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Grandma Willie's Apron

John Robert Richards, Jr.
Willie Homsley Richards
John Robert "Bob" Richards
Circa 1955-1956

Grandma's Apron

I don't think our kids know what an apron is.

The principal use of Grandma's apron was to protect the dress underneath, because she only had a few, it was easier to wash aprons than dresses and they used less material, but along with that, it served as a potholder for removing hot pans from the oven.

It was wonderful for drying children's tears, and on occasion was even used for cleaning out dirty ears…

From the chicken coop, the apron was used for carrying eggs, fussy chicks, and sometimes half-hatched eggs to be finished in the warming oven.

When company came, those aprons were ideal hiding places for shy kids.

And when the weather was cold grandma wrapped it around her arms.

Those big old aprons wiped many a perspiring brow, bent over the hot wood stove.

Chips and kindling wood were brought into the kitchen in that apron.

From the garden, it carried all sorts of vegetables.

After the peas had been shelled, it carried out the hulls.

In the fall, the apron was used to bring in apples that had fallen from the trees.

When unexpected company drove up the road, it was surprising how much furniture that old apron could dust in a matter of seconds.

When dinner was ready, Grandma walked out onto the porch, waved her apron, and the men-folk knew it was time to come in from the fields to dinner.

It will be a long time before someone invents something that will replace that 'old-time apron' that served so many purposes.


REMEMBER:

Grandma used to set her hot baked apple pies on the window sill to cool.
Her granddaughters set theirs on the window sill to thaw.
They would go crazy now trying to figure out how many germs were on that apron.

I never caught anything from an apron…But Love.
 (Author Unknown)

The above narrative about "Grandma's Apron" was shared with us by my first cousin and Willie's granddaughter, Teresa Haws Clements. Several of us who were old enough to remember Grandma Richards remember her wearing her aprons. I was hoping to find a better picture, but she seemed to have taken them off when she was asked to be in family photos. Good for her! The tiny photo above was found in Aunt Betty Richards' photos several years ago when Betty was sharing her pictures with me. I scanned them and gave them back to her. This one was obviously loved a lot ~ had many little scratches and discolorations, but I have chosen not to retouch it. At first, I wasn't sure Grandma was wearing an apron; on second and third look, I believe she was. I will let you draw your own conclusion. Uncle Johnny (Aunt Betty's future husband) looks to be around sixteen or seventeen years old to me, making the picture Circa 1955-56. In the 1940 census the family lived in Parker County, Texas.

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