AND HARRIETT ABELL, NORTH PERRY, OHIO, 1938
parents were secretly married in 1938. They eloped to Alexandria,
Virginia, while escorting a class trip to Washington, DC. No
one knew. At that time in Ohio there were rules forbidding married
couples from teaching in the same schools. Eventually they were
discovered and my father was fired. But for two years they had
kept their secret safe, which was not easy in a small village
like Mowrystown, Ohio.
Two documents survive to tell the story of their courtship .
One is the photograph of them at Lake Erie made by my grandfather
Floyd Strong Lockwood, our family's first photographer.
The other is a love letter discovered in the family Bible by
my niece Mary, a Methodist minister, in 1999. The letter was
in an envelope addressed by a child. My father had arranged
that to conceal from the Mowrystown postmaster that he was writing
to my mother. His handwriting would have given him away.