Memories of Mamaw

by Ronnie Scott and Karen Scott Kinkead

In loving memory of Ronnie Scott who passed away shortly after this article was written.


Bessie Wadley Bruce was wife of James Bruce and our Mamaw. She could do almost anything. We sum up our Mamaw as "one of a kind."

Once, disliking the two-story house the family lived in on the farm, Bessie moved the family into the barn and proceeded to remove the top story of the house, expanding the first floor. She did most of the work, herself, since James was not much of a carpenter and was busy running the farm.

Though she only had an eighth-grade education, Bessie read all the time. She was extremely knowledgeable about horticulture and animal behavior. She loved plants and our granddad was in trouble if he mowed down any of them.

Bessie had a close connection to animals and had many pets. She had a pet terrapin, named Sue, for about 13 years. Sue came when Bessie called her and ate rye bread out of Bessie's hand.

My brother and I came to live with our grandparents in the mid-1950s. The farm was a familiar place. We had visited every summer that we could remember. We played with the neighboring children, the Cummings, McGuire and James kids. We rode our bike over to the country store on 151st and Harvard to get an ice cold RC Cola, the biggest cola for the price. On the way, we looked for discarded pop bottles and turned them in for a two-cent refund.

One summer, we attended the Green Corn Festival in Bixby. Mamaw won the women's nail driving contest. Ronnie won the watermelon eating contest and placed second in the corn eating contest. I won the talent contest as a tap dancer performing a rendition of Mocking Bird Hill. Granddad won 'bragging rights' and told everyone for weeks about his talented family.

© 2007 · Karen Scott Kinkead · All rights reserved.
 
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