Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Do You Come From a Large Family?

These two views of the home of N.B. "Bonie" Pierce (1880-1964) and Julia L. Moody (1886-1965) give you some idea of the size of their house in the Pierce Level area of the farming community of Wilmer, Alabama.

The house no longer stands. Many years after the Pierce family moved out of it, the house itself was moved to another location. A fire later destroyed it.

This house is clearly far smaller than the 2,000-square-foot starter homes that many couples today consider as standard. Yet Bonie and Julia reared nine children in this much smaller house outside Wilmer.

Twenty years separated the birth of the oldest and youngest of the children, so they didn't all live in the house at the same. Still you have to wonder how those who were in the house at the same managed to get along without getting on each other's nerves.

Do you come from a large family? Did you all get along? Did you have to share a bathroom?

Friday, June 6, 2014

D-Day Salute to My Dad

At about 6:35 a.m. on this morning 70 years ago, my father Ralph E. Poore was hitting Utah Beach with the assault troops of the 2nd Battalion, 8th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division. He was a 25-year-old sergeant from Laurel, Mississippi.

Although my father landed with the infantry, he was a member of one of three liaison units of the Headquarters Battery of the 29th Field Artillery. Members of the liaison unit acted as forward observers and traveled with the infantry rather than with the firing batteries.

My father survived D-Day and was in nearly continuous combat until February 1945, when he was awarded leave to go home. He returned to Europe the same week Germany surrendered. For his service in the war, my father was awarded the Bronze Star, Silver Star, Purple Heart and other medals.

My dad remained in the Army until 1949 when he returned to civilian life and settled in Mobile, Alabama.

Having survived the horrors of front-line combat in World War II, he died of a heart attack in 1976. He was just 57 years old.