Parents and Family
|Ruth Allis Fredrick and |
Avery Henry Fredrick
Mother married the cream of the crop, Avery Henry Fredrick, September 20, 1906. Mother and Dad were quiet country folk. Dad worked hard wherever he could. He never had a credit card, checkbook, or debts.
My sister, Marion Electa Fredrick was born July 3, 1908, worked her way through high school, sometimes walking the six miles one way to finish, and to normal school. No buses in those days. She taught school one year during the depression. Jobs were scarce. She married Kenneth P. Hall, December 6, 1935. He was a mink farmer. They had three daughters; Ruth, Vivian and Brenda.
|Clyde Avery (Bus) Fredrick|
Herman Jay Fredrick
April 8, 1922 - March 29, 1939
Herman has gone to be with June,
(His sister gone before)
We hope at last, life's sorrows past,
To meet them both once more.
And so within our humble home,
Where late our loved one trod
Again we bow in grief; and feel,
It was the hand of God.
By Father, Avery Henry Fredrick
My sister, Janet Ruth Fredrick, born December 6, 1925, worked at the chocolate works in Fulton, and stayed with our sister Marion in Hannibal. She married LaVerne Chatfield August 3, 1946. LaVerne was in World War II. Later they both worked at Newark State School. They had one son, Raymond Arthur Chatfield. Janet was my "Little Sister" and I was her "Big Sister". I was fifteen years older. We loved each other dearly. Janet died June 15, 1970.
Our youngest sister, June Rose Fredrick, born June 28, 1927, lived nine months. She died March 31, 1928
To June Rose Fredrick
Died March 31, 1928 - Age 9 months,3 days
She came in the Glory of summer;
Our June Rose bright and fair,
The blue of the skies was in her eyes,
The sunshine in her hair.
She lived nine months among us,
She filled our home with bliss;
She could not stay, her spirit fled,
To brighter world than this.
We’ll hear her in the murmuring stream,
Her body lies beside.
It’s waters flow hard by the home,
Where we do still reside.
We’ll feel her in the gentle breeze.
That blows o’er her grave.
May-be. who doe'th all things well.
Now help us to be brave.
And now, farewell, O Fairy form
Farewell to thy cold clay.
May we hold you in our arms again,
Beyond the judgment day.
By Father- Avery Henry Fredrick
We went to a one-room schoolhouse about a half mile away and walked home for lunch, except when the weather was bad--then we took our lunch. When there was deep snow, Dad would go ahead of us and make a path. No snow plows in those days.
I was interested in drawing. One teacher let me have a blackboard to use and I put drawings on it, changing it when I wanted to. Another teacher had me make eight pictures to send to Rochester Exposition. I won 2nd prize of $2.00 and only "happened" to find out. I also learned it went to the school. This discouraged me as $2.00 was a fortune to me at the age of eleven.
We went to the only church in town and after I was born, Dad said he'd stay home and care for my sister Marion and me. He never went back. Mother and the children continued to attend.
When I was 9 & 10, I remember one teacher who was my Dad's first and last teacher. She trained us to memorize poems, the presidents, states & capitals, counties, towns, etc. She trained the children for the Christmas program, and put it on in the church. We had some very nice programs. We were well instructed. Marion and I would get to bed at night and repeat every word of every song, exercise, and piece and in order, as she never read a program. We never had a program. We knew our place.
I rode Billy, our horse, allover the creek, etc. Sometimes when we drove to the lake resort, Troutburg, I rode Billy into the lake. Sometimes I rode standing up, and always bareback. Except one year I borrowed a saddle. I never jumped fences.
We earned what we could picking up apples, weeding carrots, picked tomatoes, cukes, cherries and walked a mile and a half to wash dishes for a teacher for 15 cents an hour. We did well to earn $1.50 a day. Sometimes I went barefoot, until I was twelve. Bus and I liked to wade in the puddles after a rain and make mud pies. The old henhouse became our playhouse.
Mother and Dad worked very hard. Mother was small-98 lbs., but made all our clothes, kept us clean (six children), worked outdoors picking berries and helping in harvesting of fruits and vegetables. Mother also canned a lot. Dad worked where he could. In the Fall, he worked in the dry-house in Kendall Mills, then later in the Morton Canning Factory two miles away. He probably walked down, and we went after him with the horse and buggy. My Dad loved poetry and would read or recite poems all evening. Also, I love poems, so you'll find some in this book.
My folks never told me they loved me, but I knew they did. Dad would buy us 5 cent ice cream cones or a penny all-day sucker and go without himself. He wrestled with us and sometimes rocked us, especially if we did not feel well. We went for rides as a family; sometimes visiting cousins. The buggy got a little crowded after all the children came. We carried three on the seat, one on Mother's lap, and two on little stools in front.
Mother and we children peddled the berries with the horse and buggy, and often drove out to the lake where the campers were. I was so young and shy I could not speak, so Mother would get their orders from the buggy, as she often had a baby on her lap. Mother taught us many things. Some of her proverbs were: "A stitch in time saves nine", "Take care of your pennies and your dollars will take care of themselves", "A patch is no disgrace but a hole is", "Good character is more important than wealth", "It's better to be poor than dishonest". We were taught to take good care of our things, and better care of someone else's. "No matter how bad you feel or how hard times are, there is always someone worse off than you." We had some unpleasant jobs like taking a pan and stick and shaking potato bugs off from the vines. No spray in those days, at least, not for us.
Dad was very strict. One day I went down cellar to get an apple. I always wanted the biggest one (and still do). After I had mine picked out, Marion called down to bring her one. I found the next biggest, and came up holding mine behind me. Dad sent me back to find two the same size. I didn’t think it was fair.
We wore our hair long and in braids, long black cotton stocking and high top shoes.
Dad took us for walks across lots and through the woods. I often walked to my Aunt Carrie's & Uncle Elmer's a mile away, sometimes stopping to call on an older man who had one leg and lived alone in an old house. Sometimes I took cookies or fruit and we talked. We walked to the town of Morton, two miles away, not so much to shop, but more just to look, and for something to do. We played with bladder balloons at hog butchering time. We did not have hogs but knew people that did. I used to climb up a straight ladder that my sister Marion held up straight to pick apples out on the limbs. While Dad worked at the factory, we had the fruit to gather at home.
Dad’s brother, our Uncle George, and Aunt Lill, lived next door. We would go over Sunday afternoon to get the funnies and store them. When we wanted to read them, we'd draw from the bottom of the pile. My Uncle George had the first radio we'd ever heard of. What a thrill to put on the earphones and hear music or talking over a machine like that. He also had an old fashioned talking machine with round records and a big horn-shaped speaker.
Some of our fun was dangerous. The creek flooded, breaking the ice up in huge blocks. Sometimes it would pile up in all kinds of shapes. We kids would go down and climb on them. Dad came while we were doing this one time and measured the water under us. It was 14 ft. So he said we'd better go to the flats in front of our Uncle George's. The ice had piled up at flood stage and went down, leaving the ice cake there on the land. At one time a 14-year old boy with his dog and sled and I were playing "Follow the leader" on Lake Ontario. My Dad came down as he often took pictures of the ice cones, some with water spouting up in the center. He told us we were out a quarter of a mile and down there alone. So we came in closer to shore. Not sure I was brave or just foolish with no fear.
Just let me reminisce a bit
Kerosene lamps to light the page
As we read good books, or in games engage.
Coal and wood to keep us warm,
Food in the cellar from the farm.
To the rural school for our education,
To the country church for indoctrination.
No swimming pool, but a creek inviting
When hot summer days cause much perspiring.
In winter, oh what fun to slide
Down the steep, snowy bank. What a ride!
No electric lights or running water
Did those privations really matter?
The horse furnishes transportation
And also the farm cultivation.
The good old days we leave behind
And press onward. new ways to find
We must not forget our God
As in this life we onward plod.
-Marion F. Hall