I loved my Father-in-law. Having lost my own Dad, at the age of twelve, and married at the age (early) he was more like a Dad than a Father-in-law. I have always said he was one of the best men I ever knew. I never heard him say a bad thing about anyone. The nearest I ever heard him was when I had family members from California staying with us. Early one morning I stopped by his house on the way to the late Jim Owens Grocery Store. Grandy, as he was called, asked me what I was doing out so early. I told him the “Dutchess Demanded” pancakes for breakfast adding, “She is the laziest person I have ever known.” With that he chuckled and said, “She is not very ambitious is she?” I only wish that was the worse I ever said about anyone. Grandy was also one of the hardest workers I ever knew. Up until the time of his death he made a big garden. He was one of the last Village Black Smiths. I have been told that back in his younger days there wasn’t a horse he couldn’t shoe. During the Great Depression he moved his family to a farm at Planter, located out past the Jack Nolen Lake. Every morning he walked into town to his shop. Walking home every evening rain or shine, summer and winter. Some days he never made a dime. I loved to watch him work at his anvil making a garden tool or horse shoes. He was indeed a master at his trade. He was also a master at sharpening hand saws and cross cut saws. He would spend hours patiently working to get the teeth just right. People came from far and wide to have him work on their saws. When Greenwood was small town USA his shop was like the coffee shops of today where the men gathered to spread all the local news. Shortly after Mr. Hughart’s (“Grandy”) death brother Jim wrote the following. What a wonderful tribute to “Our Grandy”.
I heard the bells of heaven ring,
And echo all around,
Among the chimes last night I heard,
An old familiar sound.
Not church bells, nay, nor Carillion,
Nor sleigh bells in the snow,
The sound was like an anvil,
But then how could this be so?
Would a blacksmith be in heaven,
Where nothing needs repairs?
With street of gold and mansions vast,
With marbled walks and stairs?
The smith I knew was kind and good,
A friend to all he knew,
And heaven’s gate would open wide,
When he came marching through.
A man’s not measured by his skills,
His wealth or by his trade.
But what he is within his heart,
The fiber of which he’s made.
I closed my eyes and then I saw,
Beyond the heaven bright,
A blacksmith with his anvil,
Ringing out with all his might.
No longer does he labor,
With his sweat and with his tears.
He’s ringing out the glory of God,
That resounds beyond the years.