On 19 Aug 2015, I posted 50 Interview Questions. In the past, when my Mom and I discussed her childhood, we really started in the middle of the story. I really appreciated the survey questions because they provided a good framework for capturing family history. In fact, I learned more about my Mom’s environment than I had in the past. I urge anyone in the family history/genealogy business to use interview questions. These questions were awesome!
As promised, following is a summary of the first set of answers from the interview with my Mom. Enjoy!
- What is your full name? Alice Lauraetta
- Why did your parents select this name for you? Alice was my grandmother’s name (father’s side), Laura was my great-grandmother (father’s side), and great-aunt Etta (father’s side).
- Did you have a nickname? No, not when young. In college, they called me Chappy because everyone knew him. Besides, my sister and I went to the same college. She was two years ahead of me in college.
- When and where were you born? Mobile, AL in Aug 1935. (After checking my mother’s birth certificate, we were able to determine she was born at her grandmother Alice’s home at 6:45 am by a midwife named Mrs. Matthews.)
- How did your family come to live there? My parents met in Mobile, AL. My father was from Mobile. My mother moved to Mobile, AL from Quitman, MS with her mother.
- Were there other family members in the area? Yes, we were surrounded by relatives! (I used the females’ maiden name.) Who?
- Both grandparents on father (Alice Coleman and Ervin Williams) and mother’s side (Eva Jasper and Joseph Brown).
- Great Grandmother on father’s side (Melzar Williams and Laura Washington) lived in the neighborhood with their eight sons and eventually their wives.
- Aunt Etta Washington’s sons, Nick and Jesse (Peto) Thomas, and daughter Francis – Etta married a Thomas.
- Everybody that lived in our Maysville neighborhood (now a historic district of Mobile) were relatives.
- Great grandmother on mother’s side (Amanda Portis) and her nine children lived in Quitman, MS. I don’t remember my great-grandfather on my mother’s side. (This is because Daniel Jasper died in 1935, the year my mother was born. I will update my tree based on this conversation!)
- Were there any special items in the house that you remember?
- My parents, sister and I used to live with my grandmother (Alice Coleman – father’s side).
- When I was a baby, my parents purchased the house across the street. It had one bedroom, one bathroom, kitchen, and a table for meals. Initially my sister and I slept on a pallet.
- My family paid for the additions to the house. My father wanted to move across town, but my mother did not want to pay for another house.
- As time went on, my parents added two bedrooms, a dining room, a den, and a shed connected to the car port.
- They lived in this house until they could no longer care for themselves.
Between The Dashes