Laura Jean Puckett was fourteen years old when Angus Mullins walked up to her and asked “Where’s your shoes?” She was playing a child’s game on a child’s bench outside her parent’s boarding house. And it was the first time she had ever met the short man in the newsboy cap who smelled like he’d just been delivered from the side of a still.
“I ain’t got none,” is what she said.
“Well,” said Angus, “I’m gonna buy you some. Then I’m gonna marry you.”
And that’s exactly what he did.
He said he had already asked her father, which was all a man needed to do in a holler in West Virginia in 1922. So right then and there, when twenty-four year old Angus met fourteen year old Laura, he took her by her arm and he took her away and she never thought a thing about it for sixty years.