Sunday, May 10, 2015

Mollie Supkoff Tolchin--As Remembered by Her Granddaughter

I've done multiple Ancestor Deep Dives, tracing direct ancestors through documentation.  But there are some who actually remember these people--so I've asked them to share their memories.  Here's the first of several.  Thanks to my mother's first cousin, Karen Ehrenreich Shipkovitz, for sharing her memories of my great-grandmother (her grandmother), Mollie Supkoff Tolchin.  A deep dive into Mollie's life can be found here.

Mollie lived with us as long as I can remember.  I shared a room with her for many years as we had a 3 bedroom home for 6 of us and of course in those days only one full bathroom.  Mollie was a terrific cook and made the best cookies.   After school, she would always have her soft doughy cookies waiting for me and my friends.  She never varied much from her menu and if it was Monday you knew exactly what you were having.  She always made it a point to have a hot meal ready for my father, Leonard, who generally came home late and ate around 9.  He was in the produce business and had long hours.  Rumor has it he was a gambler- cards I believe but I never knew this as a child.  
Karen Ehrenreich, Mollie Supkoff Tolchin & Linda Tolchin Diamond (my mother), January 1977

She and my mother, Ruth, argued constantly. I think it was the close confines of having 2 women together too much of the time..Mollie’s domain was the kitchen and we were not allowed to do much in the way of cooking.  It was not until my early 20’s that I even knew my way around a kitchen(taught by my roommates after college).

Every Sunday morning your grandfather, Lou, came to visit his mother.  He often brought Linda and Eddie with him.  Sandy remembers that he would give her money(much to the chagrin of Minnie I’m sure)  What she did with it I don’t know but perhaps it was to help out with household expenses.  I think he was always grateful to Ruth for taking her in because Minnie and she would have killed each other!
Mollie Supkoff Tolchin with her sister Rose Supkoff Mallinger

I remember my mother and Mollie taking showers in the basement together under an overhead spigot surely to keep the bathroom clean and not be wasteful.  they would try to get me to join them but it was rather gross to see those two naked ladies!

I do not remember Molly being particularly affectionate to any of us.  I think she believed she had a job to do in our household and that was that.  As I got to middle school I tried to avoid being home as much as possible partly because I wanted to hang out with my friends and also to get away from the fighting.  She probably preferred my brothers!  My mother cleaned and Mollie cooked!  I don’t remember spending much one on one time with Mollie and she rarely left the house unless Lou took her somewhere or there was a family function.
At Mollie's son Lou's wedding to Minnie Joshowitz; L to R: Ruth Joshowitz Lockspeiser, Mollie Tolchin, Minnie Joshowitz Tolchin, Lou Tolchin, Esther Joshowitz, Herbie Joshowitz; June 5, 1948

I don’t recollect that she had any personal friends but family would show us for dinners and holidays. 

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