It wasn't the water that drew Lois Elaine Ford to Beaufort in 1946 after graduating from Voorhees College. She grew up in Lake View in Dillon Count, a small town with a water view.
After school, she could have returned home to teach as many did. The ones who taught in their hometowns brought a lot of pride to the area. Returning college graduates were an inspiration to those still in school and encouraged students to continue their educations.
But Ford was up for a new adventure. Those close to her supported the decision to leave and gain new perspectives during her career.
When she arrived in Beaufort County, she began by teaching at Lee Rosenwald School near Coffin Point.
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There was a teachers' cottage nearby, on Seaside Road, near the intersection of Highway 21 and Coffin Point Road. Cooks were usually provided for the teachers who lived in teachers' cottages and for their students. They prepared the meals on most days.
Oftentimes, though, teachers had to provide fuel to heat the school, as well as the cottages.
These were primitive arrangements, to be sure, but it was worth it for the challenge of teaching and seeing successes along the way.
Teachers were paid very low wages, but they were able to make do.
The rural life of St. Helena Island took Lois Ford -- and other teachers there -- by storm. And romance began to blossom. The young men of the island were rather impressed with the ladies who moved there to teach and the way they assimilated into island life.
The thought was, if teachers become a part of the community, then maybe they stay. Gentlemen would offer to drive young teachers into town and show them around the Lowcounty, hoping this would interest them in the lifestyle here.
One particular young man, with a nice car and a civil service job on Parris Island, took an interest in Ford. His name was Jesse Mungin, and he won her heart.
The Mungins had two children, Janell and Jesse Spencer.
Lois Mungin became a master at teaching reading. When St. Helena Elementary School opened its doors in 1953, she became a consultant in reading and traveled to many districts to share her views of how it should be taught.
One of her methods was to teach her students through the language of food and travel, to get them interested in other areas of the world and new cultures.
Today's recipes are shared from the recipe box of daughter Janell Mungin Bryan, who followed in the footsteps of her mother and became a teacher.
2 eggs, hard boiled
1 small onion
1 pint Dukes mayonnaise
1 cup nuts
1 small jar olives
Process all ingredients except bread in a food processor. Make a day ahead. Trim bread and spread on sandwiches.
BLACK WALNUT POUND CAKE
3 cups plain flour
1/2 pound butter
1/2 cup shortening
3 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon rum flavoring (optional)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup cream or half and half milk
1 cup black walnuts
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Sprinkle 1/2 cup of the flour over finely ground nuts. Cream butter and shortening well. Add sugar and mix thoroughly. Add eggs one at a time, beating about 2 minutes after each addition. Add flavorings. Add remaining flour with baking powder alternately with cream and ending with flour. Fold in nuts. Mix well. Bake 1 hour and 30 minutes in well greased and floured large tube pan or bundt pan. Let cake cool in pan on rack before removing from pan.
INDIVIDUAL CHESS PIES
5 eggs, partly beaten
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 pound butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 short pie crust
Add sugar to the partly beaten eggs, continue to beat until sugar is dissolved. Add butter, which has been softened over hot water; add vanilla. Stir well. Make a short pie crust and line muffin tins. Fill each ring about half full of pie filling. Bake in a slow oven until done. Pies are slightly brown and filling is set.
Columnist Ervena Faulkner is a Port Royal resident and a retired educator who has always had an interest in food and nutrition.