Remembering Summer Time in the 1950s
Let Your Mind Drift Back to the Fifties
Lazy summer days... I grew up in the 1950s and maybe that was the era of your childhood too. Now and then, I enjoy a little trip down memory lane to all the summer fun we had.
I'll share with you some of my experiences of that long ago time. I hope it triggers some memories from your youth too. Try out some of the writing prompts I've provided to get you started.
(Photo from my family album - the six Martin kids... I'm the one standing by our brother in the back)
Playing Outside - Carefree Days from a 1950s Childhood
I remember sun-filled days roaming the Kansas prairies. We ran barefoot to the creek to look for crawdads. Turning over rocks, we squealed when the small crustaceans shot out from hiding.
They tried to pinch you when you captured them but their small claws didn't hurt very much. We would build small dams to create a side pool. There we would corral our catches including the crawfish and little minnows.
Do You Have Similar Memories?
Sure, I remember...
Videos Filled with 1950s Memories - Enjoy Some Nostalgia
Remember some of these TV shows, music, ads, candies, cars with tail fins and other vintage things from the 1950s?
Let These 1950s Cars Spark Some Memories
Read Other People's Memories to Trigger More of Your Own
More Stories from My Memory Bank - by Virginia Allain
- I've Always Been Fashion Challenged
This is a photo essay of my early years as a ragamuffin. Mom had a hard time keeping me tidy and presentable. Fortunately we lived on a farm so there weren't many people around to notice my fashion mistakes.
- Paper Dolls
My memories of playing with paper dolls (posted on the Our Echo web site). Paper Doll Postcards by PaperDollFun
- All Our Play Houses
One can have a lot of fun with some imagination. My essay on Our Echo about imaginary play houses.
- On My Grandparents' Farm
We had a great time visiting my grandparents. This essay won a prize on the Our Echo web site.
- Sparkling Memories
Long ago memories can be shared in poems. Here's one I wrote about the 4th of July.
- Favorite Summer Food Memories
Ah, tomato sandwiches in the summer and kid-sized root beer mugs at the A & W Drive In.
I Was a Middle Child
Those were the lucky years, the golden times in the 50s and 60s as we grew up. We didn't know it then, that it wouldn't always be that way.
Despite recessions, family setbacks, childhood injuries like my brother's broken arm or other mishaps, the family regrouped and went on.
(Photo of the Martin children before Shannon was born. I'm the blonde one with the pigtails in the 2nd row.)
Country Kid? This Will Bring Back Memories
I grew up in the country and remember feeding the calf from a bucket, climbing a mountain of hay in the hayloft, and wading in the creek. Read this to see what memories it brings back to you.
Remembering Summer Cook Outs
from the Fifties
Since we lived in the country, we didn't make picnic excursions to a park. Mom would get fed up with fixing food for eight people in a hot kitchen during the Kansas summer heat waves. She would load our arms with the meal fixings and we would have a cook out under some shady trees between the barn and the alfalfa field.
I remember a small pit dug in the dirt to contain the campfire. We roasted weiners on sticks over the flames and finished by toasting marshmallows. It was tricky getting them brown without it catching on fire.
Mom varied the menu by putting sliced potatoes, onions and hamburger in a large coffee can and burying it in the coals. She had been a den mother for the boy scouts once, so I'm guessing she learned that from scouting.
Did You Grow up in the 1950s?
Vote in the poll
to trigger memories of long-ago summers
Three Writing Prompts to Get You Started
Eating Outdoors - Write about it. Think about picnics and outdoor eating experiences from your childhood. Where was it (backyard, park, a lake, scouts, camp, grandparent's home, family reunion)? Was there a picnic table or a blanket on the grass? What foods did you eat (deviled eggs, watermelon, cupcakes, homemade ice cream)? Tell how it was prepared, include favorite recipe, and tell who fixed the food. Did you cook a hobo meal in a coffee can over an open fire or did Dad grill over charcoal? Did you make s'mores or toast/burn marshmallows? Have a wiener roast. Any mishaps (rain, bad food, ants, injuries)? Was there a picnic basket?
Write about these and also memories of picnics with your own children.
Fun with Water - Write your childhood memories. Children are greatly attracted to water. Was there a fountain, a creek or pond where you could sail toy boats? Write about making paper boats or creating a raft. Did you swim, wade, fall in, build dams, hunt for crawdads or any other activities around the water? Tell about any restrictions there were about being around the water or if you had total freedom.
If there was no creek, did you play in a washtub of water or a kiddy pool? Did anyone in the neighborhood have a pool?
Seashore or Lake Memories - Write about them. When you were a child, did you go often to a beach or a lake or was it a major outing? Tell about the family's preparation for the day and what was taken along. Describe your swimming outfit. What food do you associate with the beach or lake? Try to remember what was fun about the day and put in sensory memories like the grittiness of the sand or the feel of the waves or the sound of the seagulls. If you didn't have this kind of excursion, write about what you thought the ocean would be like.
I Like to Read Memoirs from That Era - They Remind Me of Childhood Incidents That I'd Forgotten
Here's a few that I haven't sampled yet and want to try. Just looking at the covers starts me thinking of what life was like back then.
More Writing Triggers to Save Your Childhood Memories
- Writing Triggers for Family Memories
It's important to preserve your childhood memories and family stories, but you may wonder where to start. Start working your way through this memory prompts and you'll find the writing easy.
- Memories of the Five and Dime Stores
I remember venturing into the dime store with my life savings clutched in my small fist. The lure was a bin of plastic cowboys and Indians. Sorting through the crudely made figures in garish colors, I debated over the blue cowboy that could ride a...
- Holiday Writing Triggers for Family Memories
Following the calendar, I'll give memory prompts to start you writing about long ago holidays. It's important to write down these memories to save for your children and grandchildren. Who knows, maybe you'll even have enough to self-publish a book...