OK. This isn't really Chapter one, but you have to start somewhere and I choose to start with the births of my parents.
My father, Frederick Darwin Leach, was born September 19, 1924 in Arkansas City, Kansas. I have been told that Arkansas City is pronounced Ar-kansas and not like the state of Arkansas. It's entirely possible that the residents of Arkansas City pronounce Arkansas the same way. I don't know. Have I been there? This is just one more thing I do not recall.
He was the first born son of Frederick George Leach and Edwina Gist.
An undated postcard of the metropolis. The streetcar speaks well for the city.
My mother, Elizabeth Patricia Frye (called Betty Pat because no one on her side of the family goes by their given name), was born September 13, 1925 in Cowden, Illinois. I have been to Cowden, a very small town in southern Illinois, near Effingham (one of the better names for a city I've come across).
She was the first born daughter of John Louis Frye and Frances Christine Milliken.
This is Grand Avenue in Cowden, with no date unfortunately. It has improved somewhat since then, although I'm not sure its population has gone up.
Additional photos can be found here:
But now I'm thinking I've started my story later than I should have. Maybe it should have started with my grandparents or their parents or grandparents. I never met any of these people, but I have been researching the genealogy for several years now.
Never mind. I'm going further back in time.
But first, my parents as children. First, my father:
a little older:
and my mother:
and a little older: