What did your grandparents do?

free image of Hereford
@GardenGerty (96618)
Marion, Kansas
May 19, 2016 7:09am CST
How did your grand parents make their living? Did they have careers? Were they city people or country people? I thought of this while looking at the cattle pictures online yesterday. Today's picture is of a Hereford cow . They are beef cattle, red in color with white faces. My mother's parents had a farm/ranch, whichever you would call it. They raised a few cows for the beef market. Hereford cattle. In addition they grew most of their own vegetables, with grandma canning or freezing the produce. They would raise and butcher a hog or two a year for pork, had chickens for eggs and to eat. They had ponds with fish to catch and also could and did shoot deer, squirrels and rabbits and occasionally ducks and geese. Although Herefords were beef cattle you still could milk the cows for your personal milk supply. My dad's dad had a moving company. They were city people. They had a house in town that grandma had paid for with an inheritance. They had fruit trees, but I am not sure about a garden other than flowers. I am sure grandma froze and canned foods as well. My dad's grandfather had a grocery store in Ohio and the family lived above it. That is basically all I know. They moved to a large piece of property in Arkansas and raised some of their own food when I was about ten. Grandpa designed and built the house.
18 people like this
15 responses
@jaboUK (53412)
• United Kingdom
19 May 16
Your grandparents were affluent compared to mine. None of my grandparents owned any property. My dad's father was a regular soldier till he got a bullet in his arm in WW1, then he worked on the railways for the rest of his life. My grandmother was 'in service' till she married. My mother's father was a gardener on a big estate, and her mother was also in service till she married. Women didn't usually work after they were married - they wouldn't have had time anyway as running a house was a full time job in those days. There were no washing machines, vacuum cleaners, electric ovens etc.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Jun 16
Your gardening gift comes naturally, then. Yes, I agree, running a home was a huge chore.
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@jaboUK (53412)
• United Kingdom
6 Jun 16
@GardenGerty Funny that you should pop up in my notifs just now - I've only just finished composing a limerick about you. It'll be included in my next batch if I do any more.
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@Fleura (7110)
• United Kingdom
14 May 17
That's so right, getting married was essentially taking on a new more-than-full-time job.
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@toniganzon (48524)
• Philippines
19 May 16
My father's father was a politician while my grandmother was a housewife (being a daughter of a mayor she was raised like that). My mother's father was a politician (the rival of my fathers's dad), my grandmother was an elementary school teacher.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Jun 16
All kinds of politicians in your background. And some competition as well. It must have been interesting.
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@toniganzon (48524)
• Philippines
6 Jun 16
@GardenGerty Yes very interesting. When my grandfather told me his story, i thought it could only happen in the movies or the books.
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@LadyDuck (146741)
• Switzerland
19 May 16
My grandfather had a country farm, he sold directly his products. My grandparents lived in a big country house where I loved to spend my summer vacations. My father was a city man, he had a career, he was business consultant, my mother has never worked, she has been housewife during all her life.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Jun 16
My grand parents on my mother's side would sell some of their farm products but mostly their beef cattle. Our moms were housewives when the work was really hard and all encompassing.
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• India
19 May 16
my grandpa was in navy and my grandmother was teacher...sadly i never met them...although i been told by many they were really nice people.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Jun 16
I imagine so. To be honest, I forget that other countries also have military branches. I will have to look and see what a sailor from India looks like.
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@TheHorse (61983)
• Pleasant Hill, California
25 May 16
Good question! Both my sets of Grandparents were farmers or ranchers of some sort, but my Grandfather of my mother's side (whom I never met) became an engineer.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Jun 16
Railroad type engineer, or mechanical engineer? Maybe your desire to grow things comes from them.
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• United States
19 May 16
My grandfather was an engineer and worked at Proctor & Gamble and my grandmother was a nurse.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Jun 16
So you had grandparents that were more of the "city" type. Did any subsequent generations become nurses. I often notice entire families do that. Not sure if it is nature or nurture.
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@Lucky15 (33439)
• Philippines
19 May 16
I grow up with my grandpa. He was a farmer and worked in a sugar cane plantation in hawaii before hr met our grsndma
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Jun 16
That is a different type of farming than we have state side.
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@Fleura (7110)
• United Kingdom
14 May 17
My mother's father was originally in the merchant navy but when he wanted children he obviously needed to spend more time at home! He ran the first garage in the village, mostly servicing bicycles as no-one had cars, and charging batteries for people to use to listen to the radio etc at home as no-one had electricity. However he did wire up the family home and ran his own generator so they had electric light. He grew a lot of fruit and vegetables too. My grandmother had her hands full with 5 children; before marriage she had worked as secretary to her father who had several local businesses as farmer, undertaker, joiner, coal merchant and carrier. My father's mother was originally a nurse. Her husband was in the army in India where he trained as a teacher but when he returned to Britain his teaching qualifications were not recognised so he had to spend the rest of his life as a postman. He grew all the family's vegetables too, and the family took in lodgers.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
14 May 17
It seems to me our ancestors were much more capable and self reliant than we are.It is amazing to think of all they did.
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@Fleura (7110)
• United Kingdom
14 May 17
@GardenGerty They certainly were; we have it easy and if there was some national crisis most people nowadays would be pretty helpless.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
14 May 17
@Fleura I think we are sunk.
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@zarlamain (24531)
• United States
6 Jun 16
Now this post made me think about my grandparents. My grandfather from my mother's side was a businessman. The company still exists and has been inherited by my mother's older brothers. The company specializes in home goods such as spices, cooking oil, and soap. My grandmother was a housewife. My grandparents from my father's side are estranged, so I don't know about them.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Jun 16
That sounds very like Watkins or Raleigh products. Those companies were very important to families back in the day. Most of our grandmothers were housewives back when that was a lot of work.
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@zarlamain (24531)
• United States
6 Jun 16
@GardenGerty Definitely! The husbands would go to work early in the morning and the wives would be at home taking care of the household and raising the many children they had. The company has become a much bigger business now.
@Tampa_girl7 (24886)
• United States
22 May 16
My fathers parents were country folks and farmed. My mama's parents were city folks and my grandpa filmed movies and was a projectionist later in life.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Jun 16
That is why your mom met some actors. You had the best of both worlds to grow up with.
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@Tampa_girl7 (24886)
• United States
7 Jan
@GardenGerty yes, I loved being in the country and the big city.
@CRK109 (14421)
• United States
20 May 16
I know that when my grandparents lived in Italy, they were all pig farmers. But once they moved to America, I have no idea what they did. I don't ever remember my parents talking about their parents working.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Jun 16
Were your grandparents on both sides from Italy?
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@CRK109 (14421)
• United States
7 Jun 16
@GardenGerty Yes and they were either from the same area or neighboring areas, from what my mother told me.
@polyxena (2577)
• Sturgis, Michigan
19 May 16
I really have no clue what my grandpa on my dad's side did for a living, but I know my grandma worked at a nursing home. As for my mom's side, I know my grandma used to help work with the union wife's for things, and my grandpa had a few different jobs, he was a carpenter and a Chicago police officer and I think that was really it.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Jun 16
I am going to guess then that they were city folks mostly.
@polyxena (2577)
• Sturgis, Michigan
6 Jun 16
@GardenGerty They were.
• Canada
20 May 16
Both my grandparents from my mother's side and father's side were what we call farmers. Both had cows for milk and beef, chickens for eggs and poultry, horses for plowing the fields for corn planting and other staples. My grandmother, on my mother's side was a violinist also playing "gigues" in french-canadian. She was pretty good. My grandmother on my father's side was a school teacher. She was strict and straightforward. I loved my grandparents and miss them all.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Jun 16
We can learn a lot from our grandparents if we will. It sounds as if your grandparents were much like my mom's family.
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@AuraGael (61)
• Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
19 May 16
My paternal grandfather was a postal worker. He was a clerk. My paternal grandmother was a secretary at some point in her adulthood but I'm not sure when. I understand she could type fast and accurately and never have to look at the keys at all. My maternal grandfather was a writer and wrote for numerous newspapers throughout his life, moving his family around quite a bit. Writing this comment now, I'm realizing I have no idea what he wrote and no way to find out at this point. I can't believe I never asked my mother about that. My maternal grandmother, after divorcing my grandfather became a book keeper and stayed with that company until she retired.
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@GardenGerty (96618)
• Marion, Kansas
6 Jun 16
Well do you know any of the papers he worked for? They would have copies archived. Do you think writing on social sites is possibly a talent that is a skill you inherited?
@Corbin5 (99516)
• United States
6 Jun 16
My grandmother was a teacher and my grandfather managed A&P stores (grocery stores.) My other grandfather had a shoe-repair shop and my grandmother was a housewife, I believe. All four grandparents lived in the same southern Illinois town.