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Ellen Church Williamson, my Grandmother

Grandma Williamson was a great influence in our lives, her children's and her grandchildren's, by both the force of her personality and her many talents.  Raised by Victorian standards, she had a softer, sentimental side as well that came out in her watercolors and her poems.  Grandma gave me a collection of poems for my birthday in 1943, when I was five (yes, I was already reading everything in sight by then), and added to it over the years.  I had assumed it was in a "safe place" and have dug into every closet and drawer for months looking for it.  It turned up in my father's library last month.   My mother came across it quite by accident and it was a miracle it was saved, since my mother is almost completely blind and my father is in mid-stage Alzheimer's.  

Many are copies of poems she made for greeting cards, and while the artwork is indicated, it's not duplicated- this was the age well before Xerox.  What a pity.  She was very talented and I would have liked to seen more of her artwork.

In a forward she wrote:

Newfield, New York
October 1943

Dear Bessie Ellen:

    My object in writing this book is to give you something of profit and enjoyment, which you may have for present entertainment, and, also, enjoy for many years to come. Perhaps, years hence you will receive more comprehensive pleasure from the perusal of my stories and poems than you do now. This is my desire.
    I shall endeavor to add to this collection from time to time, and when I send you material, you may have it placed in the proper section as I shall indicate.

Lovingly, your grandmother, 

I remember the word "perusal" sent me scrambling for the dictionary.  

Little did Grandma imagine such a marvelous thing as the internet, where anyone in the whole world could see her poetry-- but I imagine if it had existed then, she would have been on it in an instant!

Index to poems:

Index to stories:

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