The footsteps in my mind…people I remember…

We carry with us these footprints of vanished places: apartments we moved out of years ago, dry cleaners that went out of business, restaurants that stopped serving, neighborhoods where only the street names remain the same.

Verlyn Klinkenborg – Remembered Spaces – New York Times

Today’s number is 24…One of the oddities of these treatments is the way they burn the throat. That has led to a change in breaking the morning fast…I find that one of the things that really helps ease the soreness is having grits for breakfast. I can hear all of you northerners groaning all the way down here on the Texas coast…Grits! Yuk! I’m going to gross ya out even more…I have been eating “Instant” Grits…Yes, ground up hominy. Corn soaked in rye lye (thanks Fred…see comments) till it swells up, dried and then ground into meal, cooked then dried again…just add water or milk and microwave until dead…What a quick breakfast with absolutely no nutritional value. But it speaks to my sharecropper roots.

Email Time…

My other hobby (you know besides blogging) is genealogy. Family history research…There is nothing like thumbing through 100-200 year old, dust covered, oversized bound record books looking for something on ancestors who had a hard time even spelling their names the same over the course of their life. One of the things I always liked about doing this research is the wandering through the basements of old 19th century courthouses pulling the old deed books out and trying to decipher the ancient handwriting in the faded ink. I have a couple of favorite courthouses scattered across the nation, most in Texas but a couple in Indiana, that I try to stop in at whenever I am in the neighborhood.

One of my favorite stories relates to the Marriage License to the left, it was issued to my paternal grandparents in 1902. When I stopped by the courthouse in 1997 to see about getting a photocopy of the record in the courthouse records the clerk asked if I would like the original if they still had it. Of course I said yes and they did so now I do. It seems that in those days when the Marriage License had been recorded they held it until the couple came by to pick it up, it wasn’t mailed. Needless to say my Grandparents never went to the courthouse and picked up their copy of the official document.

Not to long ago I signed up with one of the big name genealogy sites to access their data. The easiest way to do that is by uploading your own data and letting them search it on line. Since I already have a site with my data on the internet I did not make this batch public…they still search it and if someone wants, the provider will forward a message on their behalf requesting additional info. Every time I get one of these messages I reply with a link to my genealogy site. A lot of time the person requesting the info on a name in my data is looking for someone else of the same name…sometimes they actually are cousins, far removed in time and blood. I probably average a dozen or so of these requests a month and they help to keep the interest up in a hobby that has reached a bunch of brick walls while I wait for new databases to come online.

Time to move for the day…later.

4 thoughts on “The footsteps in my mind…people I remember…”

  1. What can I say, the crazy spell check caught me again…from Wikipedia

    The U.S. version of hominy is produced by whole maize grains, preferably white when eaten in the form of grits, mixed with scalding water mixed with a chemical solution, such as a mild lye or potassium hydroxide solution, traditionally derived from wood ash, until the soaking forces the kernel to expand so the hull and germ split. The kernel is removed and dried. After drying, the whole kernels are soaked in water and a solution mixed with limestone or wood ash is used to expand the kernels, which are then boiled. It is also prepared into grits which are dried ground hominy.

  2. Well, I’m just a northern boy (sort of…Iowa) and I like grits, though I can see how the explanation of how they’re produced could scare a person away. I’m glad to see you’re pursuing your family history, too. If you want to put some fruit on that family tree, you might check out my family history blog. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Hi Larry, glad you stumbled by…I have been spending some time at your blog. I find your posts very interesting. I’ll be keeping in touch. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

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