Monday, April 30, 2012

Blast from the Past

I love old Bibles.  I especially adore very old bibles that have all the family information written in them, even if that information isn't about my family.  All the births, marriages, deaths, and other important events that took place so long ago; it's a rich history, and I am completely fascinated.  The more dog-eared, highlighted, and written in, the better!

I have a couple of very old Bibles that were given to me by people outside of my family.  There are one or two that I got at antique stores.  I have two that belonged to family members, and those I treasure most.  One was my dad's, and the other, my Grandma Rose's. 

My dad's Bible is one of the very few things of his that I wanted after he died.  I know my mom would have liked to have kept it, but she was gracious enough to let me have it.  Dad's Bible is literally worn out.  It is falling apart.  It's a real mess!  He kept it in a zippered cover, and that keeps it from getting lost in chunks.  I love that it's in such bad shape!  It was much used, written in, highlighted, and full of sticky notes that my dad would put in places where something struck him.  The front and back covers are full of sticky notes, too.  It is very comforting to go through my Dad's Bible, and read his notes.  I can hear his voice in them, and it's wonderful to hear his thoughts so clearly.  I use his Bible often, and it's special to read a passage, and there are a lot of them, that he'd highlighted.  It's like my dad is telling me, "I was here, and this was important to me".

My Grandma Rose's Bible was also obviously well-used.  It, too, is ragged and falling apart.  After her death, when her house was being cleaned out, this Bible was on a shelf with books and things that hadn't been picked up by other family members, and I was glad to have it.  Grandma had several Bibles, and she hadn't used this one in years, but at some point, probably when she was young, it was the Bible she'd read and wrote in.  It's wonderful seeing her handwriting and reading the notes that she wrote, and seeing what she'd underlined or marked.  I wonder what she was thinking at the moment a certain passage touched her enough for her to underline it.

I also have a very old hymnal.  Its copyright is 1887, it belonged to a school in 1890, and then was gifted to someone in 1907.  According to a note in the front cover, Dec 19, 1907, in Walla Walla, Washington, there was snow on the ground for the first time that winter.  I love it!  It is so much fun to go through it, and see hymns that we still sing today.  There are many hymns that I don't recognize, and it would be great fun to have someone play them.  This is one of the times that I so wish I could play piano!  Ah, maybe someday...


  1. Oh, you almost made me cry reading about Jerry's Bible.

    Actually, it was not the first Bible he wore out. I gave him that one for his birthday one year, because he had just about worn out the one he was using--pages were starting to come loose and half the concordance had fallen out. And that one was really my Bible that his mom had given me. He just sort of took it over and wore it out. I still have it.

  2. I find it very comforting that both Uncle Jerry's and Grandma's Bibles were so worn out. :)