As I sit here this Christmas morning, I am thinking back some 70 years ago when I was a little girl!

I had a happy childhood and I was the apple of my daddy's eye!  It was he that always took the ax and off to the timber he went before Christmas to cut a tree for me. Always seemed like there was lots of snow on the ground. I can still see him going down the lane and coming back with the tree.  Oh how good it did smell.  And those little blue buds that always dotted the limbs.  We never had decorations like we do now days, but trimmed the tree with home made things.  My dad would get out the big black deep pot that had little legs on it and take off a stove lid and the old Kallamozoo cook stove and sit it down in the hole and build up the fire and pop pop corn. First he shelled the corn and took it out on the porch and poured it from pan to pan fanning out the "fuzzies." After the grease got hot he would put in some corn in the pot and stir with a long handled spoon.

After popping a bunch of it he would get a needle and thread and we would string popcorn on the thread with a needle.  We would also have what we wanted to eat of it. This was our trimmings for the tree along with some ringlets made of different colored paper.  As I recall that was all that was on the tree.

There was only one thing each year that I wanted Santa Claus to bring me and that was a doll.  I was an only child so had lots of time to snoop while my parents were out doors doing chores etc.  And snoop I would.  I always put anything I found back just like it was though so no one would know.  I got a granddaughter just like me.  Now she tells me what she found she is getting for Christmas ("but mom doesn't know she tells me)!  I was never disappointed, I always got a doll.  I had a thing for dolls.  I even asked for one for my 8th grade graduation present and got it!  It was a Shirley Temple doll!  I played house a lot being an only child I had a good imagination!  That really was all I ever wanted to do was grow up and get married and have "little dolls"!  I envied the Clements family a mile away that had nearly a dozen children!  Oh how I loved to go there to play and join in their family activities!  That is what I wanted when I grew up!

The folks never knew when I stopped believing in Santa Claus.  I kept that a secret as I thought once they knew you wouldn't get any more things under the tree. So I was pretty grown up before they discovered it. I never remember anything ever being wrapped.

My grandfather lived a half-mile south of us and we always went there for Holidays.  So after our Christmas morning dad would pull me little red wagon or sled to granddad's house. I was allowed to take one thing with me and that was always my new doll! I remember the big long table in front of the north window covered with a whilte table cloth and a grandfather's clock on the wall by the window to the west.  My granddad always asked the blessing before we ate.

The one thing we always had was a plum pudding and a white sauce to go over it.  Boy was it good and wish I had some today!

Well that is my little reminiscing for today!  God Bless you all,  Addie here

The old lady at 642 here again!  I forgot to include the "Christmas Carol" tradition which
was a big thing in my Christmas every year.  My mother would hold me on her lap and read to me lots and this story she read to me every Christmas until I was old enough to read it to myself.  The book as I remember it had some red on it a wide red border as I recall. It was about the size of a package of 8X10 note book paper. I wish I knew whatever happened to it.  Years later it came on the radio and I would listen each year and then it came on the TV and I listen to it each year. Also my oldest son, Gary, got me a cassette tape with it on. This year I kept forgetting to have the Kin, my son, get my video tape out of the closet for me until today. Lenney, my son, made a video tape of nothing but the Christmas Carol several years ago, so if I nod off I can catch it on the next viewing! I kept thinking it would come on TV this year but the version (old one) I like I have never found to be on a channel I can get so now I am watching it on Christmas day on a video!  And enjoying it.  My husband could never understand what was so great or necessary that I had to watch old "Scrooge!"

Also I got to thinking about my dolls and playing house.  In the summer time my dad always made me a playhouse outside.  He would drive about yard length stakes in the ground and tie binding twine to them to make my rooms leaving spaces for doors.  Old orange crates were used for cupboards and blocks of wood chairs etc.  An old discarded cook stove served as my stove and cooked many a mud pie!  We had some kind of weeds with velvety large round leaves that would really neat for making sandwiches (mud)!  Dad fixed me a buggy for my doll!  My dad would come visit me and eat with me etc.  Then in the winter time when it was too cold for out dad would show me how to play house with paper dolls inside.  He would take the thicker sheets from an old sears catalogue and bend them to stand up and form walls for me and make doors where I wanted them and then cut out the furniture and people from the catalogue.  Dad always left a white lining around each figure he cut out. It was just perfect.  Somehow he would make a bent stiff paper to the backs of things to make them stand up.  There was such thing or at least in our house of store paste.  We made it out of flour and water.

Sorry to bore you a little farther into my memories!  Christmas has been good to me.  Phone calls from all grandchildren and youngest son, Kin and wife and daughter Amanda came.  He also called a couple times early this morning and this evening and she also called me a couple times.  I was so surprised last night about midnight here someone came in the door and it was my sweet Amanda stopping by from church to wish her granny Merry Christmas and see if there was anything she could do for her.  My oldest son Gary, and Loraine, called from Florida and his daughter Lori and husband Bill.  All talked to me.   My grandson Terry called later today from Ohio.  Arlain, grandson from CA called yesterday, they were on their way up in the mountains to be with her parents and get some sledding in!  Last night I had a pleasant surprise, Kin, son, and wife brought her mother for dinner and games!  I had a wonderful time.   So you see this old lady has been blessed tremendously!
I have bored you with this but it pleases me to remember!
May God Bless you and yours,  Most lovingly to all.   Addie here


Two thousand one, nine eleven
Five thousand plus arrive in heaven

As they pass through the gate, 
Thousands more appear in wait

A bearded man with stovepipe hat
Steps forward saying, "Lets sit, lets chat"

They settle down in seats of clouds
A man named Martin shouts out proud

"I have a dream!" and once he did
The Newcomer said, "Your dream still lives."

Groups of soldiers in blue and gray
Others in khaki, and green then say

"We're from Bull Run, Yorktown, the Maine"
The Newcomer said, "You died not in vain."

From a man on sticks one could hear
"The only thing we have to fear.

The Newcomer said, "We know the rest,
Trust us sir, we've passed that test."

 "Courage doesn't hide in caves
 You can't bury freedom, in a grave,"

The Newcomers had heard this voice before
 A distinct Yankees twang from Hyannisport Shores.

 A silence fell within the mist
 Somehow the Newcomer knew that this
 Meant time had come for her to say

What was in the hearts of the
 Five thousand plus that day.

 "Back on Earth, we wrote reports,
 Watched our children play in sports

Worked our gardens, sang our songs
 Went to church and clipped coupons

We smiled, we laughed, we cried, we fought
 Unlike you, great we're not"

 The tall man in the stovepipe  hat
 Stood and said, "Don't talk like that!

Look at your country, look and see
You died for freedom, just like me."

Then, before them all appeared a scene
Of rubbled streets and twisted beams

Death, destruction, smoke and dust
And people working just 'cause they must

Hauling ash, lifting stones,
Knee deep in hell, but not alone

"Look! Blackman, Whiteman, Brownman, Yellowman
Side by side helping their fellow man!"

So said Martin, as he watched the scene
"Even from nightmares, can be born a dream."

Down below three firemen raised
 The colors high into ashen haze

The soldiers above had seen it before
 On Iwojima back in '44

The man on sticks studied everything closely
Then shared his perceptions on what he saw mostly

"I see pain, I see tears,
 I see sorrow - but I don't see fear."

"You left behind husbands and wives
Daughters and sons and so many lives

Are suffering now because of this wrong
But look very closely. You're not really gone.

All of those people, even those who've never met you
All of their lives, they'll never forget you

Don't you see what has happened?

Don't you see what you've done?
You've brought them together, together as one."

With that the man in the stovepipe hat said
"Take my hand," and from there he led

Five thousand plus heroes, Newcomers to heaven
On this day, two thousand one, nine eleven

Arthur Unknown - Addie here

Winter Wonderland in Clarksburg, WVa.

What a beautiful scene you have painted with words.  It takes me back many years to my looking out the "country winter window" as a little girl and so I see this very clearly in my mind's eye what you have painted!  I admire so much anyone that can write like this. Thank you, I am so glad that you posted this.

I no longer look out windows much when I am here at home as there is nothing to see but city!  But I sure do enjoy the outdoors at my youngest son's country home.  And also my oldest son's home on Thumb's point in Florida overlooking the cove and his taking me just a little way in my wheel chair to sit by the ocean!  Oh how I love that!  To listen to the ocean and the birds and watch the boats and surfers and activity there --fishermen, pelicans waiting for their bite of fish!  All that is quite relaxing to me.

When I was a child it seemed the snows were much deeper and more often during the winter time.  Here in Topeka, Kansas where I live this winter we have had none to a flurry one day of snow.

I remember so well going to school and the big snow drifts we had as a child.   I had two miles of country roads to walk to school.  My dad said I would keep much warmer walking than riding and of course riding in those days would not be in a car!  The last one-half mile to the little country two-room school was a lane-like road fenced in on both sides.  That road would drift full from fence to fence so it was much easier walking to walk in the fields following the fence down to the school house.  Sometimes then the snow would be so deep where I would walk that if you broke through you went over your over shoe tops!  And had to struggle to get out to go on. Many a time I froze my hands and face going to school and had to sit the biggest part of the morning packed in snow thawing them out.  My hands and fingers for years would swell when handling anything cold.  For example a bottle of pop start them off to swelling.  It wasn't that my mother didn't dress me because she did and very warmly.  The scarf was wrapped around my stocking cap and face and tied in a knot behind my head.  Only my eyes would be uncovered.  But even at that the cold got to my cheeks.  And somehow the mittens didn't keep my hands and fingers from freezing.
Those may have been cold days but they were very happy days for me!

God Bless you each one and yours as well.  Addie here

Thought some of you might enjoy this.  Addie here

 Since none of you receiving this are "Geezers" (;-0), it's being sent to you so you can recognize them.

 "Geezers" (slang for an old man) are easy to spot:

 At sporting events, during the playing of the National Anthem, Old Geezers hold their caps over their hearts and sing without embarrassment. They know the words and believe in them.

 Old Geezers remember World War I, the Depression, World War II, Pearl Harbor, Guadalcanal, Normandy and Hitler. They remember the Atomic Age, the Korean War, The Cold War, the Jet Age and the Moon Landing, not to mention Vietnam.

If you bump into an Old Geezer on the sidewalk, he will apologize.

If you pass an Old Geezer on the street, he will nod or tip his cap to a lady.

 Old Geezers trust strangers and are courtly to women.

 Old Geezers hold the door for the next person and always, when walking,
make certain the lady is on the inside for protection.

Old Geezers get embarrassed if someone curses in front of women and children
and they don't like violence and filth on TV or in movies.

 Old Geezers have moral courage. They seldom brag unless it's about their

 It's the Old Geezers who know our great country is protected, not by
politicians or police, but by the young men and women in the military
serving their country.

 This country needs Old Geezers with their decent values. We need them now
more than ever.

 Thank God for Old Geezers!

Sara,  I really don't know whether I should have you take me off the list for a few days or not.  But have decided to ask you to not take me off the list unless the messages start bouncing.  I think they will be OK.  There has been so much going on with the Queen line that I hate to miss any of it.

They originally thought it would take several days as they didn't want me to ride too long.  But I want to cover as much ground as possible in a day.  We will see how I fare.  I hope we can get in longer days than what they had planned.  We at this point are planning on leaving tomorrow, Wednesday.  But time will tell if we do or not.

I am going home with my son, Gary, and Loraine to South Hutchinson Island on Thump Point to watch the ocean and see all sorts of interesting things.  My bedroom there faces the cove and I enjoy it so much as well as the Jetty out in the ocean.  I probably will be gone a couple months.  At this point I do not know.

This is the first time I have traveled any distance since 99 so am wondering how I will handle it.  You might drink a little juice for me please.  There is so much involved and getting more so when I go somewhere over night.  But I am in good hands, the kids and the Lord!

God Bless all.   Addie here

Gone to Florida & Thanks

Thanks for your good wishes Billy.  I will enjoy it I am sure.  They are talking of taking me on a cruise while I am there.  That will be interesting!  I am waiting to see how I survive the trip!  Before It has been OK and comfortable but since I have fallen getting into the car I am "rather chicken" and now sit down before getting in and it is rather hard to get situation correctly.  Thanks so much for you thoughts.  Addie here

Marci, Thank you for you good wishes and thoughts for me.  This list is wonderful as if I had to tell anyone!  I will enjoy myself I hope.  And I will if I can cope with adjustments that will be necessary.  Hopefully I will be able to continue to converse with the list from there.  I hate to miss out!   Again thanks,  Addie here

Gloria,  Thank you for your prayers and thoughts and wishes.  Please continue to pray that I will make it in good shape!  I will thinking about you also as we near Florida!  Addie here

Dwight,  Thanks for your blessing and good wishes for my trip.  Yes it is one of my favorite places to watch so much wildlife and boats and surfers and Oh so many things that deal with the water.  I love to hear the ocean as it comes into shore and am amazed at God's Greatness!  I will have fun if I just get re-adjusted to being out of my own familiar surroundings that I have learned how to deal with every day problems.  I can just see my granddaughter now as she puts on her roller blades and says, come on granny
let's go to the jetty or take a walk! -- taking her granny in her wheel chair and away we go!  I love it!  You ought to see us walk her little dog though! Addie here

Gary is talking of taking me on a cruise.  I am not so sure if I need to do that as I need to learn to cope at the house first.  Oh well.  we will see! Thank you for writing and your Blessings and wishes.  Addie here

Ellen, Thanks for your kind words.  I am very fortunate to have a loving caring family and I do have even the grandchildren every one.   I am going to miss the 15 year old granddaughter, Amanda, that I will leave here in Kansas.  She has been coming down and giving me hugs & telling me she loves me even though she knows others are here so I can tell she perhaps will miss her old granny a little.  When I am alone she is here every day doing for me.  Rarely misses a day and then calls and sees if I might need her.  Then my youngest son and wife came in last night and brought me dinner and played cards with me and it would seem they are thinking about missing me. Especially since the daughter-in-law came up behind my wheel chair and put her arms around me and whispered in my ear, "I going to miss you, and I love you."  But he didn't cater to me enough to let me win!!  But I would not have wanted him to either but have to kid him about beating his old ma and not letting me win!   I had tried to tell him he didn't need to make that 60 mile round trip in that I would be fine, but he came anyway.  And I would not be surprised to see him again tonight!  In fact, he comment he thought he would be coming by. I told them this would give them a break from looking out after me and having to run in here so much and I really feel that way even though he will have to take care of the bills etc. he will not have to make the trips that he normally has to.

The first time I went with Gary after my husband died, Amanda, granddaughter, really did not like it at all that I went.  We have always been awfully close.  She was the apple of her gramps eye!  We had kept her while her mother worked from day one!

Well I have rattled on enough so well give you a rest,  but thanks again for your very kind words and wishes.  As it is we plan on leaving in the morning - Thursday.  God Bless you and yours,  Addie here

It is 6 am in Kansas and Gary is finishing loading the car so we should be off in about one-half hour at least.  Say a prayer for me please.

Thanks to all my wonderful HCPD people that are so loving and caring.   God Bless each of you and your loved ones,   Addie here in Kansas for a minute or two!

Addie honors Sotha Hickman -Our Great-Great Grandfather!

Yes and many others we have not mentioned. Levi Douglass was a step-brother to Sotha Hickman.

They came together to (West) Virginia in 1771.  They were very close, closer maybe than a lot of brothers!  In memory of my husband's ancestor I am going to post some of the material I have found regarding him.  Sotha was my husband's, Clifford Hickman,  great-great-grandfather!

Sotha Hickman, was born June 10, 1748 on Sugar Land Bottom on the Potomac River, near Rockville in the county of Montgomery, Maryland, according to his own sworn declaration.  He died in Harrison County, Virginia  (Now West Virginia) at his home on Elk Creek, called, "Quiet Dell" March 26, 1834.  He was buried in the Haymond Cemetery, which is located on Zack's Run, near his home.   Sotha thought of this location as a quiet dell and so that his how the town got it's name.   Zack's Run was named after his son Zachariah. 

December of 1771, he came to the area of what is now Harrison County, West Virginia, in the company of his stepbrother, Levi Douglass, and three others with the intention of finding land for permanent settlements.  They made their camp on Ann Moores Run in Clark District, and remained all winter, as there was a bountiful supply of game.  They were fortunate to have the friendship of an Indian who hunted with them.

In the spring of 1772 they selected lands on which to establish homes.  Sotha choose 400 acres overlooking Elk Creek, where Elk View Cemetery is now located in Clarksburg, W. Va. The 400 acres adjoined that of Thomas Nutter, on whose land Nutter's Fort was erected.   Later Sotha acquired one thousand acres on Elk Creek, by right of preemption included his settlement made in 1773 and adjoining land of Matthew Nutter, which includes the present site of Quiet Dell.  He brought his family out from the east the following year, and his son Arthur was born in Nutter's Fort on February 7, 1773.  Sotha boasted that this son was the first white child born in Harrison County that he raised the first crop of corn and owned the first rooster.

Forts, blockhouses and stockades were very necessary for the survival of settlers.  There was danger and unrest because of the French and Indian Wars.  Later the British kept the Indians stirred up against the settlers. 

A fort, such as Nutter's Fort, is described as the strongest structure, since it combined the best features of blockhouses and stockades.  It was rectangular in shape, with sides composed partly of cabins, connected to each other with palisades to form a stockade wall.  The doors of the cabins opened onto a common court.  Heavy gates in the wall let the occupants out or in.  Some forts had two storied blockhouses at each corner with holes in the top wall to be used to fire on the enemy in any direction.  Stockade and cabin walls also contained portholes.  Settlers inside were generally safe, as Indians did not often openly attack a fort, and seldom-captured one.  But they lay in wait on the outside and settlers were often attacked with rifles, tomahawks and knives when they ventured outside.

As a rule from, winter until spring families could live in their cabins with relative security. The woods without foliage made it difficult for Indians to ambush.  They were scantily dressed to face winter elements, and snow made it easy for pioneers to tract them.  However, at the return of spring the Indians began their massacres, and settlers once more fled to the fort for the summer.  In order to cultivate their small crops close by the fort, they left their sanctuary in companies, each man with a weapon.  Inside the fort women and children looked out through the openings at the valleys, hills, and woods and longed to be in their homes.  Nights could be monotonously long and dreadful sounding, filled with the shrieks and cries of birds and animals, and the voices of Indians answering one another.

It is understandable why Sotha, like other pioneers in the area, had little use for Indians, and quite often Sotha expressed his feeling with  "Dod blast their yaller hides!"    This is somewhat surprising thought considering when he first came he seem to have an Indian friend that helped him learn how to survive in this land.

The frontier exploits of Sotha Hickman, Levi Douglass and others are recounted numerous times in various historical works.  Once while Sotha and Levi Douglass were captured on the Little Kanawah River, while trapping for beaver and taken to their settlement on the Scioto River in Ohio. Here they were held for the fate meted out to those who come into Indian hunting grounds.  A Great celebration was held, with much dancing and drinking, in preparation of the usual execution of the white prisoners.  They left an old man in charge to guard the prisoners while they celebrated.  The old Indian fell asleep, and Sotha and Levi quietly armed and equipped themselves and fled.  They were fearful of being recaptured so they traveled only at night and had no food for four days. They reached the Ohio River made a safe crossing and soon reached the Hughes River familiar ground.  Once there they had the good fortune to kill a bear and they ate so much it made them sick.  Some say that they!
 were the first white discoverers of oil in West Virginia, for they drank of the Indian or Rock oil found floating on the Hughes River.  This induced vomiting and did soothe their stomachs.

On another occasion Sotha was with a party fishing on the West Fork River.  He had caught a nice string of fish.  He was carrying a fagot when he saw two guns flash.  He doused the fagot in the water as he prepared to flee.  However, Sotha stopped to grab up his catch before hurrying to the safety of the fort.

Besides the massacres and destruction of crops by Indians, buffaloes also destroyed crops.  During the year 1773, after Sotha had settled with his family, there were so many other settlers that the crops harvested the preceding fall were about one third of what was needed to feed the people.  There was so much suffering among the inhabitants that the year 1773 was called "the starving year." 

Sotha and his family had good reason to fear the Indians one fall night in the year 1779, because his dogs were barking, he knew Indians were in the vicinity.  He sighted them making fire with flint and steel.  Sotha had a shed full of flax that adjoined his cabin, and he feared the Indians were preparing to set fire to it in order to burn the family out of the cabin.  What a great relief it was to see they were only interested in smoking!  When morning came he could hear shots on the other side of Elk creek at the Samuel Cottrill farm so he fled with family to Nutter's Fort a mile away.

The last mischief of the Indians recorded in connection with Sotha was perpetrated in he fall of 1779, at the house of Samuel Cottrill who resided on the east side of Elk Creek, Sotha then lived on the opposite side, near the present Elk View Cemetery.  An Attempt was made to scalp a Cottrill nephew who was feeding some swine.  Sotha hear the "hallowing danger warning" from Cottrills and prepared his home for safety from an attack.  When morning came, the women and children of the area were sent to the fort again.  Sotha choose a place to build his cabin that had a spring under it and if I remember right was built on a bank like for protection.

After the many treaties, Sotha went, with others to Sandusky, Ohio to reclaim members of their community who were held there for exchange.  There were many encounters with Indians, and many, all spine tingling, have been recorded in various West Virginia History and Historical books and folk tales. 

By the time of the Revolutionary War, Sotha was a seasoned, experienced woodsman.  He was skilled in hunting, tracking and detection of the Indians.  In a time when most men on the frontier were able woodsman, the fact that he was chosen as a guide and Indian spy attest to his ability.  He entered the service of the government as a seasoned Indian fighter, well informed in the ways of frontier warfare.

He enlisted under Captain William Lowther, as a private, and served as an Indian spy. He served for fourteen months under Captain Lowther of the Virginia Line, defending settlers against Indians and appears on a payroll record of Captain William Lowther's Company of VA militia for 1774

Sotha is also credited with 132 days service in Lord Dunmore's Ohio expedition in 1774.   Captain Lowther's company was in the battle of Point Pleasant in 1774,  $40 a year.

 He was employed to watch the frontier and protect it from invasion and rampage by the combined Indian and British Canadian troops.  The company ranged the western frontier of the American colonies, from Fort Erie to the southern points.  He had witnessed, and seen the results of savage brutality to women and children- his friends and neighbors had been killed or were captured.  He possessed an intense hatred of the Indians and his efforts to hold off the Indians and English were tireless.  The Allegheny Front and Westward were his field.  Sotha is referred to in some histories as an Indian Spy. Other places Indian Scout.   And was called upon various times to help out in Indian uprisings. The book, Border Warfare, gives several accounts of his endeavors.

After the Revolution and the Indian threats were over, Sotha returned to his family in the Clarksburg Elk Creek Area.  The country was becoming more populated, the frontier was safe, and there was plenty of land for free.  Feeling that the Clarksburg area was becoming crowded, he moved south along Elk Creek and built a large two-story log home.  This is the area he named Quiet Dell.  This home still stood in 1971 being much changed.  It was large for its time being built of hewed logs with a large stone fireplace and chimney.  This house served the Hickman family for three more generations.  The two-story house was the second house built on the site.  Sotha's original cabin was a short distance to the east.

I was disappointed that we did not find time to search for the house to see if it is still standing when Gary took to West Virginia for research in 1996.

Sotha did not own much land in his old age.  His tax receipts show taxes paid on 135 acres in 1818; 104 acres in 1825 and 144 acres in 1830.   He and Elizabeth deeded seventy five acres on Elk Creek to their son, Arthur, (Harrison Co., W. Va., Deed Book #4, p. 599, Feb. 18, 1805.)

Sotha Hickman appeared on July 17, 1832 in open court of Harrison County, at age eight four to apply for a Revolutionary War Pension.  He received one at the rate of $46.66 per annum.  (Certificate #12525 - Act of June 7, 1832, Virginia Agency.)

Sotha Hickman did not leave a will.  Among things listed in an inventory of his estate are two matching chairs and a clock.  (Will book 3, p. 452-455).  Many frontier families did not own a clock.  Elizabeth Davis Hickman died in 1837.

Sotha Hickman died on March 26, 1834, at his home on Elk Creek, Quiet Dell, Harrison County, Virginia, (now West Virginia), having outlived the men who came with him in search of land for a settlement.  His stepbrother, Levi Douglass, 1750-1787, - (DAR Patriot Index). Said Sotha was "of a companionable disposition" and a fine hunter and trapper.  He is buried in Haymond Cemetery, located a mile and a half south, of Quiet Dell, with a marker indicating that he served in the American Revolution.

If you have bothered to read this through,  I thank you and wish you all the best. 

Addie here