For over forty years the descendants of Jonas and Mary Brown have been holding a family reunion on the first Sunday in July in Trenton, North Carolina. Jonas and Mary are my grandparents and the parents of Floyd Brown my dad. What began as a celebration of Mary’s birthday on the fourth of July turned into a family reunion with all of her 16 kids of which one is still living, Aunt Julia. She is now 97 and still gets around with the aid of a walker.
Well this year the descendants of Floyd and Essie Brown decided to hold a family reunion on the Saturday before since most of the family shows up on Sunday. It was a good time for us to share family tidbits between the nine living children and all of the children, grandchildren and great-grand kids of Floyd and Essie.
It was a good way to share with the younger generation where we lived, went to church, attended school, and farmed during our youth. Some of the children not born in North Carolina could not believe we had separate schools for Blacks and Whites and even are buried in separate graveyards.
It felt good for me to attend church at St. Matthew AMEZ where I grew up singing in the choir, attending Sunday school and loving those church quarterly meetings with all of the delicious fresh food from the gardens, homemade cakes and pies, and cold lemonade from the tin wash tub. As a kid life could not get any better.
Of course a reunion also takes you on a trip down memory lane as you reflect on your childhood. I have a few photos that I would like to share that will help tell my story of growing up in Trenton.