Jessie Huffman, 1984

Born in 1904 in Philo, Mrs. Huffman has spent the greater part of her life on farms in East Central Illinois. For 39 years her husband worked at Sloan Station near Ivesdale. He also worked on farms in Bement and Royal. "I just worked as a housewife all my life - a lot of company, a lot of cooking, a lot of canning" she said in 1984. "I wanted to be a nurse. But I didn't have the money. There were eleven in our family. "I just made a good home, raised a good family. I like to do for others." She recalled the day of her marriage when her husband had to return to work in the fields that same afternoon and she moved in with her mother-in-Iaw's
home where she and her husband lived for the next ten years. ''All I've known is just work." Even with all the work raising her three children, she says, "I've had a wonderful life. I don't have any regrets ... I had a happy married life. I'm seventy-nine years old and I walk with a cane." Nonetheless, although she lost her husband in the early 1980s, whom she took care of for several years, she said, "I feel that I can have a new life.
"My doctor says, 'You look like you're goin' to a party.' I said, 'Why not? It's what you make of yourself that's important.'"

Source: Raymond Bial, There is a Season, Champaign County Nursing Home, 1984.