My Aunt Jessie~Part 2

24 Nov

Sunday Memories

Judy Wills


My Aunt Jessie…..the only “auntie” that I was close to.  There was only her and my mother on that side of the family.  Of course, my dad was one of 13 children, so I had lots and lots of cousins.  But they were all in Texas or Louisiana….or SOMEwhere else.

Because Jessie never married, she became the breadwinner of the family after her father died, and

Grannie's Favorite Chair

Grannie’s Favorite Chair

Granny lived with her. And because she never married, her security became the things she owned.  She became an expert in antiques.  Her love of antiques started when my grandfather purchased – for $5.00 – a beat-up old chair frame for her.  She refinished and re-upholstered that chair, and it became the first of many antique items that filled her house and her life.  It became Granny’s favorite chair.

She had several love seats.  She had a coffee table that was magnificent – it was quite large and the top (covered with glass) was one solid piece of mahogany.  Beautiful.  (One family story goes that a large slab of wood fell off a train and someone – Grandpa? – found it, took it and made it into that coffee table.

She had an antique pump organ, and Victrola.  Mother said Granny always loved to have music around the house.

She had curio cabinets.  She had one piece of solid cherry wood that was a china cabinet.  The top had glass doors through which you could see the lovely antique tableware she had found.

She was always on the lookout for estate sales, and shopped at as many of them as she could.  She found wonderful sales, and was able to purchase many good things at great prices.  At one time, she was the president of the Albuquerque Antique Club.  Her house was large enough to accommodate all of her purchases, and she had a gift for placement of her pieces.  As we prepared to have an “auction” of her household items, the auctioneer looked around, and said, “This is some of the best Victorian furniture I’ve ever seen!”

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Unfortunately, Jessie never thought any of us wanted anything of hers.  Because none of us had expressed an interest in any of her things, some time before she died I suggested we should all make a list of her things we wanted, and give it to her.  If there was a duplication in “wishes” – hers was to be the final decision.  She was quite delighted to see how much we loved her things, after all.  And, I must admit that, after I had made my “list,” I finished it with the statement that we would rather have HER in our lives than anything of hers….but that we loved her and wanted to have keepsakes of her.

One Response to “My Aunt Jessie~Part 2”

  1. Louise Gib son November 24, 2013 at 8:45 am #

    How b eautifully ornate. That is quite an awesome display of treasures, Judy. Thanks for sharing.


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