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This Month’s Cover:

Spring Garden

by Jennifer Bruno

See more at:

DIRECT MAILED to 13,500 homes & businesses

in the towns of Southwick, Westfield, Feeding Hills, Tolland,

Granville and Northern Connecticut (West Suffield, Granby and beyond).

Serving Massachusetts and Connecticut

Publisher: Carole Caron

Editor: Lyssa Peters

Layout/Design Artists:

Martin Lee, Cole Ludorf

Advertising Consultant: Carole Caron

April Memories By Bernadette Gentry ........................... 3

Planning A Spring Garden By Ed Sourdiffe ................. 4

No Time Machine Needed A World War II History Tour - Part Two By Elaine Adele Aubrey ................................. 8

Southwick’s Early Salesmen By Carlene Americk ...... 10

We Are Here: Free Help for Local Businesses ........ 14

Country Cooking By Mary Kvarnstrom ....................... 16

Southwoods Bulletin Board ...................................... 20

Troubled Times By Phil Pothier .................................. 24

Classifieds ..................................................................23

Through the remainder of this year, Southwoods will be running past articles retelling stories of Southwick’s past for the upcoming celebration of Southwick’s 250th Anniversary.


By Bernadette Gentry

To me, Spring is Granby’s most beautiful season. Song birds have returned. The air smells so fresh and clean, and the white or brown world of Winter changes into the lovely greens and pastel colors of early spring.

Everyone wants to be outdoors in the April sunshine. baseball starts up again and Redsox and Yankee caps replace Winter hats and scarves.

Dogs and dog walkers have a balance in their steps, an everyone seems to greet each other with a smile and a comment on the nice weather.

If it rains, as April is known for spring showers, everyone says, “It will be good for the flowers”.

Sadly, there are only so many Aprils in ones lifetime. So let us be grateful for the privledge to be part of this one, and remember with warmth and love those who will not see this Spring...

Image by ArjanneBurger from




By Ed Sourdiffe

The harbingers of Spring are varied and many. We have the usual heralds, the swelling buds on the trees, the daylily leaf tips striving to break the soil surface as soon as they can push through, and the slight, sweet, earthy aroma that wafts about on the occasional warm breeze. Of course way be-fore these things, the sure sign that Spring isn’t impossibly far away are the brightly colored gardening catalogs that arrive almost daily in one’s mail box. While the weather still rages inhos-pitable outside, we can find reassurance and comfort in the lush pictorial catalogs, brimming full of perfect plants and per-fect gardens. A very nice way to spend an evening can be found by settling in in front of the fire, perusing the pages, absorb-ing the colorful pictures and planning our upcoming gardens. This has as much of a restorative nature to the gardener’s soul, as someone who has been lost wandering in a colorless, lifeless dessert, who then stumbles upon a lush oasis and is restored.

While this all sounds delightful, remember, as a garden-er late winter and early Spring can find you in a vulnerable

state. You are desperate to get that trowel in the ground and get some precious greenery and color back into your life. The seed and plant catalog companies know this and know of your pent up desires and will use this to their great advantage and to the detriment of your pocketbook if you aren’t careful. So let’s try and keep our heads about us and not go overboard with our desires to purchase on the spot. Yes, the pictures are pretty, that new dahlia looks like a fantasy come true, but remember all is not what it seems. The companies have tricks up their sleeves to en-sure snagging you. Yes, the pictures are charming, and oh so colorful. But remember that many catalogs enhance the photos, and color saturate the images to make the items all the more desirable. The roses are shown to be almost neon in the depictions. Multicolored flowers have the brightest hues next to one another in the most amazing combinations. That new privacy bush, or that luxuri-ous lawn mixture, will look the deepest, darkest green. A green that would make any other green plant in the natural world, well, green with envy.

Before you drain you bank account based on these pictori-als, here are some tips to remember when ordering from cata-logs. What you see might not exactly be what you get. I ordered a most amazingly colored, repeat blooming daylily. The picture showed a flower with vibrant purple, next to hot pink, next to stunning yellow. When the plant arrived, and after a long wait for the plant to mature and for it to finally bloom, the results were… well less than stunning. The colors were there, but they were a tepid, washed out version of the marvel shown in the catalog.

Next, find out what form of the plant is shipped, size, age etc. Some catalogs will show you what to actually expect in the mail, either bare root, or potted up. They will tell you how old the plant is, whether it is a rooted cutting, or an established plant in a 2 or 4 inch or gallon pot. Some catalogs won’t show


you this. They show you a robust, mature specimen for a price that is the lowest around. But when the plant arrives you find yourself with the tiniest plant barely out of seedling stage. One that seems to be in need of not only a gar-dener, but an incubator to grow it in. That Gi-ant Sequoia that you ordered and found to be two inches tall will attain the grandeur of its brethren in the forested groves, but that will literally be in 700 years. As for ordering your plants, if it’s a new source to you, ask around if anyone else uses that company. If that fails, just order a few plants and see what you get. It is better to be disappointed by a few things than a crateful. You will be surprised by the differences in what companies offer when they actually arrive at your door. When look-ing through catalogs, dream away and enjoy the magic of the imagery. But, when it comes to ordering, buyer beware, so go slow. Also, remember that in a month or so your local garden center or nursery will be stocked up with much larger plants than are available for shipment through the mail. They will even have that newest lavender and the other plants that you pondered in front of the fireplace.

All this talk of purchasing plants from catalogs has left out one of the most important offerings, the seeds. Here you can find the tried and trues, and the latest, newest varieties to be of-fered. Because the plants are in seed form, you can find them at a fraction of the cost of a mature plant. You can easily fill a gar-den bed for the price of a few mature plants. I especially like to do this with the more expensive plants - especially the annuals. The New Guinea impatient is one example. A single plant in a small six inch pot can easily go for around five dollars, which is the price of a packet of many New Guinea seeds.

I am a particular fan of the Wave series of Petunias. These also can be a bit pricey, but the vigor with which they grow, the lack of need to dead head, and the continuous colorful display that they put forth until the hardest of frosts, make them very worthwhile. So, I choose to grow these from seed also.

At this point you might be saying, “I have tried growing seeds and I get nothing but straggly, anemic things.” You prob-ably think that you need a greenhouse to do the job properly. Well that is simply not the case. So here I will give you a simple,

no greenhouse necessary way of growing healthy robust gar-den center quality plants from seed. Although you will need a few things, you will be pleased to know that your monetary investment will be minimal and will as-sure you of success. The primary item you will need is artificial light, set with a timer for 16 hours a day. You will not need the 250 dollar grow lights that you see for sale. All you need is the sim-plest florescent shop light fixture. Find the cheapest ones, the ones without the ability to start up in the cold, because they will always be used in a warm en-vironment. Then you just add a warm white and a cool white florescent bulb. You will know these when they are on because the warm white one will glow pinkish and the cool white one will glow with a distinct blue hue. Both working together will give you the full spectrum of light that your seedlings will thrive in. Because the fixture is florescent the 16 hours on a day will not cost too much. You will need to have adjustable chains on the lights to raise them and keep them at 4 inches above the little plants as they grow. When you get profi-cient with this set up, at some point invest in a heat mat. Noth-ing speeds up germination and success rate as bottom heat.

That’s all you need for successful seed growing. When its time to plant out. Just harden off the seedlings for a cou-ple of weeks in the shade, gradually getting them used to more sun. And there you have it, a garden brimming with new plants, all started by perusing a few plant catalogs. For more on this topic and more plant related topics, go to

Until next time, “You ought to be gardening”!





By Elaine Adele Aubrey

The author of this article re-cently returned from a World War II tour of Germany, the Czech Re-public and Poland. Those coun-tries offered a unique insight to a historical time period and are her observations of those countries.

No WWII history tour would be compete without visiting Berlin, where we saw the centuries-old Brandenburg Gate originally built as the gateway to the City for vehicles and pedestrians. When the Ber-lin Wall was built, the gate was closed but when the Wall came down it was re-opened. On top of the gate is a two-wheeled chariot drawn by four horses with the goddess Victoria standing inside. She holds a lance adorned at the top with a Prussian eagle and Iron Cross and a wreath of oak leaves.

The Holocaust Museum we visited has many rooms each dedicated to a different remembrance. One room used images and texts that showed the terror policies against Jews. Another had diary entries, letters and final notes from prisoners, a third showed the personal documents and photos of 15 Jewish fami-lies in happier times. The Room of Names is dedicated to the 24/7 reading of 33,000 murdered or missing Jews.

We spent hours on foot taking in the street sights of Ber-

lin and discovered Checkpoint Charlie. After WWII, Berlin was divided with the allied-occupied West on one side of the Berlin Wall and the Russian-held East on the other. Checkpoint Charlie was a West side border crossing with a guardhouse and armed guards manned by allied soldiers monitoring diplomatic and mili-tary traffic and warning that you were leaving the American sec-tor. It remained in operation for nearly three decades but the tiny, prefabricated shack was not con-sidered a permanent or legitimate border. By contrast, the Russians on the East side had guard tow-ers, cement barriers, a shed for vehicle searches and heat scans to find hiding fugitives.

The original Checkpoint Charlie guardhouse now sits in the Allied Museum in Berlin., but a replica is still manned by sol-diers for the tourists who walk and shop on Friedrichstrasse, a busy city center.

Throughout our time in Berlin, we saw remnants of the Berlin Wall. One section had many holes in it where people took pieces or chunks for souvenirs. The longest section we saw by bus. It stretched for many city blocks and was covered by artwork. Invited artists came to Berlin, selected a section and painted a mural on any subject. There were scenes depict-ing the horrors of war, while others chose subjects with happy themes or that represented peace.

One of the last places we visited in Berlin was the area of the underground bunker where Hitler and his entourage died. This “bunker” was equipped with every convenience and ne-cessity known to man. After the War, it was demolished and in its place informational posters and maps stand on the area to show the layout of the rooms and how they were used. No explanation was given as to why the bunker was destroyed but I can think of a few.

We visited German town of Dachau that served as the first Nazi concentration camp during WWII. Dachau is now a Ho-locaust Memorial Museum with exhibits and memorials to the

No Time Machine Needed

A World War II History Tour - Part Two

The Brandenburger Gate is one of the most famous sights in Berlin, Germany. Wikimedia Commons image.


victims. It also offers an understanding of the chronological events from Hitler’s be-ginning to the liberation of Dachau. The persecuted here were clergy, Social Demo-crats, Communists and eventually the Jew-ish people.

We went on to Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic known as the “City of One Hundred Spires”. Our walking tour of Josefov, Prague’s Jewish Quarter was as hard emotionally as the camps. Somehow the Quarter survived the devastation of war and oppression during the Communist Era. One Jewish Synagogue had the names of 80,000 Czech men, women and children who had died as the result of death marches listed on the walls of every room. As the al-lies closed in on the City, these people had to walk to distant areas where they could be squeezed into other concentration camps. To commemorate these cruel deaths, volun-teers, using meticulous Nazi records listed the names, birth date and date of death for each person. The first completed effort was ruined by the damp-ness of the Synagogue. Volunteers completed the task a second time only to have the walls ruined again by floods in Prague. The volunteers refused to give up and so the names were listed a third time. Their dedication will never be forgotten.

A separate room contained artwork done by the imprisoned children. It was heartbreaking and difficult to look at these pic-tures and hard to think about them even now. Two examples of their artwork that give insight to the children’s plight is one of a guard beating a child while another shows a child riding away on a horse.

In Prague another concentration camp was Theresienstadt, which originally was for political enemies but Jewish people passed through on their way to Auschwitz. Here the elderly, the sick, children without parents and very young kids and babies were put to death immediately. Statistics were posted on the wall and were difficult to fathom, for example for 1,000 prisoners brought in, seven survived, then of another 1,000, only one made it, and the list went on like that. Later, we rode into the deserted town that was once part of the Camp. Only a few elderly residents live here and stay only because they have nowhere else to go. Because of its history, people avoid the town and the government doesn’t know what to do with the property.

The city of Nuremberg is the home of the Nazi Party

propaganda center. The Documentation Center contained exhibits about Hitler’s rise to power, the Nuremberg Laws and the Ho-locaust. We visited the Nuremberg Palace of Justice, still a working courthouse. The trial of 21 of Hitler’s top aides was held here by the allies the U.S., Great Britain, France and the Soviet Union. This site was chosen because it had little damage from the War, had a great deal of space and included a large prison complex. The trial was held in Courtroom 600 and because it was not in session, we were allowed in. A map dis-played on an easel helped us determine who sat where the defendants, the eight judges, two from each of the allies, the interpret-ers, the prosecutors, the defense lawyers, the press, and the spectators. The movie Judgement at Nuremberg, with Spencer Tracy sheds light on this chapter of Germany’s history.

After the Place of Justice our bus took us to the infamous SS and Gestapo Reich Chancellery and Propaganda Ministry. This multi-acreage fa-cility was the scene of many parades and gatherings attended by thousands of Germans to see and hear Hitler’s speeches. He was always on a stage area far above the crowds to portray him as a god who was born to save Germany. The city has no use for the now abandoned structures, and costs to tear it down and rebuild are too high. So it sits deteriorating, and is slowly being damaged by trespassers, bikes and skateboards.

Although this trip was two weeks long, I could have gone on longer. Even just scratching the surface gave me the op-portunity to actually see some of the WWII history in those recovering countries. I do have to say it’s a subject best taken in small doses. No time machine needed.

Checkpoint Charlie, Berlin, Germany.

Wikimedia Commons image.


Down Southwick’s country dirt roads a common sound in the 1800’s was the jingle of harness bells on the peddler’ s horse-drawn carriage as he went around his daily route. Not all peddlers had a horse and buggy, though. The “pack peddler”, carry-ing a pack on his back and a bag in each hand, wore out shoes quickly as he walked from door to door selling or trading his wares. The doors back then were sometimes miles apart!

Bartering was a major form of payment for the Peddler’s wares. Housewives and farmers traded ci-gars or whips or rags sorted into bags of “white” and “colored” collected diligently for this purpose.

In the early 1860’s Albert F. Webb peddled cigars, which every respect-able country gentleman needed for his own use and, of course, to treat his gentlemen friends. His boss,

Charles J Gillett, a prominent South-wick businessman, gave him allot-ments of seeds and cigars to peddle from town to town. Soon Albert re-alized that this business was hard-earned and decided that peddling was not for him.

Hijah Boyington owned his own covered wagon and horses and ped-dled gunpowder from the South-wick Mills all the way to New Hav-en. There, he picked up a wagon load of Kibbe’s candy and sold it all the way to Bennington, Vermont. While in Vermont, he would pick up a wag-onload of cheese which he sold on his return journey home to South-wick. These trips kept Hijah away from home for many weeks and his young family waited in eager antici-pation for his return/a Promise of peppermint stick candy, the popular treat of the day, no doubt foremost in their thoughts.

Humphrey Campbell was Southwick’s yeast peddler. He had a top buggy to carry the small keg with a square lid from which he scooped up the yeast with his long handled tin cuP. When the yeast man jogged up the road ringing his bell, housewives would run out with a dish to buy yeast for two cents a cuP. Homemade bread was an essential part of every meal.

The meat Peddler made his weekly or semi-weekly rounds to every dooryard. His warning was a loud bell that could be heard throughout the neighborhood’ Housewives would run

Jan-Feb 1988


out with aprons outstretched while they watched the butcher cut Sunday’s roast. Dogs and cats were constant companions as they waited for scraps of fat and bones to be thrown to them. Ev-ery Saturday evening the fish peddler came along with oysters, clams, fish, and lamprey eels in season.

Another character was the traveling photographer. Without an appointment he would knock on a door and soon win the Heart of the housewife with his flattery. In the 1890’s nearly ev-ery family in town was persuaded to hurriedly arrange the en-tire household in the front yard around a picket fence or the old oaken bucket. Mother and Father were posed leisurely sitting in rocking chair under the trees while children, dogs and cats huddled affectionately around them.

The lightening rod man made yearly rounds to persuade farmers that their money would be well spent putting the device on every building. The scissors grinder found customers waiting at the garden gate for him. The most exciting of all these yearly visitors was the band of gypsies who came along and camped by the roadside. The fortunes told to the local maidens by the black-eyed travelers were, of course, guaranteed to come true.

Before the advent of the automobile, nearly everything .peo-ple could possibly need was brought to their doorsteps on a reg-ular basis by peddlers. Their visits were awaited not only for the items they sold, but for the news and gossip that they shared as they traveled.




Free Help for

Local Businesses

We Are Here:

If you are a small local business struggling to get your message out during this unpresidented business shutdown, Southwoods is here to help. We will publish your message in our online digital magazine Free of charge.

Contact us at:

or Call/Text 413-374-3004


Restaurants Open for Take-Out

Crepes Tea House - 413-437-7440

D&J’s Hash House - 413-831-6082

Fresh Fields Cafe and Deli - 413-569-2007

Gristmill Cafe - 413-569-3000

New King Yen Too - 413-569-9888

Pasticerria Italia - 413-569-2250

Rail Trail Ale House - 413-998-0555

Roma Restaurant - 413-569-6315

Southwick Inn - 413-569-5031

Summer House - 413-569-3581

The Hood: Red Riding Hood’s Basket


Tucker’s Restaurant - 413-569-0120

Village Pizzeria - 413-569-3160

Zanto Restaurant - 413-569-0164

Please call ahead or check online for availability.


Generously grease and flour 2 round layer pans, 8- or 9-inch, or a 13x9-inch pan. Measure dry ingredients into large bowl. Add soup and shortening. Beat at low to medi-um speed for 2 minutes, scraping sides and bottom of bowl constantly. Add eggs and water. Beat 2 minutes more, scrap-ing bowl frequently. Pour into pans. Bake at 350°F for 35 to 40 minutes. Let stand in pan 10 minutes; remove. Cool. Frost with a cream cheese frosting.

2 cups flour

1-1/3 cup sugar

4 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1-1/2 tsp allspice \

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground cloves

1 can (10-3/4 oz) condensed tomato soup

1 /2 cup shortening

2 eggs

1/4 cup water

Tomato Spice Cake

First Published February 1999


Mix zwciback with 1/2 cup sugar, cinnamon and butter or shortening. Set aside 3/4 cup to sprinkle over top, press remainder of crumbs into a 9-inch spring form pan, lining bottom and sides. Beat eggs until light and foamy, then grad-ually beat in remaining 1 cup sugar; beat until light. Beat in salt, lemon juice and rind, cream, cheese and flour. Strain through a fine sieve. Pour into lined pan, sprinkle with re-maining crumbs and nut meats. Bake in a moderate oven (350° ) about 1 hour or until cooled. Serves 10 to 12. (If de-sired, use 1 teaspoon vanilla instead of lemon juice and rind.)

2 cups fine zweiback crumbs

1-1/2 cups sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

1 /2 cup melted butter orother shortening

4 eggs

1/8 tsp salt

1-1/2 tsp grated lemon rind

1-1/2 tsp lemon juice

1 cup cream

1-1/2 lbs cottage cheese

3 Tbsp flour

1/4 cup chopped nut meats

Cheese Cake




Southwick 250

2020 Events

To commemorate the 250th anniversary of Southwick’s incor-poration in November 1770, an extensive lineup of community events is proposed.

June 7th - Run Walk Southwick @ Whalley Park

June 7th - Southwick Granville CROP Hunger Walk

June 13th - Adult Bus Tour: The History & Geography of Southwick

July 4th - Citizens Restoring Congamond Boat Parade

July 18th - One Call Away Motorcycle Ride, Family Fair, First Responders Parade, and Southwick Civic Fund Firework’s

August 22nd & 23rd - Revolutionary War Encampment

September 24th - Presentation: Southwick 250 Plymouth 400 - in the Footsteps of Pilgrims

October 3rd - Autumn Pumpkin Festival and Car Show

October 9-11th - Southwick Reunion Weekends

October 11th - Southwick 250 Grand Parade

October 17th - Paranomal Clinic

October 18th - Sarah the Fiddler

October 24th - Walk with Southwick Spirits

October 24th - Trunk or Treat

November 7th - Taste of Southwick Gala

November 8th - Presentation: Paddy on the Railroad & John Boyle of Southwick

To include your event, please send information by the 20th of the month. We will print as many listings as space allows. Our usual publication date is within the first week of the month. Send to: Southwoods Bulletin Board, Southwoods Magazine, P.O. Box 1106, Southwick, MA 01077, Fax: (413) 569-5325 or email us at

“Peace is the First Gift of Easter”

Encouragement from Fr. Mattew Guidi

Our Lady of the Lake Parish

Peace is the first gift of Easter which the Lord imparted to His disciples. Peace comes from the victory of Christ over sin and death. With His resurrection, we know for certain that everything has been overcome and conquered. Evil is not the last word because the goodness of God has triumphed. Death is conquered by the Resurrection of Christ. In Christ, we know that there is a certain future, a sure hope of justice, peace, joy, and new life. The tragedy is that some of us remain dead in our tombs even though Christ has already risen. The stone has been removed but we are not willing to come out. Sin and death have been overcome, but many of us are still living in sin and fear of death. What is it that prevents us from leaving our tomb to face the rising Son of the day?

We are fearful of the future. This year in particular we suf-fer with the fear of COVID-19. We worry all the time about our health and our finances and our loved ones. We simply cannot deny the reality of the anxiety and worry that each of us expe-riences to some degree or another during this horrific time of pandemic. So what must we do to enter into the New Life that Christ has won for us? In Christ we can do all things in Him who strengthens us. (Phil 4:13) Having seen the reality of the future blessings ahead of us, we need not fear, not even death, for death, the last enemy of man has been overcome. Instead, we can live boldly each day in the midst of COVID-19, chal-lenges, trials, confusion, and difficulties, knowing that the grace of Christ will bring us to a triumphant end.

With St. Paul, let us push forward, leaving the past behind and strive each day to be one with Christ in His death and res-urrection. He said, “I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 3:13f) With the apostles, we must now live our lives confidently and courageously. Easter means that we are sure of ultimate victory and guaranteed of everlasting life, of joy, love, and peace with God. I wish each of you Happy and Blessed Easter 2020!!!


“Goliath Didn’t Have a Chance!”

Encouragement from Dr. Jeff King

Christ Lutheran Church

A young shepherd boy stops and stares. Before him is the biggest man he’s ever laid eyes on. A warrior. In full battle ar-mor. Why, his biceps are bigger than the boy’s chest!

The boy’s name is David.

The giant’s name is Goliath.

David reaches for the slingshot. His heart is pounding, but his hands aren’t shaking. Why? He knows that the God inside Him is bigger than the giant before Him.

The stone hurls through the air. The giant crashes to the earth. The shepherd boy smiles.

Friend, here’s what I need you to see: The God inside you is bigger than the virus around you. The truth is, God has a plan for your life and none of this has taken Him by surprise. Before you were even born, God knew what challenges you would face, and He knew what He’d have to put inside you so that you could stand up to those challenges. The One who has promised to walk with you through every dark valley, will be by your side, virus or not.

Friend, we’re here for you, too. Join us every week at Christ Virtual Church, our online worship and encouragement experi-ence. You’ll find us on Facebook or at Remember, Goliath didn’t have a chance and neither does this virus!

“Worship Everywhere”

Encouragement from

Pastor Ken Blanchard

Christ Church United Methodist

God is everywhere. It can sound so cliché. But if we re-ally think about it, it can make all the difference in life and in worship, especially during these times of concern regarding the coronavirus. As we see houses of worship being closed for the foreseeable future due to heightened fear of contagion, some words of Jesus to a Samaritan woman have new application for us.

Here’s how “The Message” Bible paraphrase renders the conversation captured in John 4:21-24: “But the time is coming in fact, it has come when what you’re called will not mat-ter and where you go to worship will not matter. It’s who you are and the way you live that count before God. Your worship must engage your spirit in the pursuit of truth. That’s the kind of people God is looking for: those who are simply and honestly themselves before him in worship. God is sheer being itself Spirit. Those who worship him must do it out of their very be-ing, their spirits, their true selves, in adoration.”

Imagine if Jesus appeared to us and said: “The time is com-ing when you will no longer worship in this particular building in this particular town.” However you feel hearing those words may be the same way the Samaritan woman felt. And it’s not any different from what we are living through right now. We are to worship in spirit and in truth. And you can do that anywhere. You can worship everywhere!

Worship isn’t just about where, or even how, you do it. It’s more than just DOING it’s a matter of BEING. We have to worship in spirit and truth. That is true worship. That allows us to worship everywhere and anywhere based on how we live our lives. Scripture also tells us to love God with all our hearts and souls