“Cal saw her face in everything—had every day since he left. He saw her in every dark-haired WAVE or SPAR he passed,; in the women that looked nothing like her—that were short and squat where she was taller, that were tall and lanky where she could fit into the crook of his arm. He saw her in anyone with brown eyes, and if they gave him a dark stare, he’d think about the look Ada Claire would give him when she was vexed with him or, sometimes, when she wasn’t, but wanted to feign it until he gave in and kissed her. He didn’t know any other girl that could give a look like Ada Claire.”
Ada Claire, as described by her husband, Cal.
Name: Ada Claire Kendrick Womack
Appearance: Short, with dark hair and eyes. A wide smile and full lips. High, full cheeks. Ada Claire has an easy smile and warm features. She is petite but fiery, and makes the most of her stature.
Other Character Influences: My grandmothers, mother, and my childhood best friend.
Birth Date: August 28, 1915
Birth Place: Cahawba County, Alabama
Hometown: Pine Creek, Alabama
Goals/Desires: Ada Claire wants a life that is honest and that is hers. She and Cal struggle to start a family, but she very much believes in providence and divine will. She doesn’t always understand that tests set before her, but she trusts—implicitly—that God will never give her more than she can handle, and she tries not to question God’s will. Ada Claire wants to have a family, but also wants to have her own place in the landscape of her life. She values her job, her home, and her family greatly.
Quirks: Ada Claire can be prone to fidget, and will often tap a pen when stressed. She hides this by sewing or knitting, and in her most stressed or worried, one will often find her with yarn or thread in hand.
Temperament & Personality: Inherently kind. Ada Claire is temperate and good-natured. She isn’t quick to anger, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t anger. Ada Claire doesn’t easily let go of arguments where she believes she is in the right. She is stubborn in this aspect, and can hold onto tender feelings for longer than others around her. However, she is fair in those feelings; she isn’t above admitting she is wrong, and it doesn’t pain her to admit it.
Religion: Baptist; Ada Claire joined the Methodist church on the Ridge only upon marrying Cal. For her entire childhood, she attended Pine Creek First Baptist Church in downtown Pine Creek.
Likes: Knitting, sewing, watercolors. Ada Claire enjoys creating, and will often doodle her family’s likeness into the pages of her diary, or the edge of a newspaper. She has painted several watercolors for close family, and knits for her loved ones. She also loves making bread.
Dislikes: Ada Claire doesn’t love to cook—instructions like, “heat until golden brown” annoy her. She enjoys baking because she finds it more precise than cooking, which often feels arbitrary to her. Lou Tina once tried to give her cooking lessons, but Ada Claire burnt everything.
Degrees: B.A. in English from Huntingdon College, Montgomery.
Occupation: Clerk, then eventually Director of Education, Cahawba County Board of Education
Immediate Family: Cal Womack (husband); Ada Mae Kendrick (mother); Junior & Phoebe (children); Selma & Ritchie (niece and nephew); John & George (brothers)
Close Relatives: Lewis (first cousin by marriage) and Zeola (Lewis’s wife); Cousin Jacob and Aunt Froney (cousins by marriage)