Mothers Day

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

Sunday, May 14, 1911:   Went to Sunday school this morning. I went over to Stout’s this afternoon. Carrie and I were going to take a walk and visit some other girls. Just as I expected we didn’t do. What a shame.

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

Article in Milton Evening Standard, May 15, 1911

This date was Mothers Day a hundred years ago. I wonder if the Muffly family celebrated it. The holiday had been founded only four years previously—yet people in central Pennsylvania apparently were aware of Mothers Day since there was an article about it in the May 13, 1911 issue of the Milton Evening Standard.

The article discussed how people should wear a white flower if their mother was deceased; and a colored flower if their mother was living. I wonder if anyone still does that. I know that the white and colored flower tradition lasted at least until the 1960s.

When I was a child I can remember going out into the garden before church on Mothers Day to pick a colored flower that I’d pin on my dress.

When I’d get to church most of the other women and girls would be wearing flowers (as well as a few men wearing boutonnieres). I can remember sitting in the pew during the church service and being surprised how many of the adults wore white flowers.

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