This blog is mainly taken from my Great Grandfather's diary. In 2012 we are in the year 1915, after completing 1916 in 2010 and 1927 in 2011. 1915 is the year that my Great Uncle Norman was born. 1927 is the year that my Great Uncle Roger, was born. 1916 was the year that my grandmother, Annah Lee was born.

My Great-Grandfather's name was Bonnie Elmore and he worked as a clerk or secretary for the old Norfolk & Western Railroad, based in Roanoke, VA. Mary is his wife. Norman is their first born son. The Raines are Mary's parents. Skin is Bonnie's brother along with Jake.

Bonnie's work associates and friends are also mentioned quite a bit. Bonnie does a great job of blending everyday life in 1915 with the mention of some world and USA history as well. I do know from a quick glance ahead that 1915 is going to be quite different as Bonnie did not write quite as much.

After Bonnie's diary entry, I will occasionally make comments, maybe tell a little about life in 2012, possibly some current events, and some musing about the Christian faith.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

A Walk in the Park

On Sunday, January 30, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Warm-Clear. Read "English Literature". Carter Thompson and I walked to Crystal Spring and Mountain Park. Stopped at Steffey's. Bought Cigars and went to Elmwood Park. Carter Thompson and I together with Woolridge went out to Steffey's and stayed until 10:30 p.m. I retired at 11:30. Woolridge paid carfare. This particular Sunday sounds as though it was a "guy's day out", walking around town, smoking cigars in the park, and visiting friends. I know from some other posts that the Steffeys were family friends but I wonder if maybe they owned some kind of business as well? Is that where they bought the cigars? It certainly is not clear and warm here in 2010. Cold and snowy. about 8 inches now and still falling. Looks like no church tomorrow, but I have been called in to work again. This time to help dig out a fire scene from last night. Our office is short one fire marshal and I don't mind helping out. In fact, I will likely make some good over time. Read today from Exodus 10-12; Pharaoh is still hardening his heart and now wanting to compromise, bot Moses is not willing to negotiate. Jesus died to set us free, totally free, from sin and we should not negotiate or compromise with what can hold us in bondage either. Exodus 10:3 says that Pharaoh refused to humble himself and in Matthew 20:1-28 it talks about "the last will be first and the first will be last" and how if you want to be great, you must be a servant and a slave. Jesus set the example for us in this. Proverbs 6 also talked about being busy and not being lazy. I have that covered and God blesses that I believe. I can't really grumble too much about having to work tomorrow.

Friday, January 29, 2010


I got some catchin' up to do. I have had a busy couple of evenings. On Thursday, January 27, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Warm-Rain. Wrote Mr. Spangler a letter. Mr. Schick returned to office. Loam, Mamma, and Teeney down home today for dinner. Mamma got a letter from Papa and Lena about moving to Bedford. Talked to Bo/Cy. Met Carter Thompson and went to see "The Raven". Jake came home. On Friday January 28, 1916 Bonnie wrote: Sultry-Warm. Wrote deed for E. P. Gregory - 50 cents. Mrs. Raines and Aunt Annah Smith went to church of the Brethren to hear lecture of Dr. McQuaig. Sent letters to H.D. & H. and Hatfields. Mary and Gertie Seyour, Maude & Jack Bowdel and Mrs. Raines came up home at night and stayed until 9 o'clock. On Saturday, January 29, 1916 Bonnie wrote: Rain & Cooler. Beat them all to office. Went to Bank for Mr. Schick at 9 o'clock. Mr. Schick went down. Shaved and took a bath after dinner. Went up home at 5 o'clock p.m. Met Jake. Came home at 10 p.m. Brought bag of peanuts. Retired at 11:30. Bath & Shave. I thought about skipping a few days of Bonnie's diary to get caught up, but there were some things for each day on which I wanted to comment. Let's start with 27th. Again, remember that most of the time I have more questions than answers as I am trying to piece things together. So, if any family member reading this has any help for me please feel free to share. The big event on the 27th was that Loam, who I think is some sort of relative because they are always mentioned with the others, Mamma, and Tenney, who is Bonnie's sister Christine, came for dinner and to apparently share a letter from Papa and Lena. I have no idea who Lena is, but she has been mentioned several times and where is Papa? Wherever he is, he is planning on moving to Bedford. I am still wondering if maybe Mamma and Papa aren't together any more? Notice in the pictures on this blog that they aren't together, but then again neither are the Raines. I wish I could figure some of this out. I also have no idea who or what is Bo/cy. "The Raven" was released in November of 1915 and was a biography of Edgar Allen Poe and was described as being peculiar by one reviewer. Jake is Bonnie's brother, unsure where he had been. On the 28th, I learn that Bonnie must have done some writing of some deeds for other people and charged them a little bit to do it. Interesting that the ladies went to a lecture at the Brethren church. I don't know who Dr. McQuaig was. I searched a little but could not come up with anything. A large group of friends got together at the Elmore's for some Friday night fellowship. On the 29th, I am really confused by how Grandaddy put some things together. I am unsure where Mr. Schick went down to, or if Mr. Schick went down to shave a take a bath after dinner, but then why would Bonnie record that? Bonnie does not say what he and Jake did when they met and came home at 10 p.m. but they did bring home a bag of peanuts. Maybe that's where I get it. I love peanuts in most any way, except for boiled peanuts, and I could possibly learn to love those too. Bring me home a bag of peanuts and I don't care where you have been! I wonder if the circus was in town? The Shriner's circus is going on now in 2010 in Roanoke and has long been a tradition, but I don't know if it has been that long. Calling for snow here tonight, possibly 8-10 inches. I hope we get it and if we do, I will have plenty of time to write more about faith matters tomorrow and Sunday. Goodnight!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Skin needs a job

On Wednesday, January 26, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sultry-Raining. Mr. Raitt late today. Capt. Rowan absent. Wrote agreement with Crozet C & C Co. Skin and I talked to Mr. Spangler at 5:30 in regard to employment. I shaved at night and took a bath. Very warm weather at night. Mrs. Raines came up home. I know where Crozet is. I used to live there. So, Skin is a friend of Bonnie's. Is he in the mafia? I didn't know the mob was in Roanoke in 1916. Apparently Bonnie is helping him find a job. Not a lot else to say about what Bonnie wrote. Read today the story of Moses and the burning bush. God reveals Himself to Moses, talks to him, tells him His name, all very personal stuff. It's all about a relationship. Today's New Testament reading was from Matthew 17:10-27 and it talks about faith, what even just a little bit of faith will do. Our generation is one I am afraid that is of little faith. Psalm 22 talked about hands and feet being pierced and casting lots for clothing. Is this a prophecy of Jesus?

Monday, January 25, 2010

Back to the Parlor

On Tuesday, January 25, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Damp-Cloudy. Mr. Moher came down for Progress Profile of Ptq. Belt Line. Capt. Rowan away. Norman's large photograph came today. Mr. Raines came up at night and played with Norman 7:30. I went back in the parlor to sleep. Dull day at the office. Very hot at night. Feeling tired and sleepy. Retired 10:00. I bet it was kind of cool to get that large photograph of Uncle Norman. I wonder if that is still around somewhere? So much for Bonnie sleeping in his own room, one night and then right back to the parlor. I think Annah Lee may still be making a lot of noise. Except for the mention of a visitor in the office today that is about it. Caleb has been sick here. As Bonnie would say he "vomited freely" the other night. He is still not feeling well. Busy day at the office for me. Lots of pub ed events coming up. Calling for snow again this weekend. Today I read from Matthew 16:13-17:9 and Wow! How quick Peter goes from "On this rock I will build my church" to "Get thee behind me Satan". I do that sometimes. I think I am really close to God and then mess up royally. I guess I am glad to know that Peter did that too. Especially glad for God's forgiveness. I think it goes to show that there is spiritual battle going on and just when we get close to God is when Satan most attacks us. Peter didn't get HOW Jesus was to be Messiah and I am sure that in our limited knowledge there are things that God is doing that we don't understand either. I am sure of it. We too set our minds on the things of man.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Tie up that Car!

On Monday, January 24, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Warm Day. Capt. Rowan sick in bed with injured knee; fell over automobile rope on Sunday night. Miss Rowan phoned to me to come over. Went to see Capt. Took him letter. Introduced to Dr. Kirk. Mr. Schick left for Frankfort, KY. I shaved at night and slept in own room. Annah Lee is 2 weeks old today. So, one of Bonnie's bosses hurt his knee. What is an automobile rope? Did they have to tie them up like horses? This entry also still shows that things are still a little awry after the birth of my grandmother, Annah Lee. Bonnie has been sleeping in another room but tonight slept in his own room again. For any new readers, I notice we may have some based on the map on the blog and from a comment that I got that was not published, Bonnie is a man. Today it seems like an odd man's name, but it was his name. He is my great-grandfather and he was secretary for Norfolk-Western Railroad. We read his diary entry for each day from 1916, make a few comments and then talk a little bit about life in 2010 and matters of the Christian faith from the Bible. Today from Psalm 20:7 "Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but our pride is in the name of the Lord our God." and today in church we sang "Our God is an awesome God, He reigns from heaven above with wisdom, power and love, Our God is an awesome God!"

Saturday, January 23, 2010


On Sunday January 23, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Warm. Arose at 9 a.m. Went to church at 11 o'clock a.m. Company came in. Went to lecture by Hobson and Dr. Stearns at the Roanoke Theater at 2:30 p.m. Dr. Burks phoned. Went up home at 4:30 and ate supper. Came by Raines' to see Norman and read at 9 o'clock. Retired at 9:30 p.m. Sounds like another good Sunday afternoon. Bonnie made it to church and went to an afternoon lecture. Dr. Burks called to check on Mary I suppose. Apparently Norman is still staying at the Raines while the Elmores adjust to having Annah Lee at home. Mrs. Raines must have won that argument way back there the other day. Busy Saturday here. Caleb had a basketball game this morning and they won 37-14. Caleb scored 2 point. Rachel has an audition at the Attic this afternoon and I have to work at the Guns and Hoses Hockey game tonight. Beth sill not feeling well.

Friday, January 22, 2010

On Saturday, January 22, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Very warm-rain. Payrolls etc. came in the office. Went to St. Charles Hospital to take specimen of urine. Came back by Fishers at 4:30 stayed there until 6:30. Came home and shaved and took a bath. Stayed in and retired at 11:30 p.m. OK, for the life of me I can't figure out the St. Charles hospital thing. This is at least the third time it is mentioned and I have looked on the Internet and I am just not aware of a St. Charles Hospital in Roanoke. I don't know. And the rest of Bonnie's day is pretty unremarkable. Still reading about Joseph in Genesis. Spiritual hind sight is always so amazing. God is amazing. Joseph tells his brothers that what they meant as evil, God had used it for good and to keep the family alive in that drought. Joseph didn't know that's what was going on the whole time he was a slave and in prison. For all he knew, he could have been in prison the rest of his life. But he didn't lose heart and he didn't give up his faith. He still trusted God and God was in control. God worked together all things for good. So, when we think God has forgotten us, He hasn't and He still has a plan for your life.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Books, Movies and War

Didn't get to post yesterday, so catching up a little today. On Thursday, January 20, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Fine weather. Am reading "The Traitor", 2nd time. Went to the Jefferson Theater at night to see "The Battle Cry of Peace". Beautiful moonlight night. Shaved before going to show. Retires at 12 a.m. Ladies Home Journal came in. On Friday, January 21, 1916 Bonnie wrote: Warm weather. Paper full of war news on "security" and "preparedness". Wrote up long statement for Mr. Raitt about GMRRP Surveys. Went down to Mrs. Raines at night to take milk to Norman. Read "Pictorial Review" and came home at 10 o'clock. Bonnie is still the avid reader and still reading Ladies Home Journal. I told you the other day, I wasn't sure if Bonnie had seen that movie that Howard Fisher had seen and I guess he hadn't but Howard apparently recommended it as Bonnie went to see the war flick for himself. We hear a lot about security and preparedness in our world today too because of the war on terrorism. Our news as been full of reports from the earthquake in Haiti, very devastating and of the election to fill Ted Kennedy's seat in Massachusetts. Think the politicians will get the message? Read today more from Genesis about Joseph and his brothers and from Matthew the end of chapter 13 and the first part of chapter 14. Interesting that Jesus was rejected in his own hometown. He is always an example for us and even when we are rejected we should still spread the Good News. More wintry weather tonight with some possible ice.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Baby Bill

On Wednesday, January 19, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Gen. R.E. Lee's birthday. Milder-Sunshine. Work dull in office. Capt. Rowan came in behind me. Dr. Burks talked to me on telephone. Went to his office to get statement of my account ($29.50). Got letter from Lena and Papa. Wrote to Clarence Fisher. Mary got up out of bed today. I carried Norman to Mrs. Raines at night. Harry went to "Battle Cry of Peace". Retired at 11 o'clock. Pretty night. Interesting that Grand-daddy did note that it was the birthday of Robert E. Lee. I know that in modern times we have Lee-Jackson day as well as Martin Luther King day but it hasn't always been like that and I figured it was just more of a political thing that we had both. But, I guess Robert E. Lee was pretty crucial in these parts and people did keep up with that sort of thing even in 1916. Of course, 1916 was not all that far removed from the civil war either. It was time to pay the doctor for the baby delivery services I think. Amazing that it was only $29.50. Rachel was a 20 some dollar baby, but believe it or not we had some pretty good insurance (HMO) back then. It would certainly not be like that today. In fact, Caleb cost us much more than Rachel did. I am a little confused by the letter from Lena and Papa. I don't know who this is. Is it Bonnie's father and someone else, or just a nickname for someone? Bonnie does make mention occasionally of Mama and Papa, I thought. Speaking of the difference in child birthing over the span of 90 some years, he mentions that Mary got out of bed today. Do you reckon she has been in bed since the 10th when Annah Lee was born? Again, that would never happen today. Sometimes they have you up in the same day. Bonnie's friend Harry went to see a movie called "A Battle Cry of Peace". I am guessing it was popular with WW I going on. I don't know if that is one Bonnie has seen recently or not. I just found some info on it. It was released in September of 1915 and it was a war movie where it sounds like some big American cities (New York, Washington) are devastated as the enemy invades. A couple of things spoke to me today from scripture. I read in Genesis about Joseph interpreting dreams and when he is approached by Pharaoh about it, he gives God the credit. How many things happen in our lives that we should do a better job of giving God the credit for? It would go a long way in providing a witness to some people who need it. Beyond that, He deserves the credit! Also read from Matthew 13 about the parable of the sower and the seed. A lot of attention is usually paid to the seed and the ground, but what about the sower? He spread the seed on ALL ground everywhere, in the hopes that some might spring up. I put some scripture out there yesterday by way of Twitter and Facebook and got no responses and then started to think that maybe I came across too strong. Then I read this today and remembered reading the other day "what is whispered in your ear...shout from the rooftops." How about that! I have been listening to scripture in my ears through my ipod and now God is telling me to shout it from the roof tops. How do you do that in today's world? Social media like Facebook and Twitter is a great start I think. I may want to rethink some strategy and find a creative way to do this so as not to be a jerk about it, relationships are still important, but I should not be afraid to do it at all. Plus, the blog is a way to do that too! I have more space here and can explain more of what I mean. I think that may have been the problem yesterday.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Money found

On Tuesday, January 18, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Extremely Cold. Work dull in the office. Received post office money order for $15 from Blaine. Arose at 7 a.m. Work on time. Saw Norman at 2:30 afternoon. Cashed money order and gave to "Skin" to take to Mamma. Mrs Raines came up at night. Brought rabbit. Mrs. Hurst, Fred and Mrs Austin came in and stayed until 9:30 I built fire and shaved. Yayyy! The money that was lost in the mail finally showed up! That's what I am guessing anyway, that or Blaine sent more. I am not sure who "Skin" is, I think he was mentioned the other day. Obviously it is a nickname, but it sounds kind of shady to me. Not as much about work things today because things were apparently pretty dull. Interesting dinner choice: rabbit. It's probably not bad, just not something we are used to. I bet somebody killed it themselves. I know that Dad had said that he and Jerry used to trap rabbits. Today in my Bible reading it was very evident how important our words are. Today's reading from Matthew 12 and yesterday's from Psalm 15 really join together. Psalm 15 says that those who don't backbite with their tongue can dwell in the tent of the Lord and Matthew 12 talks about how your words are the fruit of your life and show what kind of person you are. "The mouth speaks from the overflow of the heart. People will account for every careless word." We are created in the image of God. He SPOKE us into existence. What are we creating with our words? Are we bringing good or bad into the world? Are we creating good or bad with words between our family members, our co-workers, or the person who cuts us off in traffic? What we say matters a lot and that is a sobering thing. Also Psalm 16:5-11 today really spoke to me as a Psalm of praise. As I spoke about yesterday, indeed I have a delightful inheritance and the boundary lines have fallen for me in delightful places. God is my counsel and because He is at my right hand I will not be shaken.

Sunday, January 17, 2010


On Monday, January 17, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Cold-intensely. Annah Lee is a week old today at 12 noon. Went to Adam's Express office for blueprints twice. Talked to Howard Fisher in hall in morning. Mr. Schick in. Talked to Bob Anderson and Miss O'Hearn on street in a.m. Sent Lena's letter and went to American Theater at night with Howard Fisher. Got $13 from Bank. Well, Bonnie acknowledged my grandmother's one week birthday and today is my 40th birthday. Most of Bonnie's post today is about work. When he talked to Howard Fisher in the hall at work this morning they must have set up to go to the theater that night. Wonder what they saw? Great Day at church today in 2010. Lots of joking about my 40th. Beth surprised me with a video of top ten signs that you are 40 that they showed during church. Lots of decisions made at church this morning too. The Sunday School class gave me all sorts of gag gifts for my 40th. My family gave me a journal today that I will use to write down thoughts about my daily Bible reading. I continued reading in Genesis today chapters 35 and 36. Genesis is really the story of families and that is what this blog is about too. Today's reading had a good deal of family trees in it. Those were really important in Bible times and as I get older I begin to see the importance of those things as well and I am so grateful for my family tree and the Christian heritage that is there. Interesting in Genesis that even though there were all kinds of family problems, God continued to bless the family of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. He is a God who keeps his promises. I also note that they were always setting up markers or altars when God had spoken to them or done something in their lives. We have so gotten away from that in the 21st century. I am not even sure we know when God has done something. That is one reason for this journal, to mark when God speaks and what He does. Also, read from Matthew 12:1-21; Proverbs 3:21-26; and Psalm 15 which asks God the question "Who can dwell in your tent? Close to you? Intimate with you? The one who lives honestly, the one who is righteous. God answers the question. The Bible is not hard to understand.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Sunday afternoon

On Sunday, January 16, 1916 Bonnie wrote: Arose at 9 a.m. Went to church at 11 o'clock a.m. Had oysters for breakfast. Stayed at home in afternoon and read Ladies Home Journal. Norman was home all p.m. Mrs. Maganys sent dinner to Mary by Alice. Read Phila. Press at Mrs. Raines at night. Retired at 11 o'clock. chilly. I have been a little lax on writing about what Bonnie wrote so, I will try and make up for that now. Going all the way back to the 13th we see Bonnie mention Mexican General Huarta, who died in El Paso Texas on that date in 1916. This guy was a real character and must have been very well known to people then too, especially avid news readers like Bonnie. Huarta was known as The Jackal and his liver problems must have come from his loyalty to Mexican alcohol. Over the past couple of days we have seen Bonnie reading a lot of magazines and a lot of them seem to be today what we could call women's magazines. I think back then that they may have been a little more mainstream and plus Bonnie just likes to read and apparently needs to be occupied and so these work as well as anything. I also thought it was neat to see that Bonnie had his razor honed, not something I think anybody does now a days. Though with the cost of disposable razors maybe it would not be a bad idea to have just one razor that we sharpen. There is even a device advertised on TV now that will do this on disposable razors or disposable razor blades. Also, on the 14th Bonnie mentions going to bed with a hot iron because it was so cold. What a Hoot! His iron of course was not electric but warmed by the fire I am sure. Please do not take an electric iron to bed with you! Thus a fire safety message. Seriously though with all of the cold weather that we too have had recently home heating is a real problem and care should be taken with space heaters, wood stoves, etc. This is one of the leading causes of house fires. We also see Bonnie on the 15th cutting wood and carrying coal, again home heating. I am unsure what the fuss was about with Elmer Brown, possibly a feud between neighbors? I was tickled to see that Bonnie went to church on Sunday the 16th and it sounds like the afternoon was taken up with more reading and eating, a good Sunday afternoon. Beth and I have seen several movies in theaters recently, which we love to do but is a little unusual for us. We saw "The Blindside" with the kids and it was awesome. Really good movie that I would highly recommend. Then Beth and I saw "It's complicated", it was more adult in nature and not for kids, but still it was hilarious. Last night we saw, "Up in the Air" with George Clooney. A good movie, but didn't like the ending. I also have some reading to do, a book for a group that I am part of. The book is "Perspectives on Congregational Leadership" by Israel Galindo. It is a book about Bowen Family systems theory, a theory I learned about in some Leadership classes and that I am now a believer in. It also plays into my interest in genealogy. Caleb has a basketball game tonight. Church tomorrow. The sermon is: Things that hurt our Ministry from Luke 11:37-54. Mom is going with us to church at Springwood. I may write some more later on more of a faith note. My Bible reading yesterday was very impactful. I still need to figure out a way to journal better.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Hot Iron

On Friday January 14, 1916 Bonnie wrote: Cold-Clear. Got to work on time. Wrote up two personal deeds for W.H. Burke. Read McCall's Magazine. Had peach pie for dinner. Mr. Raines honed my razor. Read Pictorial Review. Took hot iron to bed with me. Spent a restless night on account of cold weather. On Saturday, January 15, 1916 Bonnie wrote: Extremely Cold. Mr. Schick away. Read all morning. Cut wood and carried up coal in p.m. Harry Raines helped me to carry Norman's box up home. Elmer Brown and I had fuss. Took bath and shaved at night. Read American Magazine at Mrs. Raines. Retired at 10:30 p.m. I promise some commentary is coming. Just out of time right now.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


On Thursday, January 13, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Damp. Indexed in morning. Mexican General Victoranio Huarta died from liver trouble at El Paso Texas. Went to post office at noon. Registered mail. Talked to Steffey at 6 p.m. Went to Bijou at 9 p.m. Shaved noon. H.A. Bass and Mr. Schick left. Commentary to follow.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


On Wednesday, January 12, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Damp-Drizzling. Wore new shirt for 1st time. Got to work at 8:40 a.m. Sent out cards of baby's birth. Indexed correspondence. Went up home to supper. Came by Mrs. Raines at 8 p.m. for Norman. Argument over bringing Norman home. Read until 10:30 at night. Annah Lee's birth is still affecting life in the Elmore house in 1916 and I am sure it will for quite some time. I wonder if the new shirt Bonnie wore today was a Christmas present? The biggest revelation today comes when we discover that Norman has apparently been staying at the Raines' while things are getting back to normal after the birth of Annah Lee. That's understandable and would probably happen in the 21st Century as well. But, there was also some argument over taking Norman home. Bonnie doesn't say who the argument was between and what about, but I am guessing that Mrs. Raines didn't want Norman to leave. She probably enjoyed the company and felt like she was doing something to help Mary out, which I am sure that she was. Bonnie and Mary though are probably ready to try and get things back to a normal routine and get everybody back in the house. Sounds like Bonnie probably stayed there tonight too. Ah, the adjustments and stresses of having a new baby in the house, I remember them well and don't miss them a bit! Nothing too much to write about here in 2010. Routine day at work. County car went to shop for PM and delivered a smoke alarm and scheduled some meetings. Lasagna for supper tonight...in fact, it's ready...don't want to be late...Get it while it's hot!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Last names

On Tuesday, January 11, 1916 Bonnie wrote: Damp-Cloudy. Work on time. Went to 5 & 10 cents store. Post office to have letters registered. Phoned to Skim (sp?) at dinner. Messrs. John C. Chas. & Leon Isoacseu were in the office. Bought birth announcement cards Caldwell-Sites addressed cards. Met Steffey and Marjorie Mercheut. Sent things up home at night. Sounds like it was maybe a busy day for Bonnie after the birth of Annah Lee and like maybe he isn't staying at home still. Boy I thought Clingenpeel and Meyerhoeffer were bad last names, but some of the ones mentioned here today were pretty weird too.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Happy Birthday Annah Lee

On Monday January 10, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Cloudy-Cool. Mary feeling very badly. I went by to tell Mrs. Raines about Mary. Got to work at 8:15 a.m. Went to Dr. Burks' office at 10:15 a.m. Mrs. Muire called me on phone. Annah Lee born at 11:55 a.m. Dr. Burks in attendance. I came home at 12:15 p.m. Norman is 11 mo. and 1 day old today. Stayed at Mrs. Raines at night. So, today is my grandmother's birthday, she would have been 94 years old today. I called her Granny. I do miss her, but I know that she is in heaven and I have lots of fond memories. In fact, when talking about family and faith, Granny would be one of the first ones to come to mind. Her faith was very important to her and she lived it out. She prayed for the salvation of family members and others often. She was a church pianist, Sunday School teacher and well, that list could go on a long time. Her piano playing provides lots of great memories. Nobody I have heard played the piano like Granny. It always seemed to be lively and upbeat and she played using chords. She was passionate about the piano and continued to use that gift to bless other people right up until she got sick. The Roanoke Times even did a story about her piano playing at the nursing home on September 7, 2002. I still remember stopping by and seeing Granny, she was such fun to tell stories with, laugh with, and to get some great advice. I stopped by one time and she was going to play the piano at the nursing home and so I went along. I got a little teary eyed watching her play and what it meant to all those other people. I also partly credit Granny, with being a reason that I am in the fire service today. She knew of my love for emergency services when I was younger and I guess you could say that she kind of encouraged that. I found out later that my grandfather Joe Clingenpeel was involved in Fire and Rescue at the old Viscose plant in Roanoke, so Granny did know something about that. She would play fire trucks and first aid with me when I would spend the night at her house. My fifth birthday party at her house was all fire trucks. I also remember Granny always making me date pinwheel cookies. They started out as a Christmas treat, but once she found out that I loved them so, she made them all the time. There are many wonderful memories that I could share, but some are also better left treasured in the heart. I will post a picture today on the blog of Granny and Paw-Paw (Annah Lee and Joe) on their wedding day in 1935, in honor of Granny's birthday. It was fun to read the story of her birth today from her father's perspective. My, my things were different back then. I wish I would have talked to her more about this diary and the things that went on and what she remembered. We did do some of that and I am so glad that we did. Let me encourage you to talk to your family members and tell stories. It is a lot of fun and it is how we learn about our past, which matters a lot, because we are connected to those folks and I believe a lot of what happened to them, happens to us as well. So talking about it helps us in the long run, maybe we change things that need to be changed or maybe we strengthen things that need to be strengthened and either way, it's a lot of fun. Miss ya, Granny.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

2 eggs and a baby

On Sunday, January 9, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Cold-Clear. Arose at 9 o'clock, took a hot bath. Read Ladies Home Journal. Went up home in afternoon. Howard Fisher was there. We walked down street together. After supper, Mrs. Raines came up home. I went home with her for 2 eggs. Mary feeling ill. I didn't make any commentary yesterday as I just didn't see a whole lot to comment about and I was tired and not feeling well. Feeling better today. Yesterday, Bonnie mentioned the Bijou theater which is new to me. Today, Bonnie is still reading Ladies Home Journal. I know why Mary is feeling ill. She will give birth to my grandmother Annah Lee tomorrow, so that will be fun to read about and I am sure I will have some things to say about that. I have been meaning to write more about faith matters. I have started the new year listening to a new podcast, with my new ipod. The podcast is called Daily Audio Bible. When you listen every day for a year, you will have been through the whole Bible. I have done this by way of reading before, but listening to it read is pretty neat. It has prompted many thoughts that should probably be recorded. The problem is, I am listening to DAB in the morning and posting on the blog in the evening and a lot of other stuff goes on in between. I need to come up with a system to record some thoughts in note form or something, a spiritual journal would be even better and then post here to the blog. I know that one of the things that has struck me is the amazing obedience of the people in Genesis and well, the people in Matthew too. Who just get up and go where God tells them and leave other things behind. A lesson for us in 2010. Caleb's basketball team won a great game today and he scored! Mom bought a new Toyota van. Church tomorrow, the sermon: The Mission from Luke 10:1-24. More tomorrow.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Saturday January 8, 1916

On Saturday, January 8, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Foggy-Cold. Met Mrs. Hancock on Salem Ave. this morning. Shook hands with Mr. Wiltsee in our office. Went up home at 5:00 p.m. ate supper there. Everett came up and gave Mama 30 cents for butter. I shaved in afternoon. Everett and I went to Bijou together. Bought candy at Hursts.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Ladies Home Journal

On Friday, January 7, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Rain-Sleet-Snow. Mr. R. F. Boxley came in the office. I bound up agreements with P.G.E.L. & P. Co. for Mr. Schick. Went to post office, nothing could be done towards tracing money. Stayed at home at night and read some in "Ladies Home Journal" Retired at 10:15. cold at night. Snowy night in 2009 too. Not 15 inches like last time, but maybe an inch or two. Sounds like Bonnie finally got those agreements finished up and also, I wonder how much money was lost in the mail? Interesting reading choice for the night. Sounds like Bonnie was a prolific reader, so I am guessing he had run out of other stuff to read, or maybe he saw an article he liked. If you will remember from an earlier post, Bonnie did use Lash brow ink. Tonight here, will be the National College Football Championship game and maybe some Wii fit. Taught fire safety today at North Cross school to about 220 kids. They were a neat bunch and we had a really good time.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Indoor plumbing?

On Thursday, January 6, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Warm-Fair. Ate dinner at Mrs. Raines. Turned water on in closet upstairs for first time? Mr. Schick returned to the office. Made inquiry at post office about lost money. Howard Fisher at office. I shaved at night. Norman sick and vomited freely. As I have mentioned before, Wednesdays are just long days, so this may be short. Are the Elmore just getting indoor plumbing? Would that be the case? I am putting together clues from the end of 1916 with the water cut off problems, and this mention of turning water on for the first time, and maybe even the commode reference a few days ago. Could be. Bonnie is still searching for the lost money from Blaine and Norman is sick. Bonnie also mentioned, Annah Lee, my grandmother, vomiting freely at the end of 1916.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

N&W Calendars

On Wednesday, January 5, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Cool-Clear. Checked agreements. Wrote to Blaine. Went to post office to inquire about money from Blaine. Walked up home from work with Ed. Gregory. Ate supper at home, came home at 8:30. Capt. Rowan gave me an N & W calendar. This won't be long as it has been a long day. Bonnie had to check those agreements again, whatever they were from yesterday. Blaine is his brother. A little confusing with the 2 homes, but I think Bonnie ate supper with his parents and then went to his and Mary's house. Those N & W calendars have sure been around awhile and they are nice. I also realized today in talking with Sweeney from work, (Sweeney is from SE Roanoke) that the address in front of Bonnie's diary is on Jamison Ave. SE in Roanoke and that is not where I remember Nanny and Grand-daddy living, so there was a move at some point I think. Also, another revelation today about the American theater. I saw some other old pictures of it today and the captions said that it was built in 1928...yet Bonnie talks about it in 1916. With a little help from the History museum of Western Virginia, I discovered that there was an original American theater whose dates match with the diary. There is a picture of it and I will try to post it later or give a link to it at least, but suffice it to say that the original one was not near as grand as the one currently pictured on this blog! We will delve into that later when we have more time and are not nearly so tired!

Monday, January 4, 2010

What's in the commode?

On Tuesday, January 4, 1916 Bonnie wrote: (Before I start today, please be advised that for some reason, I am having a really hard time making out his handwriting for today's entry, so there are a few words that I am unsure of...) Cool-Brisk. Got to office at 8:30 ahead of Capt. and Mr. Raitt. Finished writing Electrification agreements. Mrs. Raines had a sick headache. Mr. Raines went to lodge at night. Wrote for calendars. I shaved at Mrs. Raines. We ate there. Got a haircut at 6 p.m. Mr. Brown spit? in commode. So, the very first thing we have to deal with is this commode reference. First, an alternate definition for commode is a piece of furniture that is like a cabinet with drawers or shelves and I just can't read the handwriting to figure out what was in the commode. It could be spit, it could be pies, it could be put, it could be all sorts of things, but Mr. Brown has something in the commode and yes, I know there could be all sorts of jokes to be added here, but we just aren't going there. You can insert your own. This entry did confirm for me that Capt. Rowan and Mr. Raitt are co-workers and possibly bosses of Bonnie. The other word I had trouble deciphering was what I think is Electrification or Electification. I don't know what kind of agreements those would be, but the electrification seems to me to make more sense for a railroad. Sorry to hear Bonnie's mother-in-law is not feeling well. I wonder what kind of lodge Mr. Raines belonged to? That might be something to look for later. Still cold in 2010 and no sign of any warm up any time soon. Got more done at work today and getting ready to take down Christmas decorations.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Submarine Trouble

On Monday January 3, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Warm-Sultry. Got to work on time. Went by Mr. Raines for tobacco. Talked to Major Taliferro. Mr. Schick went west on #3 today. John Dillard came into the office today. Brought Mr. Schick some birds. Pres. Wilson returns to Washington from Hot Springs, VA on account of submarine trouble. I went up home for supper. gave papa 70 Cents. Came home on car. Again, it is anything but warm and sultry in 2010. (I think in yesterday's post, I was still using 2009...ooops.) It is in the teens at night and winds blowing 20-30 mph making wind chills near zero or below. I know that Taliaferro name is well known in Salem and even in Roanoke, I am guessing it may be some of the same clan. One boss, went out on a train and another came in apparently. Were birds a common gift? Did Mr. Schick collect birds? That just seems odd to me. Again, we have a World War 1 reference. I remember reading that, part of what drew the US into the war was the German submarines harassing American ships. I am guessing that is what Bonnie is referring to here and is what brought President Wilson home from a New Year's vacation early. Today we have pirates off the Somali coast who are capturing ships and crews for ransom and also a continued threat of terrorism on American airlines, this time coming from Yemen. Obama says that his administration is now focused on the terrorist threat. Why weren't we all along? It is much more of a threat to our country than Health care reform. I personally agree with recent statements from former Vice-President Cheney that the current administration does not realize that we are at war with the terrorists. I wonder why Bonnie gave his dad 70 cents? There is the street car ride home again. Good day at church today though the crowd was small due to the extreme cold. Also had a good time at the young adult Sunday School class party tonight. Back to work tomorrow. Fire safety events start to pick up. Roanoke County made it all the way through 2009 with out a fire death! Whew. The cold weather though makes for some scary situations as more people use wood stoves and things like Kerosene heaters. Please remember to keep combustibles 3 feet from the heat!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

On Sunday, January 2, 1916 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sunshine-Warm. Went up street after paper. Read at Raines until dinner. Went to Steffey's at 2 p.m. Following were pall-bearers at Mrs. Steffey's funeral: Justice Lawor died; Posey Halcomb; Wm. Moore; B.W. Elmore; Clyde Hash; Virgil Nash; Wm. Hancock. Ate Supper at Mrs. Raines and went home at 9 p.m. Introduced to Edward Burnett by Everett St. Clair. Not everything is the same as in 1916. It sure isn't warm here. It hasn't gotten out of the 20's and strong winds making it feel a lot colder. I wish I had today's paper. We have been out of town and upon our return found our Saturday paper missing, oh well. The Elmores are still dealing with the death of Mrs. Steffey and Bonnie was a pall-bearer. I suppose Justice Lawor was an honorary pall-bearer? I don't understand Grand-daddy's notes here. Other than that not a lot here in this entry. Not a lot going on here either. Got home this afternoon from Greenville, SC and are just trying to enjoy the last remaining time of holiday vacation. Back to church tomorrow, Sunday School party tomorrow night. Mom got home from Staunton too. Our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the Elmores of 2009 as the funeral for Ed Natt was today.

Friday, January 1, 2010

What a way to start a New Year

Just a reminder that as we start the new year of this blog, we are starting back at January 1916. So, if you have been following along toward the end of the year, story lines will not continue as I do not have the diary for 1917. I hope that as we near the end of this year I will have another one for another year or I will be able to write some things about the Clingenpeel or Meyerhoeffer sides of my family, especially the Hessian history. On January 1, 1916 Bonnie wrote: Rainy. Last night, I with Ganderson & Mr. Woolridge sat up at Mrs. Steffey's wake. Ate crackers & smoked & read all night. Came home at 9 o'clock. Took a bath and shaved in afternoon. Aunt Annah, Mrs. R and I went out to Steffey's. Sent out a doz. carnations. So, it appears that 1916 did not start off so great for the Elmores. As best I can tell, a close family friend passed away and Bonnie, Mary and the rest of the family participated heavily in the grieving process. As I have often pointed out, there seem to be such similarities in what happens even though this is 90 some years later. As I write this, the Elmore family in 2010 is grieving the loss of a son-in-law, husband, and father in Ed Natt. Ed was the son-in-law of Roger, who is Bonnie's youngest son. Ed was married to Claire, who is Roger and Leah's daughter. Ed was a great guy, a good friend, and had a very witty personality. The local newspaper ran a story about Ed's death today as he was a prominent lawyer in town. He will be greatly missed. Our sympathies go out to Roger and Leah and Claire as well as our prayers. Roger is I believe a reader of this blog and has helped with some of the contributions as well. Once again, cancer has struck this family. I know 2009 had been a rough year for many people with war and bad economic conditions among other things. Hopefully, 2010 will be much better and also, hopefully we will find some gems in the diary of Bonnie in the early part of 1916. I am already looking forward to the entry of January 10, as that is when my grandmother, Annah Lee was born to Bonnie and Mary. I have some pictures at home of Annah Lee that need to be posted on here too. I will try and do that soon. We are currently in Greenville, SC visiting Beth's family. It has been a good trip and we will come home tomorrow to be ready for Sunday back at Springwood Baptist Church. May you all have a very Happy New Year in 2010.