Gerald and Helen Wood's Book

Pages 71 through 85


The purpose of our visit to Britain in 1974 was to visit relatives in Wales and to observe some Quaker Meetings.  

After some time in London, where we attended Hampstead Meeting; a month in Cardiff, where we attended Charles Street Meeting; and a week of festivities at the Welsh Elsteddfod, we went by train to Manchester, picked up a Hertz car and drove to Barley, Lancashire.

Our cousins, Jessie and Jimmie Barlow, who live in the beautiful village of Barley, made our stay there the highlight of our whole trip. With their knowledge of the area and expert guidance, we found and visited many Quaker Meetings that were started in the early days of the ministry of George Fox. Sawley, Crawshawtooth and Marsden Meeting Houses were interesting, each in its own way; but perhaps the most interesting of all was the extra bits of information that we learned about Haworths who lived and attended Meetings in this area two centuries ago who were our forefathers. Many by the name still live in the area. Over five hundred Haworths were listed in the Nelson telephone book.

In addition to hearing about early Quakers and Haworths, we also learned some interesting stories about the "Witches of Pendle" which made our climb to the top of Pendle Hill an exciting trip.

Before we returned to Wichita, we spent a week near Lake Windemere within easy driving distance of Briggflatts, Preston Patrick, and Yealand Conyers Meeting Houses.

We came home knowing that we must go again soon for another stay at Pendle Inn in Barley, Lancashire.

signed Verla Griffiths

             Tom Griffiths

(End page 71)






NOTE: This report spans the gap from Part IX and includes data and letters and excerpts from letters that we felt should be passed on.

Letter from Esther Speicher May 31, 1976.

Dear Cousins,

We have a new branch for the family tree, Michael John Ayers, born March 12, 1976. We went up the middle of February, drove if you please, because Sue had been hospitalized and Krista needed us. We were in Montana about ten weeks. The doctors took the baby about three weeks early because all tests showed that he was able to survive, he was five pounds fourteen ounces.  

I've never cared for so small a baby before, but he was strong and wiry.  Now he weighs ten pounds and is twenty two inches long. I miss the children so much, particularly two-year old Krista. She's a love.  

Steve and Joanne have adopted another little boy, Chauncey Charles Haworth, named for my father and so he'd have the same initials. That would have pleased Daddy very much. He was born February 3, 1976.

We arrived home the Friday after Easter, came between storms. Going up we lay over in Idaho Falls because of snow. We bad real winter weather while we were there, fifteen below zero several mornings, but inside we were cozy warm. It was our first experience with the present day comforts of cold countries, a furnace on a thermostat and good insulation. We had new radial tires so used chains only once. Ron has studded snow tires, so was out every day. The morning Michael was born was one of the worst ones. Sue had to be taken from St. Vincent's to the Deaconess by ambulance, because a tubal may not be performed in a Catholic hospital and all the maternity is at St. Vincents. So they brought Michael & a nurse back first and later Susan. One of the doctors said they should have a "Martin Luther'' room at St. Vincents.

Al Jones is on his way home from France. J had a card from Barcelona.  Bonnie and the baby came the first of May to see her parents. - - Elizabeth Ann will be one in August.  

Bertha is physically well but gets very confused. We are so thank­ful that she is in the manor where every one is most kind. Also she has two great nieces who are most thoughtful, Joe's daughters.

Your cousin, Esther Speicher

(End of page 72)

From Edna Haworth's letter written December 7, 1976, Grand Junction, Colorado

"Last spring we learned that Paul had uremia - - - He got along fairly well with several minor upsets, but was almost completely dependent on me. However I could see - - - he needed a good going over, and we both decided the V. A. Hospital in Grand Junction was the answer."

"I had rented an apartment about a block from the entrance to the hospital and was nearly ready to move down bringing Paul when he had to be admitted to the Craig hospital. Several days later he was brought to Grand Junction by ambulance. Everything seemed to go bad at once and a week later he died."

"He had requested cremation which was done here. The Memorial service was held in Craig and most of the Boulder family came - Faye, Johnie, Myrtle and Tony. We were so pleased they came. It was an effort for Faye, I know. Next spring Bill and I will scatter the ashes on a hill at Lay and we will put a marker in the Craig cemetery, probably in the Veteran's plot."

"For the present I shall stay here. - - - After the Holidays I will go back to Cold Craig and get the legal proceedings under way."

Grand Junction Address : (restricted)


   Insert: obit of Paul Haworth (Please click on the thumbnail)

(End of page 73)

Letter from Grace Haworth written December 17, 1975.

Dear Cousins, Gerald and Helen,

I should have written to you long ago, but I am afraid that is one of my failings - I mean well. We lost Harold on July 24th. The Lord was merciful to us all and certainly to " Hap " as he was in no pain at any time and it is a comfort to us to know that he is at peace, even though we, of course, miss him very much. He was feeling ill when we returned from a week at the beach in North Carolina. The doctor thought he should go into the hospital for a few days, instead of getting better he had a stroke, was unconscious and died in a few days. The boys were here and that was a help to me.

Me is resting now in Arlington National Cemetery - Grave 517, Section 67.  We had a short service at the bedside after his death at 2:30 A. M. , the family all together there, the next day our friends came to call until 7:00 P. M. when we left for D.C. and the funeral the next day. The Navy Chaplain gave a beautiful service. We had what is known as a modified military funeral, we did not have the caisson. I did not feel up to so much ceremony and besides it would not have been in keeping with our life style. It is my intention to be buried also in Arlington.

I am busy and I am thankful that I have my job at the hospital. I am busy with my church work and also I am active in the medical assistance assoc­iation. So, I can truly say that time does not hang on my hands, I have a big yard to take care of and the property we rent. Then, two of our sons are here in Norfolk with their families so I visit with them.

The National Convention of the American Medical Assistants will be having their meeting in Wichita in a couple of years. It is my intention to attend and my hope that I can visit with you at that time.

Please let me continue to receive the Haworth letters - we treasure the things that you sent us relating to John Perry Haworth). The pictures are in our William Perry's home - he and his wife had them framed and they are hanging on their bedroom wall - they especially treasure the one of Grandmother and Grandfather Haworth in front of their home in Miami.


Helen Fe and Bill Jones have a new address: (restricted)

Tom and Verla Griffiths are on a month's tour of the Orient and the South Pacific.

Bill Tom Griffiths has completed his tour of duty in Korea and returned home early in December.

According to our latest word Joe Griffiths has retired from the Navy and is settling in the Orient - spot to date not given.

Bill and Doris Wood went to California in December where they will have the family all together for Christmas. They do not plan to return to Albuquerque until in February.

(End of page 74)

Norfolk, Virginia

December 11, 1976

Dear Cousins, Gerald and Helen,

I have missed hearing from you this past year. It has been a very busy year for me. I had thought I was very independent until I had everything left for me to do and then I found it was a different story.

However, as I said, I have been busy. I did the planning and "bossing" for the renovation of three houses, one of them I had just bought in July. I enjoy doing that and I learned a lot from Harold, although he would never let me be around where the jobs were going on -"Hap" wore the pants in our household and he said I was trouble, because I either could not see how things were going to be or I wanted to change them after they were finished. But, I paid the bills and kept the books so I know where money goes in these projects and, how much it takes. When I found the man who does my work for me I told him I was subject to changing my mind and if he could not work with that kind of a person he had best tell me.  He said it would not bother him and we have gotten along very well. My neighbors say Hap would have never believed I could do it.

I went to Honolulu this summer. I had not planned to go but one of my friends was going to the International Lions Club Convention with her husband, and she invited me to go along. She thought since I had been there before I would be just the one to show them around. I enjoyed it very much but it was not a vacation that brings one back rested. While I was there I was fortunate in being able to see my oldest grandson who is in the Navy.

I also went to Idaho for the Fourth of July. That was a decision because the Oklahoma Isenhowers were having a family reunion at the same time and relatives were coming from different places. I really enjoyed being out in the desert and away the crowds. Our Marine son rode his motorcycle over from California and that was quite a jaunt for only a 36 hour visit.

It made the summer for me - I do miss "J" and I wish since he does not have a wife, nor even a serious girl friend, that he would come to the east coast for duty. He likes California, especially where he is at Twentynine Palms.

Perry has been doing a lot of traveling. He is leaving today for Ireland, which will be his third trip there in the past couple of months.  Virginia Chemicals Corporation is building a new plant in Dublin and Perrys' work is with this phase of the company.

(End of page 75)

I am so happy for Danny and only sorry that his Dad cannot share with me.

Danny has taken sabbatical leave from the Norfolk School System and is attending the University of Virginia, Charlottesville with the aim or completing his work and receiving his Ph.D. in June 1977. He will get his degree in education with a major in counseling and a minor in statistics. His wife and son remained in Norfolk and he drives home for the weekends. He is not having the easiest time but with hard work and endurance he makes every deadline. It is especially gratifying because he had to be drug through the first 12 grades of school on the "end of a rope." However, after his first trip abroad as a sailor he came back and said he had never realized the value of an education or the privilege it was until he had seen people with no hope of ever getting beyond where they were.

I am planning to spend Christmas with my mother in Delaware. Mother is now 93 and she still lives alone. That is so wonderful.

I am still working in the hospital and I have no idea of retiring at least until July 1979. I will be 65 then so will have earned my benefits. However, I can continue to work until I am 70 at which retirement is mandatory.

I was sick this fall. I was in the hospital for 16 days and altogether I was away from my work for five weeks. I do carry a lot of things on my shoulders and am involved in this and that and my doctor said it was like this; "that I am a perfectionist, and that type of person can get along fine being as involved as I was, providing everything goes smooth, but when the going gets rough they cannot roll with the punches and that it is not unusual for them to collapse." Which is exactly what happened to me. I am physically healthy and now I know that I must remember and not try to organize things so completely that I fall apart and cause my children a lot of worry and inconvenience.

Please remember us in your prayers. I wish for you God's continued blessings at Christmas and throughout the coming New Year.

Perry and Carol have the family pictures you sent. They have had them framed and have devoted a wall space to them. We have always said Carol Ann was more Haworth than she was Shelby.

[This page is too faded to read the handwritten signature.]

(End of page 76)


Wichita, Kansas

Dear [Abbie Parish is handwritten here]

After 50 years of Christmas Greetings we are feeling it is time to phase out our long list. We have enjoyed the cards and messages from friends, far and near, this year as we have in the past. But this year we could not make the deadline, so we are sending this late document.

The year brought birthdays - 80th for Gerald and 75th for Helen -and the years are slowing us. Really, though, we don't feel we are as old as we once felt people were in the years past 70.

The year also brought us a Golden Wedding anniversary in July, with family, friends and memories.

September brought Gerald a " light " stroke, followed by a second in early December. "Light" yes, in comparison, but they have left considerable impairment that has restricted our activities. Fortunately

Gerald can move about, talk and use his mind, but these activities vary with pressures and concentration of effort.

Gerald has insisted that Helen continue work with the Quaker Collection at Friends University, which she does on a limited basis. Gerald is still able to repair, rebuild and rebind the Quaker books, but at a slower pace.

December 9 brought David Roy and family from Dayton, Ohio, where he teaches at Wright State University. They were able to remain a week with us on their way to Gina's folks in Arizona. It was a wonderful week.

Christmas was spent with our attorney son, Thomas Aldin, and his family here in Wichita. His daughter, Janet Gail and family - the MacMahans - were with him and we got to enjoy them and their two children - our great grand daughters. Michelle was just a month old. The warmth of Christmas and the deep family affection made it a memorable day.

Sincere wishes to you and yours for a happy, healthy, and profitable year.

Gerald & Helen Wood

Wichita, Kansas 

(End of page 77)  

(Pages  78  to 82 are inserts)

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(End of page 82)

Dear Friends: (and cousins handwritten in) January 17, 1978

Cards, notes and letters from friends have helped make the holiday season a most pleasant one. Added to that we have had telephone visits with absent family. We spent Christmas day with our son Thomas Aldin, an attorney, and his family here in Wichita.

Gerald adds his personal note " I didn't ask for it - my 8lst year. It came as a surprise and was ushered in by light strokes. Every phase of my life has been affected. But for my wife of over 50 years I could not cope."

So the year has been one of discovery of impairments and their limits and learning to cope. We often feel we have accomplished little but as we look back we find a good deal has been accomplished and enjoyed. The year has been centered at home and our traveling has been in spirit, in memories and by mail, telephone and T. V. We have done little entertaining, but have enjoyed many visits from friends far and near. We still hear from friends abroad of some sixty years and new ones made more recently. The Conference of Friends in the Americas held here brought many old friends and much inspiration.

Helen in the Quaker Collection at Friends University found the conference a very busy time as the Quaker Room was the center of lots of interest and activity, and I might say of some surprise to Friends from the east.

Many old and new friends were profitable contacts both personally and collection wise. The year has also seen the Kansas Yearly Meeting Archives moved to a room adjacent to the Quaker Collection. Here Helen has charge of them and the records are readily available and can be used in the room.

Gerald has rebound, repaired and rebuilt many old Quaker books. We each have been slowed in our activities as there is so much of interest to scan and read. We are getting a real Quaker education. " Roots" has brought a deluge of genealogical inquiries as the word has spread that so many families have Quaker roots and that Quaker records are prime research material.

We have had a good visit with Gerald's brother Bill and wife, who traveled in England, Scotland and on the continent this past summer. They have just moved from Albuquerque, New Mexico back to California. Helen's brother Homer and wife of Newberg, Oregon visited us and the Allens.

David Roy, our son who is a professor of physics at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio brought his family to see us this summer.  Thomas Aldin's daughter Janet Gail MacMahan and family moved to Boulder, Colorado, but bring their children to visit us. We do enjoy those two little great granddaughters.

It is a privilege to live within a block of Friends University. We can't begin to take in all it offers, but we can still keep in touch. We have been able to attend few gatherings, so we have used T. V. more than usual.

Keeping up with national and international affairs has not only been informative, but has brought concern. It keeps our horizons wide. We are often reminded how very much most things have changed in our lifetime.  Violence, moral attitudes, personal principles and goals as portrayed by the news media are disturbing.

We are gratefull for our American heritage and covet that it be at its best. We are grateful for out Quaker heritage and feel it has much to offer today. And we are gratefull for our own family heritage. This has been especially rich to us as we have done personal research into our Quaker back ground that reaches back to earliest Quakerism. We have been and are glad to share our findings, especially in the Haworth line.

Now, we, in turn, hope that we may pass at least a part of that which has been good to our descendants. May the year 1978 be a good one for you and yours.

Sincerely, (signed Gerald & Helen Wood)

(End of page 83)

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