From Silence to Sound


When the oldest members of what we now call the “Greatest Generation” were yet infants and young children, the “old folks” of their time shared a glimpse of themselves, their memories growing up, and some of their experiences for posterity. They did this through the wonderfully new medium of talking pictures, sharing a brief look across seven or eight (and for some, even nine or ten) decades. They were in the same generation as President Coolidge’s father and grandfathers. For those who could look back on the preceding century, coming into the world just as the 1820s were winding down, there remained much to share. Life may not have been easy but it was life, beautiful and precious all the same. For them, it was the War of 1861-1865 under which many passed from childhood to maturity, forever shaping who they were and what they would become. They come from everywhere, California to Florida, New York City to Chicago, having watched these places go from quiet fields and unpaved paths (traversed by horse and buggy) to pavement and car, expansive skylines and bustling developments. It is a timely reminder that we are not as far from the big events of history as we may sometimes feel. Take a moment and listen, perhaps even reminisce with or appreciate again those in our memory who have shared a little of themselves with us.

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