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Chapter 1 Part 1: Charlie’s Story, the Beginning

A moleskine notebook is center left with the words The Charlie's Story Project stamped on the cover.  A vintage photo of a street scene is placed beside the notebook.  A sprig of baby's breath is below the photo.  Everything is set on an architectural diagram.  The background is grey farmhouse flooring.

Hello again and welcome!

We’re working on a schedule for releasing these blog posts. Currently, we’re aiming for Sunday and Wednesday evenings, so be sure to check back here on those days. We’ll see how it goes.

Today’s section of the book is the beginning of the chapter “Early Years”. For context, the manuscript is currently set up as “Early Years 1921-1940”, “Young Adult Years 1940-1949”, “Family Years 1949-1999” and “Later Years 2000-2018”. Additionally, there are separate sections specifically dedicated to things like a Family Tree, the History of Scotland Area Fire Protection, etc.

But without further ado, here is the beginning of the manuscript:

Charles Bronson Hunter was born to Kate (née Halliday) and Charles Dean Hunter on March 13, 1921 at Brantford General Hospital. He was the younger brother to Enid (b. 1915) and Mary (b. 1917) and the family lived in a house at 81 William Street, Brantford.  In the spring of 1922, they moved to a house in Scotland on a parcel of land bordered by Oakland Road and Marcus Street.

Charlie had good memories of life on the a small farm:

“I remember the cows, chickens and geese Father had in the barnyard when I was little.  The geese would chase me on occasion! I remember that there was a great big iron pot under the ice house. And I remember bolting a boy’s sprocket onto a girl’s bicycle which made it easier to mount. I put eggs down in a crock water glass (but I don’t remember selling eggs) and churned butter in a wooden oblong barrel using a handle to turn the barrel. I delivered milk to houses in through the village.  At first I carried up to eight pails, a quart each, on a pole and walked to the village.  Later, when Mother was learning to drive, she drove me and I took the milk to the houses in bottles. (Margaret remembers me whistling as I walked up the drive to the parsonage.)

(Side note from me to clarify that Margaret lived at the parsonage, and to say that this is my favourite part of this section!)

“I remember we had many fruit trees: apple (Wealthy, Spy, Delicious, and Yellow Transparent), apricot, cherry, peach, plum and pear (Clapp – my favourite – and Bartlett).  There was a large vegetable garden west of the house with gooseberries and currants.  I helped to pick the fruit. 

Father created the goldfish pond in 1932 east of the house.  And I remember some of the dogs we had:  Sport, a white spitz dog who was given to us by the Eddys, Father’s black spaniel with short legs and long fur given to him by Enid and Monty, and Buster, a stray that followed me everywhere.

I remember that at Christmas 1940 I developed tonsillitis and my first meal after that was on New Year’s Day.”

That’s it for today. We hope you enjoyed this one!