Thursday, April 2, 2015

A to Z April Challenge: B is for Bricker


“We need to get together more often and not at a funeral.” How many times have you and a cousin said that? Funerals are much like a family reunion. You can learn a lot about a family just by looking at who showed up. Using my grandparents’ guest books and sympathy cards, I’ll be exploring “Who came to the funeral?

is for Bricker, Luna Florence Escue Bricker, to be precise.

Florence was the daughter of Harry W. Escue and his first wife Sallie Florence Drummond. Florence didn’t become a member of the family until her widowed father married my maternal grandfather’s cousin Mattie Coleman. But Florence was familiar with my family all her life. After all, she grew up next door to my maternal grandmother’s home on Fourth Street in Shenandoah, Virginia. So it’s really no surprise that Florence attended the funeral of my grandfather, Orvin Davis in October 1963. It is also no surprise that she arrived to the funeral with her stepmother’s sisters, Reba Coleman Morris and Minnie Coleman Maiden. 

Florence was born in Shenandoah, Virginia in 1894, making her just a few years older than her future step-cousins. In 1911, she married railroad worker Willard H. Bricker, and the two made their home next door to her father Harry Escue. 
 
Escue and Bricker homes Shenandoah, Virginia http://jollettetc.blogspot.com
Image snipped from Google Maps
Escue home on the left (white)
Bricker home on the right (brown)
Florence and Willard had a son in 1912 and twin daughters in 1916. Eight years later, Florence’s father Harry married Mattie Coleman. With only twelve years difference in age, Florence and Mattie were probably more like sisters than step-mother/step-daughter.

Florence’s attendance at the funeral shows me there was an emotional and caring connection to her step-family and their cousins. She was an adult, a mother in fact, when she became part of the family. When she signed my grandfather’s guest book, she had been a widow for nine years. Perhaps she saw herself as someone who could offer comfort and encouragement to my grandmother.
 
Card attached to floral remembrance

Florence Bricker died at the age of 87 and is buried in the  Coverstone Cemetery in Shenandoah, Virginia where the Colemans, Davises, and other cousins are also buried.

Photo courtesy of Jan Hensley on Findagrave.com

Photo courtesy of Jan Hensley on Findagrave.com

  
Be brave beholding a bounty of blogs at the A to Z AprilChallenge.


© 2015, Wendy Mathias.  All rights reserved.  

14 comments:

  1. Thanks for visiting my blog (Bench with a View) and your comment. What a fascinating subject you are writing about as your theme for A/Z. I think it is neat you know a lot about your family and extended family! I did enjoy reading about Florence! Will be back to read more that you share.

    betty

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    1. Thanks Betty -- I enjoyed your benches too.

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  2. I love history like this!

    Good luck with the 2015 A to Z Challenge!
    A to Z Co-Host S. L. Hennessy
    http://pensuasion.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks -- and thanks for visiting and commenting.

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  3. Sounds like she truly enjoyed her "step" family. I'm so glad. Nice to hear a good "step" story once in a while! Lisa, co-host AtoZ 2015, @ lisabuiecollard.com

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    1. Hi Lisa, Thanks for the visit and comment.

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  4. Florence sounds like a very nice woman, and a great person to have as a friend and family member.

    Hugs,
    Kathy M.

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    1. She did seem very nice from what I can tell. I found a picture of her in a book, and I can tell she must have been an active church woman too.

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  5. My aunt once caught herself saying, in reply to a neighbor's question about her trip out of state to attend a family funeral, "We had the greatest time!" The look her neighbor gave her was understandable, but still...why is it that we wait until funerals to get together as family?

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    1. I know! There's a funeral coming up this weekend that I am going to miss because we're out of town, and I am really sad to be missing it because I would love to see everybody.

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  6. Florence sounds like one of those genteel ladies that would fit into a family regardless of the circumstances. She was probably very happy for her father to have found happiness. I have heard of the last name Brick, but not Bricker. I'm glad Florence signed the register...it's good to know about her.
    Sue at CollectInTexas Gal
    AtoZ 2015 Challenge
    Minion for AJ's wHooligans

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    1. Just signing the book is great, but it's really insightful to look at who signed before and after as well. Thanks for the visit!

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  7. What a great way to honor the family.
    Glad to have you in the challenge.

    Bushman
    2015 A to Z Challenge Ambassador
    @jwb81074

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    1. Glad to be back! Thanks for the visit.

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