September 2, 2016

Because I'm a Bookworm

Some of you may remember the time when Grandpa Elling would stay with some of his children and families for a month or so and then move on to the next. It was after Aunt Kate had died and his house was sold. One summer he stayed with our family for awhile when I was home from college and working a second shift job at a factory in Napoleon. I would get up late and eat lunch with him almost daily.

One morning I came into the living room after getting up and he said to me something like, "Since you're the bookworm, I've got something for you." Beside his chair was a small box of books. Inside was a book on World War I that I still have and a couple of McGuffey's school books. Both school books had belonged to Grandma Elling and had her signature inside.

In the photo above, one can see that she practiced writing her name over and over in the spelling book. The second book was McGuffey's Second Reader and this flyleaf also sports the names of Paul Elling, Malinta, Ohio and Louise Elling, Napoleon, Ohio. Ida Anna Katharine Spoering Elling was born on 5 February 1890, so these books were probably used before 1900. I wonder if a little girl who spoke German almost exclusively at home found these books challenging.

As a very young adult, I probably didn't appreciate these books as much as I should have, but now I surely do.

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