Bozeman lives full life from old shade tree house

Published 4:55 pm Tuesday, September 8, 2009

In 1935, at an ice cream social/dance in the Mt. Era community, Mildred Bozeman of Chelsea met Dillard Baldwin from the Sylacauga area.

Two years later, they married and moved into a “mill house” in Siluria, where Dillard was already employed.

Mildred quickly got a job in the mill and worked the second shift there until 1978.

In 1979, “Mrs. Mildred” went to Alabaster Industries and retired from there in 1985, when she turned 65.

What a life this friendly, outgoing and optimistic lady has had. Mother to Jimmy, Sue, Bobby, Jerry and Peggy, she is cherished by eight grandchildren, eight great–grandchildren and one great–great–grandchild.

Dillard passed away in 1992 and Mildred continues her busy life from “the house by the side of the road.”

For years, they operated the Shade Tree Curb Market.

Since 1980, Baldwin has entered the Shelby County Fair in the flower, canned goods, and quilt categories. She has ribbons galore.

Being a member (since 1972) of RSVP, a “Red Hat Society” member, a singer at Senior Citizens Center, Pelham Pioneers “Golden Voices,” and Joyful Hearts at First Baptist in Alabaster are just a few of the activities this 89-year-old is involved in on a weekly basis.

She didn’t learn to drive until 1976, but now takes herself anywhere she wants to go. One of her favorite activities is her fifth Sunday visits to Shelby Ridge.

When asked to name a few of her neighbors along the highway 50 years ago, she spoke of the Brashers, Roys, Zuiderhouks and, of course, the Kent Dairy Farm.

She credits clean living, patience, kindness and a Christian attitude for her longevity. She feels blessed and stays active.

Columnist Sandra Thames can be reached by e–mail at