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The Grahams’ of Cochran County – Chapter 17


This centennial exposition disrupted my life.  Let me explain.  This centennial exposition was held in Dallas, Texas from June 6 to November 29, 1936.  Big deal for Texas (see Wikipedia).  Depressing for me.  It was not until later in life that I understood the connection.  In previous blogs I have mentioned that my Dad was county judge of Cochran County starting in 1935.  All of the officials of the county were invited to this exposition.  This thing attracted more than 6 million visitors.  This celebration was the 100th year after Texas received it’s independence from Mexico.

Dad invited Mother to go with him.  I don’t know if she had ever been away from the kids before.  I was about to start to school.  Marguerite was the oldest sibling and she was close to 18 at the time and I guess that Mother thought she would be a good substitute as a mother figure.  WRONG!  Nothing against Marguerite mind you.  She had never mothered me before.  Leola was the closest thing that I had to a mother figure besides my real Mother.  I vaguely remember Beatrice doing it before she died.  Was I surprised the day that Mother and Daddy left when I went into the house looking for mother to bandage a skinned knee.

“Where is Mother”, I asked.  Some one of the older siblings responded that she and Daddy were gone to Dallas.  I wondered where the Dallas family lived.  No, they are in the  city of Dallas and won’t be back until Monday someone explained.  I was stunned.  I don’t think my Mother even told me goodbye.  I was afraid she was gone for good.  I sat down on the couch and started crying.  Marguerite told me to shut up or I might get Janie upset.  Leola came over and sat down beside me and gave me a hug.  Boy, did I have an empty spot in my stomach.

I did not cheer up all day.  Bob wanted me to play but I did not feel like I could.  Janie later started crying and asking for Mother but Marguerite did mother her into a soft sob.  I don’t think I ate anything all day.  I went to bed that night sobbing because I usually got a sweet tuck-in from Mother.  I am getting tears in my eyes now as I type this.

The next day it did get a little better.  I started eating some and Marguerite told me that Mother had promised to bring us some presents from Dallas.  I played a little bit with Bob that day but mopped around mostly.  The next two or three days just drug by.  Janie was cheering up because Marguerite was really good with younger kids and she would hold Janie a lot.

I hated the Texas Centennial Exposition.  Mother did bring some presents.  That helped some but it did not make up for my missing my real Mother.

In later years of course the history of how this state got it’s independence from Mexico has been a favorite part of the story of TEXAS.  THE LONE STAR STATE.  I have long since forgiven the The Texas Centennial Exposition for depriving me of my Mother for a few days.

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