I was in line to
carry on this male tradition in our family. Grandfather had his character
molded not by a loving mother, which he experienced only during his
babyhood, but in the cruel tradition of slavery with his foster parents,
followed by the discipline of Civil War duty, and then the manly building
of America. My father was only three when his mother (my grandmother)
died; he was raised totally by Grandfather and learned the male customs
of that time by his constant life with Grandfather.
I, in turn, spent
many, many hours with my father who had his office at home and passed
on to me the philosophies that he believed in. Mother was totally supportive
of Father; she lived and breathed for him. She was always so selfless
that it was really Father who counted in matters of family tradition.
had only a high school education he made the most of the opportunities
he had; for example, he read every book in the local library one winter
and in later life used to engage in learned discussions on history with
Judge Gipson, among others.
Father had learned
a lot about basic values of life and about entrepreneuring, and he wasnt
at all reluctant to go it alone in following his ideas. This was my
tradition to follow.