…. or, how MV came to be in our lives.
(my mother — my grandmother)
This post is about my mother and my grandmother, the two women who are responsible for our connection to the Vineyard.
My grandmother, Albra Mae Flewelling ittlefield Grant Baird, was born in Maine. She was widowed twice, her third husband, Arthur Baird Sr was an Islander who was left to raise two sons, Floyd and Arthur Jr, and a daughter, Hattie, after his first wife died. My grandmother and my mother Maude came to live on Martha’s Vineyard in Oak Bluffs and thus began our connection and love of the Vineyard.
I don’t know a lot about my grandmother’s life after moving to the Vineyard except that she was busy raising four rambunctuous children, keeping house for her husband and being active in community projects with her friends. She died before my parents were married so I never knew her but I feel a closeness to her whenever I’m on the Vineyard. She is buried in Oak Grove Cemetery in Oak Bluffs.
My mother, Maude Louise Littlefield Freeman was born in Waterville, Maine on March 11, 1907.
the picture below is one of my most favorite pictures of all time…
Raised on Martha’s Vineyard
my mother and grandmother – Oak Bluffs 1924
Moved to New Jersey after graduating from Oak Bluffs High School. She met and married a Jersey boy… Joseph Albert Freeman
and had a Jersey girl (me)…
The next to the last Mother’s Day I spent with my mom was May 1975. My parents were vacationing on the Cape and she was unaware that we were driving up to surprise her for the weekend. I gave her the book ‘Mostly On Martha’s Vineyard, A Personal Record’ by Henry Beetle Hough, as I knew she’d know some of the people mentioned in the book. I am so glad I did that because after reading the book she decided she wanted to sail over to the Vineyard to visit her mother’s grave. It turned out be her last trip to her beloved Vineyard.
March 5, 2015 at 12:44 pm
ooohhhhh……gosh that brought tears to my eyes…..i miss my mom and grandma so much…..pictures and memories are so wonderful to have…..i used to laugh at my grandmother when she would talk about the *good old days* and now i talk about them!!!! love this….thank you joan!!!!!
March 5, 2015 at 3:23 pm
You’re welcome, but didn’t mean to make you tear up 🙂 We should strive to make every day a good old day. 🙂
July 17, 2015 at 5:33 pm
Hello from the Pacific Northwest. Here’s my recent Martha’s Vineyard story. I’m an amateur genealogist; a recent MV acquaintance forwarded to me a burial plot card for the Oak Grove Cemetery in Oak Bluffs. I knew most of the names on that plot card as they are my relatives; however, two names I didn’t recognize: Frances Emma Baird and Albra Mae Baird. There’s no indication on the plot card how these two are related to others in the family plot, and neither of their names are engraved on the large family headstone, I was therefore compelled to learn how these two are related to the family. (It’s a genealogy thing!) My first suspicion was they were children who died young. I knew my uncle, Arthur Freeman Baird, had two wives, Carrie and Mae. I know quite a bit about my Aunt Carrie Frances Doughty, but little about Mae. I didn’t even know her maiden name. I thought Mae may have been a widow of a Mr. Littlefield when she married Uncle Arthur because she apparently brought a daughter with her into the marriage, the daughter’s name being Arthmaude Littlefield according to the 1920 US Census. To make a long story short, my new acquaintance in Oak Bluffs discovered your blog, forwarded it to me, and now, after reading your wonderful story, I can complete the family group record for Arthur Freeman Baird’s second wife, Albra Mae Flewellyn. By the way, my late wife is also a Jersey Girl; Elizabeth, Rahway, Woodbridge, Colonia, with dutch ancestry in Ulster County, New York going way back.
Bob Doughty, Seattle, Washington