Grandmother Marie's Necklace

In Attire
My grandmother's necklace
My grandmother's necklace

My grandmother, Marie, died when my mother was 3 years old and I was never able to meet her. Although I’ve never known her, I’ve always felt connected to her because we share the same name. When I was younger, my mother gave me a necklace that used to be Marie’s. Along with this necklace, I was given her senior photo, where she can be seen wearing the necklace. Since Marie was wearing the necklace in her senior photo, I decided to wear it in mine. By replicating her photo, I was really able to connect with her and allow the memory of her to continue. This beautiful necklace was extremely unusual for my grandmother to have owned since it was expensive and her family was greatly impacted by the Great Depression. Her parents moved to the US in the late 1800s from Germany in search of wealth from the lumber industry. They settled in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, my mother’s hometown, and became important figures within the community. They became increasingly wealthy until the stock market crash in 1929. Before the crash, however, I believe that my great grandparents were able to purchase this necklace for my grandmother and give it to her as a present for her high school graduation. When I look at this necklace, I think of my family history and how important moving to the US was for our identity. In addition, I think of my grandmother and my connection to her, despite having never met her in person, and I hope this necklace remains in my family to keep that connection alive. 

Place(s): Germany, Williamsport, Pennsylvania

– Marie Taylor

Relationship:  Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more