Friday, June 02, 2006

Someday Comes

Yesterday we took a trip to The Ohio Historical Society. It's a trip we have been meaning to take for quite some time, but it was always one of those "someday" things.

Grandpa wanted to teach the kids a little bit about our family history.

The helmet my daughter is wearing belonged to her Great Uncle Inky. He was a doughboy in WWI. When he returned from the war, his helmet was used as the model for The Doughboy Statue pictured above.

Grandpa told the kids, there is a painting of the old family home in the lobby of State Savings Bank, and that it is also printed in the book, "Columbus Viniettes" by Bill Arter.

He told them their Grandmother was born in the Old Governors Mansion, and how she became a nurse, and founded The Columbus Baby Camp for underprivileged children during The Great Depression.

He told the story of James Thurber's "Funny Flood," and how our family grocery store was destroyed on that fateful day in 1914. He went on to say that Great Grandpa took the customer records from the flooded store, and used them to found the first credit bureau in Ohio, The Ohio Bureau of Credits, and how the depression was the catalyst for the modern concept of buying on credit.

Kids don't usually have much interest in history, but yesterday it came alive for them. They connected, and found their roots.

I'm glad we took the time to make "someday" happen. Last week, Grandpa was diagnosed with congestive heart failure, and I'm not sure how many "somedays" we have left.

1 comment:

The Fat Lady Sings said...

What a marvelous history your family has! And what a marvelous way to teach that history to your kids. I've always hated the dry way history is presented to children in school. I've always been an advocate of personal history; how it was viewed by the people who lived it - finding out those human factors that may have changed the entire course of human history. Take the battle at Waterloo for instance. Napoleon always directed his battles himself. He would never allow any of his subordinates to even know of his plans; his ego wouldn't allow anyone else to take the credit. Well - he was sick at Waterloo. Had a bad bladder infection, and couldn’t stay on his horse. So he went home to bed, his commanders didn’t know what the hell to do, and he lost his entire empire that day to Wellington and the English. Imagine - his world lost on account of infection.

It’s these things that make history interesting - that bring it home to kids. Hearing about how their family impacted not only their own future - but that of the world that surrounds them. They have so much to be proud of. Your family has a tradition of service to the community. I'm willing to bet they carry on that legacy - as will their own children and grandchildren. Cool beans, my dear!