2013, Sahalie Publishing

2013, Sahalie Publishing
256 pages, over 100 pictures

Limited edition...

The Brass Bell can be purchased online at Sahalie Publishing and Amazon.com.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Martha Parsons Remembers the Fire-Part I

In 1975, Martha Parsons, the youngest daughter of Willis Parsons, and Marion Parsons' younger sister, wrote some of her memories of life on the Parsons' farm--the re-built house still stands on the corner of Parsons Drive and W. Genesee--and what she remembered about the history of the farm and the area. Here is some of what she wrote:
In the Spring of 1890 my father, Willis A. Parsons, purchased from Burritt Chaffee a sixty acre farm located on the east midway between what is now Maple Road and Cherry Road, and on the west by what is now Parsons Drive, then a lane used for farm purposes. In August of that year I was born in this house. My older sisters (Grace and Marion) were born in a house on our grandfather's (Edwin C. Parsons) farm on Onondaga Road.
On the 10th of September, 1897, a crew came with a steam engine to fill the silo with ensilage from the corn raised on the farm. There had been a long dry spell, so when the steam engine blew up about 10 o'clock in the morning for lack of water (probably the engineer's carelessness) and the flames shot into the hay-filled barn, the fire spread rapidly. Soon the house caught fire, and little was saved from the barn or the rear of the house, but much was saved from the front of the house thanks to the efforts of neighbors and passersby. The County Fair was being held that day, and at that hour many people on their way to it hitched their horses to the roadside fences and rushed to help. There were no Volunteer Fire Companies, no telephones to summon them had they existed, no water except what was pumped from the well by hand, or had accumulated in the cistern from rain running off the roof.
(Watch this site for the next installment to be posted next week. What happens to the house and the Parsons family?)

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Please take Survey Poll

Dear Friends~
There is still plenty of time to take the survey! Located on the righthand side of the page, please select the items you would most like to see covered in a book about the history of Cherry Road School.
So far the results indicate that most of you would most like to see a chronilogical history of the school and a history of Westvale. We hope to hear from everyone.
Thank you for your participation!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

An Alumni Remembers Miss Parsons

Thank you for the effort you are putting forth to bring this history into a full circle --I read with great interest and new found knowledge of this small and great community that I came from ---- while many friendships have come and gone their are a few that after 70 years still prevail --especially thanks to the internet and persistent friends who keep in touch ...
I think that is one of the things that a small community imparts on the soul!!! In today's world I marvel at the simplicity from which we come --and that somehow imparts a responsibility that we rise to --- in memory of friendships -- good friends, caring teachers who inspite of our shortcomings gave us a road map that I think today we follow even if unknown to us!!! When I think of Miss Parsons I am reminded of how much respect I held for her-- I think I was quite in awe-- my friend and I stopped in one day to say hello and she was so gracious -- my friend lived across the street from her on Cherry Rd and we were so young and curious !!!!! It brings a smile to my face as I remember gentle kindness and a bit of humor in here eyes --for some reason I remember those eyes -- while it was a quick visit I remember gracious warmth !!!!
Best wishes,Pat Hanrahan Hembach '49

Monday, July 6, 2009

Aunt Marion Tribute

I remember visiting my two great aunts; Marion and Martha, respectively back when I was five years of age. It was the summer of 1966 in July. My parents and my three older brothers were at the house on 303 Cherry Road on a humid mid -summer afternoon. I was playing with my brothers (George, Mark, and Phil) in the backyard while my parents and great aunts were preparing a picnic. My brothers and I were playing a game of "whiffleball" which is like baseball. The most significant difference is that the ball and bat are made of plastic. I recall the specific game that we were playing was "home run derby". My brothers were hitting the ball extremely well to the far reaches of the backyard. We rotated our turn at bat every ten pitches with the goal of hitting the whiffleball as far as possible. All three of my brothers were hitting the ball with consistent success during their batting turn as evidenced by the ball traveling over the heads of my brothers and I that were playing outfield. However, I could not hit the ball beyond the pitcher no matter how hard I tried at every swing of the bat. I succumbed to crying like a baby seeking its milk bottle after several rounds of inability to hit the ball like my brothers.
Aunt Marion apparently heard my cries of frustration as she approached the backyard with a confident gait. She directed me to join her on the porch located on the south end of the house. My great aunt held my hand as we walked over and sat in the chair on the porch without any interruption from other family members. Her voice was strong yet supportively firm as she addressed my despair over the lack of hitting the whiffleball. She emphasized that it was only a game and not to be too critical and expect to be like "Babe Ruth" hitting the ball. Aunt Marion stated that "someday, sooner than later, you'll be hitting that ball as well as your older brothers and quite possibly, even farther. You've to be patient with yourself for the time being and realize that in time with hard work and natural physical growth, your day as a ball player or anything that you do will be rewarding and looked upon as a success if you show passion and love for what you do."
The message that I received from my aunt some 43 years ago still resonates to this day. We, as people, can lead a better life for ourselves, family, and friends if we slow down and be patient with the process of anything involving personal growth opportunities within the journey of life. I believe that a passion for something is developed if you genuinely enjoy what you do for a living. I try to incorporate this message of wisdom to the people that I serve whom are recovering from alcohol and substance abuse.
My great aunt Marion certainly laid some bricks in my foundation as a young boy with respect to approaching life in a positive outlook. It is with great honor for my great aunt Marion to be able to share this short but everlasting story. May your journey in this life be filled with happiness. Respectfully, Jay Cole, a proud great nephew of Marion Parsons.