Sharing Our Photos
|Six of the eight Holton children|
from the author's private collection
This photo was tucked away in one of my archival photo boxes. Recently I decided to begin the process of scanning my photos. This photo was buried among all the photos, and when I came across it memories of my cousins came back that was stored away from long ago. The children from the oldest to the youngest: Dorothy Earline, Vernie, Henry, Rosa Lee, Joyce Marie, Mitchell Glendon, Rebecca Inez “Becka”, and Charles Holton. Those are the names of the eight children of John and Ellen Eley Holton.
This photo and the expressions on the children’s faces are a reminder of the difficult life they lived. Pictured here are Dorothy the oldest daughter who married at a young age to get away from the home life. She married and removed herself from her parents and siblings. She remained married to the same husband until she died at the age of 69. Vernie is to Dorothy’s right and is holding Mitchell. She married and has one son. Vernie is the only child living of Aunt Ellen’s eight children. Henry, the other boy in the photo died a tragic death, as did his younger brother Mitchell. Rosa Lee the girl on the left was the fourth from the oldest and died of cancer. Rebecca the youngest daughter died at the age of sixty-five from complications of various health problems. Their father died at the age of seventy-seven, and “drank himself to death” according to family stories. Aunt Ellen died of cancer at the age of seventy-five years.
Four years ago, my double first cousin who lives in Texas sent me this photo, and while looking at this photo, memories of my Aunt Ellen Eley Holton’s family came to life. Her children had many struggles and difficulties while growing up in rural West Carroll Parish, Louisiana.