ETHEL BOYD TURNER
(1893 - 1960)
Ethel was born April 18, 1893 in Randolph County, AL. She was the third child born to the union of the late Benjamin and Maggie Boyd. She married John Ben Turner and through their union 10 children was born: Dave, Mexico, Dollie, Vera, Eliza, Georgia, Maggie, Oddie Mae (Mona Lisa), Liddie and Frances. She had a son, Curtis, prior to their marriage.
There are many memories that I have of my mother. The sequence or range of importance of the events I'll mention are not an issue. Each one is very special because they all involve one of the most important persons in my life, my mother.
I can remember being nursed by my mother and being weaned from her breast. I was very small, so anything that my mother was told that could help to fatten me up she would try. Someone told her to give me warm milk from the cow right after it had been strained. Someone else told her to give me overtine. Although neither of those remedies worked and there were many other unsuccessful attempts, my mother would not be deterred from trying to correct the problem with my weight.
I can also remember my mother taking us to Grandpa's house every Sunday for dinner. Aunt Easter would feed us then she would give us homemade ice cream and teacakes.
Mother and Aunt Maude shared a piano. Aunt Maude would keep it for a while and then we would. One day Dollie and I were playing it and when it became my turn to play, Dollie didn't want to give in so I started crying. Mama picked up a chair and threw it. She had become so upset that she started saying that she was going crazy. She actually thought that she had hit us with the chair. When she found out that we were okay, she gave us a big hug.
When I had my first child I was living at her house. I told her that I wanted her to cook me some collard greens and crackling bread the day before my son was born and she did it. When my second child was born I was living in my own home. My mother had Papa to bring her washing machine over to my house by wagon so that she could wash my clothes. Now that was a Mama.
My mother was very kind and would do anything that she could to help someone. When she could not go or do, she would send me. I stayed with Margaret when she gave birth to Bessie Mae and Jimmie Lee. Also, when Aunt Julia gave birth to the twins, I was her diaper washer.
Mama loved to sing and I asked her to teach me. If I saw a song in our songbook that I wanted to learn, she would put the tune to it by singing "Do-Re-Mi-Fa-So-La-Ti-Do". Then I would have it.
These are just a small sample of the images of times past that I reflect upon when I think of my mother. She was a loving and caring person who was devoted to her family. Time cannot erase the impact of her love and dedication to us.
Eloise Turner Ball
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