Puritan Lawn Memorial Park >> Annie R Wells Remembrance
Annie R Wells
Annie Rebecca Wells Born 1891 in Upper Gagetown, New Bruinswick Canada. The oldest of 11 children she was tasked with the up bringing of each years new baby. Many of her siblings thought that she was their mother. When she had to leave at age 18 because the farm would not support the many mouths to feed, several of her younger siblings thought that their mother had left them. Growing up she had a pet deer that she raised when it became an orphan. It slept in the attic with her and followed her like a pet dog. Many nights she slept there with the youngest baby and warmed the baby’s bottle, which was often frozen, on her body. When she arrived by Steamer boat in Boston, she broke down and cried. “This was the dirtiest place I ever saw”. Being a country girl who had never seen an airplane and rarely an auto, this was like going to another planet. Annie was a Hired Girl for several families in the Boston area. She often said that this was the very next step to slavery. She worked six and one half days for room and board. This meant cooking, cleaning and caring for the children. The pay was less than three dollars a week. After several years of this Annie met and married Louis S. Wells. Their marriage produced a child and a home in Norfolk. Louis’s untimely death in 1942 required the sale of all property in Norfolk and the resulting homelessness that followed. In 1947 Annie bought a two family home in Arlington providing a home for her daughter and grandson. She paid off the twenty-five year mortgage in eight years, without any help. She worked two full time and several part time jobs until her early seventies. She continued to work at least one job well into her eighties. She believed in saving and paying cash. Her five grandchildren, commonly know to family as her ‘Baby Bears” all benefited from her passbook accounts set up for each. She was the cornerstone of the family during her life and her lessons will be passed on and will be a guiding force in our family for many generations to come. Her span saw travel evolve from horse back to auto, to airplanes, to men on the moon. She saw two World Wars, Korea, Vietnam, the rise and fall of the Soviet Union. Annie’s greatest marvel was not at the technological advances she saw but at how quickly time passed from her running through the fields of Canada as a young girl to watching the “Baby Bears” at age 92.