A cool day in October, 96 years ago

Today I’m remembering my Nana, who was born 96 years ago today. Continue reading “A cool day in October, 96 years ago”

Ann Lawrence “Summoned” on Easter Sunday, 1927

My 3rd great-grandmother, Ann (Kitely) Lawrence was 92 years old when she passed away on Easter Sunday, April 17, 1927. My grandmother was 3 and a half years old when Ann passed away, and was one of 35 great-grandchildren. Ann sounds like quite a remarkable woman. Much of what I know about her is from her two-page obituary, which is transcribed below. Continue reading “Ann Lawrence “Summoned” on Easter Sunday, 1927″

Solar eclipses in my ancestors’ time

Today, August 21, 2017, a total solar eclipse will roll across North America. For many, this will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience. In Illinois, some people remember the partial eclipse experienced here in 1970 and 1979, but the last time Illinois residents experienced a full total solar eclipse was in 1869. This eclipse was the only time in the history of the state (established in 1818) that a total eclipse had ever been observed! As this Daily Herald article discusses, Illinoisans were building the State Capital building at the time, and attempted to commemorate the occasion with a monument at the capital. Since solar eclipses are such relatively rare occurrences, I wondered, which of my ancestors experienced a solar eclipse during their lifetimes? Continue reading “Solar eclipses in my ancestors’ time”

“We were 50 years old…”

LoraasMarie_KaiserMildred_50yrs5-31-1950
Marie (nee Lawrence) Loraas and Mildred (nee Lawrence) Kaiser on their 50th birthdays on May 31, 1950.

This photograph is from the day that my great-grandmother Mildred and her twin sister, Marie, turned 50 years old. Mildred wrote on the back, “We were 50 years old…” with the date. Family tales explain that Mildred was born just before midnight on May 30, and Marie was born shortly after midnight on May 31. Both of their birth certificates list May 31, and apparently both of them always celebrated their birthdays together on May 31. Even when they grew older, they still looked very much alike! It’s sometimes hard to tell them apart in photographs.

Mothers are special 

This Mother’s Day I’ve been thinking of all the mothers, grandmothers, aunts and mother figures in my family. Mothers play a unique part in every family. Here’s a quick tribute and thank you to the mothers in my family!

Mothers will always think of you as her little baby…

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My grandmother smiles on her first granddaughter with her two daughters.

Continue reading “Mothers are special¬†“