Last October, I had walked down the lane to my fourth great grandparents’ home…to Joseph and Rachel (Low) Storer’s farm. As I ambled around the bend in my dreams and imagined wanderings, I anxiously awaited my initial meeting with them. The time was about 1820. I had told them of their children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren who in the future would migrate and pioneer themselves across the nation.
Today, this second visit would be a reunion of sorts. I was interested in why they had moved on from Massachusetts to New Hampshire to Maine. What drew them on to start over twice? To clear the land and build homes? To be self-sufficient in meeting all their family’s needs? To raise children devoted to the land and to the new nation?
I was curious about what encompassed Joseph’s day with farm work. How and what did he teach his sons? In what ways did he share his knowledge about animal husbandry and livestock management? What services and goods did he use to barter with his neighbors?
I was curious about what encompassed Rachel’s day with child care and food preparation. How and what did she teach her daughters? In what ways did she share about gathering herbs and wild berries? What did the girls learn about making clothes? How did her family socialize with neighbors, or were they isolated?
As parents, did they share God’s Word by reading from the Bible each evening? By praying together? Could they themselves read and write? Many, many questions would be asked.
A reunion is a cherished time with those one loves. Sometimes, that time is short and brief. Sometimes, questions go unanswered. Sometimes, much is shared and divulged. Always as the parting ends the visit, hugs and blessings are exchanged.