Whitesburg KY
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Roxana residents walked everywhere

Southern Ohio

Hello again.

I guess some of you are wondering what happened to my column last week. I sometimes write my column at different intervals. It just so happened I was in a hurry and hit the wrong button.

I had to have a new hard drive, ever what that is, in my computer and right now I am not a very happy camper. It is not letting me download a couple of radio stations I listen to. Some things are alright, I hate change as lots of you know!

I had a very pleasant surprise when I checked my answering machine. I received a phone call from Paul Ratliff, who is from Kingscreek, Roxana, or somewhere in that area. Paul had me mixed up with my sister Loretta as so many others have done.

I even had a woman from Hot Spot say she remembered me as I was a little short fat girl. I have to admit that sort of didn’t set too well with me. I told her I was never a little short fat girl although now I was a little short fat woman.

In the first place, I never lived in Hot Spot very long, and I was never still long enough when I was young to ever be fat. I am proud to say I never gained any weight until I had my third child, then I gained a few pounds.

Before I was expecting my fourth child I lost so much weight, I wasn’t much bigger than my children. After my baby was born, I was almost as small as I was when I was a kid. Just a few years ago, I weighed a whopping 104 pounds.

There is nothing wrong with anyone having a little more meat on their bones than another person, it just aggravates me to have someone say anything about anyone.

I am too short to be very heavy, yet the weight loves me and won’t leave.

I try to walk two miles every day, so this morning as I was walking my thoughts took a stroll back in my childhood in the mountains of Roxana. To get anywhere you walked. How many footsteps has time covered up of little feet in that small area of Roxana?

A picture of a bridge was posted on a Letcher County website by Gary Eldridge who is so knowledgeable of genealogy and does a lot of research in a lot of venues. I was so pleased to see the familiar word Roxana, however the more I looked at the bridge that said Roxana, I knew it didn’t look anything familiar to my memory so I posted something. Gary had no way of knowing whoever had done the research sure wasn’t familiar with, or from that area, as this wasn’t correct.

Oh! What I would give to be as smart and talented as this guy is. Though Gary isn’t from the mountains, I know his family is. I don’t know much about Gary personally, except through music. His band called Rural Route 2, an awesome band! I have known his uncle Robert Bryant for many years.

Merlene Davis Day is another person that is very smart with genealogy. The only thing that is smart about me is my mouth. Sometimes you don’t want to get that started!

I spent the first 13 years of my life roaming the woods in that little spot called Roxana. If I wasn’t afraid of getting snake bit, I would like to walk back on the hill above George and Minnie Whitaker’s homeplace. I think their son Wallace lives there now, also behind the place that Lee Gentry lived as I was born up in the woods there behind where Lee’s mobile home was.

Daddy and Mommy actually lived on Tolson Creek when I was born. Grandpa Alec Hall was dying and someone went to get Daddy. Daddy couldn’t leave Mommy by herself, so that night Grandpa died and I was born just a little while later.

There’s another place we lived that I will always hold dear in my childhood memories, the house that sets in the woods close to Vernon Hogg’s old homeplace close to the mining place between Roxana and Hot Spot.

There are times I wonder why the mountains mean so much to me as I have been away for so many years.

Oma Hatton, I was reading in your column that Marlowe had lost another person, Scrub Holland — actually his name is Scrub Hollins unless they have changed the spelling of the name.

If it is the same set, and I am almost positive it is, Thelma lived in Caudilltown when Grandma Rosa Hall lived there. I believe Scrub’s dad was Sherman Hollins. who was a brother to our grandma.

Grandma wasn’t that close to her family as she was sort of a loner. There are times I find myself being so much like her.

I finally went to Doyle and Betty Ison’s for a visit, which turned into an all day affair, complete with dinner. Betty cooked the most delicious meal and Doyle was right in the kitchen helping her. The half runner green beans were scrumptious, along with pork chops, fried potatoes, cornbread, garden ripe tomatoes, cucumbers and sliced onions.

Larry Roark, you weren’t invited, since you show all the food on the computer and don’t share.

Betty has a couple of books of ration stamps that were used during the Depression years. I have heard Mommy and a couple of people talk about using stamps for sugar, shoes, etc., however I had never seen any.

It was such a pleasure being there with Doyle and Betty. Their house is so beautiful with all the right decor in every room. If I wasn’t afraid of falling, I would be tempted to do as I used to do on my mommy’s newly waxed floors when she wasn’t in the room, I would slide in my sock feet.

Doyle can take an old board and make it beautiful, and Betty sure has good taste in choosing colors. I still love the huge boat dock of a deck that Doyle built in the back of the house.

I am trying to get Doyle to remodel the little building down in the valley for me. I really don’t need much room.

Gwen Huff Farmer is doing fairly well. I think she will be glad when her garden is finished as she has once again worked herself half to death. Gwen had company and really enjoyed them being there.

My sympathy goes out to Shirley Wells in the death of her uncle who lived in Dayton, Ohio. I haven’t talked to Shirley as I have been so occupied for the past two weeks.

I took my grandchildren Sarah, Jessica, Katelyn, Nottingham, along with my great-granddaughter Samantha Jo Gray plus Sarah’s friend Miami Whitewater to the park so they could spend the afternoon at the water park.

I love spending time with the girls. As we were on our way I was acting silly singing along with the radio and bouncing to the music in the car. Sarah says, “Oh my God, now I know where Mom gets it at!”

I started laughing, saying I used to dance in the grocery store, and that her mom would say I wasn’t her mother, she didn’t know me, that she was adopted.

Sarah said, “Well, my mom dances in the driveway where the neighbors can see.” Now don’t think that didn’t make me laugh.

Friday night, I went to Coon Hunters on the outskirts of Hamilton. A couple of friends I haven’t seen for a while were there. We really had a great time.

My brother Richie Hall isn’t doing any good at all. I am going to try to head to the mountains before long. Richie spent the night at the Whitesburg hospital. I didn’t know until he was back home. Wanda stays so busy I don’t get to talk to her very much.

Hello to my brother Jerry and Mattie Hall and to my sister Loretta Church.

Les and Pat Wagner, I hope to see you before too long.

Jennifer Collins is doing great from her surgery. Hello to Jeff and Dottie Collins, I hope to see you guys before long.

Letcher County/ Kentucky Day Picnic, September 29, at Harrison Community Center, 300 George Street Harrison, Ohio 45030 12-?. Bring a covered dish and a beverage. This will be at the big shelter behind the community center.

Belated happy birthday to Gwen Farmer August 16.

Johnny and Ann Calihan and family are still facing family problems as their granddaughter Julie was very ill and was in the hospital several days. I haven’t heard how they celebrated their anniversary.

Well, it is time to get this on its way as today is a very busy day for me.

Until next time.

Rose Ballard, 9110 Lawrenceburg Road, Harrison, Ohio 45030, email: Bluegrassmama4@aol.com, telephone 513-367-4682.

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