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Getting Hitched: Funny Story of a Wedding Journey in 1918 with Photos

I live in Houston and have worked as a nurse. I have a lifelong passion for traveling, nature, and photography (preferably all together!).

 This car might have been similar to the one mentioned in this story.  In the photo are my husband's grandparents plus another person in the middle.

This car might have been similar to the one mentioned in this story. In the photo are my husband's grandparents plus another person in the middle.

An Amusing Tale

"Getting Hitched" in this story refers to Holy Matrimony and the marriage of my husband's maternal grandparents. But horses and buggies also play a vital part in this handwritten rendition of their wedding journey and the problems that they encountered with their "Old Henry Ford," also referred to in those days of 1918 as "Tin Lizzies."

Recently I have been going through some collections of old photographs and other memorabilia saved throughout the years and dating back several generations.
In so doing, I have run across some heartwarming discoveries.

Eventually, my goal is to have almost everything put into photo albums or scrapbooks with names and places (if known) and some sense of order as to dates and times.

Let this story begin.

Notations made of their wedding journey are in this book.

Notations made of their wedding journey are in this book.

Our Wedding Book

This delightful discovery, although not in the best shape, was nonetheless fun to see and read. Notations made inside this little booklet tell of the date and location of my husband's grandparent's wedding, as well as who officiated and who witnessed the event.

They were united in Holy Matrimony in Oskaloosa, Iowa, in the year 1918. Most of the pages inside the covers of this booklet are blank. Not filled in were categories such as the following: Guests, Announcement Cards, Newspaper Clippings, At Home, Wedding Cards, Photographs, and Gifts.

Fortunately for us, the part about "Our Wedding Journey" was filled in, and I'll let the tale begin as it was handwritten those many years ago.

Our Wedding Journey

"Leaving Lynnville at 8 O'Clock, we proceeded on our way to the house of C.H. Merediths.

Arriving there, we left our car, and in company with Nellis and Clifford, we started on our journey to Oskaloosa. Everything went well until we reached the first big hill.

This half Old Henry Ford absolutely refused to climb without the aid of some heavy pushing. After an hour of pushing, puffing, and sweating, we finally made the hill.

We all piled in and once more started on our journey. After driving about one mile and a half, we came to a hill that was so very muddy that it was impossible to climb it.

While the boys went for a team, the girls walked into Taintor. The boys finally succeeded in getting the car out with the aid of a team. Reaching Taintor just at dark once more, we loaded in the Ladies.

After talking over our troubles and tribulations, and since the roads were so very bad, we decided to make a desperate effort to catch the train at New Sharon bound for Oskaloosa.

On reaching New Sharon, our hearts sank within us. Just as we reached the depot, we saw the tail end of the train leaving. After having another talk, we started on our journey once more.

As it was freezing, we made our way to Oskaloosa without further mishap. At nine O'clock, the knot was tied, then followed by dinner given by our Aunt. After 11 O'clock, we started on our homeward journey.

It was very rough, but we made it safely reaching the home of Clifford Merediths about one O'clock, where we stayed until the next afternoon. Then we started home in our car about 1/2 mile from their place.

We had a blowout. Clifford and Nellis came along in a buggy. Clifford and the bride changed places, the girls going on in the buggy. The boys finally got the car fixed and started.

All went well until close to Bartow's, where they got stuck in the mud. The team and wagon were close at hand, so it didn't take very long to get started again. This, being the last of our mishaps, we arrived safely in Sully to our new home."

Towns in Iowa mentioned in this story

Early Cars Versus Horses and Buggies

Henry Ford engineered many of the early cars called Model T's. He made them so affordable that many people who used to rely upon horses and buggies as their mode of transportation started choosing the "horseless carriages" to transport them from place to place.

However, the roads were not like the highways of today. They would often have been dirt paths in the country or rural areas, and if it rained, muddy ruts in the road made it hard for those cars to navigate.

Also, the early cars did not have the horsepower of the vehicles today. Thus the hills became obstacles in which often the people would have to get out of the vehicle and help push it up the hillside as in this true story of my husband's relative's wedding journey.

This time was one of transition!

"You can have it in any color you want, as long as it is black."

— Henry Ford

By now, you know that "Gettin' Hitched" was a slang expression for getting married. Hitching the horses up to carriages was commonplace when the 1918 marriage of my husband's grandparents took place.

Hopefully, this little story of their mishaps on their wedding journey will bring a smile to your face as it did ours when we recently rediscovered it.

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"If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses."

— Henry Ford

Great video of the Ford Model T's


This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2010 Peggy Woods

Comments are welcomed.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 05, 2021:

Hi Misbah,

Thanks for commenting on this true but funny story that happened to my husband's grandparents when they got married. Oh, the good old days! Haha!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 04, 2021:

Hi Devika,

I am so glad you liked reading this humorous story. It still brings a smile to my face.

Misbah Sheikh on March 04, 2021:

I enjoyed reading it, Peggy

The pictures are lovely

Thanks for sharing this beautiful story


Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on March 04, 2021:

Peggy W this is a well-told story and I enjoyed reading it.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 04, 2021:

Hi Anna,

I have to agree with you that this is a sweet story and relates to earlier times. Thanks for your comment.

Anna on March 04, 2021:

Thanks for sharing this sweet story.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on August 12, 2014:

Hello Franca,

Personally I agree with you! Some people have turned it around to hoping for many expensive gifts, but the focus should be on the happiness and life ahead of the bride, groom and their families.

Franca on August 12, 2014:

The wedding is for the bride and groom ,guest are invited to share and honour your special day .not to set you for life with expensive gifts.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 07, 2013:

Hi Scribenet,

I think that many people spend too much time and money on a wedding ceremony instead of what is really important. $100 is a lot of money for a gift unless perhaps to a millionaire. That bride should count her blessings that people remembered her with such a gift. Whatever happened to the idea that it is the thought that counts? If she is that shallow a person, it doesn't bode well for her relationships much-less her marriage. Glad that you liked this old wedding journey story.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 07, 2013:

Hi torrilynn,

So glad that you enjoyed the humor in this true story. Thanks for your comment and vote up. :)

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 06, 2013:

Hi FlourishAnyway,

It is nice to know who the people are in these old family photos. It is a treasure indeed! Thanks for your comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 06, 2013:

Hi moonlake,

So glad that you enjoyed this. I thought the story was really a cute one. Do you have any photos of your great-grandparents? Thanks for your vote and the share.

Maggie Griess from Ontario, Canada on July 05, 2013:

The modern bride who was talked about yesterday on Yahoo for having a meltdown because she though $100 for a gift was too little should have to push the car up a muddy hill and then take all day to reach the place she is to be married to realize hey...this is what marriage is about...not some glam wedding she cannot afford! Love those stories of weddings past. LOL

torrilynn on July 05, 2013:

Hi Peggy,

Thanks for sharing this story with us. I found it funny and I really did enjoy it. Voted up.

FlourishAnyway from USA on July 05, 2013:

How wonderful that you have a handwritten story and such clear photos (and you know who most everyone in the photos are). What a treasure!

moonlake from America on July 05, 2013:

Great story. Love reading your stories and looking at all your old family photos. I recieved my great-grandparents marriage record. It said they were married on the banks of the Little Wabash River. My aunts and mother thought that was so neat. Voted up and shared.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 04, 2013:

Hi Mommy Needs a Nap,

Yes...those were the days when horses and buggies were perhaps a bit more reliable than those early Model T Fords...especially with road conditions. Look how far we have come! Glad that you enjoyed this funny story. Thanks for your comment.

Michelle Clairday from Arkansas on April 02, 2013:

Lovely hub. I can just imagine that poor couple waiting on the horse and wagon to rescue their old car.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 20, 2012:

Hi Mazzy,

Haha! This would have made a good plot for a silent movie. Thank heavens the horses were available to save the day, so to speak. So glad that you liked this true story. Appreciate your comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 20, 2012:

Hi timcgaa70,

This hand written story of that wedding journey way back in 1918 brought smiles to our faces. Even without knowing the parties involved, I thought that others might also enjoy it because of the history involved with those early cars and the way things used to be. Thanks for your comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 19, 2012:

Hello sgbrown,

This is a sweet story, and yes, we are fortunate to have these old time photos. Thanks for your comment and votes.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 19, 2012:

Hi Mary,

Cars have certainly changed over the years! Haha! Fortunately most of them no longer need to be pushed or cranked to get them started. Glad that you enjoyed this hub and that it brought back memories of your Dad's 1929 car. As to Pinterest...I have not yet joined it. Thanks for your comment, votes and the share.

Mazzy Bolero from the U.K. on September 19, 2012:

I can see this story as a hilarious silent movie:) In those days, cars seemed like more trouble than they were worth - you'd probably get there faster on foot! You are lucky to have found that little slice of the past.

tlmcgaa70 from south dakota, usa on September 19, 2012:

what a treasure you found! thank you for sharing your story and the video, very much enjoyed both. voted up and across

Sheila Brown from Southern Oklahoma on September 19, 2012:

What a wonderful story. I wish I knew more about my families past. Your pictures are remarkable! Loved the story! Voting up and more!

Mary Hyatt from Florida on September 19, 2012:

This is no Pin button on your Hub. Did you disable that? I did read and comment.

Mary Hyatt from Florida on September 19, 2012:

Peggy, this was such a fun read. You are SO lucky to have these precious photographs. The old car with the wooden spokes reminded me of my Dad's old 1929 Dodge that had wooden spokes. We always had to give it a push to get it started.

I voted this Hub UP, etc. will share, Pin and Tweet.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on September 21, 2011:

Thanks for the comment Bye Video.

Bye Video on September 21, 2011:

Eyewitness account of the front lines on November 11, 1918. ... After over four years of bloody conflict, the Great War was at an end. ... It was a very natural impulse after their years of war, but unfortunately many fell after eleven o'clock that day. ...

Bye Video

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on July 20, 2011:

Hi JamaGenee,

Sounds like you have delightful family stories of your own. Those early cars, while wonderful, were not always reliable and of course the roads were pretty rough and many were unpaved. This wedding journey tale of my husband's grandparents in 1918 was funny. The one of your aunt-by-marriage sounds equally delightful. Thanks for adding cute and additional information to this hub.

Joanna McKenna from Central Oklahoma on July 20, 2011:

Peggy, I too have many old family photos, but can't really call them "collections" because I haven't gotten around (yet!) to grouping them by family line, time frame, etc. (I have, however, featured some in hubs here and on my blog, with the stories of each, which should count for something... lol!) That said, there are several photos of early automobiles, with whichever relative owned it standing next to or sitting in it, smiling from ear-to-ear. Since those particular relatives weren't wealthy by any means, being able to buy a CAR was a REALLY BIG DEAL. Big enough that whoever was around who owned a camera was automatically "volunteered" to commemorate the occasion. Knowing that owning a camera was also a rarity for the less than wealthy at the time makes these images all the more valuable to me and (hopefully) future generations.

As for the hilarious wedding trip, an aunt-by-marriage used to tell the story of how her father nearly banned her from marrying my uncle when she came home sopping wet one night after having to help push Uncle's Model T in the rain. Just wouldn't do that her cotton summer dress was nearly transparent and therefore my uncle had seen more of his future bride than was prudent or socially acceptable at the time! ;D

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on April 15, 2010:

Hello Lamme,

So happy to hear that you enjoyed this "Gettin' Hitched" hub. It is a fun one to share.

Lamme on April 14, 2010:

This was such a pleasure to read. The pictures were wonderful!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 31, 2010:

Hello loveroflife,

He is pleased to see the results of this "Gettin' Hitched" hub and we intend to share it with other family members who should also like reading it. Such a cute story! Thanks.

loveroflife on March 31, 2010:

Beautiful story and great old pictures. Your husband must be very pleased to see his family's history presented this way.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 29, 2010:

Hello De Greek,

So happy to hear that you enjoyed this "Gettin' Hitched" hub with the matching photos from my husband's family. I also found it fascinating and also fun. Thanks for the comment.

De Greek from UK on March 29, 2010:

It really is fascinating to look at photos of the past which have a specific history attached to them. Wonderful stuff. Thank you :-)

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 28, 2010:

Hi Ethel,

Am still working with many old photos and have so many ideas of future hubs using them. Glad that you liked this Gettin' Hitched hub. I thought that it was such a cute story. Happy that it was preserved all these many years. Thanks for the visit.

Ethel Smith from Kingston-Upon-Hull on March 28, 2010:

I love these old photos. They conjure up so much. Who were the people, how did they live, their experiences etc. Thanks for sharing this entertaining story

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 25, 2010:

Hello heymcs,

So happy to have shared this Gettin' Hitched story with you and others. It is so cute and such a slice of life in the early days of Model T cars. Thanks for the comment.

heymcs from Utah and DC on March 25, 2010:

Oh my gosh - I absolutely adored "Gettin Hitched". The family photos are priceless (and in such good shape) and the wedding story made it all come alive. Very nice. Thanks for sharing.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 25, 2010:

Hello Truth From Truth,

Am currently working with more family photos right now assembling them in an album. Sadly, some of the people can no longer be identified as the ones that might have known have already died. But there are some other great and fun photos. Glad you liked this "Gettin' Hitched" hub. Thanks for the comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 25, 2010:

Hi dahoglund,

You are right. The Beverly Hillbillies would have definitely used terminology like Gettin' Hitched in that show. Ha! Haven't thought about that television show in a while.

Truth From Truth from Michigan on March 25, 2010:

Thanks for sharing your family's history and some incredible pictures, I have a relative that has a model A and I enjoy seeing it when I visit. Thanks.

Don A. Hoglund from Wisconsin Rapids on March 24, 2010:

I have heard of hitching horses. However, being a city boy I never really made the connection. "Getting hitched has been commonly used in movies and television. Probably in shows like the beverly Hillbillies.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 24, 2010:

Hi dahoglund,

Yes...restoring old cars definitely takes a bite out of the family budget. We have never been so inclined to do that, but our former next door neighbor is constantly working on his Studebaker collection. And where do they vacation? Studebaker meets in various places. Fun to see those old cars.

So you had never heard of hitching up horses? Doubt that anyone still uses the term of gettin' or getting hitched to mean getting married in this day and age. Was just having a little fun with that old fashioned terminology.

Thanks for the visit and comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 24, 2010:

Hi Pete,

I agree that my husband's grandmother was very pretty. She was as lovely inside as her beauty on the outside. She was already a widow when I first met her so I never got to meet my husband's grandfather. But stories and photos bring it alive. Happy to hear that you liked this.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 24, 2010:

Hi Hello, hello,

So happy to hear that you liked this Gettin' Hitched hub. It was such a delight to find the material for it and choose some appropriate photos to use in this hub. Thanks for your comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 24, 2010:

Hello Mike Lickteig,

I agree with your assessment. I also felt like I was pushing that old tin lizzie up the hill. Ha! Glad you enjoyed this hub about Gettin' Hitched. Thanks for the comment. husband's grandparents probably never used that terminology...I just thought that it was a catchy title.

Don A. Hoglund from Wisconsin Rapids on March 24, 2010:

Peggy W

The model T is pretty far back, but back in the 1950's it was quite popular to restore Model A's. Prior to retirement I used to work with a guy who had two old Fords but I can't remember if they were model T's or A's. Probably the later.I was rather stunned when he told me the cost of restoring old cars.

I've heard the term getting hitched most of my life. However, I never associated it with hitching up horses.

Pete Maida on March 24, 2010:

Those are great photos; your husband's grandmother was very pretty.

Hello, hello, from London, UK on March 24, 2010:

You gave me a real tread with all these photos and your wonderful hub. Thank you.

Mike Lickteig from Lawrence KS USA on March 23, 2010:

What a terrific story. These folks went through some rough moments trying to get to Oskaloosa (a wonderful name--there is an Oskaloosa in Kansas, as well). The writing in this wedding book was so vivid, I felt I was pushing the car up the hills with them.

A nice story and better memento from times long gone. Thanks for sharing.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 23, 2010:

Hi Candie,

Model T's...Model A's...all old and interesting as well as historic regarding many of the first cars on the roads replacing horse and buggies or just plain walking. You are always so faithful in commenting on my hubs and Gettin' Hitched is no exception. Thanks!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on March 23, 2010:

Hello stars439,

Yes these family photos are great to have and of course the stories handed down like this one of getting married make it even better. Thanks for the quick comment on this hub.

Candie V from Whereever there's wolves!! And Bikers!! Cummon Flash, We need an adventure! on March 23, 2010:

Love Model T's but Model A's are my favorite (of which there's a HUGE car club that meets here, yearly). Thank you for sharing another gem from your family album!

stars439 from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State. on March 23, 2010:

Very beautiful family photographs to cherish. God Bless You.

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