D.C. and stayed 4 days. We saw it all. We went to New York, Boston, Portland on trains. We traveled thru and in all the N Eng. states except Vermont. Went one way and came back thru Penn & then we took trip to Mexico. Went the southern route came back thru the central states. 10 states in all and Mexico. Our car balked on us and a man who lived in Texas that I had gone to school with and hadn’t seen him since school days came along and helped us out. We stopped in Kansas to see my brother Bill. We had a grand trip.
Elmer & I went with Helen, Rex, Aubrey and Dennis to Los Angeles, Cal. in 1960.2 We stopped in Tucson, Ariz and got a motel with a kitchenette close to a supermarket. I went to market and it wasn’t long til I had supper ready for us all. The boys went swimming. Elmer stayed with his bro who was sick and we went on to Cal & Disney World and back through Grand Canyon. It was a great trip. We visited my nephew Verne in San Diego.
I took one trip on plane to San Francisco. Lila Bolton & I went to a PTA convention in 1956. The trip out there was wonderful but coming back I had to have oxygen. I couldn’t breathe so I went to the bathroom and took off my corset and left it in there. The stewardess noticed me and put the oxygen on me for 2 hrs. Everyone was wanting to smoke so she took it off and I was O.K. We had to change at Kansas City & she brought my corset to me in a brown paper sack. I carried it off and at the time didn’t care if I ever put it back on. When I got to Chicago, had to wait on another plane. My husband was at Louisville to meet me so I had him paged to wait for me as I was trying to get to Mt. Vernon in time to see Linda & David in their dance recital.3 I made it and I have never had the desire to fly again. I came too near conking out.”4
- The mines referenced here and in the following sentence were coal mines. ↩
- Aubrey and Dennis were her two oldest grandchildren; Rex was Helen’s husband. ↩
- I don’t know if my brother’s performance was worth all that trouble, but I’m sure mine was. ↩
- Emma Ewers Taylor Hopkins, “Journal,” 1974–1978, Loyall, Harlan County, Kentucky; privately held by Faye Hopkins McCauley, Mt. Vernon, Kentucky, 1978. Spiral notebook in which Emma wrote about her life, in possession of Faye (Emma’s youngest daughter) since her death in 1978. ↩