Mable Bordelon Aymond - November, 2008
The small town of Evergreen, located between Bunkie and
Cottonport in Avoyelles Parish, was my birth place and
home for the first twenty years of my life. My years as
a child were happy ones with many brothers and sisters,
and a good Dad and Mom.
Many of my memories are of school, catechism and church
in Evergreen. I was told by my Mom that I was born in
the house where my family lived at that time.
Interestingly, it was situated exactly where the Little
Flower Catholic Church now stands.
Later my parents moved the family to a home close to the
cotton gin my Dad operated for Haas Incorporated of
Bayou Rouge ran behind our home and is still there
today. At that time we lived there, it was much larger
with clean water, and I spent many hours on the bank
catching crawfish. They were rather plentiful.
I can recall African-American children walking past my
home on their way to a small school down the road across
the bayou. It was probably just an elementary school.
There was also a church across Bayou Rouge from the
small school which people attended, usually around
mid-morning on Sundays. Sometimes there was a service
for baptism in which those to be baptized were walked
into the bayou and partly submerged for a few seconds.
The children would sit on the opposite bank and watch.
The school which I attended in Evergreen was one of my
favorite places to be. The teachers and principals, Mr.
Jeansonne, then Mr. Smith, were figures of great
importance to me. In May of 1943, I graduated from
Evergreen High School. World War II had broken out in
1941 and it was a very hard time for everyone. I
remember practicing black-outs and the use of ration
stamps for sugar, gasoline, and shoes.
Evergreen contributed to the war effort in that three or
four sons of the families lost their lives in battle. My
brother, Dicken, was in the Navy, but thankfully he made
it back home when the war ended. It is still a painful
time to remember, and now when I ride through this very
special town, I look to the places which were part of my
everyday existence, and I feel a sense of longing and
sadness for days gone by.
My best and closest friend at school was one of my
classmates, Ardeanne Ducote. After graduation we lost
track of each other, but I was determined someday I
would locate her. In 1983, I managed to learn that she
was in Worthington, OH, so I contacted her. We stayed
in contact until she passed away in March, 2008. In
1999, her daughter drove her to visit me. I was so
happy to see her. Now that she is gone, I miss talking
to her on the phone. However, I am grateful and thank
God that she was back in my life for 25 years.
There aren't too many people I would know in Evergreen
today, as most families which were there when I lived
there, are gone. I can still close my eyes and remember
so many of them.
The residents of Evergreen are blessed and fortunate in
many ways. There will always be a special place in my
heart for Evergreen.
Mable was a member of the EHS Class of 1943.