Thursday, November 10, 2011

A Century in the Making

My Grandmother, Maxie Green, was born 100 years ago today.

She passed away in 2006 at 94 years of age, but I think of her all the time.

Born on a farm in Russellville, Arkansas she was the first in her family to graduate from High School (moving in with a family in the "city" in order to attend).

Driven from Arkansas by the Dust Bowl, she left her family and traveled with another family to California seeking greater economic opportunity.

In Blythe (an eastern desert town in California) she met my Grandfather, Victor Green. When the family she was traveling with was ready to move further west into California she remained in Blythe to pursue a life with Vic. Maxie supported herself as a waitress in a cafe. She once told me Vic caught her eye because he drove a convertible.

Ultimately Maxie and Vic moved further west into California settling in Wilmington, next to the Port of Los Angeles, where she spent most of the rest of her life.

A woman of strongly held opinions, Maxie taught me how to have a point of view and to defend it (which I often did because I disagreed with her).

It's amazing to consider how much the world changed during her lifetime. Born when William Howard Taft was in the White House, Maxie lived through two World Wars, women being allowed to vote, Prohibition, the invention of radio, television, scheduled air flight, mass production of automobiles and computers.

Here's to you, Mom.
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Grandmother Green surrounded by family. L to R -- Grandfather Victor Green, Uncle Bob Green, Father Ken Green, Mother Joyce Green and me, unable to keep a straight face.
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Taking a church trip with Grandmother Green to Magic Mountain in 1975. I don't think the matching shirt/blouse was planned.
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