Monday, March 7, 2016

March of 1960

This past weekend I ventured outside at the Daniel Stowe Botanical Gardens in Gastonia, North Carolina. It was children's art day and before we left home, I couldn't imagine any botanical treats awaiting us in the drabness of winter. Grandchildren and cousin in tow, I headed out.

I was not disappointed.

Ahh, spring. I can hardly wait!
What promises a flower brings!
We went on a photo scavenger hunt and this was the "something your favorite color" photo taken by my granddaughter. 

All this to say, in 1960, not all that long ago by the way, there was a winter that just wouldn't quit. In the mountains of western North Carolina, no blue flowers could peep through the underbrush for a scavenger hunt photo that March. Conveniently, the Brownie cameras children used during that time period only took black and white films, because that winter, color didn't matter. Everything was either white from the snow cover, or dark from the leafless trees. The snows of February and March were of epic proportion and measured in feet rather than inches. 

My mother's cousin, the one I wrote about in Called to the Mountains: The Story of Jean L. Freese, had one of those black and white photos to share with me.
What promises a helicopter full of food brings!
This photograph shows one of the mercy missions of March, 1960. The snow was too deep for ordinary transport to bring food to stores in the area. Besides, the people were trapped in their homes and couldn't get to the stores. They were desperate. The animals were trapped in the fields and the farmers could not get to them. They were desperate, too. Rescue helicopters brought food to the mission and dropped hay in the fields. Life gets harsh sometimes, as the winter of 1960 proves.

The helicopter photo was taken at the same location as this non-snow photograph.

What a difference between the two pictures! And what a difference between March 2016 and March 1960. The earth is beautiful covered in snow, but as for me, give me a March filled with blue flowers and promises of new life!

Catch of the day,


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