Married at 15

The Mannings circa 1903

When they got married, in 1903 in Alabama, my paternal grandfather (Ollie Manning) couldn’t read. This was probably common in this area of Alabama in the early twentieth century. He was a carpenter, so he could work to some degree without reading anything.

My grandmother (Mary Jones) decided that she’d teach him to read. And she did. When they married, she was about 15 years old and he was about 26. The first picture shows them on their wedding day. She was a little over 5 feet tall and he was not much taller. I don’t know why he is sitting while she is standing.

The next photo shows them years later. They are probably both well in their sixties and maybe seventies. I am really not sure, but I do know that one is 11 years older than the other. So, there is my grandfather, whom I never knew, reading to my grandmother, whom I also never knew. He’s reading his bible to his sweet wife after her eyesight had gotten so bad that she could read no longer. I wish I could have spent time with them.

Grandpa reading to my Grandmother

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