Story and Clark Piano

The piano, as it sits in our front room.
The piano, as it sits in our front room.

For my whole life, my family has had a Story and Clark upright piano. It’s made of chipping mahogany, and has old, yellowish keys. It has a matching bench, but it’s all scratched up from anxious fingers. This piano has always had a unique smell to it, too. When she was young, my great grandma, June, always had a grand piano in her house. Once she got married, she wanted her own piano. So, in the late 1940s, she and my great grandpa bought an upright piano in Stonestown, California. When they moved to Menlo Park in 1952, they brought the piano with them. She wanted all three of her daughters to learn to play, but only my great aunt Carol did. My grandma, Francie recalls how her grandma Della would come over and play hymns on the piano, and her dad would sing along. She says he wasn’t a very good singer, so he started taking home classes. His teacher would come over and play the piano, and he would sing along to her melodies. They would even have big recitals at their house! When I was little, the piano stayed at my grandparent’s house. I took a liking to it and started fiddling with it when I would come over. People told me I had a natural gift! So, when I was six, my family inherited the piano. I began taking lessons off and on for many years. Sometimes I’ll still sit down and play something on it just for fun. I really enjoy playing piano, and knowing the story behind this one makes it more special. 

Place(s): Stonestown, CA - Menlo Park, CA - Napa, CA

– Jillian A.

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