Monday, February 25, 2013

A Love Story

Orley Seymour & Polly May Stapley were sweethearts for most of their lives…

O.Seymour & Polly May Hunsaker Stapley's wedding day

…married in their twenties in the early days of Mesa, Arizona, they enjoyed life to the fullest.  They worked hard—building a successful family business and a large and loving family…

The O. S. Stapley Family

They had the finest things that life could offer at that time, even the largest house in Mesa for many years, it is said.

But even prosperous families, at that time, kept their own livestock to support their lives and feed their growing families—chickens, pigs, and other small farm animals, all were important to keep life going and were watched over carefully.

Animals were not kept as an indulgence on their property—each had a job or a purpose to fulfill.   Except one. 

Polly May had a cat, and she loved it dearly.  Calling to it every day, she would give it special treats, cuddle and pet it—certainly a pampered and well-cared for feline.

Polly May Hunsaker Stapley, about 1916

But one day, it disappeared.  Polly May was beside herself with worry.  Calling and looking everywhere—asking the children and neighbors—but to no avail.

It took her a few days to think to ask her husband.

I think he may well have been quaking in his boots each and every one of those few days…

Orley Seymour Stapley

Finally, she came to him and asked if he knew what had happened to her cat.  It was a few, very long seconds before he replied…

“I caught the cat killing a chicken, so I shot it.”

Silence.  Lots of silence.

 Polly May H. Stapley

Then, Polly May looked her husband squarely in the eye and very patiently and softly said,

“Well, now you can go out and buy me the very best cat you can find.”

Victorian hand shake Card

And you know~he did.  Very quickly, I would imagine!

Sometimes, true love is not only hearts,  flowers and happy days, but hard work, soft words, patience…

…and a new cat.

See you soon with something new.


{boy with chickens all vintage cat images found online}


  1. I love reading these stories of your family Julie. You are so very lucky to have them, and we are very lucky that you always share them with us in your beautifully creative way! xxoo

  2. What a wonderful family story. I just love reading them. Have a great day.

  3. Skøn historie, selv om jeg er stor modstander af at skyde katte, ja og hunde med. knus morkaren.

  4. What a lovely story (poor pussy cat) I bet it kept the rats down too, the cat would have had a job, but just not to eat the chickens. It's been a while since I stopped by so I am going to have a good nosey Dxx

  5. What a sweet story. I can just imagine Polly giving him the GLARE as she quiety said, buy me a new cat. I am sure that did have to break her heart some.

  6. LOL...this is so enjoyable to read these true stories of your family...any photos of that house???? :) Sandy

  7. Such a great story!! I can only imagine how fast he went out and brought home a new cat for her!!


  8. oh dear!! that would be grounds for divorce in my little world!! I just posted about my kittys last night!
    I always enjoy your posts Julie,
    happy wednesday

  9. Oh...I'm with Viv! I'm afraid I'd never speak to my husband again.
    I won't tell my kitties about this...They'd be so sad.
    Carolynn xo