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Jim: 100 Years Ago: Poem sent to the News by Mary Barger

By "Jim"

The following poem, published in the March 1, 1916 edition of the News, gives a fleeting glimpse into rural life in the mid-1860s:

Since Fifty Years Ago

To the Editor, News:

People lived not half so fast
Submitted to the news by Mary Barger, Ozark, KY
How wondrous are the changes
Since fifty years ago:
When girls wore woollen dresses,
And boys wore pants of tow;
And shoes were made of cowhide,
And socks of homespun wool,
And children did a half day's work
Before they went to school.

The girls took music lessons
Upon the spinning wheel,
And practiced late and early
On spindle, swift, and reel.
The boys would ride the horse to mill,
A dozen miles or so,
And hurry off before 'twas day,
Some fifty years ago.

The people rode to meeting,
In sleds instead of sleighs,
And wagons rode as easy
As buggies nowadays.
And oxen answered well for team,
Though now they'd be too slow,
For people lived not half so fast
Some fifty years ago.

Ah! Well do I remember
The patent cooking stove,
That father bought and paid for
In clothes us girls had wove,
And how the people wondered
When we got the thing to go,
And said, 'twould hurt and kill us all,
Some fifty years ago.

-- Submitted by Mary Barger, Ozark, Ky.
(Mary Barger, a native of Russell County, was the wife of Josiah Barger and the daughter of Wilkerson and Sallie Grider.


This story was posted on 2011-02-16 08:52:59
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