Somehow, much of my grandmother's hand written and (badly) typed notes and research wound up in my possession. Traveling from Chicago to Los Angeles and back to Chicago again. It sat, in the dark of my mother's closet, until my dad passed and my mom decided to begin her great purge. Knowing I had picked up the torch, the next generation to pursue the Greatest Hobby on Earth, the papers came to live with me. Unsure for many years on just what to do with them, I have decided to bring them out and share them with you - transcribed, of course - no one can read my grandmother's handwriting! But in her own words; mistakes, rambling sentences, and all. I think she will be pleased her work and her writing are once again out in the light.
Yakima, Wash. Sep 15 1965
to: Mrs. E. P. Thomas
Chicago, Ill 60614
2007 N. Sedgwick St
Dear Mrs Thomas,
Rec'd your letter and will be glad to help you on information about the Potwin clan. First however would like to know your mother's father's name, where your mother was raised and who was her grandfather on the Potwin side -
There's a long genealogy going back to 1600 in this country and back to 1066 in France. The earliest Potwin's were French - so write me again soon - Did your mother know of the Connecticut Potwins? - particularly those early settlers there from the Massachusetts Bay Colony -
There is a written history, kept up to date by my husband's sister - but she died last winter and I do not know who holds the book now - So after hearing from you again I'll be glad to fill in all I can of the family history.
By the way, I lived in Illinois all my girlhood - west of Chicago at Savanna on the Mississippi River. Had relatives in Chicago, so I spent many summers there on west side - called Austin then, next to Oak Park - it was a lovely city then - before skyscrapers. We drove a horse to Lincoln Park evenings - band concerts, etc.
I went to World's Fair and have seen nothing since to beat that wonderful time - 1895 to 1900 - I am 82 but no one believes it. I don't either. But they were wonderful days -
Have you seen the Northwest, wouldn't live anywhere else.
By the way - any redheads in your mother's family? I have three sons with the Potwin red hair - Bob was a blonde and my four daughters are dark, but oh - the Potwin traits that pop out!
Beulah E Potwin
113 N 27th Ave
To be continued ......
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©1965 Beulah E Potwin - Private Collection