Sunday, January 07, 2007

Honoring An Advocate for Peace

Clara Belle Sheldon Barnes
February 28, 1866 – January 7, 1942

When my grandmother was born, Andrew Johnson was President. The Civil War had ended in April 1865, a few months before her birth. President Johnson instituted the “Reconstruction” period to bring the country back from the divide the war had created.

Her father, my great grandfather “Papa Sheldon” fought valiantly for the Confederacy. When he returned, he became an advocate for peace. My great grandmother, Millicent Diver Sheldon, raised Clara Belle accordingly. This heritage was passed on to my mother and from her to me.

Today we have a country divided about the war in Iraq. I have no doubt that, were she here today, Gramma would be out there holding a candle for the peace vigil.

It amazes me that in this 21st century I have such close links back to the middle of the 19th century. And a 141 year history of advocacy for peace.


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