This is an excerpt from the family book: Devon Violets by Lana Rodlie. The book follows the lives of my ancestors, Mary Clayden and Albert Ewings, and their children (my cousins). I have made some changes to the text in order to protect the privacy of anyone still living. This section is about my Uncle Alf Ewings who lived in Tacoma, Washington. He served in the First World War and this is his story.
From the book:
The second of Mary and Albert’s children was Alfred, born June 3, 1894, in England. Although Alfie, or Uncle Alf, as we knew him, passed away in 1975, he passed down stories about his life to his son Bert, a retired teacher, who lives in Seattle, Washington. Bert is an incredible person who adapted his father’s story into a monologue which he performed at community events and for family members. He would don his father’s pith helmet and talk about his dad’s adventures in first person. On a trip to Seattle in 2006, he “performed” for us and I recorded it. (If I can figure out how to put a voice recording on this site, I will.)
I’ve taken the liberty of transcribing it and adding it to other bits of information I had, mostly from Bert in the first place.
Bert said his dad talked a lot about his relatives in England, as Alfie could remember them all, having grown up with them as a child, and then visiting them at the end of the war, before returning home to Canada. (Some of his comments were added to the story about the Claydens.) Continue reading