Eastlake sideboard, shipped to Macon GA
Eastlake sideboard, shipped to Macon GA

While getting ready to move my mother from her home in Alabama, we took apart this old family sideboard to find that it was very clearly marked by the maker to be sent to Macon, Georgia.  My father's family immigrated from England in the 18th century, paused briefly in North Carolina, and then settled in middle Georgia, where they were merchants and cotton factors.  As they prospered, they often made big purchases in Macon, which was the closest commercial center.  Following the cotton crops, my father's family moved to Alabama in 1932 to manage the operations of cotton warehouses in Camp Hill, Alabama and the sideboard came with them.  My father's generation did not continue in the cotton business and he became a high school history teacher in Jacksonville, Alabama, where the sideboard came to reside in my parents' home.  But throughout these incremental migrations, middle Georgia continued to be the family's center of gravity, as this destination on the sideboard reminded me.  Discovering this mark on the sideboard also highlighted for me the value of deconstructing artifacts--either literally or figuratively--to find and confirm stories of immigration and migration.    

Year: 1932

– Katherine Malone-France

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