Ed Gardner

Ed Beard shares about being born and growing up in Sykesville. He was the youngest in a family of six.


JIM MAYOLA: Good morning.


JIM MAYOLA: It is Monday, June 28th, and we’re at the Community Media Center’s Express Studio. My name is Jim Mayola, and it is my privilege to be speaking to Edith Knight. Did I pronounce that right? Edith Knight.


JIM MAYOLA: And, Edith, you grew up in Carroll County.


JIM MAYOLA: OK. What year were you born, Edith?


JIM MAYOLA: 1949. So you and I are almost the same age. I was born in ’51. We’re just a couple of years apart. OK. And you say you were– were you born in Linwood? You grew up in Linwood.

EDITH KNIGHT: I was born in Frederick County Hospital.


EDITH KNIGHT: And then, after that, I went out to my grandparents’ place. It’s called Mar– Marble– Marble [INAUDIBLE] Farm. And I was there for, I understand, two years– which is just outside of Linwood– if you want to say just outside of Linwood. And then– uh, and then they moved to, you know, in Linwood.

And the place is between the creek– and– Little Pipe Creek and the railroad– Western Maryland Railroad. And just going outside the railroad, it was the feed mill, where they ground cattle feed– livestock feed. And– so, and then up through town, there was a lot of brick Victorian-type homes. And, um, right now half of Linwood’s for sale.

JIM MAYOLA: Oh, goodness. Now, you tell– told me that your family had a business in Linwood. What did they do?

EDITH KNIGHT: They sold dairy equipment. It was, like, the milking machines and pipelines and Zero milk tanks. And they also– New Idea farm equipment, which was just field– field equipment. It wasn’t anything involving engines.

JIM MAYOLA: So that was the equipment to use on the tractors.


JIM MAYOLA: So it was, like, plowing and cultivating.

EDITH KNIGHT: Oh, boy, plows and cultivating, um, mowing machines, um, corn pickers. Um, wasn’t any real big machines. It was more for the family farm.

And– and, really, we lived with the business. So– and then we also had a little barn– we had a little barn in the back, and we had goats. And we milked goats by hand, and we drank the milk. And we had chickens, and we took care of the chickens. And we had a big garden which we had to take care of and do canning.

And we had enough– you know, we also did some hay, uh, you know, for the goats for over the wintertime. And– and we all– and I– I– I also was out at my grandparents’ place was the John D. and Edith Roop. And I spent a lot of time out there– about half of my childhood out there. And they had– and my Uncle Roger at the time was a dairy farmer, and I helped milk cows there.

Oh, but what I did was, basically, I cleaned the udders of the cows before they went on the milking mach– before the milking machine went on, and helped to get the cows in. And they also had an old workhorse. And my grandfather liked to plow his garden with the workhorse. So I rode the workhorse in the garden.

JIM MAYOLA: Now, how old were you when you were doing this?

EDITH KNIGHT: I started– I have a– I didn’t bring a picture of myself. But, I guess, five, six years old, I started doing all this, up to my teenage years. And that was some of the activities. And I rode the horse back and forth to Linwood sometimes. And I also rode my bicycle back and forth. It was a mile and a half up and down hills. It was– and I rode– to some of the things I did. And, um, let’s see, what else?

JIM MAYOLA: So when you were a little girl growing up in Linwood, uh, I guess, in the early ’50s, most families had gardens, didn’t they?

EDITH KNIGHT: Most all of us did. I guess all of us had gardens– large gardens, especially if they have any size of a family– had gardens.

JIM MAYOLA: And everybody would put up food.

EDITH KNIGHT: We put up– we prepared for– for the winter. And some of us had chickens. There was other people had some chickens. Some didn’t.

And, um– and for some of the fun activities we did, there was other families there that had children, and we would play baseball in somebody’s yard. We played– or football. We played– especially at night, we played hide-and-go-seek.

And also– and also– we also had bikes, and we started up at the church hill, and we’d race down and have our races down to the railroad tracks on our bikes. Of course, it wasn’t that much traffic on the road like it is now. So we had the whole road to ourselves.

JIM MAYOLA: So this was girls and boys.

EDITH KNIGHT: Girls and boys. And we were all treated the same. It didn’t make any difference who was– what duties you had to do. You had– you just had to do them.

JIM MAYOLA: So, as a little girl, you had lots of chores.


JIM MAYOLA: OK. What were some of your chores? You mentioned you helped out with the milking of the cows.

EDITH KNIGHT: Milking– I was out at my grandparents’ place milking cows. Worked in the garden with them. Cleaned house– helped my grandmother clean house. Um, I used to help cook– cook– because she had a cook stove. And I learned how to cook on a cook stove.

JIM MAYOLA: Wow. Now, this is wood for the cook stove?

A wood cook– a wood cook stove. And– A great experience of growing up with my grandparents out there at the farm, and dealing with cows and pigs. Oh, I had to help feed pigs and chickens. And they had geese. And they had guineas.

So they had a little bit of everything. It was what they called a family farm. And, when I first remember, they had milk cans. Then later on, they went over to a tank.

JIM MAYOLA: So the milk cans were used– they’d collect the milk.

EDITH KNIGHT: They’d collect the milk. They had– there was a truck that came around and picked up the milk cans. Of course, they had– they kept the milk cool in a milk cooler, which was water in there– cold water in there with the cans. And that’s how they kept the milk cold.

JIM MAYOLA: And so they’d pick it up each day and take it in to be processed.


JIM MAYOLA: And so there was probably a lot of dairy going on in the county then in the community– a lot of dairy farms.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes. I would say Linwood was surrounded by farms. And there was a railroad there and the feed mill there. And they had an access track there, which– they picked up, uh, grain and they sold it to wherever it went. You know, the grain would go on to these cars. And we– and we would watch the trains, you know, hook and unhook.

And also we had a post office. And at one time, they, uh, before the mail trucks were running, they would take the bag of mail and hang it on a hook and the train would pick it up.

JIM MAYOLA: It would just go by–

EDITH KNIGHT: Go by and pick it up. That was in an earlier– my early years. And then also there used to be a passenger train– used to be a train station there at Linwood and also a passenger pick-up. They also picked up passengers. I rode it a few– few times. We rode into the Westminster, right in downtown Westminster, enjoyed the little shops, and pop back on the train and come back to Linwood.

JIM MAYOLA: Wow. So there was a lot of rail traffic then. Did a lot of trains come through?

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes. At one time, yes. This all stopped about 1959. I was nine years old. And it all stopped then. And then everything else– the passenger train stopped. And then the mail truck came around and picked up the mail.

JIM MAYOLA: I guess everybody started moving more towards driving their own vehicles instead of riding on the trains.


JIM MAYOLA: Now, what was it like for a little girl to get on the train and ride to the big city of Westminster and do a day of shopping. Tell me about that.

EDITH KNIGHT: Thrilling.


EDITH KNIGHT: Yes. I really enjoy it.

JIM MAYOLA: What would a day be like? Just describe the day.

EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, well, we get– get up and just do chores.


EDITH KNIGHT: Um, it could be working in the kitchen or cleaning.


EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, you would, you know, feed the animals. Well, I usually helped out in the evening with the milkings.

JIM MAYOLA: Describe a day of going to–


JIM MAYOLA: No, to go to shop in Westminster. What was that day like, because that was a special day.

EDITH KNIGHT: It was just a good time. I just enjoyed it. Mm-hmm.

JIM MAYOLA: OK. Get up in the morning. You’d get on the train. Do you recall how much it cost to ride the train?

EDITH KNIGHT: No. No, I don’t remember.

JIM MAYOLA: What was Westminster like in the ’50s?

EDITH KNIGHT: It was a lot of shops in Westminster. You didn’t have– and there was grocery stores, clothing stores– a lot of clothing stores as I remember. And a couple– let’s see, A&P used to be in town. Um, the co-op, where Locust Lane is now– in the back, the co-op was there. And, of course, they always had A&– It’s Super Fresh now. It was an A&P then. And that was the only two grocery stores right there in town.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah. Now, we’re talking right on Main Street, pretty much, aren’t we?

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes. The A&P was up there where Penney’s now– used to be, which is now– what’s that called place?

JIM MAYOLA: So they had a JC Penney’s in town for a while?

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes, yes. It was there and it was also– yeah. Mm-hmm.

JIM MAYOLA: And so you’d go into town to do your shopping.

EDITH KNIGHT: Then you come– come– back on the train and come back. And it would– and since our place was right there at the– at this train station, it was very convenient.


EDITH KNIGHT: It was all walking. You didn’t have to use a vehicle.

JIM MAYOLA: Right. How interesting. Tell me about school. What was school like?

EDITH KNIGHT: I went to, uh, Elmer Wolfe. Uh, there in Linwood, we were kind of divided between– you could pick your New Windsor School or you could go to Elmer Wolfe School. And, well, I went to Elmer Wolfe School. Most of the children in Linwood went to New Windsor. I went to Elmer Wolfe. And, uh, we had the same busdr– I had the same busdriver all through school, from 1st grade to 12th grade.

JIM MAYOLA: No kidding.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yeah, it was Dick Weller. And we had– I had the same bus driver. And my mother had his father–

JIM MAYOLA: No kidding.

EDITH KNIGHT: –as a bus driver when she– when she went to Elmer Wolfe School for her senior year, because she went to Linwood School. Linwood had a school there and she went there up to the sixth grade, and that’s all the farther it went. And then they went to Union Bridge to graduate. At that time there was eleven grades.

And we’d get on the school bus, and we’d pick up all the children, and we went over to Elmer Wolfe. Of course, when I first started with Elmer Wolfe, uh, it was 1 through 12, so we had the seniors there with the first graders. And we’d just watch. You know, you’re young and you watch. Of course, that was up until ’59 until Francis Scott Key opened up.


EDITH KNIGHT: And then Elmer Wolfe went to the eighth grade. And then ninth grade went to Francis Scott Key. I guess you just go through school. It wasn’t anything I– you know, and during– and, of course, during– you know, my– we called seventh and eighth graders– you know, they had, uh, right after lunch, they had, like, a little sock hop. They did that.

Then, of course, we had the regular sports we did, you know, in school. And there was regular teaching. And then out in high school, I got involved in– I was in band. Also, um, with band, I played the coronet. And then was also, I went with the volleyball team– what they call the manager of the volleyball team– and traveled with the girls’ volleyball.

And, also, I was in the pep squad for the basketball. We did not have football at that time. And it was just the New Windsor and Union Bridge School went there. Taneytown did not go there yet while I was in Francis Scott Key.

JIM MAYOLA: Now, Edith, when you were in school, let’s talk about grade school. You mentioned that you had the same bus driver for 12 years. You probably had a lot of the same students in your classes from first grade on through–



EDITH KNIGHT: I had the same students. All of us went to school together. And, even the high school, now, we all get together through the years, you know, now and just kind of socialize and catch up on everybody. It’s like a real close family.

JIM MAYOLA: That’s great.

EDITH KNIGHT: It was less than 100 people in our graduating class. So it made it– it made it nice, compared to what it is now.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, it’s pretty big now.


JIM MAYOLA: So you got involved in music. How old were you when you got involved in music? Do you recall?

EDITH KNIGHT: I was involved in music, um, about 10 years old.


EDITH KNIGHT: I’ll say 10.

JIM MAYOLA: So you were in fifth grade.


JIM MAYOLA: And you– did you just start playing coronet then?


JIM MAYOLA: OK. And this is in the school band.

EDITH KNIGHT: I was in the school band. And, also, later on I was in a band called– called Alesia Band.

JIM MAYOLA: I know Alesia Band.

EDITH KNIGHT: I played in Alesia Band until I got out of high school.


EDITH KNIGHT: Then I went to Philadelphia for a year to become a dental assistant, to learn to be a dental assistant. And I was a dental assistant for a year or two. And then I switched careers– a total switch.

JIM MAYOLA: That’s OK. And what did you do then?

EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, right now, a engineer associate. And I worked for a consultant firm in Baltimore. From Philadelphia I moved to Baltimore. And then I was there for several years.

And then I became a engineer associate. And then I went to school at night, you know, for it. And, um, let’s see, what else? And I just kind of worked myself up.

Then I got married and had a child. And I came– well, I moved back to Westminster and built our own house and cleared the land. I felt like a pioneer, there on Hughes Shop Road.

JIM MAYOLA: OK. So you built a house on Hughes Shop Road. About what year was that?


JIM MAYOLA: And you’ve been living there ever since.

EDITH KNIGHT: I’ve been living there ever since.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah. Now, let’s go back to school, when you first started playing music. It sounds like you played music for a little while. I mean, you played in high school, and then you played in the Alesia Band for a while. You mentioned– were you in a pep band?

EDITH KNIGHT: No, it was a pep squad.

JIM MAYOLA: Pep squad. OK.

EDITH KNIGHT: It helped– it helped to get the rest– it helped the cheerleaders out to get the rest of the crowd enthused for what’s going on.

JIM MAYOLA: Now, did the band play– I know you probably played concerts.


JIM MAYOLA: And you didn’t have football then, so you didn’t play at football games. Did you do anything else with the band other than–

EDITH KNIGHT: It was marching. It was basically a marching band. We did have a Christmas concert. And we had a spring concert we did at the school.


EDITH KNIGHT: And then, during the summer, we, uh– we marched in parades– the fireman parades around the county. And also in the winter, the football in University of Maryland– the coun– uh, the county schools were, all through the whole state, were invited to the University of Maryland and played in the stadium down there once a year.

JIM MAYOLA: Byrd Stadium.

EDITH KNIGHT: Univer– university.

JIM MAYOLA: Right. University of Maryland.

EDITH KNIGHT: University of Maryland. Yes. And we played down there. All the bands in the state got together. And we played. And that was thrilling.

JIM MAYOLA: I bet it was exciting.

EDITH KNIGHT: It was very exciting. Uh, we– first we practiced. It was an all-day affair, because in the early morning we’d play in the stands for practice with everybody. And then we would have to go down on the field–


EDITH KNIGHT: –and marched, uh, down on the field in the stadium and– and played.

JIM MAYOLA: Now you had uniforms. Yes, we had uniforms.

EDITH KNIGHT: I got a uniform at home.


EDITH KNIGHT: I didn’t bring it in.

JIM MAYOLA: And– wow that’s very exciting.

EDITH KNIGHT: It was red, white, and blue. We wore, uh, blue pants with white stripes with a, uh, red jacket with white and gold buttons on it.

JIM MAYOLA: And how many members in the band? Do you recall? About how large was the band?


JIM MAYOLA: That’s a good size.

EDITH KNIGHT: Actually, we were bigger than Westminster’s.


EDITH KNIGHT: Oh, yes. And we thought that was thrilling– we were bigger than Westminster.

JIM MAYOLA: That’s really great.

EDITH KNIGHT: Of course, we had our high school competitions with various schools. Of course, Westminster was a lot bigger than us. I guess, we were kind of equal to North Carroll at the time.

JIM MAYOLA: Right. Fantastic. So you’ve see a lot of changes in the county, haven’t you?


JIM MAYOLA: What would you say were some of the biggest changes you’ve seen happen in the county since you were a little girl?

EDITH KNIGHT: A lot more traffic, uh, and a lot more housing. Um, traffic and housing and people. A lot more people. And a lot more shops– shopping.

You know, the mall being built and all the other– uh, 140 at the time, there wasn’t– it was all farmland.

JIM MAYOLA: Right. Sure.

EDITH KNIGHT: It was all farmland. And it wasn’t any car dealerships or stores or malls and eateries, and–

JIM MAYOLA: Well, when you were a little girl, there was no 140. I guess you got to see that built, didn’t you?

EDITH KNIGHT: Well, I wasn’t– we didn’t travel to Westminster.

JIM MAYOLA: Right. Yeah. But, I mean, there was no by– they called that the bypass–

EDITH KNIGHT: Well– well, it wasn’t– it wasn’t any bypass to go down to Baltimore at the time. And if we went to Baltimore, it may be once a year.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. And so you take the, what’s old Westminster Road now, down to Baltimore to– through Reisterstown.

EDITH KNIGHT: Right, through Reisterstown, to get to Baltimore at the time.

JIM MAYOLA: That was an all-day trip then.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes, it was.


EDITH KNIGHT: Of course, 75, from Union Br– from New Windsor to Union Bridge, wasn’t built at the time. We watched that being built. We traveled the old road– old 75– or go down Uniontown Road. They were the two roads to Westminster. Basically, we just went to Westminster and did our shopping. And, of course, later on the A&P and, uh, an Acme Store across from each other. Right now– it was where [INAUDIBLE] is right now.

JIM MAYOLA: Today, yes.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yeah, today. And we used to go on Saturday night and go shopping.

JIM MAYOLA: Saturday night was a big shopping night, wasn’t it?

EDITH KNIGHT: Saturday night, yes, Saturday night was our big shopping night. We would go to the grocery store. Saturd– yeah, of course, we had to do all of our stuff before Sunday.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. Sure.

EDITH KNIGHT: And then we went to– Sunday we went to church. And we were made to rest. As children, it was tough.

JIM MAYOLA: Oh, it’s not such a bad thing, though. You’d want to play, but after all the chores and all the work, it’s nice to take a day off.


JIM MAYOLA: Now what did your parents do? What kind of work did they do– your parents and grandparents?

EDITH KNIGHT: Well, my grandparents– well, my grandparents were independently wealthy– you’re not taping this.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, it’s OK. Now, they were farmers, right?

EDITH KNIGHT: Well, not really. My grandfather did a little of everything.


EDITH KNIGHT: He was not really a so-called– he was a gentleman farmer.


EDITH KNIGHT: Um, he was a graduate from Hopkins. And he did land surveying. And, I think got a little bit involved– he got involved in a little politicking. Uh, he– he was an unpaid preacher with the Church of the Brethren.



JIM MAYOLA: Is that in New Windsor?


JIM MAYOLA: In New Windsor? Church of the Brethren in New Windsor?

EDITH KNIGHT: Well, Church of the Brethren, wherever. They went to Pipe Creek.


EDITH KNIGHT: But he grew up in Meadow Branch.


EDITH KNIGHT: He owned Roop’s Mill.


EDITH KNIGHT: So I have rich history in Roop’s Mill.

JIM MAYOLA: Sounds like it.

EDITH KNIGHT: Until the inheritance tax got us after my grandfather died. And we couldn’t afford to pay the inheritance tax on it. So we had to l– we lost it.

JIM MAYOLA: OK. That’s when you lost Roop’s Mill.


JIM MAYOLA: So Roop’s Mill was in your family for–

EDITH KNIGHT: Over 200 years.

JIM MAYOLA: No kidding.

EDITH KNIGHT: The inheritance tax got us.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. Yeah.

EDITH KNIGHT: So we lost it.

JIM MAYOLA: When your grandfather passed away, the family couldn’t keep the– couldn’t k– couldn’t afford to keep the mill.


JIM MAYOLA: So you had to let it go.


JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, that’s sad.

EDITH KNIGHT: It was sad. So–

JIM MAYOLA: I guess you’ve been back to the mill, though. It’s kind of amazing that it’s–


EDITH KNIGHT: It’s still there. Right now it’s just still sitting.


EDITH KNIGHT: Um, there’s a rich history of– of the Roop family there.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. Now, what’s your relationship? Was that your grandparents– were the Roops.

EDITH KNIGHT: Grandfather.

JIM MAYOLA: Grandfather was a Roop. Now, did you get to see that as a working mill when you were a little girl?

EDITH KNIGHT: I was real small.

JIM MAYOLA: Real small.

EDITH KNIGHT: I remember it when I was real small, but mainly I didn’t totally remember it. But I remember going through it a couple of times, you know, and through the various floors. And my grandfather would explain various things, how it worked, the way things worked.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah. How about that bridge– the suspension bridge there?

EDITH KNIGHT: We were never allowed on it. W– it was in bad shape. They didn’t– they didn’t– They d- I was never allowed on it.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, that bridge has been in bad shape for a long time.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes. And that was designed as the Brooklyn Bridge.


EDITH KNIGHT: It’s one of the expansion bridges.


EDITH KNIGHT: And that was a big thing at that time.

JIM MAYOLA: It’s fascinating, though, to look at it. It’s really an amazing, uh, uh, piece of machinery to see that bridge.



EDITH KNIGHT: Mm-hmm. The Roops were very inventive people, very much ahead of their time.

JIM MAYOLA: It sounds like it, yeah.

EDITH KNIGHT: So my Grandfather, what he did down at the mill– of course, the mill ran by water.


EDITH KNIGHT: It went under the road, where it’s 140 now, and had a dam across over

there, where it’s Dr. Woodward’s property. Well, it isn’t now. But they lost it, because of inheritance.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah. Now, that whole field that is over where the Meadow Branch is, was actually under water, wasn’t it? I mean, they used that to dam that up.

EDITH KNIGHT: They had a dam. They dammed it up there at Meadow Branch. And then he ran a pipe across, run to the meadow.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah. And that was to power the mill?

EDITH KNIGHT: That was to power the mill? And, of course, electricity, back in the early 1900s, was starting to come in. So my grandfather made a generator out of the running water and is one of the first people in rural areas that had electricity.

JIM MAYOLA: So he had electricity at the mill–


JIM MAYOLA: –that was powered by the water power.


JIM MAYOLA: How interesting.


JIM MAYOLA: They were ahead of their time then.

EDITH KNIGHT: They were very much ahead. So they had electricity down there.


EDITH KNIGHT: They were very much ahead of their time, before the rest of the county became–

JIM MAYOLA: Now, as a little girl growing up in Linwood– there were a lot of folks, I guess, that didn’t have telephones. Did you have a phone in your house?

EDITH KNIGHT: Yeah, everybody that I remember had telephones. And they were all party lines.


EDITH KNIGHT: And they were, like, if you– you know, you wait, and if you had one ring, or you might have two rings.


EDITH KNIGHT: We had another person. Ours was two– two-party line.

JIM MAYOLA: That’s not too bad.

EDITH KNIGHT: It was a two-party line.


EDITH KNIGHT: So what we did, if we heard the other person talking on the phone, we would just p– we would just hang up.


EDITH KNIGHT: And they would– it was a lot of politeness going on back there on the phones. We– we didn’t sit there and listen. We were told to hang up.


EDITH KNIGHT: And if you just heard it, you’d hang up.

JIM MAYOLA: OK. What about if you needed to make a call? Would you just break in and say, hello, I n– I need to make a call [INAUDIBLE].


JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, OK. Because sometimes there might be an emergency.




JIM MAYOLA: OK. So, you had, um, let’s see, you had, uh, telephone. So you had electricity in your house.


JIM MAYOLA: Did you have–


JIM MAYOLA: –running water?

EDITH KNIGHT: We had running water. We had h– hot and cold running water. And out at the– at M– at the farm we had hot and cold running water too.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. All the comforts of home.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yeah, we had all the comforts of home there. And we had central heat.



JIM MAYOLA: Wh– how did you heat the house? What did you use?



EDITH KNIGHT: We had oil in our house.


JIM MAYOLA: So very advanced for that time. I mean, there were a lot of people that heated with wood, and there were a lot– or coal. And, um, of course, you–

EDITH KNIGHT: There was people in the larger house– the people in– some of the people in Linwood had– did heat with coal.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. Because you mentioned that you learned to cook on a wood stove.

EDITH KNIGHT: Oh, at my grandparents’. But they also had electric stove in the kitchen. They had both. But they had– but they liked to use the cook stove, because it helped to heat the kitchen.


EDITH KNIGHT: In the summertime, they did not cook on the cook stove.


EDITH KNIGHT: And they w– cooked on the electric stove.

JIM MAYOLA: Well, it was great in the wintertime, because it really heated the whole house.

EDITH KNIGHT: Well, th– no. They also had– now, what did they have– they had oil.

JIM MAYOLA: Oh, did they? OK.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yeah, I remember. They h– I don’t remember them having coal there. They had a oil furnace there.


EDITH KNIGHT: And they had hot water radiators in the house, which is still being used today.

JIM MAYOLA: Really? That’s interesting.

EDITH KNIGHT: The furnace is still use– being used today– same furnace.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah. Amazing. They made things to last in those days, didn’t they?


JIM MAYOLA: Wow. So the– the furnace actually heated with oil, heated the water, and ran the radiators through the house.

EDITH KNIGHT: Right. And they had the– that water also heat– for hot water in the house.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. So you always lived in a house with indoor plumbing?


JIM MAYOLA: A lot of folks had outhouses though.

EDITH KNIGHT: They also had outhouses, but that was if you were outside and didn’t want to run into the house, you could use the outhouse if you wanted. There was always both.


EDITH KNIGHT: You always had a choice.


JIM MAYOLA: Well, Edith, we were going through a transition in our culture at that time.

EDITH KNIGHT: Oh, right, one more point, wait a minute Another thing. What my grandfather did– they also had heat when he was– uh, the house that– where my grandparents lived– actually, my grandmother, back then, with families that had any money, they would buy a farm for their– you know, f– oh, w– actually it turned out to be my grandmother’s mother’s family– you know, made– uh, built– built a farm there for her. And my great grandmother designed the house there.


EDITH KNIGHT: And my grandmother was born there. She was an only child. Of course, she inherited it. And when my grandfather moved into it, he put a water tower. And w– he had a– it was– c– what was that w– creek called down there– I don’t remember.


EDITH KNIGHT: It was a little creek, um, I don’t remember what the little creek was called. I don’t think it w– but, anyway, he m– he built a water– water mill– a water wheel down there, and a dam, and he would p– and they had a spring there. It was k– he had a– built a box there for the spring, down there at the meadow. And he would use the water power from the creek to pump the spring water up to the tower to supply the farm.

JIM MAYOLA: Right. So he’d use the pressure from the creek itself to pump the water up to the–

EDITH KNIGHT: –the spring water up to the house.

JIM MAYOLA: Right. And so that was natural water pressure.


JIM MAYOLA: And then once it was in the tower–

EDITH KNIGHT: Tower– then it would, you know, gradually went down to help to take care of the farming– water for the farm. Like I said, he was advanced for his age.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. Absolutely.

EDITH KNIGHT: And it’s still there. It’s not being used.


EDITH KNIGHT: And the pump house– it was– is no longer there.


EDITH KNIGHT: And– but I used to go down there with my grandfather. And he would build these smoky fires in– in the pump house to keep it from free– keep it from freezing in the winter.

JIM MAYOLA: Sure. Yeah, just enough to keep the chill off.

EDITH KNIGHT: Mm-hmm. And keep everything, you know, from freezing.


EDITH KNIGHT: And we’d also go swimming– and with the dam, you know, we’d go swimming down there in the–

JIM MAYOLA: In the summertime.

EDITH KNIGHT: In the summertime.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, on a day like today.

EDITH KNIGHT: Right . We’d go down there swimming in it with the cows.

JIM MAYOLA: No kidding.

EDITH KNIGHT: And in Little Pipe Creek, when I was growing up, th– in– w– out there in Linwood, we’d go swimming with the cows.


EDITH KNIGHT: But soon as, New Windsor, of course, technology came– I don’t know how much technology it is– the– the sewage systems fr– was built in New Windsor and Westminster, and an overflow sewage went into the creek.

JIM MAYOLA: No kidding.

EDITH KNIGHT: And we could not go in the creek anymore.


EDITH KNIGHT: We could go in with the cows, but not with the humans.

JIM MAYOLA: No kidding. It wasn’t safe.

EDITH KNIGHT: Wasn’t safe to go in at all. And the creek used to freeze over, but soon as the sewage went over into the creek w– uh, at that time– of course, I think they try to stop it now. But still it isn’t really safe to go in.


EDITH KNIGHT: And, uh, it, um, doesn’t freeze anymore. In the summertime, it stunk.


EDITH KNIGHT: And, um, afar– as far as I was– it wasn’t advanced technology.

JIM MAYOLA: Now, did you remember, was there any fish in that creek?

EDITH KNIGHT: Yeah, before we fished. We used to fish bluegills and sunnies.


EDITH KNIGHT: And there was muskrats. And we all saw water snakes.


EDITH KNIGHT: So a lot of that stuff is gone. Right now, it’s carp. Of course, they’re a– bottom-feeding fish.


EDITH KNIGHT: So– and all the other fish are gone now, because of the dump into the creek. And, of course, the Union Bridge also dumped in– in there down farther, which did– it m– made it– creek worse.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah. What were winters like?

EDITH KNIGHT: Winters were snowy, were cold. I think we had a whole lot more snow.


EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, the county came by and plowed us out.


EDITH KNIGHT: And we kind of had to plow out– you know, shovel our lane out.


EDITH KNIGHT: And, uh– and we also, sometimes, we had a snow– the early snowblowers, we had– or our tractor– we had various– whatever equipment we had at the time. I remember, you know, we had very few snow days for school.

JIM MAYOLA: Oh, sure.

EDITH KNIGHT: The bus went, with chains. And going down McKinstry’s Mill Road, it was just– the bus just made it through, because we had snow touching the side of the bus.

JIM MAYOLA: No kidding.

EDITH KNIGHT: But we still had school.

JIM MAYOLA: You were expected to be in school.

EDITH KNIGHT: We were expected to be in school. Uh, these past winters, we would have been in school.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. Yeah, no doubt.

EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, they were very diligent about that.


EDITH KNIGHT: You were expected to go. And the students went.

JIM MAYOLA: Now, Edith, did you have a radio in your house?

EDITH KNIGHT: We had radio and TV.


EDITH KNIGHT: We had– I was about six years old when a TV came into the house, one TV.

JIM MAYOLA: And what kind of a difference did that make when you– because I know you remember that.

EDITH KNIGHT: Big difference.


EDITH KNIGHT: Big difference.

JIM MAYOLA: What did you watch?

EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, with Saturdays, I liked to watch the Westerns. And, of course, later on was cartoons.


EDITH KNIGHT: Um, also, from school, we used to like to watch “The Buddy Dean.”


EDITH KNIGHT: Of course, my parents didn’t like that.

JIM MAYOLA: You got it in Baltimore.

EDITH KNIGHT: Had to turn the radio– TV down, real low–

JIM MAYOLA: Way low.

EDITH KNIGHT: –and shut the door so they couldn’t hear it.

JIM MAYOLA: “Buddy Deane” was a great show, wasn’t it?

EDITH KNIGHT: Yeah. The, uh– of course, parents back then– we couldn’t listen to music like that.

JIM MAYOLA: We were going through a cultural change.

EDITH KNIGHT: Oh, definitely, definitely.

JIM MAYOLA: Now, what kind of music did your parents like to listen to?

EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, church.


EDITH KNIGHT: My mother listened to church music. My father liked opera.

JIM MAYOLA: OK. All right.


JIM MAYOLA: And you liked Buddy Deane.

EDITH KNIGHT: And I liked Buddy Deane. And, of course, then WTTR had the Buddy Deane-type music on it at the time.


EDITH KNIGHT: And they also had sock hops in various communities. I was not allowed to go. I wasn’t allowed to go dancing. I wasn’t allowed to do anything like that. They were very strict on it. I would say I had strict parents.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah. Well, they looked out after you. Did you ever go to the movies?

EDITH KNIGHT: Maybe once a year. We went to the Carroll Theater. Of course, at that time, there was another theater called the Star Theater.


EDITH KNIGHT: But we always went to Carroll Theater. And we were only able to go watch Walt Disney movies.

JIM MAYOLA: OK. Those were the ones that were allowed.

EDITH KNIGHT: They were the only ones , and maybe go once a year.

JIM MAYOLA: Do you remember any movies in particular that you went to see?

EDITH KNIGHT: They were basically the anim– some of the animation movies, uh, like Snow White.


EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, I can’t remember what came out during that time.


EDITH KNIGHT: But I– but I remember going once a year if lucky.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah. That was a big deal.


JIM MAYOLA: So you’ve seen a lot of changes– a lot of changes in the county in the years that you’ve grown up here. Um, and you said that it was mostly the number of people and the number of cars and the number of houses– l– fewer farms.

EDITH KNIGHT: Fewer farms. In the ’60s– mid-late ’60s– there was, uh, farms going out of business– a lot of farms going out of business during that time, uh, which made it rough on us.


EDITH KNIGHT: And then my father had to go get a– a j– he got a job with the county– tried to supplement the income. Then my mother kind of ran the business. And, of course, my father kind of ran– you know, were to do some of the service work that required. So, it was like, if, uh, milking m– if, uh, milking machines weren’t working or if pipeline wasn’t w– or the tank wasn’t working– he had to go do the refrigeration work on it.



JIM MAYOLA: So did– they don’t still have their business though.

EDITH KNIGHT: No. It went out– uh, no, the business went out of business, I would say pretty much in the ’70s.


EDITH KNIGHT: It pretty well went out of business in the ’70s. They just kind of did a few things, but not– not any– not any– great deal, because it was– uh, farmers were going out of business. And there was other competition going on at the time with the farmers, you know, with the other farm businesses. So it was a lot of competition at that time, not like it is now– I don’t think, because I’m not involved in it.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah. Well, what advice would you give for youngsters growing up now, Edith, if you were going to– if you were going to give them, uh, one piece of advice that you would want to share with them?

EDITH KNIGHT: Be more involved with the community and help your neighbors out.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. Because we used to be very closely knit, weren’t we?

EDITH KNIGHT: Yeah, we were– we were very closely knit people here in the county, in your immediate area. And everybody helped everybody out, and, uh, which gave you a good feeling. And we– and the church families, um, you know, all helped out each other. I would say– I would say– uh, that w– that w– would be it.

JIM MAYOLA: You used to know all your neighbors, didn’t you?

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes. And if you ever wanted to know everything, just go over to the post office and we’ll find out what’s going on in the community. That was our newsletter.


EDITH KNIGHT: You know, go over to the post office and find out. Well, y– uh, it w– the Keefers– Charlotte Keefer ran the– ran the post office. Well, first her– her– her father ran it– and then– then– she– her father was David Roop– ran th– ran it out of their house. In part of the house they had the post office.


EDITH KNIGHT: And, uh, of course, before then, it was over– the Englers had it over in their little store. It was part of the mill. But it wasn’t my– it was over there– well, Roop slash Keefer Post Office. And we also would wait for the school bus in the post office, to come by, you know, keep warm until the bus got– came by and picked us up.

JIM MAYOLA: People don’t know their neighbors as much as they used to.


JIM MAYOLA: People don’t seem to be as interconnected as they used to be.

EDITH KNIGHT: And I think it’s what it is, is everybody is working. You know, you get up in the morning, go to work, and come home, and do your things at the house.


EDITH KNIGHT: And you don’t have time to socialize, really, with your neighbors. When I was growing up, um, the– the m– the woman of the house was home, taking care of family. And they all were– you know, helped each other, communicated with each other.


EDITH KNIGHT: And also, uh, you know, when the father would come home– right now we– there was– there wasn’t as much– there was clubs around, but I think it’s more clubs, which are hurting tremendously now, uh, because people just don’t have the time.


EDITH KNIGHT: But the– the fam– the family kind of stayed togeth– um, didn’t have too much– as much outside influence– going on, like they didn’t have as much going on as outside influence like they do now.


EDITH KNIGHT: Um, I think, as I remember, that was a lot of it. It wasn’t as much outside influence of clubs or organizations. They were there. And they all worked at it. But a lot of times they worked at it as a family, not like they do now.


EDITH KNIGHT: It seems to be separating.

JIM MAYOLA: And, um, there’s a lot of, um– there was– there was a lot of socialization in those days.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes, we all socialized.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. And– and as you pointed out, uh, one wage earner could support a family. And now everybody seems that they have to work. You didn’t make as much money, but things didn’t cost as much in those days. So–

EDITH KNIGHT: Well, yes, the things did not cost as much. And I would say, the– you know, the woman of the house, you know, ran the family. And by putting up food in the winter, it helped out with the grocery bills, which didn’t– so you didn’t have to spend as much at the grocery store.

JIM MAYOLA: When you went to the grocery store– store, you just bought the essentials, the things that you couldn’t make at home.



EDITH KNIGHT: Yes, and flour.

JIM MAYOLA: Flour, right.

EDITH KNIGHT: Or if– of you didn’t have your paper prod– well, actually, we didn’t have p– we had toilet paper. But we didn’t have paper towels like they do now. Um, we used rags and you washed them.


EDITH KNIGHT: And that’s what you used.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, absolutely.

EDITH KNIGHT: And we didn’t have to make as many trips. You know, like, w– if you went to the store, you m– you made the whole trip in one day. So there wasn’t as much running around like it is today.

JIM MAYOLA: A little more planning in advance.

EDITH KNIGHT: It was a lot of planning. You had to do a lot of– you know, there was a lot of planning you had to do in one day.

JIM MAYOLA: And nothing was ever wasted.

EDITH KNIGHT: No, nothing was ever wasted.

JIM MAYOLA: Now, as a little girl, you grew up on a farm, and you said you had goats. Now, you did some butchering on the farm, didn’t you?

EDITH KNIGHT: My grandparents did. We butchered hogs.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. And so you’d put up the meat.


JIM MAYOLA: How did they do that? Do you recall?

EDITH KNIGHT: We did it down in the basement.


EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, I remember working, uh, stuffing sausage. And they had a big fireplace down– it’s a big, huge– we had two kettles down there. And– and we had to stir the kettles.


EDITH KNIGHT: You know, but they did– I never was ar– I– they did the– uh, the killing and the cutting of the meat. I wasn’t around that.


EDITH KNIGHT: They’d, uh– as a child, they– we weren’t allowed to see all that.

JIM MAYOLA: But you did the processing.

EDITH KNIGHT: We– well– you helped out with the processing.

JIM MAYOLA: Now they salted some of the meat.

EDITH KNIGHT: They salted. My grandparents salted, and they had a smoke house.


EDITH KNIGHT: And they smoked– they smoked the, uh, the ham.


EDITH KNIGHT: And then we would have that around holiday time.


EDITH KNIGHT: It was very salty.

JIM MAYOLA: I bet they were. But also very good. Yeah. And you’d put up the sausage.

EDITH KNIGHT: For the sausage, they did have freezer.

JIM MAYOLA: Did they?

EDITH KNIGHT: We had freezers.

JIM MAYOLA: Wow. OK. That was pretty unusual for those days that– every family didn’t have a freezer.

EDITH KNIGHT: Well, we had a freezer.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, well, good for you.

EDITH KNIGHT: It was Wilson freezer.


EDITH KNIGHT: And my aunt had one in Ohio. And a couple years ago, it stopped.

JIM MAYOLA: No kidding.

EDITH KNIGHT: So she had it for over 50 years.

JIM MAYOLA: No kidding.

EDITH KNIGHT: Mm-hmm. My parents’s w– did the same thing, and they– because my grandparents’s lasted about 50 years.

JIM MAYOLA: Amazing, that things would last that long.

EDITH KNIGHT: It was an upright.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. We, uh, took more care of things in those days. Uh, we weren’t about throwing things away.


JIM MAYOLA: It was, you’d keep things and you’d get as much use out of things as you possibly could. You mentioned using rags where we use towels. Diapers.

EDITH KNIGHT: We washed diapers.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, sure.

EDITH KNIGHT: There wasn’t anything such as paper diapers.

JIM MAYOLA: Right, yeah.

EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, we washed diapers. And, uh, everybody survived.

JIM MAYOLA: Yes, we did.

EDITH KNIGHT: Even with my son, I washed diapers, and worked. Well, I only worked three days a week– week at that time. And that was when the paper diapers started to come out.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, you never would’ve thought they’d take off, did you?


JIM MAYOLA: No. What it is this about? I guess it was convenient if you were going somewhere, you know, if you were in a hurry, but–

EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, yes. Um, then you could dispose of the, uh, soiled diaper. But, um– but everybody used soil– everybody had diapers. And if you were at somebody’s house, you just took care of it– took a bag along, and just put the soiled diaper in there, and take it home and cleaned it.

JIM MAYOLA: We’ve just gotten completely away from that it seems. I guess it’s easier. But it certainly doesn’t–

EDITH KNIGHT: It’s very costly.

JIM MAYOLA: It is indeed.

EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, there was– we did a lot of– as you say, we didn’t have much– wasn’t much money. But you learned for what you had. And, um, and there wasn’t any credit cards. There wasn’t any credit cards back then. If there was, we didn’t know about it.

JIM MAYOLA: So what did you do? You saved up until you could afford something.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes, you saved until you could afford. They had credit back then. But they didn’t do it.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah. You could pay on time for things.

EDITH KNIGHT: Mm-hmm. If you really had to.


EDITH KNIGHT: And– and the only way you could do it was through a bank.


EDITH KNIGHT: But you didn’t have to, unless you really had to.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. And that was for a big-ticket item– if you were buying a car– you had a mortgage on your house, I guess.

EDITH KNIGHT: Or if the mortgage on the house– well, my parents didn’t. My grandfather financed it.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. A lot of people did that. Their families held the mortgage on it.

EDITH KNIGHT: The f– the f– yeah, the families held the mortage– mortgage on it and not necessarily the banks.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah. No credit cards.

EDITH KNIGHT: No credit cards. My parents– they didn’t have one.

JIM MAYOLA: I don’t think people realize that the credit cards didn’t come in to–

EDITH KNIGHT: I don’t know when they came in.

JIM MAYOLA: Well, it was in the ’50s.

EDITH KNIGHT: In the ’50s.

JIM MAYOLA: They started in the late ’50s– we started having credit cards. And then in the ’60s, everybody had them.

EDITH KNIGHT: They didn’t.

JIM MAYOLA: No, I’m sure they didn’t. Different world.


JIM MAYOLA: And you always saved as much as you could– had money set aside if you could, just for a rainy day, and saved everything else.


JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, didn’t waste anything.


JIM MAYOLA: They say when they butchered hogs that, um, everything got used except the squeal.

EDITH KNIGHT: That’s about right. We had the tail, and we always played with the tail. We had, uh– we had rental properties and we had dug wells. And to clean the dug well out, they would send a child down in the well.

JIM MAYOLA: No kidding.

EDITH KNIGHT: And I was small enough and would go down in the well, and, uh, with the bucket, and clean the mud out of the well, and they would pull it out.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. S– now, did they pump the water out first, so that you could get down there?

EDITH KNIGHT: Well, the well– there wasn’t any– the well kind of was– was filling up with mud, so you had to clean the mud out so the water could come up.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, I see.

EDITH KNIGHT: So that’s what you did.

JIM MAYOLA: That one must have a little bit scary, wasn’t it?

EDITH KNIGHT: It was scary. And very– and it turned out to be very dangerous, because there has been children that have perished in wells that they were down far enough that they, uh, got carbon monoxide, and they would die.

JIM MAYOLA: Right, sure. Because there wasn’t enough oxygen in them.


JIM MAYOLA: Now, were these wells cased, or were–

EDITH KNIGHT: They were encased with stone.


EDITH KNIGHT: With stone. And you would go down. I don’t know if I had a ladder or I just kind of used a stone and– and just kind of worked myself down in there.

JIM MAYOLA: They’d have a rope around you.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes, they had a rope around me. But it was– it was scary. It was cold.


EDITH KNIGHT: And I think I was the only– I think of all the– you know, I’m the oldest of four– and I was– and of the grandchildren, I was the oldest. And, uh, I did a lot of things you wouldn’t do today.

JIM MAYOLA: That is amazing, Edith, what an interesting story. Yeah. What other things can you remember about growing up as a young child?

EDITH KNIGHT: Oh, of course, I said fishing, along the creek. And the neighbors, we also– we all go fishing together. And we’d also go underneath the bridge and just kind of hang out, because sometimes we would just hang out.



JIM MAYOLA: Well, it was cool.

EDITH KNIGHT: Right. It was, um, cool, and we just watched the water go by. And, uh, we’d say, well, we’ll go down and meet at the bridge.


EDITH KNIGHT: Sometimes we would do that. And, um, or take walks.

JIM MAYOLA: And you said you had a bicycle.

EDITH KNIGHT: I had a bicycle, and I would ride back and forth to my grandparents’ a lot. And I’d ride the horse back and forth.


EDITH KNIGHT: I didn’t have a saddle. All I had was work gear. And, uh, fortunately the horse did not like running, so that was perfectly fine.

JIM MAYOLA: That was fine, yeah.

EDITH KNIGHT: And, of course, if I was in the garden, and I was just standing still sometimes. I always watched, you know, the circus. You’d stand up on the horse. So I would stand up on the horse and pretend I was in the circus.

JIM MAYOLA: Right, sure.

EDITH KNIGHT: And, uh, but she was a good horse. Her name was Lark.

JIM MAYOLA: Old mare.

EDITH KNIGHT: An old mare, yes.


EDITH KNIGHT: Yes, she was– she was very good and gentle horse.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. Yeah, the best kind.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes. And, of course, riding back and forth to Linwood to my grandparents’ place, uh, there was all farmland. So you were the only one on the road.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, I bet.

EDITH KNIGHT: If anything happened, nobody was there. Yeah.

JIM MAYOLA: Now, how far was that?

EDITH KNIGHT: A mile and a half.


EDITH KNIGHT: They had a half a mile lane.

JIM MAYOLA: Right. Wow. And going to the store then, did you ever go to the store by yourself? Was that ever one of your chores.


JIM MAYOLA: OK. What were the treats that you would get when you would go with your family to the store. What did you always look forward to?

EDITH KNIGHT: We didn’t really get any treats.

JIM MAYOLA: No treats. No penny candy or anything like that?

EDITH KNIGHT: No, no. They– they– let’s just say they were very tight. We didn’t get– we didn’t get treats.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, um–

EDITH KNIGHT: I guess the treat was just to be able to go.

JIM MAYOLA: That’s right. OK. Just the experience. Now, you said you were the oldest of four.


JIM MAYOLA: You had–

EDITH KNIGHT: –three brothers–

JIM MAYOLA: Three brothers, OK–

EDITH KNIGHT: –after me.

JIM MAYOLA: Uh-huh. So you were in charge– the bit sister.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes. And it was a lot of responsibility.

JIM MAYOLA: I’ll bet it was.

EDITH KNIGHT: A lot of times I had to cook and clean the house. And, also, if my parents weren’t around, if any customers came by, I had to, uh, to help to get parts for their equipment. We also sold ice cream and Cokes. Coke– Coke company would come by. And we had a Coke machine there. And I was in charge of the ice cream and the Cokes. I would take all the money and order it, as a child. I was in charge of the ice cream and the– we sold, um, popsicles and half gallons.


EDITH KNIGHT: Elmer’s. It was Elmer’s ice cream from Frederick.

JIM MAYOLA: So you would serve the customers.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes, I would serve customers. So I had a full life.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah, it sounds like it. And you also had some of the chores of keeping the house clean, I bet.

EDITH KNIGHT: Yes, I had to keep the house clean, do canning, pick– pick vegetables, weeding, planting. We also had to do– we’d, uh, pick up hay. That’s another thing, I picked up– helped, you know, put hay on the wagon, or stack w– stack it in the wagon. And I would stack it in the barn. I did that in Linwood and for the goats and also for the cattle out there at the farm. I would ride the w– hay wagon.

JIM MAYOLA: Right. Now, how much younger were your brothers?

EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, one– Jonathan is three years younger. David is six years younger than me, and Roger is ten and a half.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. So, I mean, you had little brothers then that you were taking care of. So you were– you were really the big sister to the youngest ones.

EDITH KNIGHT: Right. Mm-hmm.

JIM MAYOLA: So you, uh, really had to watch after them and probably a little discipline sometimes.

EDITH KNIGHT: Oh, yes. We– we– we had our scraps.

JIM MAYOLA: I’m sure.


JIM MAYOLA: But it was your responsibility as a big sister. The par– your parents expected you to make sure– maintain order.


JIM MAYOLA: Absolutely.

EDITH KNIGHT: My mother wasn’t– she– at times I say she belonged to every club in the county.


EDITH KNIGHT: It seemed sometimes she wasn’t home a lot.

JIM MAYOLA: Now, you mentioned that you milked goats. Did you ac– did use the meat of the goats too? Did you–


JIM MAYOLA: You didn’t butcher the goats.

EDITH KNIGHT: We didn’t butcher goats. We just, uh, had the milk.

JIM MAYOLA: Did you sell the milk?


JIM MAYOLA: OK. Just for the family.

EDITH KNIGHT: It was just for the family. Um, I didn’t particularly care for the goat milk.


EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, we put chocolate in it. That’s the only way we would drink it– when it had chocolate in it.

JIM MAYOLA: Yeah. Just that it was palatable.



EDITH KNIGHT: And, uh, we, uh, you know, milk– milk– we had about– we had two– two or three goats we milked. And we brought the milk up, and then we cooled it– cooled it under the sink, you know, running water over the sink. And then we’d put it in the refrigerator.


EDITH KNIGHT: You had to cool it down before you put it in the refrigerator.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. So it wouldn’t spoil.

EDITH KNIGHT: Right. And the milk would keep maybe two days. And that was it.

JIM MAYOLA: Wow. Interesting times.


JIM MAYOLA: Wow. So what kind of games did you play with your brothers and the other kids around the area?

EDITH KNIGHT: We played, uh, baseball, football, and hide-and-go-seek.

JIM MAYOLA: Those were the big ones.

EDITH KNIGHT: And sometimes we’d play scavenger hunt.


EDITH KNIGHT: And we went through– all over Linwood for that.

JIM MAYOLA: How did that work?

EDITH KNIGHT: Well, the church, uh, the youth group up there, had scavenger hunts, and we’d all– in groups. And we would, uh, go through the neighborhood to find things.


EDITH KNIGHT: It was fun.

JIM MAYOLA: I bet. Yeah. Now, in the summer, you spent– y– during the school year, during the winter, you’d be in school. But in the summer, you’d get off. It was a summer vacation. But it didn’t– I guess it didn’t feel much like a vacation, because you were doing so many chores and things.

EDITH KNIGHT: Right. We didn’t go on vacations. We didn’t know what vacations were.

JIM MAYOLA: Right. Because you were working.

EDITH KNIGHT: We were working all the time.

JIM MAYOLA: Every day. Now, you had dairy cows at the house.

EDITH KNIGHT: No, we only had goats.


EDITH KNIGHT: And we call it “out at the farm”– at Marble– my grandparents’ place. There was animals there.


EDITH KNIGHT: Uh, actually, my uncle, Uncle Roger, he passed away in 1960. Up until then, uh, I would– he– he ran the dairy farm. And, of course, after he passed away, the dairy farm stopped. Then my grandparents sold off everything.

JIM MAYOLA: Right. You know, people don’t realize what a responsibility it is to have animals. That’s– you can’t go on vacation if you’ve got cows, or dairy goats too–

EDITH KNIGHT: Back then, people– farmers and stuff didn’t go on vacations. You were there taking care of your– your animals.

JIM MAYOLA: Mm-hmm. Absolutely.

EDITH KNIGHT: It was a 24/7 job.

JIM MAYOLA: Yep. 365 days of the year.

EDITH KNIGHT: Days of the year. That’s right.



JIM MAYOLA: Well, Edith, I want to thank you so very much for taking the time out of your day to come and talk to us. And you’ve told some great stories. Um, interesting to reminisce about growing up in the ’50s in Carroll County and how things have changed.


JIM MAYOLA: And the ’60s. That’s right. It’s a different world now. The stories about the trains in Carroll County is just– I– I– that’s something I didn’t know. I didn’t realize how much train traffic there was in Carroll County and how, uh, many people used it.

We’ve changed a lot in our culture in our country. And I really do appreciate you taking the time to reminisce. Thank you so very much.

EDITH KNIGHT: Well, you’re welcome.