I spent several very pleasant days with JoBeverly, sitting at her kitchen table enjoying a cup of coffee, while gazing out at her lovely garden.
She has so many interesting and often funny stories about growing up amongst the Lamberts. Soon my newly discovered relatives began to take shape and to gain personalities in my mind. However not all of them were to brag about--my father least of all. But I've learned his father (Granddaddy, Andrew Jackson Lambert) wasn't that much of an upstanding citizen either. I've heard tales now of family members involved in bootlegging during the 20s and I suspect those incidents had something to do with a family feud--but so far I only have pieces of the story. What I do know is that there are two factions of Lamberts and somewhere way back they stopped talking to each other. Today no one knows what the feud may have been about--but I'll keep looking for clues. (This is more fun than the best who-dun-it with a little Truman Capote tossed in for good measure.)
JoB (as she prefers to be called) is a bona fide southern lady--complete with a natural green thumb, a soft melodic drawl--and a blue bottle tree! You can't get more authentic than that. One of JoB's stories that made me chuckle is about my father's sister, Aunt Kate. It seems that Kate's parents (my grandparents) could not come up with a suitable name for her until she was several years old--when (perhaps in desperation) she named herself. The name she chose? It was the name of the family mule--Kate!
The five of us got together for one more meal before saying goodbye--for now. Lilly and Brenda were planning to head back to the Smokey Mountains, Kim was going home to Houston and I was heading to Robeline and the Lambert reunion.
JoB is going to have a hard time adjusting to the loss of her son but I could see that these ladies love her a lot and will be watching out for her. And most of all, I don't want to lose touch with her now that we've found each other after all these years.
I think I've said this before--southern women spend a lot of time in cemeteries. Don't ask me why--it's just part of our makeup to go exploring old graveyards.
I told JoB that I now knew a lot about the Lambert lineage but very little about the women they married.
She told me my grandmother's name was Ethel Thompson and Ethel's parents (My great grand parents) were buried in Marthaville. So I took a little side trip and found the following...
My Great grandmother, Darthula Jane Thompson. (I am really curious about the name, Darthula)
And then my Great Grandfather had two girl's names, Francis and Marion. I sure hope they called him Frank.
I spent the afternoon strolling through the cemetery then took a nap parked under a great oak tree. I think cemeteries are one of the more peaceful places to nap. Hmmm.