Softened At the Edges with a Spine of Steel

These are the women of my maternal ancestry. Sophia left a slave plantation and husband in North Carolina with six kids and moved to Texas during the Apache Wars. Her daughter Emily married a Civil War Union soldier, watched her husband rush during the Oklahoma Land Rush and homesteaded at Manyberries, Alberta. Emily buried her oldest and her youngest with fevers she could not nurse. Josephine was abandoned pregnant with child #4 and found love with my grandfather. Jeane at age 17 was raising the Union Jack flag teaching during WWII. Elizabeth Blair my great grandmother lived through the 1816 Year Without a Summer. Samantha Hendrickson buried a husband and child with tuberculous. She came to Canada, an illegal immigrant in 1912 to be with her daughter after her next husband dropped over with a heart attack delivering mail.

Aunt Oma Jane, Sophia Sidbury Atkinson, my great grandmother Emily
Elizabeth Blair, my second great grandmother
Samantha Hendrickson Lindsay, Reinhardt, Boyce my second great grandmother
Josephine Reinhardt, Errhart, Miller my grandmother
Verna Jeane Miller, Waddell my mother

Jodi Picoult says, “She is beautiful, softened at the edges and tempered with a spine of steel. I want to grow old and be like her.” Happy Mother’s Day 2021.

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