Honesty in stories. Truth in words.

130 Years Ago Today…


…two people, aged seventeen and twenty-four, joined hands in marriage.




Young and naïve, neither had the slightest idea that their lives would be anything but blissful and simple. They didn’t know that he would have health struggles and nearly leave her a widow. They couldn’t have prepared for the heartache of loosing a child. They never guessed that they, raised in a large city since childhood, would be forced into the wild west, pioneering in eastern Washington state, where there could be miles between homesteads.



They didn’t know that fifty years of marriage lay ahead of them. They might not believe how many lives they touched…lives of people who they met only once or twice, yet who still remember the kindness and smiles to this day.



They didn’t know that their great-great granddaughter would be one of those weird author-folk who loves to write everything down. They didn’t know that one day, their life story would become an honest-to-goodness, deliciously pieced together book.


They didn’t know that their lives would leave a legacy which would remain sound even seventy years after their deaths.


If you haven’t already figured it out, I’m speaking of William and Clara McDonald, my great-great grandparents. Today is their 130th wedding anniversary. (Hence the special post.)




William and Clara have inspired me so much, first as a young child when I heard of their bravery moving from Chicago to little tiny Spokane, and now again as I’ve dug deeper into my family’s history and learned more about these two amazing people. When I first read their 8-page memoirs at age ten, I remember thinking, “wouldn’t it be cool if there was a book about them?” Never in my wildest imagination did I think that it would be me who would be recording their story.


This very special record of their lives, a book I’ve titled The Old River Road, will be shared with the world THIS YEAR. That’s right; this year, on June 13th, I’ll be throwing my great-great grandparents (not literally, mind you) out into the big scary world.


Are you excited to read their story?


6 comments so far.

6 responses to “130 Years Ago Today…”

  1. Awwww this is beautiful!! I’m SO excited to read their story!! Can June come faster?!

    • Ivy says:

      Aww, thanks Emily! I’d love June to come faster, too, because I can’t wait for others to read their beautiful story! But at the same time, I’m glad I have almost 3 months to finish editing. ;-)

  2. Yes, I’m excited! It all sounds so interesting and I’m looking forward to reading their story.

  3. Abi E. says:

    Oh my goodness, how cool!! I think it is so neat that you know so much about William and Clara and are recording it. I might do the same some day. This was such a neat post! :D

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