A Story About Joannah Bingham, daughter of Sanford Bingham [and Martha Ann Lewis], son of Erastus Bingham [and Lucinda Gates], who was the son of Sarah (Sally) Perry [and Elisha Warner Bingham], who was the daughter of Capt. David Perry [and Anna Bliss]
This information came from the life sketch of Joannah Bingham written by her daughters, Josie B. Garner and Nannie B. Stephens, with the assistance of Sophia Bingham, Autumn, 1933, and from the book "The Descendants of Erastus Bingham and Lucinda Gates" (Ogden, Utah: Erastus Bingham Family Corp., June, 1970). -- © 12 Sep 2000 by Karen Rackliffe
retold by Karen Rackliffe, a descendant of Joannah Bingham
Nine-year old Joannah was proud of her new stockings. She had made them all by herself. Of course she had known how to knit for a long while now, but she had only made scarves for her little brothers or potholders for her mother. This was her first pair of real socks with turned heels. She put them on with a sigh of satisfaction.
Mother had taught her how to gather the wool left on bushes and shrubs by the sheep. She kept the wool in a sack in the loft of their cabin. When the sack was full she borrowed Mother's washtub to wash the wool. She filled the tub with warm soapy water and washed the dirt and grease from the wool. Then she laid the white clumps of wool out in the sun to dry.
When the soft clouds of wool were dry, Mother showed Joannah how to card the fibers straight and spin the fluffy softness into yarn. Carefully she twisted the wool into thin strands. When the yarn was finished Mother showed her which plants to boil to make a dark brown dye. Joannah had to keep a fire going under the big black kettle in the yard while she made the dye. Then she put the yarn into the boiling brown liquid. After a time she lifted the steaming sodden mass out of the water with a long stick and hung it across a pole in the yard to dry.
After the wool dried, Joannah wound it into a big brown ball. Now she was ready to start knitting her first socks.
Joannah reached down and scratched her ankle. The socks were itchy, but so were the stockings Mother made. She thought about the weeks it had taken her to finish knitting both socks. Mother had watched her progress carefully and made her take out every mistake so the socks would be perfect. Mother kept telling her to hold the yarn loosely but Joannah liked to tug it tight. Her strong little fingers drew the stitches so tight that the finished stockings could nearly stand alone. She wore them almost every day now that it was winter. She had been wearing them for weeks now and the tight little stitches still looked as strong as iron links in a chain. Joannah scratched her ankle again. She feared that her new stockings would never wear out.
[from Denise G. Jones -- a descendant of David Perry1, Sarah [Perry] Bingham2, Erastus Bingham3 and Lucinda Gates, Sanford Bingham4 and Martha Ann Lewis, William Bingham5 and Anna Maria Petersen, Annie Maria [Bingham] Gudmundson6 and Arthur Daniel Gudmundson. Sr.)