We hope you all had a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! We all have traditions around the holidays that give us a chance to remember the warmth and love of Christmases past, and the New Year lets us think about the hope of the future. After the busy fall, the past weeks have been a nice break before the Society gets busy in January.
We look forward to seeing you at the January meeting on the 20th at the Hoover Library. The meeting will be downstairs in the room across from the theatre at 1:30 with Archivist Jim Baggett presenting the program. And, we will have refreshments! If you would like to bring something, please contact Sue Knopf.
More information about the plans for the history book is on the agenda for the meeting. The Society members are also looking forward to the March meeting, the Annual Field Trip and Membership Tea in April, along with the May meeting and new officer installation. I hope you will make it a priority to participate this spring!
The Society still needs a Chairperson for the scholarship committee, which will be seeking applications in February. The committee members need someone with experience to lead this process.
Another contribution our group could make to the community is to provide speakers for presentations to groups on the Historical Society, so the public will know who we are, what we do, and the value of preserving the history of our City. This would be simple for volunteers to do if we had a PowerPoint presentation. If you are familiar with this program and would like to develop this project, please let me know.
There was a saying on New Year’s Eve that my parents always repeated to each other and one had to be the first to say it: “New Year’s Eve gift.” I really can’t recall why, but I think it was for good luck. Also, when I was young our church always had “Watch Night Services” on New Year’s Eve. We had planned activities, which included games and singing until midnight and we capped the event off with choruses of “Happy New Year!”
As young married adults with children, our kinfolk encompassed quite a range of cousins, aunts and uncles and many children when we gathered together to celebrate New Year’s Day. The families represented through the years included Wells, Vaughan, Butterworth, Bachus, Hays, Watkins, Jacobs, Lundy, Spangler and others.
Mitzi Wells always prepared the lunch on New Year’s Day at her home in Hoover. There were no invitations issued for lunch. All the kinfolk and friends and neighbors just knew to show up at Mitzi’s on New Year’s Day around one o’clock for some of her good Southern cuisine. What a feast she would have!
She prepared two meats--a fresh cooked ham and a cured ham. Also served were macaroni and cheese, potato salad and a sweet potato dish. The vegetables included turnip greens and black-eyed peas. A dime was always put in the black-eyed peas for good luck. We were always welcome to bring any special food items. The bread portion was rolls and cornbread. The condiments consisted of jars of chow chow, fresh little green onions, pickles, and pepper sauce.