Sunday, October 25, 2009

James Boyd (Akin)

Jay or J.B. to his friends. Moredaddy to us, the Atticus Finch of our family.

Jay was a college educated man who found it necessary to give up his job as a science teacher when his father died of heart trouble in 1934. This photo was taken in 1938. My grandfather's family owned 35 acres of land in Burwood, Tennessee where they farmed tobacco. Jay would get up at 4am to milk the cows and then go into town to help his Uncle Vance with the Akin Brothers General Merchandise Store.*

Times were tough as the depression continued and the store did not do well for them. My grandmother tells me they had to mend their shoes with scrap and had a hard time eating. Circumstances improved though. They sold the farm in 1943 and Jay returned to teaching, eventually becoming headmaster for the well-known Battle Ground Academy.

Photo: Jay with his daughter Janice (my aunt) and a horse-drawn plow.

*The General Merchandise Store was opened by M.F. Akin in 1883 who then took on his brother Vance as a partner in 1888. They outgrew their original store and constructed a larger building in 1911. They owned and operated the store for 53 years. It was subsequently owned and operated by Robert Huff and his son Kenneth. In 1988, it was added to National Register of Historic Places.


Leslie in Adams Morgan said...

e-mail message from my Aunt Jan:

I followed More-Daddy all over the farm from the age I was allowed to go with him. My favorite place to be was on the farm with him. Your mom stayed in mostly with Mimi. We rode ponies together, and then I would ride my pony all over Burwood with a couple of friends. I was probably six years old. Those were the days when we did not worry about safety.

Polly said...

Aunt Jan and I used to ride our ponies out to a pond on the farm, and then we would go into the pond on horseback with the ponies swimming. We must have been pretty young since I was four when we moved into town. I wonder now how we were allowed to do this, but Aunt Jan says More-Daddy was always close enough to us to intervene if we fell in.