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Old 05-16-2005, 05:14 AM   #1
madasacutsnake
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living memory

Pinched this from another board but it was too good to pass up:

How far back is your living memory (memories of the oldest people you've known)?


One definition of living memory doesn't mean things that we remember ourselves but, loosely, what the oldest generation still largely represented and cognizant remembers the oldest generation when they were young recalling from their life experience. Since the oldest generation that exists in significant numbers of mentally/physically healthy people today would have been born around WW1 (give or take a little) and able to remember the 1920s fairly well, they would have known people who could have remembered the Civil War fairly well from their own childhood/young adulthood, so I'd say the Civil War is basically the border for living memory in America today.

What's yours?
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Old 05-16-2005, 05:16 AM   #2
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I'm not sure it really counts according to a strict definition but my father can remember his great uncle talking about meeting the Duke of Wellington on his visit to Newcastle, UK..........which was in 1829.
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Old 05-16-2005, 10:56 AM   #3
craig johnston
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it's very tricky cos people do tend to, erm, embroider certain things.
i don't see how you can claim somebody else's memory as your own.
so if it's just my memory it's like, middle of last week or so.
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Old 05-16-2005, 11:30 AM   #4
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^ tis true. old people are crazy and senile. my grandfather always tells us that his dad (or someone... i don't remember) invented cats eyes (on the road, you know) first, but then this horrible evil guy nicked them off him, and said that he invented them, and got all the money.

i don't believe him for a second though. he lost his marbles years ago.
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Old 05-16-2005, 11:55 AM   #5
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First thing that comes to mind is my grandmother telling me about the mass hysteria ensued by the broadcast of The War of the Worlds in 1938. I can still remember the vivid description she gave me of the fear in the air that day.
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Old 05-16-2005, 12:16 PM   #6
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AN old man my dad knew had fought in the civil war...My great gramma lived with us until she was 95 and she was born in 1888. (then we made her go get a real job)
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Old 05-16-2005, 12:28 PM   #7
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My Grandmother met my Grandfather while working as a nurse during WWI. He was an ambulance driver for the US Expeditionary Force, she was an English nurse.
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Old 05-16-2005, 01:00 PM   #8
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My dad likes to tell the story of how when he went to school, 5 of the 8 children attending were him and his siblings. When the family decided to leave the town, they closed the school. Seemed to be a point of pride really, that they couldn't get along without us. That would've been in the 1930's. Judging from my dad's recollections, they lived off lard and rabbits.

We went back to this place when I was a kid, and he drove us around trying to find the house where he lived but it was all gone. The only thing we could find was the railway station, which was more like a corrugated iron bus stop and had probably been replaced several times since he had lived there.
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Old 05-16-2005, 01:06 PM   #9
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i love living histories. i have my all of my grandparents tell me their stories...one day i will write them all down for the family

my grandma lived during the depression. her younger brother's bed was a dresser drawer.

my fathers grandfather was a butcher in canada...he traveled all thru Saskachuwan cutting meat in the 1800s.

my grandpa was born in Poland in the late 1800s and came to America for work after WW1.

my moms dad has told me stories of driving through Ann Arbor (Michigan) when it was a farming community
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Old 05-16-2005, 01:18 PM   #10
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^^marvelous!

A 1932 vintage friend'omine remembers taking the subway from Brooklyn to NYC at aged 5 (in 1937) by himself and with a cousin of that tender age.

I can remember NYC being perfectly safe 24/7 in 1965. After that crime, after dark, ruled.

My grandmother's love for her entire family was amazing. Her Christmas celebrations and dinner being a highlight. She gave 100% to homemaking, always did the kindest things and was completely credible.
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Old 05-16-2005, 04:49 PM   #11
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Thumbs up cool thread, mad

My grandmother was an adult during the depression, and gave plates of food to hobos knocking at the back door.
But when she was very very young, she remembers sneaking a peek with her little girlfriends through a knothole in the side of their outhouse in rural Texas to giggle at her grandmother Cora Belle (an Irish immigrant). They thought it was hilarious to watch her sitting in there having to hold herself up very straight because of her corset.
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Old 05-16-2005, 05:12 PM   #12
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when my grandfather was a kid, he skipped school so he could see Gandhi walk through his village during the Salt March.
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Old 05-16-2005, 05:19 PM   #13
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^ how cool! i've seen his sandals. he had really tiny feet
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Old 05-20-2005, 01:06 AM   #14
madasacutsnake
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Last month a 103 year old lady at the home died. Her aunt was nurse to one of Queen Victoria's ladies-in-waiting c 1880's. The 103 year old told me that when the lady in waiting died, the husband gave her aunt the pick of her jewelry. She chose a diamond and ruby ring which is now handed down to the eldest girl in each generation.
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Old 05-20-2005, 01:14 AM   #15
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That's a cool story.

My oldest living memory I guess would come from my great-grandfather, born in 1900. He worked for an early automobile service carrying people back and forth two major cities in Oklahoma, the company was known as the REO Speedwagon, hence the name of the band.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/REO_Speedwagon
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