Do You Remember When? – by Benjamin Harrison Russell

While visiting my mom this week I had a special treat. I found several old letters she had saved that my grandfather Russell had written to the Public Forum section of the Decatur Daily newspaper in 1969-1970.

Benjamin Harrison Russell and James Martin Hughes in 1939.

I want to share them with you, but first let me tell you a little about my grandfather. His name was Benjamin Harrison Russell. He was born in Morgan County, AL, April 21, 1889 and died there November 11, 1987 at the age of 98. He married my grandmother in 1910. Because they were divorced when my mother was about four years of age, I never got to know him very well so these letters helped me know the man.

Here is one thing he had to say:

Do You Remember When?

We paid all our taxes at tax collectors office? Farmers planted as many acres as he pleased of anything he pleased? Got his weather report from Lady’s Birthday Almanac? Our government believed the philosophy of Abe Lincoln –
No work, no eat” was a good deterrent against any would-be parasite? We were taught the best way to prevent hunger was more work and less waste?

All this was before our present Robin Hood style government that taxes the working men and women to pay for food and pay an army of people to hand it out to many who have no right to receive it.


Sounds as if he could have written this about the current administration, doesn’t it?

Next post will be a letter he wrote with ‘tongue in cheek’ – How the moon affects life on earth.


About jlue

I am a grandmother of seven and I like to garden, read, study the Bible, and spend time with family. I am not very politically active, but very interested in who is elected to lead our country.
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3 Responses to Do You Remember When? – by Benjamin Harrison Russell

  1. Julie Perry says:

    Hi, Benjamin Harrison Russell was my Great-Grandfathr, it was reall neat to see this site on here. I love seeing all the old photos and having his letters was a special touch. I only remember meeting him a couple of times. You have his birthdate listed above as 1989 rather than 1889. : )


    • jlue says:

      Julie, Thanks for pointing out the mistake. He would be rather young, wouldn’t he?

      Which of Poppa’s children is your grandparent, Bobbie, Carl, or R.V.? I knew Uncle Carl and Uncle R.V., but never really got to know Bobbie. My mother is Odessa. She is still living and is now 91 years of age. Poppa lived to be 98. Uncle Bennie is now 92 and Aunt Eloise is still living, but I don’t recall her age. It is nice to hear from you.


      • Julie Perry says:

        Bobbie was my Grandma, her daughter Lenita is my mom. I called my mom to share this information with her as she lived with her grandparents until she was 5 years old, she feels especially close to them. She said that last she knew, Eloise was living up here in our area of central Illinois, but that it had been years ago since she has seen her. I have been working feverishly on our family tree on, I think I am officially hooked. My email address is, if you email my your email, I can send you an invite to my family tree page. I would love it if you could review for accuracy and possibly fill in some blanks.


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