Monday, June 23, 2008
Music began with Grandma Wasden
The piano sat in Grandma and Grandpa's parlor, and when we went to visit as little children, we would do some pretend playing - I'm sure it was never allowed to last very long because it would have been very noisy. The piano had taken place of an earlier pump organ. Uncle David was given piano lessons, because he was the oldest, and, in keeping with old world principles of primogenture, got the most privileges. Aunt Sofe, (next in age), who was very musically bent, would sit in a corner, listen to the lessons, and then when everyone had left, would practice the lessons on her own. She became a very proficient pianist, much to Dave's dismay, and, so was no longer allowed to listen to the lessons. (That did not stop her - she certainly played well most of her life, and probably was the one who taught our mother to play.) I donot know that Grandma ever played the piano - I don't think that any of us ever heard her. But, when I became capable enough to play the hymns for Sunday School sometimes, she gave me this book of hers to use for prelude and postlude music. She does not mention music in her little autobiography - instead, she talks about writing poetry. Pioneer times were difficult and demanding for a woman. There must not have been much time in her life to pursue the finer arts.