•  Community Travel
  • When I drive through local communities, it gives me a chance to meet the realness of the locals.
  • COMMUNITY TRAVEL PHOTO JOURNAL
  • © 2021 The Sherlene Brand. All rights reserved.
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I am a part of a very large maternal family from Maryland's Eastern Shore. Both sets of my family are mostly from the Deep South ... such as the Carolinas (North and South). I thank God, every day, for the parents he gave me--even if they were mid teens. My father is older than my mother.
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My published memoir. (2012).
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Me, again. It was unpopular for children to style their eyebrows when I was growing up. It was thought that if styled too early, brow hairs wouldn't grow back.
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This is my for-real mom. She is a cook, and a former hairdresser.
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Baby Me
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Me Again
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This is my multiracial American maternal grandmother (5/8/1939 - 10/1/2016): British ancestry.
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Many in the community called her Aunt Nora or 'Momma Nora.' The 2nd youngest daughter (8 girls including two deceased several months after childbirth and 7 boys) of my great grandparents. During her teen years, her black-Indian hair was so long she would sit on it. This is the hairstyle/length that I've always known her to have. She said "her long or medium-sized hair length felt too heavy around her neck (sweat) and false teeth". She was a consistent United Methodist church member for over 65 years, a former wife of a preacher's kid for a short time. She often told her off-springs to think; It's okay to be a faith believer with its rituals, use the sciences and nature in your being, too. So many jobs she worked, including State of Maryland Health Dept. for many years until retirement. She was not my for-real mom, but my grandmother. I called her Mom.
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This is my step-grandfather & custodial father (3/11/1932 - 4/21/2019). His real name is William. Many people in our community, including his mom, called him 'Uncle Joe.' He was a veteran of the Army, and a former long-standing line supervisor at Campbell Soup Company. He loved tending to his vegetable garden, eating fried fish that he would scale himself or pig hock, listening to the southern oldies, and watching the old sitcoms on TV. He loved baseball (local game or Baltimore Orioles). He was a tall man w. big strong hands and feet (size 13/14). He was multiracial and a Native American of Color, too, like my grandmother. Others called him Uncle Joe, I called him Pop (Pop-Pop).
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Former Marriage Years: My then-husband, and four biological kids. High-school couple and 16 yrs. of marriage relationship. In Aug. 2005, I, a home-schooling mom/teacher college student/gov. employee, was given 15 min. to leave my kids and him for the local societal-experience script. The social norm and economy WAS to disconnect the kids from their parents until I interrupted the pattern. All the while what I didn't know the social norms, God is awesome, I was in college absorbing all the knowledge that I could gather to open this business and to work with my local employer (hired someone else to replace me ... a woman). -The Script in My Box: A Journal of Forgiveness.
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Who are these four? My kids, now young adults.
They call me Mom.
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These are the generations from my multiracial maternal grandmother's work. She is wearing the green shirt. Just some of my immediate family. I have four siblings on my maternal (mother's) side and three siblings on my paternal (father's) side. Of all, I am still the oldest!
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Immediately after my 15-year-old mom gave birth to me, in 1971, I went to live here in my custodial father's home.
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This is the home presently (2020).
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Childhood home for a few years, with my for-real mom.
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Former Family Church, Aaron Chapel (United Methodist Church). Between Edesville and City of Rock Hall, Maryland
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My Youth Choir Robe
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My Great Grandparents' Wedding Anniversary: From this union came 15 children. Pa Pa (Oscar) 4/8/1899 - 9/22/1989; Grandma (Ethel) 11/1/1900 - 9/20/2004.
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My [Maternal] Great Grandfather. His grandmother was of mixed-race identity (Native American, white British heritage, and maybe African American). Him mom was a white lady from Britain who lived in the Deep South.
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My maternal great grandfather became blind later in life. He was never able to physically see his great grandchildren. I spent quality time with him and often was his sitter, during my childhood years.
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Ethel (Rochester) Hicks. My great-grandmother. Her paternal family was originally from the Rock Hall or Kent County, MD area (Piney Neck for People of Color).
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My maternal family's foundation: My great grandmother's 96th birthday. She is no longer with us on earth. My great grandfather passed away many years before this picture. A truly, real married couple in our family history who lived in their house just as long as their marriage. We all have different skin tones, but we are of the mixed-race group, America's Black Indians w. British ancestry.
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The Hicks House was purchased in the late 1930s, I believe. Originally, it was a country store owned by a white couple. The original community was a group of people-of-color homeowners.
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The front door entrance that we used. In the back, near the small white building, was orginally a big barn where my great-grandfather stored his handyman tools and lawn-mowing equipment.
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This side of the home probably seems basic to you, but this is where we had our large, summer, family unions where we held hands and prayed together and for each other and our neighbors. Here was where there were faithbased picnic gatherings, too.
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