The Family of James Patton Taylor

Standing, from left to right: Napoleon Bonaparte (Uncle Pole), Baxter (my grandfather), Gertrude (Mrs. Harvey Hannah), Sanna (Mrs. James Pouder), James P. Jr., Robert David, Philip Sheridan.
Front: James Patton Taylor (my great-grandfather) and Cora Showalter, whom he married some years after the death of Mary Susan George (my great-grandmother and the mother of all those standing in this picture).

      According to my father's note, this photograph was taken at a family reunion in 1923. If so, Alfred A. Taylor, James's younger brother, who was present at the reunion, would have just completed his term as governor of Tennessee and likely there would have been some lively fiddling. Granddad (Baxter Taylor) was both a fiddler and a fiddle-maker, and of course Alf's fiddling was well known and widely appreciated. No doubt others in the family played as well. And there would have been speeches and stories and platters of fried chicken galore, not to mention watermelon. No doubt Baxter would have answered questions about life in his adopted state of Oklahoma and its always turbulent politics. Tales of "Our Bob"--who had died a scant ten years before--or could it be eleven already?--would be told with such reverent gusto that children such as my father must have thought "Our Bob" more of a saint than a mere mortal U. S. senator.

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