Welcome! I really enjoy exchanging information with people and love that this blog helps with that. I consider much of my research as a work in progress, so please let me know if you have conflicting information. Some of the surnames I'm researching:

Many old Cape families including Kelley, Eldredge/idge, Howes, Baker, Mayo, Bangs, Snow, Chase, Ryder/Rider, Freeman, Cole, Sears, Wixon, Nickerson.
Many old Plymouth County families including Washburn, Bumpus, Lucas, Cobb, Benson.
Johnson (England to MA)
Corey (Correia?) (Azores to MA)
Booth, Jones, Taylor, Heatherington (N. Ireland to Quebec)
O'Connor (Ireland to MA)
My male Mayflower ancestors (only first two have been submitted/approved by the Mayflower Society):
Francis Cooke, William Brewster, George Soule, Isaac Allerton, John Billington, Richard Warren, Peter Browne, Francis Eaton, Samuel Fuller, James Chilton, John Tilley, Stephen Hopkins, and John Howland.
Female Mayflower ancestors: Mary Norris Allerton, Eleanor Billington, Mary Brewster, Mrs. James Chilton, Sarah Eaton, and Joan Hurst Tilley.
Child Mayflower ancestors: Giles Hopkins, (possibly) Constance Hopkins, Mary Allerton, Francis Billington, Love Brewster, Mary Chilton, Samuel Eaton, and Elizabeth Tilley.

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Alfred and Mildred (Booth) Rollins: A Love Story


In honor of Valentine's Day, I'm taking a break from my usual blog format to write about my grandparents, Milly (Booth) and Alfred Rollins.  I always think of them on this day because Al was absolutely crazy in love with Milly! Even in their 70s he would call her "my Bride" and "Peach Blossom." She wasn't as open about emotions and would roll her eyes, but she adored him too. He would leave notes and poems for her to find around the house. She kept many of them which I found after she passed away. Below is one of the notes. He wrote better poems, but I love the heart on this one!

Milly was born Mildred Louise Booth on 15 May 1917, at West Dennis on Cape Cod, in the family home on Ferry Street built by her great-grandfather Hiram Kelley. Her parents were Wallace and Ethel (Kelley) Booth. As a teenager she married Arthur "Art" Washburn Davis, and they had a son Robert (my dad) in 1934. Their marriage was brief, unhappy, and sometimes violent and they soon divorced. Art did not stay involved in my Dad's life, so I never met him. From all the research I have done, it seems he was a troubled man. Because of him, though, I am descended from a boat load of Mayflower passengers and I had the immense pleasure of meeting his sweet half-sister Dorothy. 

The stars aligned when Milly met Al Rollins, a handsome, sweet, gentle, quiet man with a dry sense of humor. He fell in love with her instantly and grew to love her son. Although he was aware my grandmother could not have any more children, he popped the question and they were married on 22 Jan 1942 in Medford, Middlesex, Massachusetts.

They weren't perfect, but I find I focus mostly on the good things from the past. Although Al wasn't my biological grandfather, he was my grandfather in every sense of the word. They made time spent with them magical for my sister, Beth, and me. They lived on the ocean with their own private beach and it was like heaven on earth. They and my parents were into boating and both of our families always had multiple dogs. Christmas at their home was magical and we were spoiled rotten with presents. 

Al was born Alfred Addison Rollins in Danvers, Essex, Massachusetts, on 06 Apr 1913, to Alfred Rollins and Edith Norris. He served in the Air Force during WWII and signed the papers to adopt my Dad when he was serving overseas. 

Al died at Wareham, Plymouth, Massachusetts on 22 Sept 1991 at age 78 from lung cancer. In nearly every photo I see of him during his more than 2 years serving in WWII, he has a cigarette in his hand. 

Milly died suddenly from a heart attack on 9 Feb 1999 in Onset, Plymouth, Massachusetts at age 81. 

They have been gone a long time, but I think of them often. I was closer to my grandmother than nearly anyone in my life. From her I got my love of the ocean, boating, dogs (I even have 3 dogs like she did), antiques, jewelry, home decor, and all things Christmas. She was tough as nails: she was the one to bait my fishing hook and clean the fish we caught. From my grandfather I get my appreciation of nature and a beautiful yard. They set a wonderful example of what it means to be in a committed, loving relationship and for that I will always be grateful. 

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