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.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Pay Day

On Monday, February 28, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Chilly-Sunny. Pay Day. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Read "Literary Digest". Left home 7:50. Got checked cashed. Sent 2nd payment of $5.00 to Federal Schools Inc. Mary, Baby Jane, Annah Lee, and Pauline Burnett went to Scouts' show at Auditorium at night. I shaved and helped Norman with arithmetic. Washed my hair. Rather lengthy end of month memo for February 1927: Capt. Anderson has been sick for several weeks during this month. Troops of Japan, U.S., Italy and England re still moving into the harbor of Shanghai, China. Severely chilly nights and mornings at the end of the month. Haven't felt so good this month. Senator Saulsbury died on 24th. Dr. Jos. R. Wilson brother of late Ex-President, Woodrow Wilson died of heart trouble in Baltimore. Warships and men sent by U.S., England and Italy to Shanghai, China to protect nationals, incident to a revolution there. Dr. J.C. Burks' wife died on 2nd. Lawrence Sullivan's father died of pneumonia on 12th. Miles Figgat died on 14th in hospital after an operation, was traffic manager, American Tobacco Co., in New York. Reva Gee's baby was born on Sunday afternoon 20th. Mary went up there. She fell down the steps and sprained her ankle and bruised her side. Large number of young college students committed suicide this month, cause unknown. Fair weather prevailed the greater part of the month. Bonnie helped Norman with arithmetic and in 2011 we have had to be on Caleb about his grade in Algebra, though I sure wouldn't be much help, that is Beth's territory. Also interesting that the US sent troops to China to help protect nationals as there was an uprising there in China. In 2011, the US sent a chartered ferry to Libya to help evacuate US citizens there who are in harm's way because of a violent uprising against dictator Khadffy. And what was up with college students committing suicide in 1927? The big Elmore family event seems to be that Mary fell. In 1916, which I wrote about last year, we read a lot about Dr. Burks from Bonnie's diary. This month in 1927 his wife died.

Sunday, February 27, 2011


On Friday, February 25, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Cloudy-Cool. Letter from Christine. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Left home 7:50. Worked hard all day. Stayed in the office at noon. Talk around the office about retiring Capt. Anderson. Norman attended Scout meeting at Presbyterian church, 7 p.m.. I shaved. Cold and windy tonight. Fire in furnace. Got ton of coal from H.W. Harris. On Saturday, February 26, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sunny-Chilly. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Worked hard all morning. Cut wood from 3:30 to 6:00 p.m. Spread manure over yard. Mary and the girls went to city. Mary bought a new hat. I helped Annah Lee and Baby Jane deliver papers. Took a bath at 11 o'clock and got to bed about 11:30. On Sunday, February 27, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sunny-Cold. Arose at 6:30. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Shaved. Mary and the children went to Sunday School. I went to church. Harry ate dinner and supper with us. He and Mary took a nap. We snapped pictures. Cold wind in p.m. Harry stayed for supper. Jim and Mrs. Drewry came by from church. Got to bed 11:00. I had never heard that Annah Lee (Granny) and Baby Jane had a paper route. Was this a routine thing or were they just filling in for somebody, or a special occasion? Sounds like a nice Sunday afternoon. We had a good Sunday afternoon here in 2011 as well. Stayed after church for a Soup/Sandwich and game fellowship. It was fun. Then we came home and read, Rachel did homework and I watched the race on TV. Tonight it is family TV watching: "Amazing Race".

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Washington's Birthday Hike

On Tuesday, February 22, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Chilly-Hazy. Holiday. Washington's Birthday. Mary got up at 6 o'clock and got Norman off. He went with the Scouts on a hike to Catawba mountain. I slept until 1:30 p.m. My sides feel sore. Shaved. Cut wood, but felt weak. Annah Lee and Baby Jane went to "Jefferson". Norman got home, very tired about 6:30. We got to bed about 12:00 p.m. On Wednesday, February 23, 1927 Bonnie Elmore: Rain-Chilly. Arose at 6:15. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Left home at 7:45. Mr. Musser took me to the market in his truck. Stayed in the office at noon. I studied from 8:45 to 10:30 tonight on my drawing course. Mrs. Drewry came over. I went to bed about 11 o'clock. On Thursday, February 24, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sunny-Warm. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Left home 7:55. Got haircut at noon; sweater yarn at 5:30 for Norman's red sweater. Got home at 6:00. Read paper. Studied my drawing text and charts from 9 to 10:00. We are awfully sleepy. Went to bed about 11:00 o'clock. Warm at night. Just had time to catch up between some errands, now off to take the kids to play practice! Bonnie, I am tired too!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Mary Fell

On Monday, February 21, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Cloudy-Cold. Arose at 6:15. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Left home 7:40. Mary went back to Reva Wilson's. She stepped on a loose board at Richard's and fell, sustaining a severe sprain of her ankle and shoulders. Mr. and Mrs. Drewry came over after supper and left about 9:45. I read until 10:30, got to bed by 11:00. It sounds like Mary took quite the spill. I really wish people still did things like go over and visit the neighbors after supper.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Love Chapter

On Sunday, February 20, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Chilly-Wet. Water in basement. Arose at 6:30. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Shaved. Baby Jane and Annah Lee left for Sunday School at 8:55. Annah Lee recited 13th Chapter of 1 Corinthians. I helped serve Communion. Annah Lee and I got candy and gum. Mary went to Reva Wilson's. Wilson brought her home at 9:40. I got rest of water out of the basement. Studied charts and text until 9:30 p.m. How about that! My sermon today in 2011 was from 1 Corinthians 13 and way back in 1927, my grandmother was reciting that at church. Watching the Daytona 500 race today on TV. Took a nap.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Busy week

On Tuesday, February 15, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Cloudy-Mild. Pay Day. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Read "Literary Digest". Left home 7:45. Mary went up town at 4 p.m. I got check cashed at noon and 47th note on house. Baby Jane helped me put screw in Drawing board and mount it after supper. I studied from 9 to 10:30. Someone called on phone at 10:40. On Wednesday, February 16, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sunny-Pleasant. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Shaved. Left home at 7:42. Walked around at noon. Paid bills. We went to Calvary Baptist Church at 7:00 p.m. Met Loam. Dr. Powell preached an interesting sermon. We got out about 9:15. Reached home at 9:50. Went to bed about 10:45. Warm tonight. On Thursday, February 17, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sunny-Pleasant. Mr. Turner away, a.m. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Read paper. Addressed envelopes for Mrs. Drewry. Left home at 7:42. Walked at noon. We all attended PTA meeting at 8 p.m. (Refreshments) Good session. Junior Spillan broke Norman's watch crystal. Got home at 10:40, tired and worn out. We went to bed about 12:00. On Friday, February 18, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sunny-Fine. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Left home 7:45.Lot of work today. Deposited $10.27 for P.T. Assn. Wrote a lot of mail today. Mary Burnette's baby born about 9:00 p.m. Mary was there. Pauline and Walter came over to our house. My head aches. Read a great deal. Went to bed about 11:00. Driving rain flooded our basement. On Saturday, February 19, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sleet-Rain P.M. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. I feel very tired today; side hurts. Marketed, got home at 2:00. Baled rain water from basement from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m. Sleet is falling. Very disagreeable outdoors. I cut Annah Lee's hair after supper. Took a bath at 10:30. Went to bed about 11 o'clock. Still sleeting. There were a couple of things in these diary entries that caught my attention. First off was that the Elmore's went to church on a Wednesday night, which I can't remember them doing before in 1916 or so far in 1927. Then, they went to Calvary Baptist which they don't normally do, I don't think. In 2011, I happen to know the pastor at Calvary Baptist and am pretty good friends with her, Donna Hopkins Britt. I wonder what made the sermon so interesting? Also, it seemed long at over 2 hours, especially for a Wednesday night. It sounds like the Elmore's were having a week like we have in 2011 all the time, with something to do almost every night, whether it's church, PTA, sports, friends, kids, etc. And it sounds like Bonnie was feeling the effects. I also know that feeling of having a flooded basement, but thankfully, don't think I have ever had to bail water for 3 hours on a Saturday, that would stink. Here in 2011 the weather is warm and breezy but pleasant. I hope we don't have any more sleet but still wouldn't mind some more snow, though that is looking a lot less likely. We even really just need some rain as things are VERY dry and there have been many small brush fires. Beth is away doing our "marketing" now. It took me a little bit to figure out what Bonnie was meaning in that entry, but then I got it. The rest of the family in 2011 is watching English soccer and NASCAR racing after having spent the morning doing house cleaning, school work, laundry, and sermon prep.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Grant's Tomb?

On Monday, February 14, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Cloudy-Cool. St. Valentine's Day. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Read "Literary Digest". Dr. Percy Stickney Grant, well known New York minister died. Mr. Sullivan buried. My head aches right much. Didn't work much this morning. Mary and Mrs. Crowley attended Central Council meeting. We came home together on car at 5:15. The children exchanged Valentines. Got to bed at 10:30. Not a whole lot to comment on in this Valentine's Day entry. I had to do some catching up over the weekend. In those posts, we celebrated Norman's 12th birthday and there was the mention of Reva (Gee) Wilson. I know some Gee's from the Mt. Pleasant area of Roanoke, which is still SE Roanoke where Bonnie and Mary lived. I wonder if there was any relation? It was good to see that Bonnie helped with homework! Also in those earlier posts, Bonnie really seemed to have a hard time getting into the Express office for whatever kind of supplies he needed. Nothing much going on here on Valentine"s Day 2011 either just a quiet night at home for the most part. Very Windy today, lots of power lines down and small brush fires today. Also tonight Blue Ridge Fire Dept. is working a fire with lots of help from Montvale, Read Mountain, and Vinton. We ordered supper out and exchanged Valentines here at the house. Itunes music and candy were also shared as gifts!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Express Office.

On Wednesday, February 9, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Chilly-Hazy. Norman is 12 years old today. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Left home at 7:40. Annah Lee still feels bad, but went to school. Mary went up to see Reva (Gee) Wilson. I feel awfully tired and exhausted tonight. Helped children with lessons. Addressed Valentines. To bed at 10:00. On Thursday, February 10, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Cloudy-Mild. (Raining at 6 p.m.) Arose at 6:00 a.m. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Shaved. Left home 7:55. Mary went to school house in afternoon to help fix draperies etc. Mr. Argenbright went to Exp. office. Didn't get school supplies, locked. Mr. Argenbright took me to the express office in his car 5:30, ware room locked, didn't get table and papers. Don't feel at all good. On Friday, February 11, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sunny-Mild. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Read awhile. Left home 7:50. My head aches. Wrote to Mama. Walked to the express office at 1:50. Also to Shapiro's for rings (not ready). Mr. Argenbright came to the office in his car for me. Went to the express office, locked up. I read until 10 o'clock. On Saturday, February 12, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sunny-Mild. Mr. Jno. L. Sullivan died. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Left home 7:50. Worked hard all a.m. Have had headache. Mr. Argenbright came to the office in his car - We got drawing table and papers from express office. Cut wood in p.m. Mr. Drewry braced back steps for me. Washed my hair. Mary had severe case of indigestion. On Sunday, February 13, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Rain-Chilly-Cloudy. At the office in a.m. Arose at 6:30. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Shaved. The children and I went up town together on car at 9:45. They attended Sunday School. I went to the office. Mary felt sick. She stayed at home. I studied text of Division No. 1 of my course all afternoon. After supper, Mary played the piano. We sang. Norman went to church.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Board Meeting

On Tuesday, February 8, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Warm-Pleasant. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Left home 7:45. Got jury check cashed at noon. $7.50. Paid our phone bill. Annah Lee is at home sick. I attended Board meeting at 8:00 p.m. Got out at 8:55. Mr. and Mrs. Welcker and Mrs. Newcomb and I came home in car. Went to bed at 10 o'clock. I wonder if the board meeting was at church and if so was it about finding a new preacher as we know that Dr. Violette preached his last sermon the other day. It was nice that the jury check seemed to pay for the phone bill. In 2011, Internet is still slow and we are busy driving the kids places. In fact, just got a text that I need to go get them from play practice.

Monday, February 7, 2011


On Monday, February 7, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Hot-Sunny. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Shaved. Left home at 7:55. Man took me to market in car. I feel sick at my stomach today. Mary is not feeling well. Busy all day. Walked at noon. Got home at 6:00. Read after supper. Went to bed about 11 o'clock. Quite tired. Short comments tonight. Very slow Internet here at our house in 2011. Amazing how dependent we are on the Internet nowadays.

Sunday, February 6, 2011


On Sunday, February 6, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Warm-Cloudy. Arose at 6:30. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. I took all the children to Sunday School and church. Doris Vicewarner went with us. I helped serve communion. Norman went to dinner with Chester Britts. Harry ate dinner with us. He brought candy. Ate supper with us. Baby Jane and Annah Lee went to Dunkard church. Sounds like Bonnie and family had a normal winter Sunday. I am thinking that possibly I should have named the blog this year "Made a fire. Dumped Ashes" Beth though correctly pints out that this may change when summer comes. I am also still surprised at the kids going to the Dunkard church. I never heard Granny mention this. I may have to find out more about this, especially where the Dunkard church was that was close to their house in SE Roanoke. We have had a good day here in 2011. Mom went to church with us, where we had a decent crowd. Busy day at church with communion, I taught Sunday School and Beth and Rachel did children's church. We ate at Greenwood restaurant where I had fried oysters. Today is Super Bowl Sunday and we are just enjoying that together as a family tonight.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Quite Tired and Sleepy

On Friday, February 4, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sunny-Hot. Arose at 5:50. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Shaved. Left home at 7:50. Wrote a letter to Nina Leslie. Took a walk down 3rd Ave. to 3rd St. N.E. at noon. Quite tired and sleepy. Got haircut on Tazewell Ave. at 5:15. Walked home at dusk. Read from 8:00 to 9:30 p.m. Went to bed about 10 o'clock. Warm. On Saturday, February 5, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Cloudy-Cool. Arose at 5:50. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Read " The Bar Sinister in Lincoln's Life" Left home at 8:00. Mr. Armstrong came to the office. Introduced me to R.M. Wilson, Chief Train Dispatcher. I cut wood from 3:30 to 5:00 p.m. Shaved and took a bath. Mr. Argenbright took us to town in his car at 7:45 p.m. We went to "Park" Theater Got Ice Cream. Home 11:00. I too am quite tired and sleepy here in 2011 after having worked 8 hours today. Maybe some more comments tomorrow.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Children Drew Birds

On Wednesday, February 2, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Hot-Sunny. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Shaved. Left home at 8:00. Very busy today. Mary went to town, Central Council meeting. I met Norman at Joe Milan's at 5:15. Mary joined us and we got Norman a pair of shoes. Got pork chops. Had supper about 6:50. Read until 9:20. Retired at 10:00. On Thursday, February 3, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sunny-Hot. Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Dumped ashes. Read awhile. Left home 7:45. Mary attended PTA meeting 3:00 p.m.. I got polish and candy and went to bank at 1:45 p.m. Mary phoned me. Got home at 5:30. Made a fire. Mr. Lotts came down to phone after supper. I read until 10:30. The children drew birds.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Annah Lee for President!

On Monday January 31, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Warm-Sunny. On jury (reported). Arose at 6:00 Dumped ashes. Made a fire. Shaved. Left home at 7:50. Went to court. Excused for the day. Got my checked cashed at noon. Paid bills. Sent letter to Federal School, first payment $5.00. Harry is going to take me to Auditorium tonight. Will Rogers. Nell Hancock and her husband came by. End of month note: Nina and Newt are to move to Washington D.C. Undecided in regard to taking up Commercial Designing by correspondence. Annie Burnette was married Christmas night. U.S. Gunboats and 3,000 soldiers and Marines rushed to Nicaraugua to stop landing of arms by Mexican ships. Big fire at Rocky Mount, Va. on 12th. Girls killed and broken up. On Tuesday, February 1, 1927 Bonnie Elmore wrote: Sunny-Hot. Baby Jane is 10 yrs. old. On jury 1/2 hour (Last Day). Arose at 6:00. Made a fire. Took out ashes. Left home at 7:55. Went to court. No cases tried. Jury was excused for the term. Very busy all day. Annah Lee was elected President of Girl's Reserves. Got home at 6 p.m. Read until 10:30. Awfully tired and sleepy. We went to bed about 11 o'clock. Yay for Granny (Annah Lee) she was elected President of Girl's Reserves. What is Girl's Reserves? I have no idea. I am guessing like Girl Scouts? And Happy Birthday to Baby Jane! In 2011, my trip to Dallas was postponed due to icy weather and blizzards in Dallas and the Midwest. Left work a little early today to watch a soccer game with Caleb on TV. Registered Rachel for her classes as a junior in high school. She pointed out that she only does that one more time. Wow. I'm old.