Dungarees, not jeans, for Christmas

Published 9:10 am Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Growing up, every year from Santa Claus I got two pair of dungarees. This was until I got to high school and then I got dress pants.  Some names familiar to us all were; Levi, Lee, Wrangler and Camel and they were very sturdy.  Some of the toughest pants that I have ever worn.  At John Small School the ground outside the building was perfect for marbles and we all played marbles before school. The dungarees always wore out at the knees, if you were lucky enough in marbles “to stick in the middle”.

Dungarees were a part of the day. New ones took a little “breaking in” and needed to be stretched to fit just right.  They could shrink after washing if Mom was not careful. Some girls wore them especially in the neighborhood, where they crawled and played like the boys.  Rose Ann wore dungarees until the eighth grade. Now, girls wear them daily!  They are stylish.

Remember the first time you tore the knees out of your dungarees? I can. It was on the asphalt basketball court behind the old high school. That asphalt seemed to eat dungarees up, especially the knees.  The other times we were skating down Ninth St. and paying no attention to what we were doing.  Not a worry in the world, and then my skates came off.  Down I went and tore my dungarees but had no other injuries.  The worse thing was telling my mom but she ironed a patch on the knee and never told my dad. It sufficed until the next fall.

You have not heard me use the word jeans.  We never used that word back in the days of true dungarees, but today – it is used often to describe blue jeans.  All youth wear jeans, including girls.  Some with holes, bleached and even dirty looking jeans. Can you imagine wearing those dungarees out of the house on the way to school?  Mom would not let me out of the house with holes in my pants or dirty looking dungarees, but it is today’s style and everyone wears them now.

 I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas, enjoyed your family and stayed warm. Wishing you a safe New Year and a very prosperous 2023!

They were the best of times with the best of friends and in the best of places, Washington, N. C., the Original Washington!

Harold Jr.