A true pioneer lady, she came to Grayson county at the turn of the 20th
century in a covered wagon from Bosque county TX. She worked hard
all her life. She worked in her vegetable garden the day she died
suddenly at age 91, In the month of August. Was hardly ever sick.
Read more below about life at Florence's home.
Florence Lucille Cook
Clountz in front of her house ready to work outside in the yard or her
garden, or with her livestock, which she loved to do!
She made the bonnet herself
and stiffened it using strips cut from a Cherrios box. I still have the
bonnet and her apron which she also made.
Here is a quilt Mama (Florence Lucille Cook Clountz)
made from feed sacks and
old clothes and has been very much used and
is tattered now, but very treasured .
"I remember she kept boxes
and boxes of quilt pieces, scraps of material left over from other projects,
old clothes to be cut up and made into quilts, feed and flour sacks to
be used as quilt pieces and used many times to make clothes from.
I wore many flour sack dresses and shirts. Some of those prints were very
beautiful. Mama went through the Depression, so she never threw anything
away that could be used later. If material wasn't good enough for
clothes or quilts anymore, it was saved and used as rags around the house
and farm because they couldn't afford to buy things like that.
Another thing I thought of about Mama's quilts,
In the good ole days, we slept on old iron bedsteads, painted and
flaked and painted over again countless times with with whatever paint
they had. These beds had old hard metal innersprings sitting on wooden
slats between the bed rails (they could also be used as TV antennas).
On top of this was an old, old, OLD ticking mattress that was probably
from the 20s or 30s (this was in the 60s) that sagged in the middle, (a
lot), and all that "comfort" was sitting out on a screened
in porch, which is mite nigh just a euphamism for being outside. At first
we only had a tarp that we put up over the screen in the winter to keep
the wind out. In the summer, we let the flap down to keep from burning
up at night. When we got really lucky, we were able to find
enough boards to box the porch in for the winter. (Why we didn't
sleep in the house by the wood stove in the dining room, I will never understand,
but as a child, I didn't question it, it had just always been this way).
There once in ancient days was an old gas heater out there, but it had
long ago succumed to old age (it probably froze to death out there!).
You must understand, just like there were Japanese that were found on islands
years after the war who still thought it was going on, out family was never
informed that the Great Depression had ended. That is how we continued
to live on throught the 70s. When you don't have money, you don't
fix things that break, you use them to stack things on, or just to stumble
over in the middle of the night. But YOU DON"T THROW THEM AWAY, YOU
MIGHT NEED THAT SOMEDAY. (I hear that in my sleep). Anyway, In the
winter that bed on the porch was just a little warmer than crawling onto
an ice block to sleep. Then you struggled under SO MANY quilts you
could hardly breathe under them for the weight, and it took a LONG time
to get your space warmed up under there from your own body heat, what there
was left of it because you felt like ice! Then you didn't dare move
one inch all night because whereever your foot or hand moved, it was ice
cold under there. But it was hard to move anyway because the mass
of quilts weighed a ton! But we didn't freeze, we survived because
of those old quilts, lovingly, painstakingly, stitched with old hands from
old pieces of cloth that nobody else wanted. The memories of those
old quilts those are like gold now. Amazing what a worthless piece
of cloth can do!
about Florence Cook Clountz' Life
of Natalie's Family Quilts