John Cook Taylor and Emma Jane Owens were my great-grandparents. Pa and Granny were married 120 years ago today at her parents’ home in the Freedom community in Rockcastle County, Kentucky.1 They had been married fifty-three years when Pa died 7 September 1953.2
This picture was probably made within a year or two of Pa’s death. They are standing on the sidewalk in front of the duplex across the street from First Christian Church in Mt. Vernon, Kentucky, where they lived twice during their lives.
Even though they were together that long, this is one of only two pictures I have of them alone together. I’ve accumulated family pictures from my mother, both of her sisters, and one of their first cousins, so chances of many more being out there somewhere are slim.
I knew both of them. “Knew” may not be the right word when it comes to Pa. I was not yet two years old when he died. I don’t remember him. But we moved to Mt. Vernon when I was six months old, and I had seen him many times. I did know Granny. I was a teenager when she died 17 Mar 1968.3
- Rockcastle, Kentucky, Marriage Records, Book 9: pg 23, Taylor-Owens, 1900; Rockcastle County Clerk, Mt. Vernon. ↩
- Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services, death certificate 23800 (1953), John Cook Taylor; Office of Vital Statistics, Frankfort. ↩
- Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services, death certificate 7549 (1968), Emma Taylor; Office of Vital Statistics, Frankfort. ↩