Monday, April 7, 2014

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks - Gertrude Batterton

Amy Johnson Crow, of No Story Too Small, issued the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge. The Premise: Write once a week about a specific ancestor.  

My grandmother taught me the women's side of our family.  "Eleanor had Catherine; Catherine had Sophie; Sophie had Emma; Emma had Gertrude; Gertrude had Eleanor; Eleanor had Eleanor; and Eleanor had you!"  These are the ladies that make me want to know about their lives and keep me researching.

Gertrude Batterton was my "Nanny" (great-grandmother) and I can remember sitting in her lap, her 'powdery' scent, and her beautiful white hair.  I can also remember sleeping in her dresser drawer (pulled out and placed in the middle of the floor) the night my little brother was was rushed to the hospital.  I was only excited about spending the night with Nanny that I didn't really understand what all the fuss was about.  Nanny was all softness - her voice was soft, her skin was soft, and her lap was the best place to be.  

Gertrude Batterton Thomas
taken by Siegel Cooper probably
on her honeymoon in 1899.
She was born in August 1878 and married Clarence Thomas May 21, 1899. She had her daughter, Eleanor, in 1902. In 1909 Clarence died from TB and she moved back home with her daughter.  She was terrified of losing her daughter and made my grandmother sleep with her window open so she wouldn't get TB.  After the death of her mother in 1937 Gertrude moved in with her daughter and son-in-law and remained with them until her death in 1962.
Gertrude and her Granddaughter, Eleanor.
(taken about 1937)

Nanny had an aquarium and let her granddaughter put tadpoles in it.  They loved watching the tadpoles swim around - until one morning there weren't any in the aquarium.  My grandmother caught frogs for hours. But that didn't stop her, the next spring they got more tadpoles.  Unfortunately, even with the addition of a top on the aquarium, the results were the same.  That was the end of the tadpole watching.

Nanny never remarried and when she died on August 8, 1962 was buried beside her husband in Eminence, Kentucky.  

No comments:

Post a Comment