...in Marion County, Indiana, Agnes Cairn Blair married Otto J. Hofmann. The bride was 28 years old, a native of Scotland, and her 35-year-old groom had been born in Germany. For most of the rest of their lives, they lived on a farm in Kentucky.
Agnes and Otto are not my ancestors. I don't have any photos of them, and I don't know much about them. I do know they had four children together, and one of their two sons (born in Kentucky) grew up and married my mother (born in Missouri). Here's a photo of their son and my mother, taken in Texas in 1957, a few days after they met on the beach:
I think about people like Agnes and Otto and wonder about the chain of events that brought them from their native lands to the U.S. and then to a place where they eventually found each other. I wonder where I'd live today if it hadn't been for Otto and Agnes and their son, my stepfather.
If my mother hadn't married their son, I might still be in Missouri. Instead, we moved to Texas when I was a teenager. I met and married a Texas man (son of parents from Oklahoma) four years later. He and I had two beautiful daughters. That marriage didn't last, but it was in Texas that I met and married my second husband (born in Maryland), with whom we moved around the country until we landed in Louisiana.
So many people from so many places. So many miles traveled for chance meetings that sparked love and changed lives.
Otto and Agnes never knew their grandson, my brother (born in Texas to my mother and their son), and I don't know how much my brother knows about them. I think their story might be a nice one. Judging from their choice to wed on Valentine's Day, at least one of them must have had a romantic streak.
Happy Valentine's Day to the ones I love. Some of you are right here in Louisiana, nearby. Others are in Texas, California, Missouri, Minnesota, and points in between. One, a young Marine, is in Virginia. Wherever you live, you live in my heart.