Hollis, where my father grew up, is a little town in the far southwest corner of Oklahoma, still charming in many ways. It took about three hours to drive there from Oklahoma City. On the trip, my brother, sister, and I passed cotton fields that looked like patches of snow, visited a cemetery that was as hot, dry, and dusty as if going back to the Dust Bowl age, and took pictures of old stores, churches, and schools where my family once walked.
The day trip was fun, especially with my siblings in tow. Since all of us had visited there as children, we reminisced about our childhood and favorite relatives. Thank you Keren and David for accompanying me.
We visited the Harmon County Historical Society where we found pictures of my dad when he graduated in 1948 and many names of relatives mentioned in historical books. Then we went to the Harmon County Courthouse, where a nice lady helped us look through monster books that went back to the beginning of time, or the beginning of the county’s statehood. Marriages. Divorces. Testaments. We found a great aunt’s marriage licenses from the 1920’s, and my great grandparents’ will and testament. What a find!
I’m considering writing a short story or historical novel about my father’s family from Harmon County. Set in the 1930’s like my other historical books, this one would be about the five sisters and the baby girls they lost during the Great Depression. Where was God when the Dust Bowl hit Hollis residents so hard?
The Bible instructs us to remember the past. Remember what God has done. Deuteronomy 32:7 states, “Remember the days of old; consider the generations long past. Ask your father and he will tell you, your elders, and they will explain to you.”
Digging into the past has been a challenge. I love looking back to see how God worked through people. He was always there, always helping, always loving. However, sometimes you have to look really deep to see it!