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Macclenny in Baker County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Ida Raulerson Gainey

— Heritage Park Village —

 
 
Ida Raulerson Gainey Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Brandon D Cross, September 21, 2022
1. Ida Raulerson Gainey Marker
Inscription.  
Baxter Midwife
Born 1909

Ida Gainey was raised in the back woods of Baker County. A poor country girl with poor but honorable parents, Daniel and Laura Mizell Raulerson.

She married Otus Gainey at the age of 15 but hardships did not improve with marriage. The $1.25 a week Otus earned as a section laborer with the Southern Railway was not enough to sustain them during the Depression years.

In 1926 her only child, Mildred, was born. Often she was called upon to assist with the care of friends and neighbors until the Doctor arrived to deliver their babies. If the Doctor did not arrive in time, Ida would deliver the baby.

Eventually she became an official mid-wife delivering countless babies mostly from poor farm families and recording their births long before the advent of Florida’s Official Vital Records.

Here are excerpts from a 1979 interview with the phenomenal woman whose wealth in service is only known to God.
Home Life
"We'd go to bed so cold and so hungry. Sometimes we'd cover up with the feather mattress, take feed sacks
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and stuff them with corn shucks or moss to sleep on.

Part of the time we didn't have clothes to wear. I had one dress I wore to school. I'd come home and change into a rag and wearmy dress back to school the next day.

We missed school a lot. We'd go to school totin' our lunch pails with no shoes on. We poor children starved lots of times. We'd come in from school and might find a cold biscuit and a piece of onion and go straight to the cotton patch to work. I only went to the fifth grade, but I'm grateful 'cause I learned to read.”


Midwife Experiences
"Them women didn't have nothing for pain and most times I'd have to wrap their babies up in an old rag, or an old skirt or worn out coat.

Sometimes there weren't even a sheet on the bed and I'd pull out one of my clean white towels to lay a head on and the cinches would jump on it like flies.

We used homemade octagon soap back then and any old twine we had to tie a cord. I 'member once a man came driving up in a rickety old cross tie truck screaming 'Mis Ida you gotta come, she's done had the baby.’ When we got there to his house I found his wife on her back in the yard with the baby on her belly fightin' off hogs from eatin' her baby. He was full of liquor, plumb drunk, and his wife in that condition. Poor woman.

Times were hard back then.
Ida Raulerson Gainey Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Brandon D Cross, September 21, 2022
2. Ida Raulerson Gainey Marker
Once I was invited to eat a meal after delivering a baby and being there all day. All that was on the table was a smoke house bone and cornbread."

Last of Interview
"Let me show you what the Lord's give me," she said rising from her rocker and seating herself at the upright piano. As her fingers scaled the keys in perfect gospel tones her voice rising above the worldly cares outside her door, eyes closed as if in vision... the words were sung with feeling and conviction, 'I have Jesus, now I have everything." Ida Gainey died in 1992
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Parks & Recreational AreasScience & MedicineWomen. A significant historical year for this entry is 1979.
 
Location. 30° 16.719′ N, 82° 8.052′ W. Marker is in Macclenny, Florida, in Baker County. Marker can be reached from South Lowder Street south of West Railroad Avenue, on the right when traveling south. Marker located within Heritage Park Village. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 102 S Lowder St, Macclenny FL 32063, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Alverdo A. Geitgey (a few steps from this marker); Otis and Mattie (Crews) Canady (a few steps from this marker); Ida Estelle Corbett Mathews (a few steps from this marker); Ernest Harvey Jr.
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(a few steps from this marker); Postmaster Walter Turner (a few steps from this marker); Olustree Memories (a few steps from this marker); Clyde Sands and Mamie Thrift (a few steps from this marker); Lula Thrift (a few steps from this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Macclenny.
 
Also see . . .
1. Wiregrass Families. (Submitted on September 23, 2022, by Brandon D Cross of Flagler Beach, Florida.)
2. Heritage Park Village. (Submitted on September 23, 2022, by Brandon D Cross of Flagler Beach, Florida.)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on September 24, 2022. It was originally submitted on September 23, 2022, by Brandon D Cross of Flagler Beach, Florida. This page has been viewed 88 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on September 23, 2022, by Brandon D Cross of Flagler Beach, Florida. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.

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Apr. 20, 2024