I have talked a bit about my Grandpa Swain and now it is time to talk a bit about Grandma Swain. She was born Annie Hogan 06 December 1888 in Irwinville Georgia. Her parents are John Wesley Hogan and Clora Aurora Porter. Grandma was the eldest of 11 girls and all but one made it to adulthood. She married George William Perry Swain on 15 February 1906.
I wish I had great pictures, but the old pictures have deteriorated. This is Grandma with her hair down. She is wearing a maternity dress.
I remember being a child and watching Grandma sit on her hassock and comb her hair. Her hair was mostly black then with a bit of white. Sitting there on the hassock her hair would almost brush the floor. Grandma slept with her hair plaited into two pigtails. She would carefully unplait her hair and comb through it each morning. If she found a frizzy or broken end she would burn it. She never cut her hair. It was a sin in her eyes to cut her hair. So a match would be lit to take care of the frizzy or broken ends.
Grandma was very religious and attended church whenever she was able. She read her scriptures every morning after dressing for the day and combing her hair. If we were visiting I would sit on the arm of her chair and listen to her as she read the scriptures aloud.
She had little bits of life and death tucked into her bible. She had everyone's birthday written on a piece of paper and tucked in between the pages. Obituaries, engagements and wedding clippings were also tucked inside. A flower sometimes was pressed between the pages. I now have Grandma's bible, but all the little bits placed between the pages are gone. The cover is falling off... it is safely tucked away in an acid-free environment.
Grandma was just a perfect grandma. She always had tea cakes for us when we came to visit. She sent us birthday cards... they always had a dime taped inside. To us a dime was a lot of money. But those dimes did not come off the cards until we were adults. When I graduated high school she sent me a card with a dollar check inside. I still treasure the card.
I was so scared when I went to cash the check... I had never done such a thing before. Mama showed me where to endorse the check and I shyly went to the teller's window and cashed it. I saved the dollar and later in the year the dollar helped me... along with other cash I received as graduation gifts... to purchase a very warm coat off the clearance rack at Penney's. I think the coat was $15. Why did I need a very warm coat in Georgia? Well Frank and I married in August and Frank joined the Army in October. We were going to Virginia where the winters are much colder.
When we visited Grandma as children she would have us roll her crochet string off the cones into balls. Grandma crocheted and tatted. Sometimes she would cut pieces of the string and teach us string tricks... I'm afraid I don't remember how to do them any more... cat's cradle, Jacob's ladder, grandpa chewing tobacco and many others.
She let us look at Grandpa's stereographs. The stereoscope was similar to this one. The stereographs were fun to look at. There were pictures of many places all over the world.
I started genealogy research many years ago. I wish I had started sooner. I could probably have gotten a lot of interesting stories from Grandma.
In my research of the Hogan line I came across the following newspapers article.
IRWINVILLE, GEORGIA, JUNE 10, 1903
Nazery Shot Hogan at Bone Lake
Don't you love the way they wrote back then. Grandma is the only girl that fits this age, so this story is of my grandma. Mama tells me that her granddaddy was a large man... over 6 feet tall.
The Hogans owned land that was next to Bone Pond. The land passed through Clora Aurora Porter Hogan's mother, Penelope Ann Prudence (nee Stanley) Porter. Bone Pond is nowadays known as Crystal Lake.
Here is the youngest photo I have of John Wesley Hogan.
I did not find a marriage certificate in Irwin county for my Grandma and Thomas Marshall. I did find one in nearby Wilcox county dated 19 July 1902. It does not show them as being married. It only showed that they had applied for a license.
I would have loved to have heard what really happened from Grandma.
Here are a few more pictures I have of Grandpa and Grandma Swain.
Taken sometime in the 1940s
On the back of the original photo of the one below was stamped 1947.
Grandma liked colors of lilac and burgundy. She also liked navy blue. Dressing up meant a hat. There are tables and chairs in the background of the above photo, so it was probably a special occasion or a church social.
When we visited and ate a meal with Grandma and our family was the only one visiting I would get to sit on the bench at the table with Grandma. She always said something to me... never ignored me.
I wish I had pictures of the bench and the chairs.... Grandpa made them and they were beautiful.
In the late 1960s all five of us Zees went to visit Grandma. We cooked supper together. Fried chicken was the main dish. While turning a piece of chicken the grease popped onto the tip my finger and burned me. Grandma told me to rub butter on it. I told her that they now said that was not the thing to do. As she crinkled her nose and broke into laughter she said that sticking my finger in my nose would stop the burning too . I told her I would just run my finger under cool water :-)
Frank did get to meet Grandma Swain. She worked her special talent on him. Grandma could rub away warts... and they wouldn't come back. It took a few sessions sometimes, but it always worked. I can still see Frank sitting there and laughing as he talked with Grandma.