Stanford B. Mace
Stanford B. Mace
Source: Pattie M. Mace
When Stanford B. Mace was born on February 28, 1909, in Mississippi, his father, George Jr., was 25 and his mother, Queen Esther, was 19. He was their eldest child and known for his love of God and family. He was a clean sharp dresser. When he would dress casually, it was in either a thin dress shirt with slacks or a polo style shirt with slacks. When he would dress up, he was suited and booted as they would say. He always wore a complete suit with hat and tie and handkerchief to match the tie. Every now and then he would wear overalls. He did not care for how the overalls looked or fit.
Stanford had specific favorites. His favorite colors were purple and scarlet red (burgundy as we would call it.). His favorite athletic sport was boxing. He loved basketball, baseball, and boxing. He himself was a boxer as a young man. He said often, he was good at it. He developed a working strategy to knock out his opponents. His favorite vegetables were turnip greens and yellow squash. His favorite fruits were tomatoes, blueberries, and pears. He loved his blueberry cobbler and pear preserves. He made the best pickled chow-chow preserves known. It was his own secret recipe. He would show you how to make it, but never exactly told you how in written form. Therefore, no one ever got the recipe. His homemade buttermilk biscuits were fluffy and delicious, and his homemade molasses was stomach rubbing full tasty.
Stanford had a beautiful baritone voice that would bring tears to your eyes and melt your heart. He also knew how to sing bass. His most favorite known songs were, “Burden Down Lord”, “The Dr Watts Hymns”, “The Christmas Song by the Temptations” and “I Heard it Through the Grapevine”. Speaking of grapevine, Stanford had what some would call a green thumb. He planted a grapevine just outside his house that for many years after his transition, it would grow long, tall, and strong. It still produces grapes. He planted a Magnolia Tree just outside his house in 1968, and it is still there. Magnolia is the State of Mississippi’s state flower. Therefore, where there is a Magnolia tree growing in the State of Mississippi, it is illegal to cut it down unless it is diseased or rotten. He also planted several fruit trees (plum, apple, pear, banana, and lemon) and vegetable gardens that were considered fields. The tomatoes would be huge and juicy. You could pick them off the plant and eat them while waiting on him to finish gathering his crop. His hot peppers were so spicy you would shed tears the moment you smelled them.
He tried to teach all of his younger siblings, family generations and friends what he learned about life to help them triumph, overcome and succeed. One of his favorite scriptures which was one of several guidelines of his life was, “Watch and Pray.” Stanford enjoyed teaching people (especially children) how to drive. He loved to ride horses, sing, dance, fish and enjoyed farm animals of all kinds. He also had a passion for building houses, along with breeding and raising bulldogs. He had the special gift of talking to animals in a conversation form, and they would understand and obey what he would say to them. It was exceedingly rare that he would use force of any kind or punishment of any kind to get an animal to obey. Sometimes, he would lay in his bed, in his house, in his room and talk to the dogs, chicken, cats, and all outside and they would do whatever he would tell them to do. Amazing right? This is true and witnessed by many people. Everything he loved to do, he tried to teach his children, several nephews, some nieces, and so many others.
Stanford said that when the draft for the war was going on, he was not drafted because those who had four “C” s were not drafted. He was among those with four “C”s.
In 1930, at age 20, Stanford B. Mace married Coniell Carson and had his first children, a set of identical twin girls, Mary Belle & Martha Belle Mace. Together they lived on the Mace Estate and Stanford’s grandmother, Mollie Dolks (a widow at the time), lived with them at times to assist with the babies. (Mollie also had her own home on the family land for a period.) Stanford said that Mary came a minute and twenty seconds before Martha. He also said that when they were little, they put a homemade bracelet on the arm of one of the twins and a bracelet on the other twin leg to tell them apart. As they grew older the twins would switch bracelets to confuse people and trick people but by then they were growing into their personalities and ways. He knew which was which but his Grandmama did not always know. He said Mary was very outspoken and she would persuade Martha to do things she would tell her to do and Martha would quietly go along with it.
The twins were forced to be left and raised by their father, Stanford B. Mace, and his family. Coniell was pregnant with their third child, Marion, when she left the Mace Estate. Although Coniell and Bee were separated, two additional children were born, Ethel Ruth and Fred. Eventually, Stanford and Coniell were divorced.
Stanford’s second union was with Arlean Gilmore. Arlean had a daughter named Mildred Ruth (aka Ruth) prior to her relationship to Stanford, and they had two other children after being united (Andrew and Shirley). Stanford said that he moved to Chicago and began working at Campbell Soup so that he could make more money to support his family. After being there for a few months, he sent for Arlean and his children. He would also give loans to several of his co-workers at Campbell Soup, with the agreement they were to pay him back with interest of two bids on a dollar. That helped a lot with the household finances. After living in Chicago for a few years, they decided to move back to Mississippi. After moving back to Mississippi, Stanford, and his brother-in-law (Fred Gilmore) started their own back woods business. They begin making and selling moonshine whiskey. Also, when he returned from Chicago, Roscoe (aka Britches) had the family farming cotton and he told him there was no money in farming cotton because too many people were doing it. He convinced Roscoe to change from cotton to farming vegetables. That was when the family finances began to improve.
Arlean went to the hospital to have what Stanford called a small procedure and transitioned to her eternity while in surgery.
In August of 1965, Stanford Mace married his third wife, Janie Mae Flagg. Although Janie had a daughter and son (Annie and Willie) from her previous marriage when she and Stanford married, they too had a daughter together who carried on the legacy of the name, Pattie Marie. As a baby, Stanford would have Pattie in his lap teaching her to drive. On Sundays, Stanford would hitch the horses and he and Patty would ride for up to 7 or 8 miles. They would walk Mace land often and he would take his Kyser blade and clean the entire 200+ acreages of land by hand with a Kyser blade. He never owned a dozier or heavy machinery. He and his sibling would plow the land with either a mule or a horse. He taught the horses to do the work of mules. Stanford and Janie also divorced, and he never married again.
A pillar in the community, Bee, as he was known, was one of the community’s carpenters and veterinarians. He was also “the meat and vegetable man”. From Utica to Vicksburg, he would load his truck and setup camp to sell his fresh fruit and vegetables, along with his meat produce (beef, pork, goat deer and other from the farm animals he killed). Stanford only had a third-grade education, but he taught himself how to read and write. He would sound the words out and write them as they sound until he was able to purchase a dictionary. Once he got a dictionary, he would use it and learn how to study his Bible. He loved to read the Bible to his children. He joined the Shriners during his time in Chicago and once he returned to Mississippi, he became a Noble of Prince Hall Free & Acceptance Masons, later working his way up to a thirty-third degree. He was also a deacon of the church and a board of trustee member at his church, New Oak Ridge M. B. Church in rural Hinds County, (Edwards) Mississippi. The cornerstones on the side of the church lists his name. In early1990, Stanford was diagnosed with bone cancer after an incident that happened one day when he and a couple of his sibling were outside working with cattle and he stepped back and both of his leg broke in an awkward place and way. The doctors predicted that he would not live past six months. They told him that he would never walk again, and he would need around the clock care. Stanford, being a strong determined man never gave up. In fact, within months after his surgery, he was up walking with a walker and then without one. He would put a chair in the tub to sit on while giving himself a shower. He transitioned from Earth on February 23, 1992, at Mercy Hospital in Vicksburg, Mississippi. He was 82-year-old, and this was five days before his 83rd birthday.
During his tenure on this earth, Stanford B. Mace, worked for six years at Campbell Soup Company in Chicago, Illinois, the company that makes Pontiac cars assembling vehicles, and Shop-A-Mint convenient stores in Vicksburg, Mississippi for several years. Also, Stanford was a faithful PTA member for many years and worked with his brother Roscoe (who was PTA President for a while) as they pushed for quality education for their children and the children in the community.
Stanford’s biological children are listed as follows: Mary Belle Mace Allen, Martha Belle Mace Faulkner, Marion Mace Brown, Fred Albert Mace, Ethel Ruth Mace Gardner, Andrew George Mace, Shirley Mae Mace Delk, and Pattie (aka Patty) Marie Mace. He also embraced Charles "Charlie" Green Wells as if he were his own son.