Mixsonian Morrs and Barbara

Barbara and Morris

In January of 1957 the house that Barbara’s parents Fred and Waive were building across the street was finished and they moved into it.  With her parents moved out, Barbara and Morris’s were finally able to move into their house that her parents had been living in for the previous year.  I remember moving to the new house being an exciting day.  Dad had borrowed his father’s truck which we loaded up with our household items.  I would help carry small boxes and items out to the truck which Dad carefully placed in the back of the truck.  When it was loaded, Mom and Brenda sat in the cab with Dad driving and my brother and I sat in the back with the furniture as we traveled across town to the new house where we excitedly unloaded and put into the new house.   In February I had my tonsils taken out at the hospital.  I remember I was given ice cream to eat as the cold made my throat feel better.

After moving in Morris and Barbara got their first phone with the number Franklin 1545. The phone hung on the wall in the kitchen just inside the door to the phonedining room and with only a three-foot cord on the phone, all conversations took place while standing the in the kitchen so everyone could hear what was being said.  Phones at the time were dial phones that had a dial with holes in it for each number 0-9.  To dial a number, you would stick your finger in the numbered hole and turn the dial clockwise, pull your finger out and the dial would rotate back and stop, and you would repeat for the other digits in the number you were calling.   The town was divided into areas that each had a two-letter codes which had names to remember them by so our number was FR-1545 thus the name “Franklin”.  If the person you were calling were in the same area you just dialed the number but if they were in a different area you would dial 0 to get the operator and tell her the number you wanted, and she would connect you.  As Gainesville grew and stopped using operators, more digits were added and our number became 352-1545 and then later the area codes were added becoming 904-352-1545. Barbara and Morris had the same phone number until Morris died 63 years later.   

Brenda with HappyBrenda with Happy in by the front door 1962

In the spring Morris brought home a little black long-haired dog who was part cocker spaniel and mostly mutt who we named Happy because, well he seemed so happy. Happy was an outside dog and was never allowed in the house.  I always attributed Happy with saving my life one day after Grandma and Grandpa Junior had moved into the house across the street.  Our street was the last street in the neighborhood so behind all the homes on Grandma and Grandpa side of the street was a big open field.  One day that summer the family was all gathered in the large, enclosed porch that was at the back of Grandma and Grandpa’s house and I was outside playing in their backyard with Happy when I decided to go into the house.  As I approached the backdoor of the porch with Happy at my side, he started barking at something by the door which turned out to be a rattlesnake.  I yelled there’s a snake and Dad came out, got a shovel, and killed the snake.  When we first got Happy my brother, sister and I would play with him and he would follow us around when we played outside.  As we got older, we played less and less with Happy and I remember him always laying on the carport. Sometime in the mid-sixties he disappeared, and Dad said he probably went off some where and died.  I always suspected that Dad took him somewhere and put him down but I never had the courage to ask, not wanting to really know.

Updated: 05-29-2023

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