Finding the Glorious Ones – The Journal

The gravity of this journal being 78 years old wasn’t lost on me.

We didn’t know that it existed until she was gone – my older brother discovered it when going through our late Big Mama’s effects, telling me in no uncertain terms:

“Bro I’m setting this aside this for you, you’ll know what to do with it.”

The pages in the book lent contrast to the stories that my Grandmother regaled us with over the years.

My Bigmama’s Journal (1942 – 1945)

I touched every page wondering when the spirit of trepidation finally understood that warring with this woman would be an exercise in futility – because her knees would never bend

The 20 something year old version of my Grandmother didn’t have it all figured out, but she didn’t allow the unknown to deter her. Her recollection of the journey that lead her from the restrictive confines of the Jim Crow South to Chicago in the waning days of World War II – never lost its power, regardless of how many times she told it.



Journal Entry
My Bigmama arrives in Chicago.


“Shit… I wasn’t gonna work in no white folks house where they would treat me worse than the blamed dog! So, I hopped my rump on the train on Friday, got to Chicago on Sunday and had me a job on Monday morning!”


When the War ended, my Bigmama made a note of it in her journal…


She made a note about the war ending… Sort of a big deal I suppose?
My Bigmama and Paw-Paw circa 1944.

My Grandfather was drafted into the Army during the War – she made a entry about that as well. She recalled that he hated his time in the service – and when he was honorably discharged. He didn’t hesitate to rid himself of his military garb at the first opportunity that he got, much to her dismay.

My Paw-Paw circa 1944 and me in 2019 it is said that I grabbed my scowl from him.

To be continued…


Copyright © 2020 ShunPwrites. All Rights Reserved.




  1. justcalmwildness says:

    Wooow, that journal must have made you feel really good.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. As if she were there with me; or if I were there with her!

    One of the best feelings, ever!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Shantae McCarver says:

    This is amazing! Juat having that history and insight from her past is just, phenomenal!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is like having the directors cut, seeing the events through her 20 something year old eyes is humbling.

      Seeing the names of our folks in pencil… Is surreal.


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