Friday, June 13, 2008
Carnival of Genealogy - Family Pets
Rogers family with Viola, (Miss P) and Blackie the cat, August 1925, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
The topic for this edition of the Carnival of Genealogy is: family pets!
Well, I’ve always been a cat person and expect I always will be. We didn’t have pets when I was very young – my brother had lots of allergies and I believe my parents thought a pet wouldn’t be good for him. My mother had had a dog, I know, (a dog named Sandy who was afraid of thunder) so she might have liked a dog, but one day a cat showed up on our family's back porch looking for some dinner. My mum fed it something, the cat stayed on; eventually she adopted us and condescended to let us call her ‘Twink’. (The name was my idea - you know, 'twinkle, twinkle little star...')
My dad’s family did have cats. The cat in the photograph in my dad’s arms was called ‘Blackie’ apparently (really original, aren’t we?). This was taken in August of 1925 according to my grandmother’s note and shows my grandparents (Joe Rogers and Sarah Saggers) with their two sons, my dad, George, with Blackie, and his brother, David, and also Miss ‘Viola P’, in Vancouver, B.C., Canada. Viola was visiting and the family must have taken her around to see all the sights, as there are a few other photos like this one of the two boys -- shown here in Vancouver’s Stanley Park. (My grandmother must have treasured these pictures of happy times later, after David died of polio in 1927.)
But the ‘pets’ I associated most with my dad when we were young, probably were never pets at all. As the story was told to me by my mum, who got it from her mother in law, my grandma, and told it to me, my grandparents had chickens at one time and my dad was fond of some of them. Likely he helped to look after them. One day though he came to realize that a chicken or two had turned up on the dinner table, and he then refused to eat.
Never again, as far as I know, did he eat any kind of fowl – not even turkey at Christmas. The rest of us ate chicken and turkey, mind you, but he didn’t even want to be in the house while fowl was cooking. Nowadays, a boy in the same situation would likely become at least a vegetarian, but dad must never had met a pig or a cow he specially liked, as he didn't give up meat, just 'fowl' which, of course, he said was - 'foul'.
George and David Rogers, August 1925, at the Oppenheimer monument, Stanley Park, Vancouver, B.C. Canada