Volume X, No. 2, Winter 1982




BITTERSWEET PEOPLE

OUR OZARK HERITAGE

Compiled by Melinda Stewart


Apple cider, plumgrannies, courtship and marriage, and tall tales. Homemade whiskey, mountain dulcimers, baskets, and chairs. Good times, bad times, growing up, and growing old. Traditions long forgotten, and people long gone. Events marking our ancestors and changing our heritage. Our Bittersweet people have remembered them all.

Rough individualists, who are confident in their ways, conservative by nature from the poor land of the Ozarks, strong from years of struggling to earn a living, honorable with a deep sense of duty and responsibility, humorous with a wry wit, these Ozarkians are a truly remarkable group of people.

RAY O'DELL - When kids are so took up with the old ways I just say, "Well kids, I lived that. I know it from living in it."

JOHNNY STARNES - (Age 104 years) I wasn't broke down until I was ninety-nine. After that I couldn't do nothing. ESTHER STARNES - was eighteen when we married. He was thirty-nine. Now I'm 82. We was married in 1911.

[42]

WILFORD HAYMES - I'm not an expert on nothing, but when I could see, I could do pert'neer anything anyone else could. I could make a stagger on it."

DAISY COOK - Sometimes I do it real sudden like, but most of the time I think about a picture quite a long time before I paint it, to decide what I'm going to put in that.
All photos by BITTERSWEET staff.

[43]

ART PATTERSON - Sometimes I let it age ten or fifteen minutes.

SAM BRADFORD - I like to tell the tales about Jed Hollister. He was to the Ozarks what Paul Bunyan was to the north woods.

WILLIAM LENZ - When I started in photography all prints were made from sunlight.

NORMAN WRIGHT - I got a lot of memories of this old farm.

[44]

JULE WRIGHT - Getting a picture of me and my babies?

ALONZO WRIGHT - I got a lot more hair than I had a couple of years ago. My hair is coming back. I'm in my second childhood.

CHARLIE GRACE - I don't see too good, so be sure and let me know if I'm hitting the plant instead of the weed.

ELVIE HOUGH - They just know my voice and come running.

[45]

LESTER AND ROSEMARY MONDALE - They say, "Be careful about what you want most in life because that is what you'll surely get."

SHORTY CREWS - I used to catch so many catfish they called me "Catfish." Also I used to catch a lot of crappie and they called me "Crappie." Then I had a kid working for me whose father called me "Shorty."

DOROTHY LEAKE -I think I'm fortunate to have my retirement here.  I like to do lots of things outdoors.

SOPHIE PIAZZO - I don't regret my age. I've enjoyed every day of my life, even with my husband after sixty years. I wouldn't trade him.
[46]




Copyright 1981 BITTERSWEET, INC.


Next Article | Table of Contents | Other Issues


Local History Home