This story and picture was given to me by Joan (Gordon) Cunningham, Mary Ann’s sister. Mary Ann said that she also
remembers the Dred Holland Store in Taylortown, Texas and the way everyone called him "Daddy Dred." The picture was taken
shortly before the store was bulldozed.
Let’s take a tour back through time Go back through the 90s, 80s, 70s, 60s, 50s, and into the 40s. In the 40s Mary
Ann and I were likely found playing churchor or school. Those were our favorite things to do. However, Dad or Mother were
also very much in favor of us learing to work. I well remember Dad saying to me and Mary Ann, “Girls I want you two
to go with me today. I need you to help me chop cotton.” I think I must have known at the time that we two were in trouble.
That was my first time to use a grubbing hoe. We didn’t simply chop cotton, we dug we dug out the roots of persimmon
sprouts. No matter how hard we tried, we could never get all the roots out. By the next week or two, those rootd would have
sprouted and the work done previous needed to be done again. Dad always tried to provide an incentive to work. He promised
that if we worked hard we could stop by Daddy Dred’s store and get a Coke on our way home.
Now that store was something to behold. It was quite large, two stories in fact. I still remember what it felt like to
walk across that floor. The floor boards would give a little as you walked which made you want to press down hard to see if
you could make them move a little more. As you walked in the front door the ice cream bpx was the first thing you saw. At
least it was the first thing a child would see. Then the Coke box. Now that was a wonderful thing to me. Five cents bought
a Coke, R C Cola, Dr Pepper Grapette, Orange Crush or a bottle of chocolate. To me that was the kind of things dreams were
made of. I have to tell you that I did not pay too much attention to all of those groceries. I was not interested in them
very much. I can still picture the candy counter though. It was glass shelves enclosed so we could not touch. Oh how we could
look and imagine the taste of all that different kinds of candy. It was a child’s delight.
I even remember the big tall gas pumps out front. One could see the gas in the glass at the top of the pump.
Getting a five cent Coke for working with Dad was good pay but there was enough incentive to work in the knowledge that
we were going to get to stop at Daddy Dred’s store to see what was going on.
This picture was taken by Gaylon Little’s sister Carol. He and Laquita were kind enough to let me have some copies
because my sisters Peggy, Jan and Mary Ann would love having as a “Precious Memory.”
Joan (Gordon) Cunningham