Today would have been my Great Grandmother's, Annie Prudence Butcher (nee Harris) 116th birthday. I knew her as Granny, and later as I began my research I affectionately called her APH. My cousins knew her as Big Gran, because their Grandma looked after APH in her elderly years and I guess to a child having two Grandma's in the same house was confusing!
This picture is taken from the Christmas card Granny sent to family and friends in 1955. I have inherited the one she sent to my Grandfather, Grandmother and Mum.
The first official document I saw when I began researching my family history in earnest was the 1881 Census, which in 1988 was the last official Census available to those of us in the United Kingdom.
|Image courtesy of Ancestry - RG11/780/6 Puttenham Surrey|
The Census shows, Annie aged one year old. I recall the moment I spotted that entry line as I muttered the words wow! complete with that tingly feeling of excitement.
That very same Great Grandmother who cuddled up to me as an elderly lady. Smelling of talcum powder and lavender. Who had the firmest, yet gentlest cuddle of all. She would wrap me in her arms and tickle me and I would wriggle with excitement. I can almost feel that cuddle as I write this and all of a sudden I miss this elderly lady, who loved her family passionately and yet despite her frailness, always gave me one of those lovely safe and reassuring cuddles.
Here is a picture of how I remember her, surrounded by flowers and the love of her family.