The dictionary meaning of "bequeath": 1) to leave (property, etc.) to another by one's will; 2) to hand down, to pass on.
Bequeath--now there's a word I definitely don't think about often. I can't imagine that I have even said it twice in my whole life. I had to look it up to be sure I had it in the right context.
What made me look it up? Let me tell you.
Recently, this unusual word came to light due to two generous bequests that came to the Historical Museum from unexpected sources.
Often in the world of cultural organizations, museums and not-for-profit organizations, emphasis is placed on reaching out for support to the usual suspects: the big players, the heavy hitters, the proverbial movers and shakers in the "right" socioeconomic limelight.
Well, I learned that this limelight is not always the right place to look.
Two of our long-time individual members, Martha Lou Bradley and Mary G. Beazel, remembered the Historical Museum in their wills.
These ladies were members for decades. They renewed their $35 Individual memberships each year and quietly loved the museum. I was not fully aware of the extent of their dedication, except for the fact that they supported us as members, year after year. They were faithful friends to the end.
I had no idea that before their passing, Mary and Martha Lou took the time to provide for us, planning for the day when they would be gone; when the museum could no longer count on their yearly renewals. Their diligence and thoughtfulness in giving could not have come at a better time.
The Historical Museum and I wish to thank these two ladies who have clearly defined giving to me and for bringing into sharp focus where organizations like us need to look for our real support base, to those who love us, to our members.
-- Hilda Masip, Membership Officer