Will You Miss Me When I’m Gone?

Having grown up listening to the Carter Family music,

I think their music has settled in my heart.

Alvin Pleasant Carter and Sara Dougherty were married on June 18, 1915, the month before the bride’s seventeenth birthday.  After the ceremony and the dance that followed, Pleasant loaded up his one-horse wagon and carried his new bride back to Poor Valley.  They had to ford the winding Moccasin Creek five times just to get to the gap that let out onto the south side of Clinch Mountain.  “I know that was a wonderful trip home,” their daughter Gladys wrote years later.  “Daddy always walked over the mountain as it was so much closer to go courting, but now he was bringing her home with her autoharp, all of her fancy crochet pieces, quilts, a few dishes; and, Aunt Nick had picked out twelve of her prize pullets and a rooster and put them in a coop on back of the wagon. . . . They would be settling with their horse, a milk cow called Old Brin, two good squirrel dogs Top and Brownie (which was a must in every family those days), a good 12-gauge shot gun, their chickens, a step stove, table, four cane bottom chairs, two iron beds, and a new dresser with a big mirror in it (very rare in those days) in a new little two room cabin which Daddy, his brothers, father and all the neighbors had pitched in to build as soon as he told them he was going to bring his bride home in so many days.  he had to have his house on his little tract of land.”

. . . Maybelle Addington fell for the most eligible young bachelor in Poor Valley: Ezra J. “Eck” Carter.  That was Eck for you, charmed for life.  Eck’s friends and his brothers had been dragging themselves across Clinch Mountain in search of a Rich Valley girl, and one walks right in Eck’s front door.  And not just anyone, but maybe the finest flower in all Rich Valley.  Here was a young woman–a girl really–who could sing, dance, play a guitar, ride a horse or a motorcycle or a running board, and bake a banana cream pie to curl your toes.  She also provided instant ballast for Eck’s orneriness.  She could sit for hours making new friends while Eck would sneak off after “Hello.”  She never got rattled.  Hard work didn’t scare her a bit, and neither did hard play.  Meanwhile, she also thought Eck Carter was the most beautiful man she’d ever seen, which was just fine with him.


About hopeseguin

Who am I? I'm still discovering just who I am, I suppose. A. Powell Davis writes that "Life is just a chance to grow a soul."

Posted on January 3, 2010, in Books and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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