Tag Archives: silver-weddings

The Art of Failing to Communicate

Early marriages of our forefathers
had great and hopeful beginnings.

My focus on the male-female angle of life’s issues was far from clear for me. In fact, the issues were inevitably clouded by race and, the more I questioned the faulty communication between black men and women amongst the Westindians of Panama, the more questions cropped up. Although I couldn’t know it then the communication problem between the sexes would remain a key issue even amongst my acquaintances with United States Blacks later when I’d eventually immigrate. Continue reading

Windows to Manhood


For me the real test of manhood would arrive at a time in my life when I would be looking to form relationships with girls that would
provide a future wife. I had hopes that among the girls I was growing up with there could be that special girl and that we would both fall madly in love. But, as the days wore on I wasn’t even close to making that love connection. Continue reading

Wedding Bells

A 1930 Studebaker sedan similar to the one Cobert owned.
Image is of my sister, Aminta, and myself serving
as flower girl and ring bearer at one of several
weddings we would be called upon to adorn. My mother
would also be asked to do all the dress making for these
Silver weddings of the 40’s. I remember refusing to
smile for the photo as no one had really informed me
before hand that I would be participating in this wedding.

Rosa Lena Green and Cobert Reid, as with most young people, had very little notion of the enormous responsibility ahead of them as a married couple. They were too busy falling in love and enjoying themselves and their friends in the few areas around Calidonia and Santa Ana in Panama City that offered anything interesting for adolescents. Continue reading

Silver Weddings

A West Indian wedding party in Panama, circ 1915.

Silver Weddings of the 30’s and 40’s
Images thanks to Mr. G
eorge W. Westerman


The year 1935 was a year of firsts on the American home front. The first broadcast of “Fibber McGee and Molly” occurred on April 16, and the pop icon Elvis Presley was also born that year. It was also the year that the U.S. Congress accepted FDR’s “New Deal” package.

In Panama, 1935 was the year my parents decided to formalize their romance and get married. It turned out to be quite a shindig, one that many friends and family members would remember for years to come since my father, Cobert did not stint in so far as paying for the best of preparations, attire, food and vehicle transport and church arrangements. In fact, the “Silver” weddings of the 30’s and 40’s were usually elaborate- one might say ostentatious- affairs. Continue reading