The Only Grandparent I Remember #52Ancestors

Basil R LoweryIt’s Week 2 of 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. If you’re not exactly sure what’s going on have a look at this post that explains this year long adventure as suggested by Amy Johnson Crow.

Last week I wrote about my paternal grandfather and as I debated what clever way I should climb my family tree I decided to hopscotch back and forth between my maternal and paternal lines. So this week I’m writing about my maternal grandfather.

Basil Rue Lowery was born February 27, 1895 in Henry County, Ohio. He was the third of ten children. Basil’s father Charles worked for the railroad and during his teenage years the family moved to Allen County, Ohio for his dad’s work. Well you know what happens when you’re a teenager in Allen County, Ohio. You fall in love and get married!

Even though Charles’ work again prompted the family to move to Michigan, Basil stayed in Ohio and wed Gladys Marshall August 12, 1912. The Lowery’s went on to have four children, my mom Dorothea, being their youngest.

He worked for National Lime and Stone and took a terrible fall at the quarry that put him in a body cast for an entire summer. My genea-buddy sister was just a baby that summer and my dad said she was the only grandchild that wasn’t afraid of grandpa in his body cast. My sister went on to have a special life long relationship with him.

My grandma didn’t call him Basil she referred to him as Base. I have a photo of him and on the back he’s identified as Base Lowery. That’s the only bit of her handwriting I have.

It’s Basil’s grandfather that is my Civil War ancestor. Man oh man would I love to ask him questions about his grandfather.

Basil R Lowery

Basil R Lowery

I really admire my grandpa. For 32 years his widower father-in-law lived with them. I know that’s common to this era but still he never lived alone with my grandmother until 1944.

One very specific memory I have of my grandfather is later in his life. I was six or seven years old and my mom, dad and younger sister would visit them once a week. My grandma always sat in a chair in the living room with an afghan across her shoulders. As a kid all I knew was that she was sick. She spoke very little and my sister and I were to sit still on the couch during our visit.

So after what seemed an eternity sitting on the couch my grandfather would take my sister and me to the kitchen. We’d sit in shiny chrome chairs at the kitchen table and my grandfather would place paper napkins in front of us followed by our treat. Moon pies. Chocolate covered marshmallow cookie goodness. My mom never bought moon pies. These sweet sensations were found only at my grandparent’s house. I can remember licking my finger to pick up any crumbs that fell on my napkin.

I don’t see moon pies often at the store but when I do I’m transported to a small, narrow kitchen with varnished pine cupboards. There a gentle, white haired man sporting a flat top puts a cellophane covered moon pie in front of me and I smile.


  1. Bernita Allen says:

    Beautiful memory and tribute to your grandfather.

    • Bernita ~ Thank you for reading and commenting on my #52 Ancestors this week. Even though I don’t have a lot of memories I treasure the ones I do have and the opportunity to share them. Thanks again!

  2. So similar to my experience. I lost 3 grandparents by 5 years of age. I only have fragments of memories. My Dad’s Mom lived until I was an middle-aged married lady. 😉 So many wonderful things she did for me, including my first plane trip, my first trip to Europe, teaching me to catch crabs from the Chesapeake Bay. Oh how I loved her.


    • Schalene ~ Thank you for reading my post and commenting! So nice of you! I can feel the love for your grandma through your words. I loved reading about your special memories with her. She must have been a truly remarkable lady. Thank you so much for stopping by!

  3. Wonderful that you have a remembrance of him. Moon pies, now how great is a grandfather to think of that for kids. Sounds like he was a very tender loving man.
    Thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks Fran for reading and commenting! Writing those memories just brings a smile to my face.
      I really appreciate Amy Crow’s challenge it’s helped me look at my ancestors with different eyes, especially those I’ve written about before and that’s a good thing!
      Thanks again for stopping by!


  1. […] – “The Only Grandparent I Remember” (Basil Lowery) by Cindy Freed on Cindy Freed’s Genealogy […]

  2. […] put together at this time is that George kept the farm for awhile and daughter Gladys and husband Basil had a home in town. My mom spoke of both places as belonging to all and that granddad would walk […]

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