TRANQUILITY.....by PFN 1999
It's just a word, isn't it? Funk and Wagnalls says "tranquility" whether it is spelled with one or two "L"s means the state of being tranquil, rest or quiet.
But to a certain writer, it was, and is so very much more. First of all, it is a small country village not far from here where a beloved aunt taught school in a little one-room building. Later the same building became a community center. She retired after many years and was later to marry the man she would meet in almost the same location. This happened, would you believe it, in the village cemetery where he had come to place flowers on the grave of his first wife. After they were married they lived in a home just a few feet from the community center and the little white church just across the road.
Another chapter began when this writer and her parents came to celebrate a mortgage burning ceremony in the same former schoolhouse. It was now enlarged and became the gathering place for chicken and waffle suppers, harvest homes and other affairs put on by the church. This time a large group awaited a concert that was planned.
The uncle had invited a gentleman from a nearby farm where he was working as a state milk tester, to be the soloist. At the conclusion of the performance, the young man (tall, dark and handsome, of course) asked to be introduced to one of the young women in the front row of the audience. This he did and so began a new era of "tranquility." The girl had come to the evening meeting to drive for her parents and to practice her recently acquired driver's license.
The young couple dated for a couple of years and found they had a number of things in common. The next step was an engagement and soon a marriage. Inside the wedding ring the word "tranquility" was engraved as a fitting motto; now, after almost sixty-five years, it is barely visible.*
Soon a family came along. First there came a daughter who was baptized in a beautiful large church in another small town. The next child was a son who was baptized in the little white church just across the road from the spot where so much had started.
As the family grew it moved to an urban town nearer the father's business needs. Soon twin daughters came along to complete the growing family. They were baptized in the large stone church on the green. All the children developed many interests and another diversion seemed to be in order.
A little log cabin in another state provided rest and recreation with new friends and interests. Of course, the cabin had to be named "Tranquility." The signmaker had erred and spelled it "Tranquillity." It became quite well-known around the little country lake that had been built by a cousin. This relative had generously offered the family the privilege of choosing a building lot wherever they liked. An ideal spot near the dam and spillway provided a choice view of the whole lake including watching the many forms of wildlife. On the porch of the cabin hangs a framed article entitled "Tranquility," apparently the sentiments of another writer had written and published many years earlier as evidenced by the yellowing newspaper article.
Many things were happening around the world, the foremost of which was the landing on the moon by the astronauts. Was the "Sea of Tranquility" just another coincidence?
Two more minor things added to this strange saga when the oldest daughter began selling articles of jewelry put out by a famous company that specialized in home party sales. One very popular item was a silver pendant depicting the moon landing and was named "Tranquility." It sold out quickly and everyone in the family has tried to find this special piece but have had no luck so far. Another company that made cosmetics, took advantage of the publicity and put out a skin fragrance also called "Tranquillity." This was purchased and is enjoyed still. How strange that a single word could be the focus of so many happenings!
The little country village, the community house and the tiny white church remain there still today. Perhaps our story will have its ending in the neat Tranquility Cemetery where it had all begun so many years ago.
Pauline F. Nulton
The Tranquility United Methodist Church, was built in 1870.