From the photo albums of my grandmother, Gladys Corrine Walker. She was born in 1897 and the entries just prior to this one have followed her life up till now. My uncle’s words come from this interview in Tinplate Times.
In the 1940s, my grandmother worked as an elevator operator at the Seattle Federal Building. (She had done the same job at the Standard Furniture Company in the 30s.)
During World War II, she invited many young soldiers home for a home cooked dinner. They called her “mom” and many signed a guest book which I still have and will share in a later post.
As soon as she was old enough, my mother, Ginger, moved in with Gladys.
Gladys’s husband Harry was around some of the time but was mostly off fishing.
Her husband, Harry Walker, in the garden.
Harry was gone fishing for long stretches of time. His boat was the Eden.
(By the time I came along in the 1950s and spent most of my childhood at this house, the trees in front and the hedge next to the lawn had been removed and the front window had a window box and shutters, and the 3000 square foot lot was packed with flowers.)
Some of the photos are so tiny they must have come off of a proof sheet.
Because I know more about my mother’s life in the 40s, I will give her a separate entry (next).
Gladys’s son Allison (Al) Cox tells about his life in the 40s:
Al’s photos sent to Gladys from Alaska:
Above: this bunk with pictures of his girlfriend and his mom
He included some plant photos for her:
Al’s story continues:
Irene was an accomplished, intelligent, and fashionable woman who loved to create elegant parties and dinners. She had a son, George, and a daughter, Sylvia. Her being older than Al was not quite approved of by society, it seems. Note how in the wedding announcement, if the woman is older, her age is listed simply as “legal”.
Al must have provided the costume for the photo below, which is a tiny little photo and I can’t tell if it’s my mother, Ginger, or Irene. I’m guessing Irene.
In about 1946, Gladys’s first of two grandchildren, Jonathan Allison Cox, was born. (She also doted on her step grandchild, Irene’s son George.)
Sylvia Robbins has fascinated me since I first learned of her existence when I was in my 20s. She ran away from home in her late teens, before I was born, and disappeared for years, returning finally in the 80s (I think), but I never met her and she was never mentioned when I was a child.
In the early 50s, Al sold the 6309 12th NE house in the previous two photos to my mom and dad; it is only as I put this album together than it clicks into place that he, Irene, and John and Sylvia had lived there first.
John grew up loving dogs. Let’s jump ahead to a photo of him with his own childhood dog, a dog that I remember.
He next began to raise St Bernard dogs, and eventually had a champion St Bernard named Kris, who you can enjoy in this video. You’ll see grown up John running with Kris, the “Most Titled Saint Bernard Champion (39 AKC & SBCA titles)” in 2007. John’s Youtube channel has several more dog show videos.
(How I wish I still had that painting of boats that hung on her wall during my childhood.)