Stamper Family Project

Memories by Dorene  

Dorene J. Stamper ..............

Daughter to William Charles Stamper and Vernetta Esther Hunnicutt 

 Memories of Grandmother Martha Stamper

Every child loves to be sitting on their Grandmother or Grandfather’s lap; or cuddled nearby, while listening to tales of their own parent when they were young. Especially when you are being told of the things that had gotten them into trouble when they were about your own age. This is what I remember of my own Grandmother Martha (Ellen Moore) Stamper.

When Grandmother would come for a visit she would tell me story after story about my Father (William (Willy) Charles Stamper) and his brother Boyd. They were always filled with mischief, fun and adventure and I looked forward to hearing them.

I remembered each one of these tall tales well into my adulthood, much to my joy and my fathers despair. One day when I was still in my early 20s, I recounted them to him as he sat there in a state of absolute shock for he never had wanted me to remember them. But I’m so glad that I did. So these tall tales are all true.

But when it comes to the tall tale about my Uncle Boyd...... this one is NOT the truth.

Nonetheless they all make for a good tall tale to be heard. I hope that you get a good laugh at what I’m about to tell you now. But remember......this last one (Uncle Boyd) is just hearsay and not at all true.

  Matchbox of Money

One day Willy (William Stamper) was sent by his Mother to buy some candies at his brother Boyd’s store. Once at the store he stood there watching the customers coming and going and noted that they all had one thing in common. And that was....they were giving Boyd their money. As he stood there for the longest time he thought of how rich his brother must be. After getting his candies he headed for home. When he arrived home his mother saw him eating the candies and enjoying them as he counted out his coins. "Why do you still have your money?" she asked. "Mother, Boyd is so rich with everyone giving him their money that he didn’t need mine, too."

  Boyd’s Rifle

Willy was passing his brother Boyd’s bedroom and noticed that the door was open and no one was there. He went in to see what Boyd had that just might look interesting to him. To his delight he spotted Boyd’s rifle leaning against the wall in the corner.

He quickly went over and picked it up. He pretended that he was shooting big birds as they would fly by......or rabbits as they scampered along in the woods. In his mind he had become one of the best hunters of all times. Life was good.

But soon this became old and he longed to have the thrill of hearing the rifle sound off and a bullet hitting it’s mark. He looked around the bedroom and once finding a box of bullets he quietly headed for the backdoor and adventure. Down the steps he raced and headed for the open fields and opportunity.

Once he had gone far enough from the house, so not to be caught by his mother, he sat down and started to load the rifle. It wasn’t easy but he had seen Boyd do it a number of times so with this knowledge he soon had it loaded and ready to go.

What should he aim at was the next problem but as fate would have it there in the open field was a small, run down, old shack. ‘Can’t mean much to anyone’.....he thought, ‘cause look at it, it’s almost fallen down anyhow.’ So up went his brother’s rifle onto his shoulder and he shot bullet after bullet at that old shack and missed it with every one. Soon the box of bullets were all spent. With a heavy heart he headed back to the house.

As he entered Boyd’s bedroom there was Boyd waiting for him. After Boyd scolded him for coming into his bedroom and taking the rifle he asked him what he had killed while using it? "Nothing." Willy whispered. "Nothing? All of the bullets are gone so you had to of shot something?" inquired Boyd. "No, I didn’t kill anything. I took it into the back field and shot at that old shack and missed it with every one. So I didn’t kill a thing!" explained Willy. At that Boyd started to laugh. He laughed so hard that he had to sit back down. "What’s so funny?" asked Willy. "It’s a good thing that you missed that shack for it’s full of dynamite!"

 It’s Too Early

Willy never did enjoy getting up early in the morning and longed to sleep in. But morning after morning his mother would come into his bedroom and wake him up. This had to end but how? Day after day he gave it thought.....then one day he had it! The rooster! Yes, it’s his fault that we all had to get up so early!!!

So one day, just before nightfall, Willy went to the barn and looked at what paint cans were being stored there. Finding just the right color he headed towards the chicken coop. It was going to be hard work but tomorrow morning when every member of the family would be able to sleep in they would thank him for this blessing.

First one window and then the next and soon all of the windows to the chicken coop were painted black. He returned the paint to the barn and slipped back into the house. As he climbed into bed he was looking forward to sleeping in.

The next morning his Mother came in and woke him up as usual. Willy looked around and it was still dark outside..... and then sat up in shock as he heard the rooster crowing. He didn’t want to say anything that might get him into trouble so he went on as if all was normal. But once his Mother found the coop windows all painted black she had him remove the paint the best he could......and it took him days to do so.

 St. Patrick’s Day

A parade was going to be held in town for St. Patrick’s Day. All of the children had been invited to participate. Willy, not wanting to be left out, tried to come up with an idea for the parade. His dog....yes, that would do! But he needed something green on the dog so a necktie was in order. He went into the house and hunted for one but there was none to be found. That wasn’t going to stop him. So he headed next for the barn and the paint cans. Looking around he found a can with green paint in it. He brought in his dog and with a brush he painted on the most beautiful necktie he could onto his dog’s coat. He never did get to go to the parade because his Mother caught him and had him give the dog a bath until all of the paint had been removed. So much for participation.

 Uncle Boyd

Here is where history and tall tales come into play. Crashing into each other is more like it! And I now know that none of the below is true. And why she told me will have to ask her once you get to Heaven.

Boyd was always a ladies man and he did enjoy the ladies. One day, as he was working, a sheriff came to his place on horseback to take him in. For it turned out that there were a lot of babies being born to unwed mothers and they looked a lot like Boyd. As they came into a clearing (I assume that Boyd was also on a horse.....where were the cars back then????) bullets from all around them came screaming past the Sheriff and hit Boyd. He had been shot by the Fathers of those unwed mothers.

 Now I’ll tell you a little about Grandfather William Critenton Stamper and Grandmother Martha Ellen (Moore) Stamper as told to me by my own Father and Mother.

Grandfather loved the ladies......(now this might be where Grandmother was crossing her husband with her own son Boyd)...... and he would try to be with one whenever he found a chance.

When Grandmother found religion Grandfather wasn’t too keen to what she was doing and how she had wanted him to act. So one night he packed up a few things and took off with a young lady from town to parts unknown. After a while he sent her back home and she had his baby out of wedlock. Grandfather was no where to be found. From that time on Grandmother had a hatred for all men.

Many years later, when I started doing my Family History, I asked my Father if he would help me work on the Stamper line. After a while he wrote back and was very upset to find that he had a half-sibling, the results of when his Father had ran off, but he was able to accept this child without complaint. If I can recall this child was a boy. I have lost the letter from my Father that had this information in it.

By not placing a link to my email address, it may discourage robot functions from sending spam mail.

The Stamper Family Project is the property of

Golden Combs Ferguson
Booneville, Owsley County, Kentucky