Grandad Alban married for the third time to a Mary Badders. They bought a house on York Road in Cockeysville, Md. right across from the Pennsylvania RR Passenger Station. Mary's mother lived with them until she died.
Right: William Henry Alban's 90th birthday. Back:John, Amy, Jim Howard, Bessie, Clara. Middle: William Henry Front: Bessie's Grandson.
They lived next door to the Ehrman - Chevrolet dealer show-room, and after Grandad retired from the PRR in 1936, he worked for Mr. Ehrrnan, sweeping the floor and answering the telephone... As the years come and go, Marys's health is beginning to fail her - she no longer cleans - she can't cook and Grandad told my father he would give him the house if he would come and live with them. Mother, without hesitation, declined the offer so the offer was extended to Aunt Clara. Clara and Irwin has only been in their new house a little over a year and right away Aunt Clara said NO; but after thinking about it for a couple of weeks, changed her mind. Such a transformation of that old house, you can't believe. Aunt Clara didn't have an easy job of it - she ended up having to keep diapers on the old lady and someone had to spoon feed her. Grandad's third wife died October 23, 1947, at the age of 84 years and nine months old. Irwin died six years later in 1953 and Grandad died in November of 1960. After Irwin died, Aunt Clara learned to drive an automobile. Later on, Clara married a Gordon Vogt.
Both of Clara's sons had married and they both had one son. Preston married a divorcee - another Mary. Mary was a good friend of "Molly Martin", a TV personality, who held cooking classes on television every week day. Molly Martin had Clara on her show, sharing one of her recipes with the Baltimore television area. For this she was given a new wall-oven.
If I didn't mention the good times we had with Aunt Bess and Aunt Clara and their families on a Sunday afternoon drive, I would be letting a lot of the good times out. Rides through the country would sometimes end up at Jessup's Church and the other church I talked about - the one up Falls Road. Once in a while we would get lost but that would even make it more fun. On many such ocassions, we would end up back at Aunt Bess's house for Sunday night supper. Sometimes, I wondered what they ate the rest of the week after feeding that hungry crowd. After supper, Uncle Jim would get the ole carrom board out and the men would play a game of carrom. One time on one of these Sunday outings, we drove up to York Haven, Pa., to see Russ and Lois in their new home, and then we went over to meet Lois's Aunt and Uncle. These people had the most beautiful home we ever saw.
Life has been good. I have learned to be content with such things as I have - Hebrews chapter 13, verse 5. It would have been good if I had learned Romans 9: 20 a long time ago while I was a kid: Who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to the one who formed it - Why have you made me thus?
I would like to say to our Grandmother - Elizabeth Hellen Meek Alban - you had four wonderful children and I know you are proud of them all --- Her children arise up, and call her blessed. - - The book of Proverbs chapter 31, verse 28.
Your Grandchildren turned out rather well also.
Left: Elizabeth Hellen Meek Alban 1868-1897
Earlier this year, I wrote a letter like this on my mothers side of the family. Without even realizing it, I was thinking of mother's maternal grandfather as sort of the hero of her family; his name was Lemuel Eby - he was the school master in a one- room school house in Sabillasville. This man raised an admirable family but I will not go into that. He was born in 1827 and died in 1903.
On the Alban side, without hesitation, I would have to pick the first-born of Grandmother Elizabeth Hellen Meek Alban, which of course, is my beloved Aunt Bess - Bessie Albertha Alban (Howard), she is the true heroine of our family.
Twenty three years after she went home to her heavenly reward, Ellie and I were eating dinner in the Crab Trap at Ellington, Fla. Also at the table was my sister Betty and Russell. The other two couples was Ellie's sister, Mary and her husband Bob.The other couple I had not met.
Right: James Frank and Eleanor Elizabeth -- October 2001. Married 57 years.
Betty, to make conversation, asked Mrs. Taylor where she was from and she replied - Riderwood, Md. Betty replied 0h, I have had a lot of good times in Riderwood, my Aunt lived there. "0h, what was the name of the people?" asked Mrs. Taylor, to which Betty replied: Bess and Jim Howard. Mrs. Taylor set up straight and said with total surprise and happiness - You knew Nannie Howard? It really made the day for us and this woman's surprise showed forth more love for Bessie Howard than I could ever put into words. I thought this was a beautiful tribute to Aunt Bess.
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