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August 6, 2013

@SylviaMcDaniel: A Ring From The Past?

Most people have two reactions when you talk about family reunions. It’s either they can’t wait to be with all the people they’re related to or they groan and say I try to avoid at all costs. Most of the time the people who enjoy these reunions are older folks, parents, grandparents and aunts and uncles who I personally think want to show off their families.
This year I traveled to Alamosa Colorado for the Sartain family reunion. This was my grandfather’s family, and I had visited several of the relatives when I was a kid, but I’d never attended their reunion. The people were lovely, the weather was fantastic and the food delicious.
I met my cousin that had gotten me in trouble when I was nine years old when we crossed the river to climb the sand dunes in Alamosa. My mother had strictly forbidden me to get in the water, as I had pneumonia. But hey, how often does a kid get a chance to climb sand dunes.
But the neatest part of the reunion was going out to my great-grandparents homestead. The land is set way back off the main highway, and the house is gone. The views were incredible, and I couldn’t help but wonder what would have happened if they still owned the land. About ten of us walked all over the area that once belonged to my great-grandparents, searching for anything that might have been theirs. I found a glass bottle, a snuff can and some broken bits of china. As we walked along, I stared at the muddy ground, and saw a silver band in the dirt, half hidden by a bush.

I dug it out, wondering what this silver circle was.  When I pulled it out, I noticed it said sterling silver on the inside. It appeared to be some kind of ring, maybe even a wedding band. Excited, I called my uncle over and he verified that I had indeed found a ring. We don’t know if it belonged to anyone in the family, or if it was a hiker who maybe lost the band, or where it came from. All I know is that I found a silver wedding band on my great-grandparents land in about the same location where we think their home stood.
Unfortunately, none of their children (fourteen of them) are alive to tell us if this could have been my great-grandmother, Corabell Sartain’s, wedding ring or if it belonged to one of her children. My writers mind has been spinning ideas over the last few days with story ideas. Part of me believes I was lead to this ring. That may sound crazy, but for me to find something of my great-grandmothers a hundred years later is amazing.
My great-grandparents were very poor, so it’s possible that Corabell didn’t even own a wedding band, and it belonged to some unfortunate hiker. For now, I’m going to take the ring to my jeweler and ask him if there is any way he can verify the time period or tell me anything about this silver band while my brain plots.
Tell me do you have any weird things that have been found from your family’s past?
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Vicki Batman, sassy writer said...

Hi, Sylvia! What a nice moment for your trip. You'll never forget how special that was. And knowing you, shall end up in a story.

No, I haven't found anything like that. At the beach, shells, coral and such. That's it.

Sylvia said...

Hi Vicki,
Yes, it was a special moment. I'm taking it to the jeweler probably Friday. I can't wait to hear if they can tell me anything about it.

It poured down rain all the way out to their place and I wasn't even certain we would get to walk the place. When we arrived, the rain stopped and a beautiful rainbow suddenly appeared in the sky. The time there just seemed special.


Karilyn Bentley said...

What a neat story, Sylvia! I haven't found anything like that. I'm interested to know how old the jeweler thinks it is.

Sylvia said...

Hi Karilyn,
Me too. I'm planning on running some errands on Friday. This is my first official day at home writing and all I've wanted to do was take a nap. So tired from the trip. But I did get three pages done today. Yippee.


Phyllis said...

What a wonderful find, Sylvia.

I received my grandmother's engagement ring, a gold pinky ring and some of her doll patterns. I didn't have to dig for them, but they are treasures all the same.

And yes, you will come up with a lovely story. You always do.

Sylvia said...

Thanks Phyllis. Colorado was beautiful and their homestead had a fantastic view. It really was a good trip and today I'm still recovering. I can't remember ever feeling so tired.