There was no formal invitation. No detailed agenda. No dress code. Just a weekend, a beautiful weekend, where a family gathered in an old historic city - New Bern, North Carolina. And while this historic city is truly historic, it held much, much more history for one family. Aunts and uncles, cousins and grands, spouses and siblings, all connected by a common bond gathered to talk, to share and for some, meet one another for the very first time. The weekend in itself was history in the making.
It was in this old city that a great family was started many, many years ago. Two sets of couples, the Owens' and the Hardisons, not living far from one another, began their own lives and their own families. And from these families came two individuals, Margaret Owens, one of two children and Bill Hardison, one of seven. (Yes, seven.) These individuals were born (just blocks from one another) and raised in New Bern, NC. Individuals who grew up just two doors apart. Individuals who attended the same school, started their first jobs and then began courting. And it was in this great city that Margaret and Bill, also known as Hard Rock, were united as one. After marrying they moved to the small town of Orangeburg, South Carolina where they had four sons of their own. And it's because of these two invdivuals that I am here today. I'm so thankful for them and so honored to call them my grandparents. My Mammie and Poppadaddy.
|House Mammie was born in, built in 1910|
|Church where Poppadaddy and Mammie were married|
Saturday morning we all gathered at "The Meeting Place", which at one time was an old pharmacy. The name is quite fitting, huh? We spent hours meeting family members, sharing stories and pictures, eating, conversing and swapping memories. Of course I spent lots of time sharing my hearts, Travis and Morgan Kate. I met many of my dad's first cousins and their children and some of their children. My Aunt Rhonda put together an amazing slideshow for our entire family that included a family tree, many pictures and updates on everyone. My dad's first cousin, Marianna, shared with us old pictures of my grandaddy and his siblings as children and young adults. And Mammie, being the only living spouse, had things to share with us that no one else could, as it is she that has known my grandaddy and his family the longest.
|First cousins |
Lane, Richie, Lewis, Corky, Loitton, Jimmy
Marianna, Barbara Jean, Ginger
Of course, no trip would be complete without a photo shoot of my best girl. Next to the Meeting Place was the railroad station and it provided the most perfect backdrop for some new photos of Morgan Kate.