I wish I could visit with my Great-Aunt Beatrice.
I would say to her, ‘Details. I need details!’
Beatrice and her 11 siblings, mother Mary and father William lived in Paoli, OK.
A new doctor, George Blackwell, moved to town.
George was handsome, charming and well spoken.
All the ladies in town vied for his attention.
The competition was fierce.
Beatrice was the ‘winner’.
George (33) proposed to Beatrice (17) and she accepted.
They were soon married.
George took Beatrice to Mexico for the honeymoon.
When in Mexico, Beatrice overheard a conversation George had with some men.
George had just sold Beatrice into white slavery!
Beatrice locked the door.
Beatrice’s father, William, was a Mason.
He had taught his children to find a Mason if they were ever in trouble.
Beatrice was definitely in trouble.
Beatrice couldn’t leave the hotel room.
She could hear men talking outside her door; waiting.
Beatrice sat by the window and watched people as they went by.
She was watching for a Mason.
In time, a Mason walked by.
Beatrice got his attention.
She told him what had happened.
Not only did the Mason rescue her from the hotel, he accompanied her all the way home to Paoli, OK.
As a side note:
I have no idea how Beatrice recognized the Mason.
This is a detail I would ask her.
Beatrice later married Jim Sanders and lived in Fort Worth, TX.
Sadly, Jim died from pneumonia shortly after they were married.
Beatrice moved to San Antonio, TX, to be near her sister, Callie.
She met Perry Stowe there and married him in 1921.
My brother, Ted, our family tree guru, located Beatrice in San Antonio and went to visit her.
Unfortunately, Beatrice was in the hospital and not allowed visitors.
Ted visited with Beatrice’s daughter Faye, instead.
Ted told Faye about her mother’s first marriage and the honeymoon to Mexico.
It was all news to Faye.
Beatrice’s own daughter had never been told about this.
Great-Aunt Beatrice died while in the hospital.
Ted never got to talk with her.
My brother said he would not have asked her about her family secret.
Oh yes, I would.
‘I need details, Great-Aunt Beatrice, details!’
– Sue Williams