Thursday, December 14, 2006

Christmas The Early Days with the Hawkins

Hi Marty,

You have posted this sketch in the past. It was done by my Dad in 1921 at the age of 12. The kids today would have no idea of how time consuming and difficult a sketch like this would have been at that time. What with working with a nib pen and bottle of black ink, being careful not to get to much ink on the paper or to smudge the ink with your hand. The detail in it has always fascinated me.

This was a typical Christmas Eve in his and in our family... "Le Reveillon".

We would go to Bethany Church, a french protestant congregation, in Verdun at the foot of what is now Champlain Bridge. Santa, my father, would suddenly appear. We would sit on his knee, receive gifts and sing Christmas Carols and hymns. Reverend Dumas would say mass and have his annual heart attack, collapsing behind the pulpit.

A few weeks later he would be back at the pulpit saying mass.

After church all my aunts, uncles and cousins would gather at our house and we would celebrate just as you see in this sketch.

Bob H
PS An interesting side note to the sketch is that my Dad signed J. E. Hawkins. The family called him Ernest or Ernie. However. it was not until he married Rosalyn's mother that he found out that Ernie was not his name. His real name was Jean Louis Hawkins. His father wanted a boy named after him and his mother wanted him named Ernest. On the day he was baptized his mother stayed home with the other children and his dad took him to be baptized... Jean Louis.... then came home and told his wife that he had him baptized Ernest... and the rest is history.

Thanks Bob H. for sharing these great times with us..

I hope we get some more stories from others as well..

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