With the school year ended, and summer just weeks away, kinfolk from all over the country will be flocking home for family reunions. Most southern families take these reunions very seriously, and Mississippians are no different. Family members living in other states often take hard-earned vacations to make the trek home to visit with relatives they may see only during these gatherings.
The photograph above was taken at one of these events. This particular gathering occurred on the occasion of my great-grandmother's 80th birthday. The place is Goodman (Holmes County) Mississippi, in the yard between my great-aunt Stella Branch Young's home and the home of her mother, Claudia Baldridge Branch, my great-grandmother. The time was a Sunday afternoon in late summer of 1956. My great-grandmother is pictured in the front, on the right, seated between two of her daughters. It appears that she is holding a wrapped birthday gift in her lap. My mother and I are pictured to the left, sitting next to each other, and my father is standing to the right in the back of the picture.