“Dear Mother it is near easter”
I find it interesting that Cudn’ Hattie had in her possession a postcard that belonged TO HER GRANDMOTHER! How she came into possession of it bewilders me. I declare (Lucy Mae’s favorite saying) I found everything among her effects but a “coon” and a “possum”. She saved several hundred dollars in three large pickle jars because she considered jars to be “rat proof”.
This post card from Cudn’ Hattie’s collection. The writer, E.P.W. is her son-in-law, Elie P. Weathersby (b. 1880). He married Grandma Lucy’s daughter, Sophronia (b. 1880 or 1881). The postmark is illegible, therefore, a small scale investigation ensued. What I am almost certain of is the stamp was issued between 1908-1922.
Stamp facts: Third Bureau Issue commonly known as the Washington Franklin Head Issue. Per her postmarked letter, Cudn’ Hattie was living in Laurel at least by 1920, but I believe that she might have acquired this postcard prior to leaving home. If I had to guess (and I must), I surmise that this postcard dates around 1917. This supposition is not solely due to the “17” that is legible on the image below, but partially due to the year in which I think she left home…going from Mendenhall to Laurel, a whopping 57 miles. This was a distance during the early 1900’s.
Dear Mother it is near easter I know that you have your easter eggs ready for that time I would have had mine but will haft to get them out from under that old hen so love to you all we are well hope you all are well.
“Lucy Mae” side note: (I assure you it is relevant to the Lucy Harrison Williams post. )
Our Mother, Lucy Mae (b.1915) said she only saw her maternal grandmother four or five times in her lifetime although she lived in Hattiesburg, Mississippi and her grandmother lived in Jasper County, Mississippi, a mere 54 miles. Mama said as she was growing up during the 1920’s, it was far too dangerous to travel between counties just for a visit. Somebody had to be “sick and mighty low sick” (Lucy Mae again) , dying or dead!
Travel for any Black person was precarious at best to risk being accosted by a White man on the roads in many parts of Mississippi. A physically attractive Black lady traveling the road to Bay Springs and encountering a While man was a potentially combustible circumstance. For Mama, it would have been explosive! If anyone White folks got out of line with Lucy Mae, they were going to be put back in line! Daddy would always say he never knew how Mama made it through the Jim Crow era alive and well. Lucy Mae would not have “backed down” nor “cowed”… her version of “cower”. Thus, she stayed home in Hattiesburg, in town and the family only traveled “up home” for funerals.
There are a few really interesting accounts Mama provided regarding this Jasper County grandmother. The two of them actually encountered an apparition one night coming from revival while riding in a horse-drawn wagon. Did you notice I did not “speak” my maternal great grandmother’s name? I shall, but not yet.
Future Posts: Sometimes I feel she’s Cudn’ Hattie and sometimes she’s Maybell. Mae and Mable have not shown up yet. If you’ve been keeping up, you’ll know she’s all of the aforementioned. One NAME would not and could not do justice to this lady! Another letter will be featured re how she reacquired her inheritance (her land) while still in Mississippi during the summer of 1944. I must then return to posting the one hundred year old postcards from her stepfather.