Parents Away–Had Friends Over

17-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today: 

Sunday, July 28, 1912: Pa and Ma went away to spend the day. Went to Sunday School this afternoon. Had company this afternoon.

Recent picture of the house and yard where Grandma lived when she wrote the diary.

Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:

Where did Grandma’s parents go? Her father’s sister Mary’s funeral was on July 20. Mary had lived with two other brothers. Maybe Grandma’s parents went to the brothers’ home in Ottawa (Pennsylvania).  Families often gather soon after a funeral to write thank you notes, sort things and reminisce.

Since their parents were gone, I suppose that Grandma and her sister Ruth invited friends over for a fun afternoon.

8 Responses

  1. Not much has changed in this regard. When the parents are out of town, the teens throw a party :-). Or, just concerned neighbors checking up on them.

  2. The picture is a nice addition ~ glad your grandmother had friends over to get over the doldrums of mid summer.

  3. Whenever I drive by the house, I think about how wonderful it is that the house and yard are nicely maintained.

  4. cats away, the mice play…not much changes :-) Sounds like it was time she had some fun.

  5. Really liked the picture — a nice lazy sunny day — and the good news was that the cows hadn’t run amok.

  6. I remember my family talking about visits on Sunday afternoon. Family that lived in Pittsburg would travel to the farm by train and spend the whole day and take the train back that evening. The train ride was only 45 mins. in those days. They would do this about once a month and sometimes my mother would get to go to their house a few times a year on Sunday. The city folks in the family had more money.

    • Your comment reminded me of a book about a family in Pittsburgh called The Spencers of Amberson Avenue: A Turn of the Century Memoir by Ethel Spencer. It was published by University of Pittsburgh Press. The Spencer’s lived in a house near the Shadyside rail station. It described how families in the late 1800s and early 1900s moved far from the center of the city because they could easily get into downtown for work on the train.

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