Wagener Monthly •
Wednesday, May 30, 2012
Memories Memories are precious. Memories areomething that cannot be taken awayrom you. Memories bring you great comfort and joy. Memories can sustainou through difficult times. Memoriesallow you to remember from where youcame and look forward to where you aregoing. Memories are God’s gift from theast for the future.
A Welcome CallAbout two weeks ago, I received aetter from Sam Lybrand, a cousin that Iad never met before; he wanted infor-ation on the Lybrand family.Since his phone number was includedith his request, I gave him a call.Through our conversation, I learnedhat he and I share the same great-randparents – George Washingtonand Jane Jackson Lybrand. Sam livesn Edisto Island, S.C. His father Har-ey Lybrand* was a first cousin toy mama. Mama’s father Fred washe youngest son and Harvey’s fatheramuel was the oldest son of G.W. andane Lybrand. Sam is working on a fam-ly history for his children and in theprocess is reaching out to Lybrand rela-ives.I delight in family history, and it doesot have to be my own family. Mama isa wealth of knowledge; she remembersamily connections, family stories andccasionally lets one of the family skel-tons out of the closet.So since Sam’s call, we have sent himamily pictures and family information.ncle Sammy, Sam’s grandfather, diedn 1924 the same year that Mama wasborn; therefore, Mama knows only whathe has been told about him. However,unt Mame his wife did not die until1973, and Mama spent a lot of timeat Aunt Mame’s house when she wasrowing up.Aunt Mame’s oldest daughter Thelmaydrick died when her daughter Fran-es was just 2 years old, and so Fran-es came to live with her grandmotherame. My mama whose name is alsorances and Frances Hydrick were con-tant playmates.Mama told me that Aunt Mame waserrified of a thunderstorm, and, whenhe heard thunder, she would makehem lie down on the bed and to not letheir feet touch the floor.Frances Hydrick moved to Newexico after getting married, andama hears from her occasionally. Auntame’s youngest child was Sue.When the family was sitting aroundalking about events from the past thatoccurred before Sue was born, shewould always ask, “Well, Daddy wherewas I?” And UncleSammy would reply,“You were under thebed.” His commentwould always satisfyher.Aunt Mame livedacross the road fromNew Holland BaptistChurch. Mama recallsthat Aunt Mamealways had a gardenand fruit trees andher house was alwaysspotless. Mama also said that AuntMame was very neat and always woredresses with a black background.I questioned Mama about this, and shetold me that all those many years agothat many women wore black becausetheir husbands were dead.Several days after I spoke with SamLybrand, I told Mama that we were rid-ing to New Holland cemetery. I jokinglysaid that I had a few questions for someof the Lybrand relatives buried there.My great-great-grandfather WesleyAllen Lybrand and great-great-grand-mother Sarah Elizabeth Lybrand and mygreat-grandfather George WashingtonLybrand and great-grandmother JaneJackson Lybrand are all buried at theNew Holland cemetery. Uncle Sammy,Aunt Mame and a lot of other Lybranduncles, aunts and cousins are buriedthere, too.After arriving at the cemetery, Mamaand I got out of the car and began towalk through the cemetery reading theinscriptions on the graves and discuss-ing how each one was related to us. Wecame to great-grandpa George’s brother,Noah Webster Lybrand’s grave; he diedfrom being bitten by a rabid dog.George W. and Jane had six otherchildren besides Sammy and Fred; AuntCorrie, of whom I often speak, was theoldest girl. I probably knew her betterthan any of Pa Fred’s siblings.When Grandmama Leila Lybrand wasalive, Sunday afternoons was a time toride to New Holland. Almost always, wewould eventually visit with Aunt Corriewho lived on highway 39 between Oak grove and New Holland. I rememberAunt Corrie always laughing about mosteverything. She never let life get herdown.Her youngest daughter Faye wasthe age of Mama, and Mama has toldme many tales about Faye and herself.One of my favorites is just after Faye’sdaughter Gloria Jean was born.She was at Aunt Corrie’s house andEugene Buckingham, more affection-ately known as “Punk,” said, “Ma’ahyou better go in there and see about thebaby; Faye is dragging her around like asack of peas.”Also when we were at the cemetery,Mama told me a tale about her daddyand Cousin Annie Boatwright Johnson’shusband Claude. Pa Fred and Claudewere fishing from a boat in the river.It seems that Claude had taken off his hat and placed in the bottom of theboat behind him. Pa Fred told Claude toget his hat, as it was getting water in it.Claude began to retrieve his hat and indoing so he also began to moan … ooh,ooh, ooh, then louder ooooh, ooooh,all the while bumping his hat from onehand to the other!Well, a snake had fallen from a treeinto the boat, and Pa Fred had managedto slip the snake into Claude’s hat; I can just imagine the fun Pa Fred had withthat stunt. Mama went on to say that PaFred came home and told GrandmamaLeila what he had done.After them having a good laugh,Grandmama asked, “What happened toClaude’s hat?” Pa Fred replied that thelast time he had seen it, it was spinningdown the river.I have been retired 14 years now, andfrom 1999-2004, Garry, my husband,and I visited 44 states of our great Unit-ed States.I still often remark that I neverdreamed that Garry and I would havebeen able to travel as we did. Eventoday we still talk about all of themomentous times that we shared. So,next to our travels, I would put visitingcemeteries as my second fun thing todo. There is so much history and mys-tery in a cemetery.And by the way, I did not get a singleanswer to any of my questions from anyof my Lybrand relatives at the New Hol-land cemetery. I just got a lot of goodmemories.
* Harvey Lybrand was the third child of Uncle Sammy and Aunt Mame; hewas Aiken County Superintendent of Education from 1933-1936. Harvey, hiswife Jenny and their three sons Tommy,Sam, and David moved from Aiken to Edisto Island. Harvey and his familydeveloped much of what Edisto Island is today.
Learning history through time spent at a cemetery