18-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today:
Sunday, October 12, 1913: Went to Sunday School this morning. Ruth and I went up to church this evening. It was so nice and moonlight. Some of the girls walked down the road with us coming home.
Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:
This diary entry makes me feel both good and worried. Let me explain.
First, why it makes me feel good—
I can picture Grandma, her sister Ruth, and their friends ambling down the road from McEwensville toward the Muffly farm on a beautiful ,unseasonably warm, October evening.
I imagine a group of five or six girls in long skirts chatting and giggling about guys, friends, clothes, work, and all of the other important things that teens talk about. And, in my mind, I envision that as they neared the midpoint between town and the Muffly farm that the group separated with Grandma and Ruth continuing on—and the other girls returning to McEwensville.
Now why it makes we worry—
This entry reminds me that Grandma often had to walk home alone in the dark after church, community, and (before she graduated) school events. Some of those nights were in the dead of winter—and it must have been excruciatingly cold.
Maybe people were just used to walking at night in rural areas back then, but I worry about her safety. (I know it’s a hundred years too late to worry—but I do it anyhow). Did Grandma ever feel scared during the mile or so walk home through the dark countryside?