Reflections on our family - Jack Miller on Irene Rogers
Irene Rogers [1900 - 1978] was my father's [Frank miller 1929 - 1973] mother and my grandmother. She was a unique individual and one we were fortunate to be able to know. From flapper to church leader, her life was full and her memory is with us all. Here are some of Jack's [1930 - 2009]memories of his mother.
Irene Rogers Miller Went to William Woods College somewhere in Missouri.
Summers she went to a summer camp where Wayne Miller [1896 -1945] met her at Lake Geneva, near Delaven, Wisconsin, where there are still lots of far-removed cousins.
I think she was a liberal arts major, but can’t be certain. She was a flapper. Pictures make her look like a plump Clara Bow.
She graduated with a BA – must have been around 1922 or so. Married Wayne on June 10th 1926. It was his second marriage after leaving his first wife and two children.
She and Wayne had spent several years prior to WWI as a team of Evangelists (Methodists). He was an ordained Minister, but lost the way as a result of four months service in the army from about June to November 1918.
After Wayne died, Irene got a job as a secretary connected with the new Boys’ Club in Valdosta, working in the old city hall building on Hill Avenue, south of Ashley St. Then she got involved in fund raising for the new Boys Club. She worked there until about 1952 or so.
Meanwhile, she took in boarders overflowing from the Pines Camp Motel next door to our house at 1510 N. Ashley Street. She’d bought it with Dan’s insurance money in 1945 for about $4500.00 total. It had been built in 1942 for $2500.00 as part of the early GI housing for people on Moody Field Air Base. It was only 2 blocks from our old house at 306 E. College St. which we’d been renting since Dec 4, 1941, but were forced to buy during the war.
When Wayne died, we had a 1941 four door Chevy Master Deluxe which we’d bought for $1200.00 from Lee and Laura Maiden, a couple of Vermonters stationed at the base during the war. Laura is now 82(1990) and visits her son, Norman, in Ocala. I saw her in November. Irene had to sell the car to stay afloat, but chanced on about the only 1950 Ford Anglia in the USA.
That was that funky little old black car in which the head liner in the roof kept coming down on everyone. It was a menace – almost matching her lack of driving ability. [I , Barbara, remember that car as a playhouse' parked under the grape arbor in Irene's back yard. It was used as a 'green house' during the spring and summer months]
Then she bought a 1965 Chevelle – her green car. Which lasted the rest of her life. In 1955 Irene made a trade of the Land Beneath Her House on Ashley St. in return for a Duplex and a separate house on Alden Avenue, just off Ashley St. plus a vacant lot at 2425 University Drive, plus she made the developer who traded her out of her house, move her old house onto the new lot.
By that time we’d all left home. I was just about the only person who lived any length of time in the Ashley St. house.
Tad and I (Jack) spent the school year, 1945-46, at Gordon Military College in Barnesville near Atlanta.
Pete went off to college in the dorm at Georgia State College for Women (GSWC) about four blocks from the house on Patterson St.
David went into the Navy, landing at Quonset Point, RI as Editor of the Quonset Point NAS base paper.
I spent my junior year in that house.
Tad returned for brief periods, but couldn’t stand taking orders from Mother, so lived with Botie Chitty in a rented room much of the time.
Pete was married to Frank on June 29, 1946 so was soon gone.
I left on June 9th, 1947 for a job at Raduim Springs in Albany. I was 16. I worked the prior summer in Atlanta at 15.
Read more about our family at My Family Genealogy Si8te
on 2012-07-07 06:42:56
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