Deborah Sokolove

Sokolove_ Deborah.jpg

My grandmother Minnie was born on May 1, 1892, in Lodz, which is now in Poland but at that time was a Russian territory. She told me that she only went to school for about a year as a child, and went to work in a textile mill at the age of 7. She and my grandfather Sidney immigrated to the United States in 1913. When my mother was twelve or so, my grandmother left my grandfather because he had a violent temper, especially when he was drunk, and cheated on her with other women. She worked as a washerwoman, a seamstress, and a milliner, to support herself and her only child, my mother. The hats in my panel are like the ones she would have made in the 1920s and 30s. When I was small, she lived in my parents' home, helping to take care of my sister and me. She liked to sing, to cook, and to laugh. Grandma Minnie died peacefully in her sleep on March 14, 1980, at the age of 88.