Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Ephraim Pray: An Amazing Man

Currently, I have the number twenty on the brain–as in twenty years. When I was twenty I was working as a paralegal for law firm in Marietta. Looking back on it now I had it made. I had my own money, but I lived with my parents. Mother was available as my cook and laundress while Daddy served as my advisor and back up banker. My main activity when not working or sleeping was hanging out with my friends.  

Even though I worked it wasn’t back-breaking labor. I was in a very nice air-conditioned office with machines such as a word processor and a copy machine to help me with my job which basically consisted of drafting complaints and researching case law. The attorney I worked with never came in before twelve each day, so twice a week I’d venture over to the courthouse and answer a calendar call on his behalf. I ate lunch out every day in places that had real waiters and cloth napkins. 
Even though I was great at my job and took it very seriously the words cushy, charmed and spoiled come to mind, but it wasn’t lost on this student of history I was experiencing a much different lifestyle at twenty than many of my female counterparts who had gone before me. I had more opportunities than my aunts had experienced, much more than either of my grandmothers, and my great-grandmothers would have been shocked I didn’t already have three or four kids trailing after me and one on my hip while I took care of the house, the garden full of produce and a yard full of chickens outside my back door. 

Go back to the 1820s and 1830s and life was just plain hard–not just for women, but things were difficult for men as well when compared to today.  Folks didn’t have the ease of today’s modern fabric regarding clothing choices, education was lacking unless you had money and the right connections, and modern conveniences such as the phone, electricity, and modern travel just didn’t exist.
To reach a certain age such as twenty years old and venture off to make your way in the word was a hard thing to do. There was no constant contact with loved ones and friends like there is today. Striking out on your own meant being on your own–TOTALLY!  Once you left your family’s side a letter could take several weeks to reach its destination. Overnight postal service didn’t exist.

In fact, if you left your family and moved to another state or even more than fifty miles away it was very probable you might never see your family again. Yet, people did leave their families and did make their own way in the world including a very important man in Douglasville history. 
Ephraim Pray – one of the area’s earliest citizens even before Douglas County or Douglasville existed, and he actually hailed from the North.

Yes! A Yankee in our midst! All joking aside, Ephraim Pray became a model for hard work and responsible citizenship...

THANK YOU for visiting “Every Now and Then” and reading the first few paragraphs of “Ephraim Pray: An Amazing Man“ which is now one of the 140 chapters in my book “Every Now and Then: The Amazing Tales of Douglas County, Volume I”. 

Visit the Amazon link by clicking the book cover below where you can explore the table of contents and read a few pages of the book…plus make a purchase if you choose! 

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