I was born in Houston, Texas but my parents moved to Arkansas when I was only about six weeks old. This was the first of many moves. For most of my childhood my father was either a Baptist preacher or an Air Force Chaplain. We had a good life but we were nomads. From the time I was born until I left home I never spent more than three Christmases in the same house. When we got to Arkansas we went to Papaw and Mamaw’s house. This picture is actually my first Warford family picture. It was, I am told, a very big occasion but as you can see I appear to have slept through the whole thing.
I love this old picture for many reasons. Obviously the fact that it was a first is a pretty big deal but there is something else. Most of the Warfords from my line, at least the ones that have gray hair or color it, refer to that little white house as the old home place. Can you see the porch right there on the front of that little house? One glance at that porch drowns me in memories. That porch was an all-weather playground for all the kids in my family. So many things happened on that porch. When we played hide and seek that porch was the base, when we ate watermelon we ate it on that porch, when I got my hair cut it was cut on that porch, we shot firecrackers, bottle rockets, BB Guns, rifles and shotguns off that porch. I could probably fill a nice little book with porch stories but for now let me just say that was one seriously all-purpose porch.
It is hard to explain, I never lived in the little white house at the end of Warford road and I never visited there for more than thirty days at a time but for me the little white house in this picture will always be my old home place.