Family Histories

Family Histories for the Rose and Kirkpatrick Families

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Fearless Females - Working Girl

Easie Stanfill (right back) at Stanfill Grocery, Nowata, OK 1930s

March 12 - Working girl:  Did your mother or grandmother work outside the home?  What did she do?  Describe her occupation.

In the 1930's my grandparents moved from Arkansas to Oklahoma and opened a grocery store and creamery in the town of Nowata; they also had stores in nearby Vinita and Chelsea.  In August of 1941, my grandfather became ill with encephalitis and died shortly after at the age of 37.  This left the business to be run by my grandmother.  Within a month of his death, a fire burned the Nowata store, destroying it completely.  Newly widowed, she had to finish building a home that was in the process of being built when her husband died, run the business and rebuild the store that burned, as well as raise two young children.  The woman at the far right of the picture is Velma, who worked at the store and helped care for the children when my grandmother was working.  Grandma continued to run the stores until she remarried several years later.  Velma married and moved back to Arkansas.

I can't imagine successfully facing such obstacles, particularly during a time of grieving, and actually making it through.  I think our female ancestors may have been far tougher women than we are now.

In honor of Women's History Month, blogging prompts from Liza Alzo's blog

1 comment:

  1. A great photo. I love seeing photos of everyday things. I would argue that we are just as tough, we are just blessed enough to not have quite so many obstacles thrown at us (less death from disease, less fires, etc). I think raising kids has become a little more difficult, though. You used to be able to let your kids run around the neighborhood; everyone looked out for them. Now we're afraid to let them walk around the block! It's interesting to think about.