Check out yesterday’s Clarion Ledger for a sweet commentary by Sid Salter about a family tradition he still carries on, visiting the old Williams Brothers General Store, outside of Philadelphia. The story reinforces the argument that preserving places–not just documents or pictures of places–is important to keep the fabric and traditions of families and ultimately the larger society intact:
Now that my grandparents and parents are gone, my trips to Neshoba County center on a few reliable anchors. The old store is chief among them. Some might suggest that having an emotional connection to an old general mercantile store is a bit strange. Perhaps they’re right.
. . . .
How can I explain it? It’s as if I can hear the echoes of the footsteps of my people in that old store, hear my mother’s voice and feel my father’s hand on my shoulder.
I can look out the window and see my Papaw Salter sitting on the tailgate of his truck rolling his own from a tin of Prince Albert tobacco with OCB papers.