“Seventh Heaven!”

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Salesman, Hubert Harris, 1935

(Remembering Mary Ellen Townsend Harris, 1911-2016)

A few days before her twenty-third birthday, in May of 1934, Mary Ellen’s grandpa John Townsend died.  She went to the Big House where she and Grandma Mary comforted each other, and recalled those childhood days when Grandma’s house was Mary Ellen’s favorite place to be.  So much had changed for each of them, yet in their souls they were closer than ever.  Mary Ellen had no idea that just six months later a whole new chapter would begin to open in her life.

Salesmen came and went at the Cincinnati office of the Smokeless Coal Company.  Mary Ellen enjoyed talking with them, so nothing seemed noticeable on a November day when a young man came in selling office supplies.  Somehow he seemed different from the others–neat, pleasant, polite–not just talkative or flirty.  He said his name was Hubert Harris.  They…

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