Sunday, July 31, 2011

Sentimental Sunday - 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History: Nani's and Nana's

The prompt for Week 31 of 52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History is Grandparents’ House.

Describe your grandparents’ house. Was it big or small? How long did they live there?

When I was a child in the 1960s, my maternal grandmother ("Nani") and step-grandfather, Wallace and Sara Wolfe Guokas Archibald, lived at 1118 Bay Oaks in Houston, Texas. This wasn't too far from my family's home in the early 60's at 7913 Cedel in Spring Branch. I don't remember a whole lot about the inside of the house. The outside was more memorable. My grandmother had a green thumb and the house was surrounded by trees and bushes and all kinds of plants. There was a small swingset in the the backyard (that shows up in a lot of home movies my step-grandfather took). The photo above of me in the tree (then) in front of their house was taken in 1966.
My paternal grandparents, Paul and Elizabeth Massmann Pape ("Nana"), lived at 2547 Hastings in Evanston, Illinois, which was at the corner of Central and across from Bent Park.  They were in the end-unit of a three-plex.  I only visited them there a couple of times, the last being around July 4, 1970.  Besides being a great location to watch the parade down Central, having a wonderful playground across the street wasn't bad either.  Once again I don't remember much about the inside of the house, other than it had a full basement, a novelty for one like me who grew up in Texas.  The photo above was taken in January 2000.

Both Wallace and Paul died in 1970, and my grandmothers moved not too long after.  Nana moved in with her daughter Rosemary, my Aunt "Moe" and Uncle "Das" (Ronald) Dietz, in nearby Glenview, Illinois, and eventually she moved with them to Largo, Florida, where she passed away in January 2000.  Nani's younger sister Edith also lost her husband Robert Brown in 1970, and for a while they shared a house on Beechnut (between Fondren and the Southwest Freeway), not far from our home at 8015 Sharpview, until Aunt Edith remarried in 1981.  At that point Nani moved to a condo at 6161 Reims (again not far from our home), where she lived until she passed away in November 1997.

© Amanda Pape - 2011 - click here to e-mail me.


  1. You are inspiring me again! I have got to do this even though it is a day late.

  2. Kristin, you have all week for the 52 Weeks. :) My grandparents' houses aren't all that interesting - I bet yours are!