Irma Estella Upton White was my husband's grandmother. She was born in 1914 and died in 2012. She lived a long and healthy life. The following is a note that Irma wrote in 1995 detailing her life. It is taken word-for-word:
8th child in family of 10 children; 6 brothers and 3 sisters. We didn't have a lot of boughten toys. The boys made sleds and they pulled us up and down our street in the ice and snow. We 2 littlest girls had 1 doll buggy we shared and the two older ones did likewise. My dad made us a little dresser w/ mirror and pull out drawers and we got a little ironing board and high chair for our baby dolls for Christmas. We played house on our large front porch. Some of the neighborhood kids would bring their dolls over and play too.
We would get out in the evening and play games with some of the friends next door. We played hide and seek and one called Go Sheepy Go. The boys played markbles outside and we played jacks on our sidewalk. If we could get a golf ball it bounced better on the concrete. My Grandma and Grandpa Jones lived down the alley 3 houses. I didn't remember them. I was around 3 or so when they died.
My third brother got married when I was 12 and the next year I was an aunt to a big baby boy. We didn't have much money but my sister and I had 5 cents a piece and we went to Woolworths 5 & 10 cent store to bought him a 10 cent rattle box. If we had any money for the park on the 4th of July we would save what we got for a mo or 2 before. If we were lucky we had about 15 cents. Anything was only a nickel then. Ice cream cones cracker jack and pop. We would walk a mile or 2 to Peterson Park carring a large picnic basket full of our dinner, stay all day & watch the fireworks after dark and ride on the street car back up town and then walk a mile to get home. I remember being so tired and think I would never do it again, but (next year)!
I liked playing in my friends backyard with his little cars. He would get 2 or 3 everytime his dad had a payday. We built roads and made little cities with churches and houses and schools out of rocks or broken bricks and run roads all around to drive on. But one day he moved a few streets away and we couldn't play together then.
We got our mail delivered twice a day. The mail courier walked his route carrying his big brown leather bag full of letters for al of us. Now they all ride in small mail cars. Of course they still have a lot of walking to do. The routes are a lot longer now, 1995.
We also had an ice cream man that came around in his horse and buggy with a large umbrella for shade. He came on summer days. Ice cream was 2 dips for a nickel or an ice cream cone for a nickel. We didn't get it every day, just once in a while.