More than 40 years ago, my father gave me the Young Family Bible. It had been given to him by his father, who’d received it from his father. The value of the book, as experts like to say, was “intrinsic,” In other words, it was zero, except for what a family member would believe.
The book as received from my father was wrapped in brown grocery-bag paper and tied with twine. It has sat on a closet shelf in my parents’ house for a long time, probably since they moved there in 1955. I have very vague memories of it from childhood.
When my father gave it to me, I did the time-honored thing: I put it on a closet shelf. Eventually, I removed the wrapping and twine and wrapped it in acid-free paper and a box. Its value to me and the rest of the family was what it contained – four pages, inserted between the Old and New Testaments, of family births, marriages, and deaths. The earliest date was that of my great-great grandfather’s birth in 1802; the last date was in 1890. All of the events were written in the same hand – my great-grandfather’s Samuel Franklin Young. He also wrote his signature on an inside cover.
To continue reading, please see my post today at Tweetspeak Poetry.