Me and Turners Station Mercantile–A Mini-Memoir

By Jill Elsey-Stoner

Jill Elsey-Stoner and Candace Stoner
When I was growing up in my parents' house behind the store and post office in Turners, Missouri, one of my favorite things was returning empty pop bottles for cash. I rode a little red tricycle with an attached wagon and hauled my empty bottles down the driveway to the store. I used the refund money to buy candy.

Since kindergarten, I wanted to run the store—business name Turners Station Mercantile—that  has been in my family since

Depression-Era Paper Boy Remembers the Public Square—A Mini-Memoir

By Russell Keller

Left, Russell Keller
I started selling newspapers on the public square in Springfield, Missouri, in 1928, when I was eight years old. Back then, the square was a cement circle edged in brick with a flagpole in the center and was called the pie. My three older brothers worked for the newspaper on the circulation desk. They were in charge of getting subscribers and managing some of the delivery boys.

My dad, Henry, was a letter carrier. He later became public administrator for the county. My mother, Nellie, didn’t work outside the home. She had her hands full

My Habitat for Humanity House: A Mini-Memoir


Patty Goss
By Patty Goss

I had a hemorrhagic stroke in 1994 when a blood vessel burst in my brain. I was in and out of rehabilitation for seventeen years, trying to get function out of my left arm and learning to walk with purpose. I loved to run whenever I could. When I was driving a truck and parked near a building, I’d run to the building and back. People asked, “Why do you do that?” I said, “Because I can.”
 

The stroke was the morning of Mother’s Day. If it had

Rare 1828 Journal: A Mini-Memoir of Danger and Death

Journal title page
Volunteer Mike Marsh was boxing contributed books in the fall of 2014 for Friends of the Library, Springfield, Missouri, when he spotted a five-by-seven-inch, brown-leather volume with no title or design on the cover. Front and back were faded, scraped and scarred, with patches of leather missing, as though tossed about or shelved or read dozens of times. Pages were neatly penned, and edges of some were darkened with bits missing.   

“Jane, look at this. I think it’s unusual,” he said to Jane McWilliams, who is in charge of special books for the Friends’ semi-annual sales events. 

This was on the title page: “A Voyage from England to the United States of America April &

Doling Park History Project Wants Your Memories

Gail Mitchell, Doling Park historian
Doling Park has been a cultural and societal landmark in Springfield, Missouri, for more than 130 years. Gail Mitchell’s family members owned some of the park rides when it was a celebrated amusement center. Her sister-in-law, June Roberts, played the organ at the skating rink.

“I took my children without having to pay the twenty-five cents per ride,” Gail says.

The park had a reputation for bringing lovers together.

The Teacher Who Changed My Life: A Mini-Memoir

Samantha White
By Samantha White

They say people are like seasons. They enter and exit your life with a certain purpose and then move on to make room for others. This is quite true and particularly relevant for the teachers in one’s life.

I have had countless teachers in my life. Some good, some not so good. Some concerned about my well-being and development and others who couldn’t care less. There is one that

Top of the Food Chain: The Art of Memoir


Book Review: The Art of Memoir 
Mary Karr
Harper, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, 2015 Hardcover, 256 pages with appendix

In her opening words, Mary Karr waves a yellow flag to signal this is not just another how-to book.

“No one elected me the boss of memoir. I speak for no one but myself. Every writer worth her salt is sui generis [unique]. Memoirists’ methods—with regard to handling