The Order of the White Moon
A Level III Final Project for
The Sacred Three Goddess School:
A Goddess Amongst Us
Ethel Mae Jones Detrich
March 13 1899 to August 10 1989
My Great Grandmother
~ Peace Whitehorse ~
(© 2011. All original material in this site is under copyright protection and is the intellectual property of the author.)
She was born Ethel Mae Jones in Hamilton Township, Franklin County, Pennsylvania in March of 1899. And she died in Guilford Township, Franklin County, Pennsylvania in August of 1989. I am not sure she ever left the state. I do know that she traveled as far as Erie PA because she went there a few times to visit a brother.
She only went to school until the fourth grade and then she went to work in the Heinz Plant in Chambersburg PA to help support the family. At the age of 14 she married Earl Kyle Detrich and they had two daughters, one when Ethel was 16 and the other when Ethel was 18. Earl was 9 years older than Ethel.
Above is a photo of my great grandparents with their first-born daughter, my great aunt Marie. Their second daughter, Gail, was my maternal grandmother.
"Nanny" and "Grampy" as I called them lived on Franklin Street in Chambersburg, and before that on the Warm Springs Road in Chambersburg and also in Cheesetown, which is not really on any map, but was near Edenville outside of Chambersburg in Hamilton Township.
I grew up spending many weekends and summer weeks at the house on Franklin Street. These were some of the happiest times of my childhood. Grampy died in 1971 when I was almost eleven years old. So I have some memories of him but most of my memories are of Nanny. She was an amazing little woman. She was all of four feet ten inches tall, but she was the undisputed head of our family. Nobody did anything of importance without consulting her first. She was the Wise Woman in our family.
Nanny was insistent that when my son was born that he would wear belly bands and she went so far as to make these for me on her treadle sewing machine, an old Singer, so that I could wear them on my son. The purpose of the belly bands was to be sure that the umbilicus did not rupture. The doctor that I took my son to was not too keen on the belly bands but I used them regardless, because Nanny said so.
Five generation photo with Nanny holding my son.
I am certain that he had a belly band on in that photo!
Stories are told about my great grandmother that lead me to believe that she was a Pow-Wow practitioner. She was born into a Mennonite, or "Plain German" family. That is the origin of many Pow-Wows. She was able to blow fire out of a burn, and it is told that she could do something with a kitten involving a box and a string that would keep the kitten small although it would age as any living thing does. It was Nanny who told me about dandelion tea and catnip tea and other remedies when my son was an infant. There were no hex signs in the house although that does not surprise me since Grampy was a high or "fancy" German, a Lutheran. Nanny converted to the Lutheran faith when she married.
Nanny was famous in the family for her cream of tartar cookies, which she made at Christmastime. Nobody in my family has been able to make them except her. Oh what I would give for just one of Nanny's cream of tartar cookies!!! They were like sand tarts, a rolled cookie cut into shapes with cookie cutters and decorated with candy beads and colored sugars. Christmastime was never complete without them.
Here is a somewhat modern recipe for rolled cream of tartar cookies:
1/4 c. lard
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tbsp. cream of tartar
1/2 c. can milk
Mix all the above ingredients together. Add self rising flour to make a stiff dough. Roll on floured board. Cut and bake. Bake at 375 degrees for 10 minutes until light brown. Makes 3 dozen.
Her recipe was a little different and went something like this:
Mix sugar, lard and egg, with milk. Add a dash of vanilla and a good pinch of cream of tartar. Add flour until stiff. Roll out and cut into shapes, decorate, and bake in a medium oven until golden.
No wonder nobody can duplicate them...
Nanny at my first wedding in 1978.
I often wonder what Nanny thinks of me being a Witch. Somehow, I think she probably approves. I call her into Circle often, and I miss her terribly. Goddess bless you, Nanny.
HONORING OUR GRANDMOTHERS RITUAL
SET UP ALTAR:
Chime candles: yellow, red, blue, green, white, silver
Intent candles: white [spirituality], red [strength], pink [honor]
Photo of Grandmother
Something Grandmother owned
Anything that reminds you of Grandmother
Sage oil [wisdom] to anoint candles
Sandalwood incense [for love and spiritual growth]
The intent of this ritual is to honor Grandmother.
BODY OF RITUAL
Light red intent candle
Thank you Grandmother for the strength you have given me! You showed me strength in your gentleness and love and in the way you guided me. I have your strength because I am your granddaughter.
Light white intent candle
Thank you Grandmother for the spirituality that you taught me! It may not be the spiritual path I am following now, but you showed me the importance of the spiritual in my life. I honor you, Grandmother, as I walk the path I have chosen.
Pick up each of the objects on the altar that represent Grandmother.
Meditate on each one, and remember time spent with Grandmother.
Light pink intent candle
Grandmother, never doubt my love for you, as I never doubt your love for me. You showed me what love was, by the way you cared for me. You taught me that love was important. I remember you Grandmother as I walk the path of Love.
An' it harm none, this ritual is done!
Nanny, you are very special to me.
Strong and kind at the same time.
You praised my artwork and my writing,
You taught me the value of a nickel and a dime.
You taught me I was worthwhile,
You took the time to really be with me.
You taught me to crochet and sew,
And to be still and just "be".
Time went by way too fast,
I grew up and you grew old.
Then one day you slipped beyond the veil,
I was left alone in the cold.
But now I know you are still here,
You are with me still!
I feel your presence in my heart,
Your love within my will.