February 2, 2021

Dorothy, Juanita and Sally
936 White Street, Atlanta


The four Cate siblings—Clifford, Della, Harriett and Jack—had 9 children among them.  Clifford and Abbie had 5 sons and 1 daughter, Della and Richard 1 daughter, and Harriett 1 son by Robert and 1 daughter by Arley.  This rare photo of the three girl cousins shows a united front for the minority! Each of us was our mother’s only daughter.

Dorothy was several years older than Juanita, and I was an afterthought—over a decade younger than they were.  I thought they were beautiful and ever so much fun!  Our home lives were very different—Dorothy living with her parents and five brothers on a large dairy farm on the outskirts of Athens, Juanita living with her parents in the West End neighborhood of the growing city of Atlanta, and I living as an “almost only” child with my parents in Athens.

Dorothy was a petite blue-eyed blonde—I thought she looked like a movie star.  Just as pretty with her hair in pigtails and no makeup, she was glamorous when she curled her hair, polished her nails, put on makeup and a stylish skirt and blouse and flats. She had a wonderful almost musical laugh. She loved going to the “picture show” downtown with friends, kept up with all the latest popular music, which she liked to play on her upright piano. 

The brick bungalows on Juanita’s street were very close together.  Everyone had a front porch where they congregated during warm weather.  The McCaulley family lived next door—and their daughter Lulabelle was Juanita’s best friend. She had an older brother Don who was also a friend and I think he had a crush on Dorothy when she came to visit. 

Juanita’s city life was much different from her “country cousins” and we loved visiting Atlanta.  We would walk up the street and take a streetcar or trolley downtown to shop at Rich’s, visit the Wren’s Nest in West End (the home of Uncle Remus author Joel Chandler Harris), go see the Cyclorama at Grant Park, go to a movie at the Fox Theater, and walk to the Big Apple supermarket in West End. Juanita had a record player—and all the latest 78s. As an only child, she enjoyed reading popular novels and kept a diary.  

In this photo, Dorothy and I were visiting—probably with my mother–and we probably were headed for a shopping trip!  Dorothy and Juanita both have on stylish pleated skirts. About 6 years old at the time, I thought it was wonderful to be “one of the girls” in the big city!

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