Episode 27 – Bettilew Turk Gaskell

Birmingham, AL
Born 1925

I met Bettilew on accident the same day I met Ann Veren.  I was sitting in a coffee shop, and Bettilew’s granddaughter complimented my earrings.  We got to talking, and after telling her of the work I was doing, she insisted I interview her grandmother.  I’m so glad it worked out the way it did.  What a pleasure it was to meet both Bettilew and Ann!

Bettilew tells two stories in this episode.  One endearing, one about the war.  Both are valuable to understanding our past.

Read the original post I wrote after just having met Bettilew in 2015.

Episode 26 — Ida Mae Harris

Conway, SC
Born 1920

Ida Mae Harris passed away last week, only days before I was to meet her again at a signing event in her city.  This is a special podcast edition to honor her life.  She speaks about the Depression, and gives very good advice for enjoying the richness of life.

Episode 25 — Barbara “Dolly” Markess

New Brighton, PA
Born 1932

I grew up with Dolly.  She took care of us when we visited my grandmother.  She was a life-long nurse, still caring for others even after her mother passed away.  In this interview, she describes teaching her elders who were immigrants to read in English, and shares her concern for younger generations.

Episode 24 – Virginia Ann House Veren

Birmingham, AL
Born 1931

“Politics has changed… we never saw them.”

I met Ann through a stranger at a coffee shop.  That stranger, Barbara, has now become a friend.  Ann Veren was one of the first I interviewed to make the point about politics having changed due to television and radio.  Imagine voting for someone you had never seen before, whose voice you may have heard on the radio once or twice.  Today’s political landscape is very different, and we are saturated with our candidates rhetoric.

Episode 23 – Barbara Blake

Wilmington, NC
Born 1936

“Family was just closer.”

Barbara Blake is also the grandmother of one of my friends.  I am very lucky to know people spread across America, and to have their trust to connect me to their family elders.  Barbara describes a way of life that the Pew Research Center is concerned about — family dinner.  She feels that family was closer, and that family dinner was an important part of that.  Not only does Pew agree, but I have noticed this in my own life.  We explain in this interview.

Here is the article about healthier eating due to family dinner:  https://news.uoguelph.ca/2018/11/family-dinners-improve-teens-eating-habits-no-matter-how-well-family-functions-new-u-of-g-study-finds/