Friday, February 17, 2012

Millers in Love - Mary Kathaleen Miller and Roger Bruce Simmons

As I was getting ready to write this post about my parents, Bruce and Kat, I realized I didn't really know about their courting or wedding days.  Be sure to ask your own parents about their courtship before it's too late!!

It was a gorgeous day in west Florida in May, 1953, when Mom and Dad tied the knot.  Both being raised in Vernon, Mom and Dad knew of each from their school days, but since Dad was a few years older, they didn't run in the same circles and had never dated. 

Dad had already joined the Navy and was stationed at Milton;  Mom was still in school.  Dad was home one weekend when he and his friends had gone to a school basketball game where Mom was cheerleading.  She noticed him and mentioned to a girlfriend she thought he was really cute and would like to date him.

Shortly after, Dad's brother, Skeet, who was in Mom's class, set up a date for them.  Unfortunately, Dad never arrived.  Because there were no phone lines out in the country (where Mom lived), he couldn't call her to tell her he couldn't get off the base that night.  He called Skeet and asked him to drive out to the country and tell her.  When he got there, Mom was ready to go but didn't have a date.  Mom's not one to pass up a good time so she just went out with Skeet and his friends.

Several weeks later, Mom had to go to town for an errand for her father and she saw Dad at McFatter's store. They talked a few minutes and scheduled another date.

After several months of dating, they knew they were destined to marry.  The big day was May 31, 1953 at the New Hope Methodist Church in New Hope. 

The ceremony was held at the New Hope Methodist Church in New Hope.  Mom's sister, Louise, was the maid of honor.  When I asked about the best man, Mom couldn't remember who it was.  The ceremony was officiated by Brother Guy.   There was no reception or honeymoon.  After the wedding they went to their folks' homes to say goodbye, changing their clothes and getting their suitcases.  Mom also mentioned that when they went to Dad's parent's house, Granny Simmons had baked a cake to take with them (I'll almost bet it was a coconut cake!!) 

A copy of their Marriage License lists the witnesses as Mrs. J. C. Guy and James Kenneth McFatter.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Millers in Love - R.C. (Rosewell or Dick) Miller and Madeline Register Miller

R. C. (Rosewell) Miller and Madeline Register were married on April 15, 1933 in Vernon, Florida.  Witnesses were J. T. Hightower and Herbert Johnson.  The ceremony was conducted by C. R. Melvin, Justice of the Peace.

I talked to Joe (R.C. and Madeline's son) and he didn't know whether his parents had a church ceremony or were married at the Courthouse.

They were always a beautiful couple!

Millers in Love - Still Waiting for Those Submissions!!

What a great day!  Mom (Kathaleen) and I spent an exhausting day at the Washington County Courthouse searching for Marriage Licenses.  Thank goodness most of our Miller ancesters were married in the same county!  We came away with copies of 19 licenses (some from my Simmons side of the family).  I'll be posting copies of those licenses soon. 

We also attended the "First Tuesday" luncheon of the Vernon High School Alumni Association.  Mr. Perry Wells offered to open the Washington County Historical Society Museum for those that wished to stop by.  What a great place!  Lots of historical photos, news articles, ledgers, furniture, farming implements, etc.  I guess I was so awestruck at their collection I didn't even think to take pictures! 

They also had a collection of funeral home documents and copies of obituaries.  I will definitely be back to search through those documents and make copies.

Here's the link for the Washington County Historical Society:

If you're in Chipley, stop by and see them. 

As for the "Millers in Love" junk I mean submissions ("junk" was Joe's term and when he said it today I had to laugh because it was the perfect male response!!), don't think you need to give me a novel about you or your Millers.  Just a picture or the date of the ceremony will do fine.  If I have a copy of the Marriage License, I'll add that to the post also.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Millers in Love ~ The Story of Mary Alice and Dan

Here's our first "Millers in Love" story which has been submitted by Mary Alice.  She was unable to send pictures since she and Dan winter in Arizona and her pictures are home in Iowa.  I can't wait to see the pictures!!

In September 1966 my girlfriend and I were planning on attending the Freshman Dance at Arlington State College where we attended classes. She said she would get us a ride with a guy she knew. When they picked me up that night, I found out that her friend, Dan Dias, didn’t realize that he was picking me up for the dance too.

After we got to the dance, our mutual friend spent the evening dancing with a guy that she had met and ended up having him take her home. That left Dan taking me home. When I got home and as we were saying good night, I asked Dan how did he spell his last name; he replied, “Said spelled backwards.” So I wrote in the air “said” spelled backwards and got “Dias.”

We dated the rest of the semester. In December 1966 we went out to dinner at the Candlelight Inn; over dinner Dan proposed to me and gave me my engagement ring. We didn’t set a date right away. The determining factor in the date was made after Dan and I had our car accident in May 1967. We had driven to Houston to see the new Houston Astrodome. It was early morning when we decided to return to Arlington to finish up our college semester. Dan had a 1965 Marlin which had a metal dashboard (back in those days). He has a magnetic flashlight that he had placed on the lower part of the dashboard. As we were driving down the interstate about 3 a.m. Dan hit the flashlight with his knee. As he did this, the flashlight fell down to the floorboard. As Dan bent down to pickup the flashlight, he turned the steering wheel to the right just enough to drive off the side of the road and hit the embankment. As we hit, I jolted to the floorboard and my right leg met the floorboard as it came into the car. I broke my right leg. Dan finally got the police and ambulance there after running across the country side trying to find a house that he could call from. (Remember, there were NO cell phones back in these days).

I was in a cast for 6 months. Neither Dan and I finished our college. I went home to Mom and Dad’s (Velma and Tex) to recuperate in Duffau, TX. Dan was already in the Navy Reserve doing his weekend duty at NAS Dallas in Grand Prairie; he decided to go active duty to keep from being sent to Vietnam. He was stationed at NAS Dallas for all but 1 ½ of his 21 years of military time. Grand Prairie is North of Duffau – about 2 hrs. Dan would visit me every weekend when he didn’t have duty at NAS Dallas. After coming for about 3 months, we decided that I could clean our house as well as I could help Mom clean hers. So we decided we would set a date.

Dan is Catholic and since I wasn’t strong in any religion at that time (even though I was raised Baptist), I decided I wanted to take Catholic instruction and be married in the Catholic Church. I started Catholic instruction in September 1967 and was married on Friday, October 13, 1967. I had a walking cast on my leg. Mom had made me a dress for my high school senior prom out of white brocade. This dress was converted into my wedding dress with a train and pointed sleeves. She also made me a boot out of the white brocade (yes, we were able to find the matching material almost two years later ) that covered my cast. The R shoe was covered in the same matching white brocade. When you look at our wedding pictures, the photographer happened to catch my covered cast foot as we were walking back down the aisle to the front of the church after the ceremony. Dan has labeled that picture – catching the best foot forward.

After 44 years, we are still catching the best foot forward.

Mary Alice