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Vagabonds Child

Updated on April 26, 2011

Never Loved

My mother bless her soul, was born In the hills of Tennessee. Her mother was of course a housewife and her husband went off to war and left a vagabond at home with his wife to work the crops and help on the farm and at the time he left there were 4 girls. Upon his return, there is a new daughter though the husband had not been home in several years. In short order, he has the sharecropper leave, and packed the young child to go along with its biological father..the child of course my mother. This was about 1918-1920 though my mother was uncertain as her birth was not ever recorded.

She was raised in the coal mines with no memory of having ever been inside a real house as they lived in an old mine shaft till she was possibly 14 though she couldn't say as the years going by meant nothing to her father and he didn't bother to keep track of them.

There was an educated man in the camp an Englishman that was the cook he took it upon himself to tutor my mother and give her the benefit of his upbringing and education. At the time, she was going thru puberty her father put her on a pack mule, and took her back to her mother, he told my grandmother I have done all I can, and she is in need of a woman's care now, and he left her there.. She would not see him again until just prior to his death in many years to come.

As unwelcome as the family could make her is how she found life to be, her mothers husband hated her for the constant reminder of the wrong her mother had done him and the shame it caused the family. As soon as she could leave, she walked into town and hitched a ride and went to Florida, where she got a job as a waitress met a merchant seaman married him and apparently had a marriage that was never consummated. She wanted a child badly, but after 7 years of marriage still her husband showed no interest in her romantically. Then one day a young girl walks up to the house knocks upon the door, and explains she has just had a child, and she is not married, her family says she has to go away, and she must give the child up for adoption, but the girl wants my mother to have the child, and record the birth as her own, and my mother takes the child, walks into town, and records the birth telling she had the child at home, and was just now able to walk in to register the birth, and it was done, and that is how I got my oldest brother.

Upon her husbands return from the sea, he is quite upset to find a child in his home and informs my mother she must leave and take the child with her as there was no way to undo the recording of the birth.

So once again she walks to town and hitches a ride and ends up in Alabama where she had information she would find her father, but she wasn't able to locate him. She did get a job in a boarding house where she could work for room and board and keep her infant son with her. She met and married my father here, he had 2 sons by a previous marriage and together my parents had 4 children of their own the first four years of their marriage. They stayed married until my father died in 1992. Though they didn't live together for 16 years prior to my fathers death. The last 2 years of my fathers life my mother took him in and cared for him until his passing..which makes her a far better woman than I shall ever be.

I hope she is finally living in a mansion, and that the streets are indeed paved with gold I do so hope that she has found all the things life never gave her, at the funeral we played go rest high upon that mountain, and I pray she is.

Though she has been gone since 1999, not a day, goes by that I don't miss her she was my little mamma, and the best friend I could ever hope to have.




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    • jorja kick profile image

      jorja kick 6 years ago from southeast georgia

      You know I love to read your comments as much as your hubs,I almost want to write one right now to have you comment on it!!

      thank you for having had a special relationship with your mother so that you could relate to mine..

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 6 years ago from Deep South, USA

      What an amazing story! It perfectly illustrates two things: (1) the resilience of the human spirit, and (2) the validity of that old saying, "Truth is stranger than fiction."

      Your mother obviously had a strong survival instinct. Many people would have just given up when faced with the hardships she endured. I hope her later life with your father and their family was much happier than her earlier years. You have every reason to be proud of her.

      I understand why you still miss her though she's been gone twelve years. My own "little mama" died in 2008. I think about her and miss her every day, too, and probably will for the rest of my life. The upcoming Mothers' Day will be bittersweet.

    • jorja kick profile image

      jorja kick 6 years ago from southeast georgia

      Thank you for that wish it means a lot.

    • American Romance profile image

      American Romance 6 years ago from America

      We all have these same stories in our families, Heart warming, I too hope those streets are paved with gold for her!