So if my father had graduated high school where he grew up until he was 12 or 13 (I can’t be sure), he would have graduated at BittieTown, USA, which is on my way between my home in TinyTown, USA and MyHomeTown, USA.
I had been doing research in another small town that has a museum, and the one woman said, you should go to the BittieTown Alumni Reunion! I said oh, should I? Yesss!
She said the people who attend those may remember your family when they lived there in BittieTown. Well, I hadn’t thought of that. So I made a flier with all the photos I could acquire that had the people in question. I included some facts and my contact information. I printed about 30 fliers off. I lost the folder of fliers. I found the folder of fliers. And suddenly the Saturday of Memorial Day was six days off!
I called the contact person and the gentleman who answered was effusive that I should come! He was encouraging. It’s at the gym, he said. It’s easy to find, he said.
So about three days before The Day, they closed the road to BittieTown.So I got out a map and found an alternate route. He never really told me where the gym WAS, but I decided driving around a town of 200, which I’d done a few times before, was okay. -- Well, it really was at the gym and it really was easy to find. I found a place where more than four cars were parked like they were attending something, and look, that could be a gym. Old folks getting out of cars. Yep, this is the place.
I went in and saw the guy I’d talked to on the phone. I greeted him. He said, you should talk to Mr. So-and-So, my brother! He wrote the BittieTown Scrapbook! I was thinking, noooooooooo, (I had already looked at that and there’s none of my family in there.) So I met Russ, who is a really nice man, and after 40 minutes or so, he both told me cool stories and found that I was not indeed, part of either of the two families he thought I might be related to. I had already figured that, but, you know. Researchers have to check for themselves.
It was a nice reunion of friendly people. The food was good, the presentations were good. I even checked with the woman who spoke for the Class of ’55, but she didn’t remember my dad, either. I did talk to a gentleman on the way out with a name similar to someone whom my aunt said “their house was in the J. Jones neighborhood.” I asked if that was him, and he said that’s my cousin, and it's over across from the Presbyterian Church. But at night is not the time to be rooting around for a house in a small town, so I took myself home.