Nearly a century with Ada Lee Crane

Grandma Crane a/k/a Grandma Brooks

Ada Lee Crane/Brooks passed away at the ripe old age of 96.  Ninety-six years.  The world changed a lot in those 96 years and Grandma was around to see it.

Woodrow Wilson


Woodrow Wilson was president when Grandma was born and stainless steel had been invented.  Electricity was just getting into private homes.  Conveniences started to pop up when she was only three years old such as the toaster and band-aides.  She was seven when frozen food hit the market for the first time – and the wind-up watch was invented.


Grandma was 9 years old when the television was invented.  Imagine the marvel and wonder to a 9 year old that a show could be played at home, on a little box.  At twelve years old, the world introduced the first bubble gum.  At 16, Polaroid made it easier to capture memories with their camera. Only a few short years later, nylon was invented and panty-hose would soon follow – a staple in any woman’s drawers.

In her twenties, she’d see the ballpoint pen, instant coffee, helicopters, color television, the jeep and the aerosol can.  The microwave oven was also invented, though it wouldn’t make an entrance into the family home for quite some time.

Her thirties were filled with awe as several new things entered the world, such as the slinky, the Wurlitzer, Velcro, cake mix, superglue and the first evil credit cards.

By the time Grandma was in her forties, McDonalds was a growing chain; Barbie (ruining the self-image of millions to follow) was sweeping the nation.  The world became a happier place as valium and non-dairy creamer hit the market. 


The first handheld calculator was round by the time she was fifty and fifty-six when children changed forever with the first video game.


Things changed very quickly over the next decade with the introduction of walkman, CDs, cellphones, roller-blades and post-it notes.  Time sped up and our lives were being invaded by technology and Cabbage Patch Kids.

She’d seen the introduction of the world wide web, cellular devices, DVD, liquid TV and hell – even Viagra.

The world changed a lot in the 96 years Ada Lee was around.  She lived through 17 presidents, an amendment granting her right to vote, two world wars, the inventions of everything from Scotch Tape to Digital Cameras.  I cannot imagine the memories she’s had, the sheer number of times she’s seen something cool, unusual and new in her lifetime.

The world did change a lot in those 96 years, but it was a better place because she was in it – always armed with Orange Sherbert, a sweet smile, infectious laugh and a kind word.  She had an enormous family who all loved her.  She was an angel on earth, as I’m sure she is now in heaven.


2 thoughts on “Nearly a century with Ada Lee Crane

  1. What a great tribute. It is amazing that so many changes come to this world in our lifetime. I can’t imagine what technology will by like when my grandchildren are old enough to blog. Of course they won’t call it that!

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