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The Past is Prologue

[My mother was passionate about her family's history and how she was the result of large families on both sides yet became one of the last surviving Braggs. I suppose loosing parents early in life might have that effect. When you lose parents before you are 20 you don't have the privilege of experiencing the changing relationship that comes with adulthood. You are forever a child relative to your parents. She did seem particularly predisposed to ancestral research but was left to her own to discover it. ~Martha]


The following is the Prologue to Kirkie's Memoir:


The suicide of my Father’s first wife and the disgrace of my maternal grandfather were responsible for my parents meeting and marrying. Lucy Garth Bragg and Nathaniel Givens never knew each other, but their unfortunate life choices are the reason I exist.


Margaret Givens and Harry Bragg, my parents, were an unlikely couple. He was 33 years older than she was but they fell in love and hoped to fulfill each other. I was the child, though not the son, they wanted.


By the time I was 18 I had gone from only child, the last of the Braggs, to adult orphan. I had many advantages but I always felt the need of reviving a family, once numerous, but scant in my generation.


Only Me No More is a memoir that reveals family secrets, lauds family strengths and champions the miracle of the current generation’s achievements and promise.


Book One starts with the last letters my maternal grandmother wrote to my grandfather weeks before their marriage in January 1897. The couple’s youngest child, Margaret Kirk, was my mother. I am her namesake. This part is presented as fiction and incorporates Spencer, Hollingsworth and Givens and Bragg family stories. It ends with my birth.


[As I mentioned in her eulogy I have a carpet bag full of letters, I may reach back even further to explore the relationship of Martha Hollingsworth Givens [my name sake] and Nathaniel Givens. In fact I intend to do so that is if my eyes can stand the strain of trying to read the small, spencerian, over 100 hundred year old script.]



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