The latest edition of Family Stories is about my maternal grandparents, Elmer Dennis Hopkins and Emma Ewers Taylor. I’m the oldest of four children. Mamaw and Papaw were a constant in our lives. After Papaw retired from the Louisville & Nashville Railroad when I was eight years old, they were around even more.
Almost every Monday, they made the 100+ mile trip from their home in Loyall, Kentucky, to ours in Mt. Vernon. They’d spend the night and return home the next day. This routine continued for years—long after I left home. In 1972, I started working for the Kentucky Department of Economic Security in Barbourville, which is between Loyall and Mt. Vernon. Their routine expanded to include stopping at my office for a quick visit on either Monday or Tuesday most weeks.
This little blurb isn’t in their story but it tells you a lot about them. Disney World opened in Florida when my youngest sister was five years old, and my parents thought we should go. The older three of us had no interested in it so they agreed to let us stay home alone. At 20, 18, and 17 years old, we were happy to be on our own for a few days with our parents three states away.
I doubt that my parents and little sister were much past the Kentucky-Tennessee line heading to Florida when Mamaw and Papaw pulled into the driveway. Mamaw thought it was a terrible idea to just go off and leave us. I’m still not sure if my parents knew they were coming or not. (Mom says she can’t remember.) Whatever plans we had for the week went down the drain. But we ate well while our parents were gone.
Other family stories published to date are available on the menu under Family Tree > Hankins & Petty > [select an ancestral couple]. Next up Emma’s parents, John Cook Taylor and Emma Jane Owens. Coming in February.