Friday, October 30

A new obsession

Some called my Step Father a pack rat, I called him a collector. Either way when he passed away 2 years ago I was left in care of his estate which included several sealed boxes. At the time I was overwhelmed with tragedy and caring for 3 babies. So the boxes where placed into storage where they sat, until 2 months ago. While going through the unit in search of family pictures I rediscovered them. Underneath yearbooks and personal papers was a an old stationary box, filled with letters. I began opening each letter, looking for dates and familiar names. The letters were written by 3 men between 1921-1935, all proclaiming everlasting love to my Grandmother, Gladys. What a perfect box to hold letters of such passion! Some were typed, some handwritten with the most remarkable penmanship.

There are quite a few poems.

Lot's of pet names.

My Grandmother did social work before she retired to raise her children. Many letters are from the Red Cross during war times.

She was also a journalist.

And scads of telegrams. Telegrams must have been the 'texting' of that time. Some are short, just information like what time their train was due to arrive. Some more romantic in nature.

Some are really funny, check out the detailed map. Or the one below telling her about a movie.
Little interesting and silly clippings were in some.
I didn't know my Grandmother, she died in the early 70's before my parents married. But I know that none of these men were my Grandfather. The mystery deepened when I discovered one of the men would later become her husband. I am trying to sort the letters by date so I can put the pieces together. What happened to these men she cared so much for. What happened to the first husband? So far I haven't found any letters from my Grandfather! Weird. It's like a Hallmark movie or something.
Daughter finds old box of letters.
Daughter sits in dusty attic reading the letters.
Daughter discovers dark family secret....
I know by the hotel stationary that these men traveled quite a bit. The engraved letterhead is Amazing!! I buy old sheet music every chance I get just for fonts and engraving like this.

I've been lucky enough to stay at the Monteleone in New Orleans, it's a beautiful hotel. Still looks just like this.

I love this one! Sweet Hotels, sleep in comfort and safety.

Here was the object of their affection, wasn't she beautiful?


Katies Rose Cottage said...

ohhh my gosh !! what a wonderful and amazing treasure ~
I would not be able to pull myself away from that box ~
It does so very much sound like a movie ~ I read a book that was alot like what you are getting to do ~ I need to find it ~ I think it is by Francine Rivers ~
Ohhh girl what a neat neat heirloom ~

Dorthe said...

Lisa, oh my, what a wonderfull treasure find, and mysterius one too, I guess you will have to fill in many hours with serging for this story to be totally told,to you.How exiting dear.'

Hugs Dorthe

sissie said...

What a beautiful piece of history and memories of your grandmother.

I found letters that my father and his brothers had written to my mother during WWII. My father was a Pearl Harbour survivor, so the tragedy that he saw and witnessed had to be horrific. However, you would have never known by the sweet lovely letters he wrote to my mom.
The penmanship and the eloquent use of words were amazing, just like yours.
What a treasure you have unopened. said...

Wow, she must have been something, huh? How exciting to read those.

Anonymous said...

What an amazing stash to sort out! And yes, she was very lovely. Let us know when the Hallmark movie comes out! :)


Halo Hill said...

Oh my GOSH! What a treasure you have found! What a dream for anyone to find such things from her Grandmother!! You are one lucky girl! That is absolutely AWESOME!


Susie~From My Home To Yours said...

Oh, what a wonderful adventure you've been on....and what great memories! Your grandmother was definitely a very beautiful woman, I'm sure she was very special. Thanks for sharing.

Cami @ Creating Myself said...

What a wonderful, fabulous, awesome treasure! As if the letters weren't great've unveiled a family mystery. How interesting!

Pat @ My Tattered Elegance said...

How did I miss this blog until today? What an amazing adventure with all these treasures. You are a very fortunate grand-daughter. Enjoy the time you spend reading the past and getting to know that beautiful grand-mother.
Hugs, Pat

Julia - "Vintage with Laces" said...

Wow, these are treasures! You must be very excited to find out all the things about your grandmother you hadn't known before. She had been for sure not a boring person. Very fascinating!

Nelly said...

Oh my! How amazingly fortunate you are to have those. Just wonderful treasures!

Charlene said...

Beautiful like her granddaughter! What a great story! It would be interesting to see what happened to all the guys.

I stayed at the Montelone Hotel too. Haven't been back to New Orleans since all the damage. Have you? Used to love to go there. All those different handwriting was great! It would be wonderful to do a journal of all those & put her on the front.

Mom has gone to San Antonio for the rest of the week. Due back Friday. Had to work at the airport today but, maybe we can talk tomorrow. I miss talking to you & the group.

Cindy-Stitches-N-Stuff said...

Wow, you've got a gold mine. This is like Bridges over Madison County. Please let us know the end, and if your grandpa was one of them.


Laura said...

Hi Lisa,
She was, indeed, very beautiful! Her story is mysterious and how exciting for you to unravel the threads...
I hope you share your discoveries with us!
Take care, Laura