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My Alabama Shaw Family on My Father’s Side From 1861-2014

Granddaddy was a successful farmer in the 20th century.

Posted Oct 14, 2016

Annie Shaw-Barnes, Ph.D.
Author and Speaker
Cultural Anthropologist
Family Specialist
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Hi everyone,

Granddaddy was a businessman farmer and instructed Daddy, as the under-patriarch, to require all his sisters and brothers to work.

Daddy plowed and worked from sunup to sundown and supervised his brothers' and sisters' plowing, hoeing, pulling grass, picking squares [bolls of cotton with boll-weevils], and picking cotton. At night, all of them fed the mules, chickens, hogs, and cattle.

Daddy, starting in childhood, until retirement, showed me what a good working person looks like, and he and Mama sought to train me the same way in everything I did. Therefore, when they gave me a chore and taught me how to do it, I improved upon it. For example, while we lived on the Goolsby sharecropping farm, we had a dirt yard, and it was my duty to keep it swept. I reveled in the chore because, on my own, I created the special style of making each stoke the same length, and, when I finished our dirt yard was beautiful.

Hence, I thank my granddaddy for being a hard working smart man, and I never saw or heard anyone say that he didn’t do his best at everything, and it is a trait that he passed to Daddy and Daddy passed to me, and I love it.

Enjoy even the most boring task, such as sweeping a dirt yard could have been, and live, happily, because you have done your best every time in everything. There is a feeling of excellence in doing one’s best at everything good. Get it!

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