Wednesday, April 16, 2008

More Life In The Ford Lane

That's a joke---my maiden name is Ford. I always said we were from the wrong side of the Ford family, for sure! Dad's family lived in a little town called Dawson, Illinois. His grandfather (my great-grandfather) served in the Civil War in the 5th Illinois regiment and fought in the Battle of Vicksburg. Yep, a Yankee. I have a Civil War sword that he supposedly captured in battle. It won't stay on the wall in this Southern home. It currently resides in my basement and I certainly need to rescue it. I always had planned to have it framed in a shadow box, but never had the money. When great-g'dad got home from the war he got married, built a little house (I have the records: it cost $350 to build.) He started a grain business and farmed 80 acres. My grandfather was named William Ord Ford. The Ord is for my g-grandfather's commander, for whom Fort Ord in California was also named. Anyway, Dad was the oldest of 3 living children. My father was actually born a twin, but his twin died at birth. When Dad was about twelve, the whole family was sick with rheumatic fever. Dad crawled to the barn to milk the cows. Later, when Pearl Harbor was bombed, Dad went down to enlist. During the physical they found he had damaged his heart during his heroic action to save the cattle. He was 4-F and so didn't serve; in fact, during this period of severe restrictions on rubber, they gave him coupons to purchase tires to move to the Southwest. Otherwise his heart would not have been able to last long in those Illinois winters. And so it was that I came to be brought up in New Mexico!

No comments: