Long ago before there was an internet, there was IBM Machines. :
My grandmother worked at NIPSCO which was and maybe still is, a major gas company in Northern Indiana.
She was a clean up woman. After everyone left after 5pm, my grandmother and the other clean up workers
began their night cleaning in the building. Mopping floors, emptying trash cans, dusting, etc.
Every now and then, my grandmother would bring home a big box. The box was full of tossed out IBM cards.
They were allowed to take them but why would anyone want them? They were cards that had already been
run thru the IBM machines.
The cards were various colors. Orange, Green, Yellow, Blue, White, Off White. I don't know how many would
be in the box's that she brought home. Maybe a thousand or maybe 5,000. It was a lot. They were about
8 to 10 inches longer and maybe about 4 inches wide.
The cards had tiny little squares out of them. That is because they were run through the IBM machines and
I guess those little squares had something to do with inputting account holders information.
So in the basement they went, box after box of IBM cards that had been run through the machines and of no
known purpose but trash. We had several large closets in the basement and one was almost full of those IBM
Retirement came and to the south we moved. My grandfather bought a church.
One Christmas my grandmother opened several of those IBM card box's. She had glue and glitter. Lot's
of various colors of glitter and stapler and staples. She folded one end of the cards and stapled. she did
that with hundreds. She then stapled them together at the other ends and made large amounts and smaller
amounts. She then stapled them together. She them took the glue and spread it on all those ends and took
glitter and put all over the ends. The finished product was..... Christmas Wreaths. In the middle she took
pine cones that had fallen off our pine cone trees and put some of those in the middle for direction. She
also took sticks and made crosses for the middle. We took those to the church and placed them in the
windows and in front of lighted electric candles. The light would shine through all those tiny square holes
and the glitter would glisten and everyone was so amazed by them.....and I was too.
Everyone wanted them. So I helped take the box's of IBM cards to the church and everyone that wanted
could come to the activity class and help make them. Many went in to the church bazaar and every one
was sold. The money went towards new church pews.
I was just a kid and it was probably one of the first times I realized my grandmother was smarter than me.