Letter from Josie

written about Laura Estell (Landrum) Simmons Perry

Page last updated:  August 30, 2014


My mother was born Oct 26, 1889 at Groesbeck, Limestone Co. Her parent's were Silas and Irene Landrum. She was the oldest of 12 children. Her name was Laura Estell. She married my Daddy, Jessy James Simmons Dec. 25, 1906 at Brownwood, Tex. They had 5 children. 3 girls and 2 boys. Pearl/nick name Lady, was born Sept 23, 1907 at Brownwood Tex. Josie was born April 10, 1909 at Brownwood Tex. Katie Estell was born at Tempel Tex. Ervin was born Brownwood 1916. Jessie died at birth. Katie died at 6 weeks old. Ervin died at 7 mo. old.

My Mother raised a orphant boy. She helped raise her dead sister's boys. Her home was always open to any body that need help. Whe we were children my Mother would work in the fields just like a man. She would work up until her babies came. She didn't make much money, but we never went to bed hungry. Times were so hard, but she never quit.

When Lady grew up she married Harry Swarthout and moved to Ark. They made thier home there and started a famialy. They had 6 children. Jimmy Earl, Billy, Eugene, Mildred, Dorothy and Judy. Mother didn't get to be with Lady s children much, but she loved them all so very much. She was always happy when her grandchildren were comming to see her. She always tryed to make thier visit a happy one.

I married Earl Paris Oct. 31, 1927. We had one child. We were married until my baby was one year old then I had to move in the house with Mother and Daddy. I was verry sick and could not work so my Dear old Mother would walk from one side of town to the other to gt my baby a can of milk and some oatmeal. She would go and rub cloths on a rub board all day then walk home. She cleaned houses for other people and keept thier yards. So many times she would go when she could hardly walk. But she never complained. My dear old Daddy was sick and was unable to work. He had T-B. So it was left up to Mother to make the living. As years went on Mother got a job in the sewing room. This was during the depression years, wages were very low. I have seen her come home from work so cold her feet would be froze. She had to walk ever where she went. She didn't know what it was to ride in a car. She depended on the legs the good Lord gave her.

In all she had to do, she still found time to go to church. She loved her Lord and served him so faithfuly. She always taken my little girl to Sunday School. My Mother was also active in Her church. She didn't miss many meetings.

Mother was a great fisherman. When she had time you would see her get her cane pole and her old split bonnet and head for the creek. She didn't eat them, but she sure like to catch them. She could sat on the banks of the creek as long as she would get a nibble.

My Mother also loved her flowers. She always had her yard full of flowers. She would treat them with such tendeer care. And she would geather fresh flowers and go to the grave yard and put them on the graves of her loved ones.

She would go and sat with the sick. Any time any one called on her, she was all ready to go. She had lots of friends. When my Daddy died there was a small insurance policy that Lady had, and with this and what Mother had he was put away nice.

Several years Mother met Claud Perry. They got married. They were good for each other. After Claud died Mother moved to a housing project. Things were a little better here for her. She begain to have trouble with her legs. My husband had passed away so I moved in to help Mother. Now it was my time to take care of her. Still she wont'd to be independent. My dear old Mother finally got where she could not walk. She had been so actived all her life I knew it was hard. Just setting. She would sat and look out the window and allways had a smile for any one. When my sister died, Mother wasn't able to go to her funeral. As full of greaf as she was. I had to leave her with my daughter and go without her. She never quiston God about any thing.

My Mother had a hard life as well as a good one. She injoyed her life and made the best of it. My mother was a very remarkable woman.

Mother had 7 grandchildren
22 great grandchildren
11 great great grandchildren

My darling Mother was called home to be with her Lord June 13, 1974. She has no more suffering to go thru. She is with her loved ones and is rejoycing with her family. And I know some day I will see her again.

This is written in memory of my Darling Mother
March 4, 1980
Josie Wood

(This is as Josie Simmons Wood wrote it, none of the spelling was changed.)