By Kristin Finney
Greene Publishing, Inc.
To say that Madison has changed over the years would be an extreme understatement. The older generation once knew a Madison with movie theaters, dime stores and many other amenities that no longer grace this small town.
Eartha Barfield has lived in Madison for the majority of her life. She attended high school in Greenville and spent many of her afternoons at Suwannee River Junior College’s (now North Florida Community College) ball field.
Barfield played basketball for her high school and, after school, almost every day she and the team would practice at the college’s ball fields. “I also used to jump rope and play hop-scotch. There were a whole bunch of us who used to go out there,” explained Barfield.
Growing up, Barfield stayed busy helping around the house also. She helped to cook dinners for her and her family. She also cleaned around her house by dusting and mopping the floors every week.
Some of her hobbies included sewing, a hobby that she still holds today. “I want to learn to crotchet, too,” said Barfield. She enjoys sewing all sorts of things, so many in fact that she can’t list just one favorite. Sewing allowed her a chance growing up to have something to do when she wasn’t playing ball.
Another activity that Barfield enjoyed doing, and she even described it as her job, was planting flowers. She enjoyed working in the garden and planting all kinds of flowers.
Being outside was one of Barfield’s favorite things. Whether she was outside playing ball or working in the garden, a large portion of her time was spent outdoors.
Being outdoors played a large part in Madison’s past. Unlike present day, there was not much to do inside. There were no video games or computers to entertain children, so instead, they went outside to play with other children.