Wednesday, June 12, 2013
The woman apologized and explained, "We didn't have this green thing back in my earlier days." The young clerk responded, "That's our problem today.
Your generation did not care enough to save our environment f or future generations." She was right -- our generation didn't have the green thing in its day.
Back then, we returned milk bottles, soda bottles and beer bottles to the store. The store sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilized and refilled,
so it could use the same bottles over and over. So they really were truly recycled. But we didn't have the green thing back in our day. Grocery stores bagged our groceries
in brown paper bags, that we reused for numerous things, most memorable besides household garbage bags, was the use of brown paper bags as book covers for our schoolbooks.
This was to ensure that public property, (the books provided for our use by the school) was not defaced by our scribbling's. Then we were able to personalize our books on the
brown paper bags. But too bad we didn't do the green thing back then.
We walked up stairs, because we didn't have an escalator in every store and office building. We walked to the grocery store and didn't climb into a 300-horsepower machine
every time we had to go two blocks. But she was right. We didn't have the green thing in our day.
Back then, we washed the baby's diapers because we didn't have the throwaway kind. We dried clothes on a line, not in an energy-gobbling machine burning up 220 volts -- wind
and solar power really did dry our clothes back in our early days. Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing.
But that young lady is right; we didn't have the green thing back in our day.
Back then, we had one TV, or radio, in the house -- not a TV in every room. And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief (remember them?), not a screen the size
of the state of Montana.
In the kitchen, we blended and stirred by hand because we didn't have electric machines to do everything for us.
When we packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, we used wadded up old newspapers to cushion it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap.
Back then, we didn't fire up an engine and burn gasoline just to cut the lawn. We used a push mower that ran on human power.
We exercised by working so we didn't need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity.
But she's right; we didn't have the green thing back then.
We drank from a fountain when we were thirsty instead of using a cup or a plastic bottle every time we had a drink of water.
We refilled writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen, and we replaced the razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor just because the blade got dull.
But we didn't have the green thing back then.
Back then, people took the streetcar or a bus and kids rode their bikes to school or walked instead of turning their moms into a 24-hour taxi service.
We had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances. And we didn't need a computerized gadget to receive a
signal beamed from satellites 23,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest burger joint.
But isn't it sad the current generation laments how wasteful we old folks were just because we didn't have the green thing back then?
Please forward this on to another selfish old person who needs a lesson in conservation from a smart-ass young person.
Sunday, July 15, 2012
Robert Fields, brother to Earl Dean, was indeed a member of the
Society - and I've obtained a set of his papers. There's good news and
bad news with those: They were done in 1969 long before the current
standard of documentation was adopted - and while he supplied wonderfully
precise dates for events (birth, death, marriage), there is little by way
of proof with his papers. There is another set of papers in Plymouth that
doesn't share as many generations, but is more recent and helps with some
of the earlier generations.
Here is a summary: You are generation 13, Francis Cooke is generation 1.
Generations 1-5 and the birth of Levi Cooke in 6 are covered by Mayflower
Families - a source accepted by Plymouth. The rest of generation 6 and
all of 7 and 8 are covered by MA vital records - and I have full citations
or copies for those so nothing needs to be done there. Gen. 9 is not as
strong, but will work. Lewis Augustine/Augustian's birth is in the vital
records and in a family Bible - copies of which I have. The Bible also
has his death date and his marriage date - and to whom married. This is
skimpy, but will work. The crucial proof here is for Lewis'
birth/parentage and we've got that.
That leaves gen. 10-13. Gen. 10 is covered by Robert Fields' papers, and
he gives places and dates for each event - but no proof. I can get the
marriage from ancestry (and that for the marriages in gen. 11 and 12), but
the rest we would need. By rest, Plymouth wants copies of birth (showing
parents), marriage, and death certificates for at least the most recent 3
generations (yours, your parents, and your grandparents in this line) as
well as for any event after 1900 (the deaths of Emma and Thomas Fields in
gen. 10, and the death of Susan Mary Crump Hunt in gen. 9). We use copies
to submit - not originals.
Our process is in 3 steps. The first is a Preliminary Application, which
I'll send you by mail. If you want to apply, this gets returned with the
application fees, and then I'll send a worksheet and complete set of
instructions (which you basically won't need as I've given you above what
will be needed). When the rest of the documentation is done, the last
step is for me to prepare a final application for your signature. That's
I suspect this isn't news to you at all, but you are a direct descendent
of at least Stephen Hopkins, Miles Standish, and John Alden as well as
Francis Cooke. You could do this through any of them - or do supplements
after you've done a first.
Last comment on Bibles. I don't know who owned the Bible that I have
copies for. Robert Fields' papers mention an Enoch Hunt Family Bible and
a Fields Family Bible. The other set of papers that follows your line
through Harriet Newell Cooke and Enoch Hunt and then goes through another
sibling mentions "Bible Record". I have the copy of one of them, but
don't know which. Obviously, it would help you if you could find - or
know who has - the other one(s). I mention this only as a side comment -
because it/they may be impossible to find. On the other hand, this branch
of your family has been in Monroe County for generations - and someone may
well have either left the Bibles themselves, or copies of the family pages
- with local historical societies etc...
Historian - Mayflower Society CT