Mixsonian Waive

Waive Schwander is Born

While the Mixson’s worked their farms in Florida, another family some thousand miles to the North in the state of Michigan also worked their farms.  The Schwanders had been in Michigan for a long time first immigrating from Switzerland in 1749.  Like many of that time they were farmers and in 1912 three generations lived on a farm in Burnips on the east side of Lake Michigan.   In addition to the patriarch Isaac Schwander there were two sons and their families.    In September of 1912 the oldest son, Charles Earl Schwander and his wife Ruby Alice Simmons second daughter was born who they named Waive Carrie Schwander.    


Great Grandfather & Grandmother Schwander, Grandmother Ruby feeding chickens, Aunt Hazel and my mother Waive is little girl in white hat.
Written on back by Waive's daughter Barbara Junior Mixson.

Waive had fond memories of growing up on the farm writing in her memoirs:  

We used to rent pasture land from a neighbor for the young cattle but the mile road that led to it was very hilly and bad.  I would go with Dad to bring the cattle home, and riding in the buggy, he would sing this song to me:  

“We jumped in the buggy
 and all gave a yell,
the horse ran away and broke
the buggy all to h---.”  

I was singing this song when we got home thinking it was a pretty good song to sing but I was wrong for Dad really got a bawling out from Grandma and Ma for teaching me such things!  

I remember that we would can and put away potatoes, apples, onions and cabbage in the cellar for the winter. Dad wouldn’t be very busy in the winter and we loved that. He would peel apples for us, track nuts, and make tops out of empty thread spools. Sometimes he would take potatoes and onions, put them down in the hot ashes of the stove and cook them for as -- we really thought they were good.  

When I was about ten years old, we moved from Grandma’s. The folks bought a sand farm about four miles from Grandma’s farm. I remember crying until I was just about sick for, I wanted to stay with Grandma.  When I aid stay with her, and if it was in wintertime, we would eat by the fire on a little table with a red and white checked tablecloth.  I loved those days. . . it was at this time Jack nearly died with pneumonia.  

One time Grandma’s youngest sister, Aunt Tillie brought me a canary from Ohio. I named it Freddie after Grandma’s nephew.  We also had an all-white cat (which was pretty rare in those days) that always stayed up in the barn.  On one particular morning, Dad got up to build the fire and there the cat was in the house.  Dad was surprised to see him in so let him out, then built the fire and uncovered the canary.  There lay my canary in the bottom of the cage with no head!  When I saw it I cried and cried.....Dad threatened to kill the cat, but we never did see that cat after that.   Years later Waive would have a son who she called Freddie.

We raised a lot of baby chickens on the farm and in May or June the crows would come by the hundreds and steal the baby chicks and carry them off, many a time the farmer would have to replant the corn because of the crows.  On a Sunday that I remember, Dad took his shotgun and went looking for the crows.  He found a big nest, shot at it and 2 or 3 little red squirrels fell out.  Dad brought them home at that time to us.  Jack wore little bib overalls and they would crawl up his pant legs.  At this same time, we had an old cat that had kittens in the barn and she raised those squirrels right along with her kittens.  People would stop by just to look at that cat nurse those squirrels.  

Another time, Jack had another lamb whose name was Mary.  The doctor that took care of Jack when he was so sick was Dr. Joe Do Pree, and his daughters also had a lamb, but he was getting too big for city life (Burnips) so they gave him to Jack.  We called him Joseph. Dad didn’t like sheep and when they got big he took them to town in the wagon to sell.  On the way into town, they got into his chewing tobacco and ate it all up -- boy, did all of us kids think that was neat.  

During the spring months, we would pick lilacs, lily of the valley, and violets by the bushel. Also, red winter green berries.  We never could go swimming much as Dad was afraid we’d drown. I never liked boys too much but one I remember that I liked only because he had a pony.

Mixson Activities

On May 7th of 1912 the Ocala Evening Start reported that  Mr. James Rhodes spent the other night with Mr. Wilbur Mixson and the Wilbur’s brother Henry Mixson had a nice patch of onions which he sold his first the previous Saturday at Micanopy.  Wilbur, Misses Bessie and Lois Mixson were the guests of their sister, Mrs. J. H. Gladney the past Friday afternoon and then on Saturday Mr. and Mrs. Gladney with their little daughter, Julie, spent Saturday night with their father J. D. Mixson.  And Wilbur’s brothers, Messrs. Charlie and Maxey Mixson were shopping in Micanopy.   


In February 1913, Myrtle, the little daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Job Mixson, fell into a kettle of boiling water and was badly burned but was improving. The Ocala Banner, Feb 14, 1913

Updated: 09-24-2021