Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Four Generations ESJ and B&B

Ella Rye Anderson Steinhauer (1915)
Shirley Anderson Hagen (1951)
Juanita Dawn Hagen Watne (1973)
Bailey Dianne Watne (2002)
Brigette Ione (2004)
Photo date: 2006 Christmas
For those of you who live close to your family, get those generational pictures taken. I applaud this family for doing it so often. What a beautiful family this is. They are tightly knit. Not only do they visit Ella in the nursing home on a regular basis, they visit amongst themselves and email one another. They care and show it.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007


A few weeks ago, Old Trunks offered a four generation picture and the author thought the baby was Brenda but it was Juanita! They are sisters.

Here we have Julia Rye, Ella Anderson, Shirley Hagen, and Brenda. IF one lays pictures of Brenda and Juanita side by side THEN you can see the difference! Don't you just love the way Shirley is holding her daughter's hand?

Brenda has a birthday coming up on the 13th of November. She will be 37. She and her husband, Ralph live in Embarrass, MN. She practices her nursing profession.

In sifting though pictures from her grandmother's, the sweetest pictures of Brenda were those of her bottle feeding a raccoon. I like the way she is paying attention to the child. Can't you almost imagine how she listens to the patients she cares for?
We all know that early pictures of our ancestors where taken with breath held. We know that when we look at our own pictures are mostly grouped-to-gether-take-a-picture type poses. Look at Brenda's picture again. Can you see how her personality is captured? Let's all try to take more pictures like this.
May I borrow your raccoon?

Monday, October 29, 2007



Jens Prestby returns from serving his country was instantly killed by the lightening while mowing hay on his father’s farm in Kratka Township


Northern Woodwork suffers loss of $10,000 in a fire started by lightening. The building on Knight Avenue near the Great Northern Depot was struck on the southeast corner and followed the wires to the interior.


Han Hermanson, for many years a resident of this city, was instantly killed last Sunday about noon when struck by lightening as he sat reading his Sunday paper at his home west of the city, towards the fair grounds. The bolt which put Hermanson’s life to an end came down the chimney, passing thru the body into an iron bed upon which his feet were placed and out through the opposite wall. Mrs. Hermanson, who was seated only a few feet from her husband when the bolt struck him, was so stunned that she remained in a daze the rest of the day. She is now reported to have recovered completely from the shock, although a little weakened. The bolt of lightening was so violent that the chimney was wrecked and bricks thrown a considerate distance away and several holes were burned in the wall.


Lightening struck at the Minnie Mellem home last Monday night. It first started in an upstairs bedroom and Mrs. Mellem was able to put it out.

Out Houses

Boooooo! And Halloween to you! Trust all of you are ready for goblins and ghosts.

It isn’t like Oliver has moved the out house and when the pranksters tried to tip it over……..yes, they fell into the pit!

The conversation to day is about out houses. I am certain all the readers have used one.

When I was little and stayed with my grand parents at their farm in Rosewood, my grand father would say, “I am going to see a man about a horse.” And I always wanted to go along because I loved horses; he always denied me.

When I was little and stayed with my grand parents at their farm in Rosewood, my grand mother would say, “I am going to see Mrs. Jones.” And I always wanted to visit my grand mother’s friends, but she said no.

And then, one day, I climbed up on the counter and watched my grand father amble out the back door and go in the out house.and shut the door behind him. After he came back inside, I went out and looked in there and I will tell you there was no room for a horse and he had been using code and so had grandma.

When I stayed there, I used a chamber pot. But after watching my beloved grandparents, I announced I was going to see Mrs. Jones about a horse. They both giggled and as usual, grandma covered her mouth with her hand as she laughed.

I was annoyed by the smell and the lack of toilet paper as I knew it. I suppose I was wearing my disgust when I told them there was no toilet paper, only a catalog. She told me that if you wrinkled up the paper long enough it got soft enough to wipe.

The other grandmother had a privy too. SHE HAD REAL PAPER.

At camp, we were assigned sometime during our stay to clean the out house. We had to wash down the seat and floor with bleach water. I am not certain which odor I detested the most. I have since learned that the white stuff on the bottom was lime to keep the odor down and the flies away.

For those of you who never used an out house.....The average outhouse was three to four feet square by 7 feet high. Many were single holers, but often they were double holers. In the last century, hotels often had outhouses with a dozen holes. And at least one hotel outhouse in Montana had a two story outhouse with a plank from the second floor going over to the second floor of the outhouse. The `droppings' fell through a 1 foot channel down past the first level into the hole.

Outhouses were easy to build. They were nothing more than a wooden shell with a roof, a floor and a front door. Inside was a 2 foot high box built into the back half that went from one side wall to the other side and came out from the back wall about two feet. In the top of this was an oblong hole about 12 inches by 10 inches. The outhouse was set over a hole that had been dug, usually about 5 feet down into the ground. When the hole got full, a new hole was dug near by the the structure was moved; the dirt from digging the hole was used to fill in the old one.

I was hopeful to get away from such inconveniences but when one is in need a port a potty somewhere along the lake shore or along the way to and from the lake is a welcome site and that it no Halloween!

My bright son says now we used a portal potty. That means we say BRB to our web cam to go use the flush-type version.

Halloween in two days, do you have your out house ready?


Saturday, October 27, 2007

Jump Starting

She walked amongst the rocks and down through the trees searching for an inner jump start. She sat down on a big rock and thought about getting some direction. She looked up, to each side, and down.

On the ground, in a crevice between the rocks, she found a small piece of drift wood no longer than her hand. Attached to it by a piece of string was a little charm.


That is all it said but it became a symbol for her. A charm to find what she was looking for. It may have been lost there by someone who had sat on the same rock.

The jump start was so profound that it came to work with her and found, on the QT, its way to our house to take a picture of it to include in something we are working on for her for Christmas.

My sweet Thomas says he doesn't have the "Anation" to go with the imagine, (IMAGINATION). Between the two of us, we found the little piece of wood and a pewter charm tied on the string affected us as well.

I started to think about what statements my parent's had made to me and how it may have been just as much as a charm.

I suppose I was about 13 when I asked my Dad for a pair of moccasins. I told them they cost $2.98. When he asked me why, I told him I wanted them because everyone else had them. He told me that was a poor reason.

I felt bad for asking and wanted to do something nice for him because he had taken the time to explain why. He had a sub compact at the time called a Goliath. I washed his car with a bath towel.

When he woke up from his after lunch nap, he saw the vehicle had been washed. He said, "You really did a good job. If I had this done at Torgerson's, they would have charged me $3.00". He gave me three dollars and said I could spend it any way I wanted and winked.

That was fifty years ago. I didn't buy moccasins then and I still don't have a pair. It was the charm that is still with me.

So if the lady with the drift wood hangs on to the IMAGINE charm I understand why, do you?



Friday, October 26, 2007

What special occasion happened in Rosewood on a windy day? Is Ella wearing a corsage? Why? Was this picture taken the same day the last picture of the boys and the dog was taken? They have the same hair style and are wearing the same clothes. This is a photograph of Lloyd holding Judy, Ella, Sylvia Mellem, Bob, Dorothy, and Dick. Judy, being held, was born in 1944. The back ground show us the grass is high, the poplars are fully leafed, and there is ivy-like weeds in the tree behind Lloyd. Judy looks greater than one but younger than three. If we say she was two and a little, that dates the picture at early fall of 1946. That makes Dorothy 8, Dick 6, and Bob 5. What do you think?
This is Ella Anderson with Dorothy, Sport, and the white cat. Doesn't Dorothy look like she is going to pet the dog? I would not have believe Ella wore her hair so severe, would you? It appears to be taken while there was snow on the ground. Look in the back ground at the bare trees and the white back ground. Remember the spinning wheel picture and how the adults stepped outside for a picture? Notice Ella is not dressed for out door weather but Dorothy is. We know that Dorothy was born in September 1938. We know this was during 'snow time'. I would judge it at about November or December of 1939.

This picture features Dorothy with her dad, Lloyd and the wonderful dog, Sport. Judy wrote to say that Dorothy learned how to walk holding on to him. See the cat in the lower left hand corner? I think this picture was taken at the old Sjoberg farm where the rats would take the dressed chickens off the table.

This is a picture of Dick and Bob Anderson with Sport. There were several pictures taken that day. We do know that Sylvia Mellem was 'home' at the time the pictures were taken. Dick looks shorter in this picture but he is leaning on the dog.
Aren't pets precious?

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Meet Snowball

A couple of days ago, we talked about pets. We have, in the past, also shared colorized pictures, specifically of the three oldest Anderson children. Today, we are sharing a colorized pet photograph!

I did not write about the pets my parents had. After I left the keyboard, I started thinking about my Dad and how he had trained or disciplined all the pets that lived with us. And I thought about all the Snowball stories I had heard as a child. Snowball was, the best dog that ever lived with the Ranum's.

I am enclosing two pictures and am asking you to look closely at the black and white picture. Snowball has a pipe in his mouth! I can hear my Dad saying "SIT STAY". As you can see, the dog was not a pure bred, it is hard to guess just what his stock was. We can see he has a long muzzle and lay down ears and a long coat.

What surprises me about the colorized image is that it was done at all. It would be an expense just to have an 8 x 10 made let along have it colored in the late thirties. Someone really loved this dog to have the picture done.

In my search through the pictures from the old trunk, Anderson pets also turned up. I am going to write to one of the children to ask Ella about Sport. He looked like a great dog for children; he was there when Dorothy was little and there are other pictures of him with Dick and Bob when they were three and four, or at the latest four and five.

The Anderson's also had a Spitz. I did not find them listed at the American Kennel Club site, although we know they are a German breed and may have had the name changed. They are listed on the Internet, type in German Spitz for more information. I did find a Spitz in Uncle Olaf's old National Geographic bound books, volume 35 which was printed in 1919. Anderson's Spitz was named Buddy and he was lively! He appeared to have a pure white coat and dark, sparkling eyes and he loved to run!
I wonder how many white, long coated dogs there were in New Solum Township?

Shirley writes to say: Buddy was my dog when I was a kid..Dad said he was Spitz and Alaskan Husky. One summer we had a reddish ring insecticide thingy hanging outside the back door, to help with the flies. One day I went outside, using the back door. The ring of stuf had been bitten in half, some has still there but just bits of the other half left on the steps. Dad was of course at work so Mom called a vet telling him what we thought had happened. He told Mom to beat 2 raw eggs and some milk and pour down Buddy's throat..The hardest part of the treatment was catching the damn dog..he thought it was a new game. He didn't appreciate the treatment at all but, didn't get sick from his ingesting the concoction either.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Julia and Julia

October 24 is a special day for us to remember. Most of us are related to the two fine ladies that were born on this day.

Julia Clara Opseth Ranum was born on October 24, 1885 in Rosewood, Minnesota. Her parents were Andrea and Hannah Opseth.

Julia Olette Olson Rye was born October 24, 1889, in Beltrami, Minnesota. She was born to Ole K Olson and Gertrude Halmgrimson.

We always thought it was special that both were named Julia and they had maiden names starting with O and married men with the last name starting with R.

It is the 122 anniversary of the birth of Julia Opseth and the 118th anniversary of the birth of Julia Olson.

Julia Ranum died in 1966 at the age of 81 Julia Rye died in 1980 at the age of 91.

These were strong women. They were the leaders in their family circle.

Congratulations to all of us who had these women as our ancestors.


Tuesday, October 23, 2007

It is NOT Gertrude!

One of the many things Oliver did was label pictures. He was the best of all. Twenty some years ago, I copied a picture which was like this one, just taken at a different angle. I always thought the lady with the white hair was Grandma Gertrude Olson. In fact, I was so sure of it, I put it in my digital ancestry file as Gertrude.
It wasn't until I took Oliver's pictures home and started looking at them that I realized it wasn't her at all, it was his cousin, Carrie Dillion.
Now, just how is Carrie Dillion related?
Gertrude and Ole K had several children
Carrie was the fifth born (1887)
She married Charles D Dillion (1877)
They had Linnie (1905)
She married Ivan Knepp
Carrie is the 2nd great aunt of Kelsie Hagen and Jaeme Thomae.
In Oliver's book, crossed out, no date:
It says, "Where cousin Linnie is in hospital" Linnie Knepp, Columbiasia, Ohio and a phone number.
Perhaps the lesson of the day is two fold:
Check with other family members that may have a like picture.
And for US, write the name and date on the back of the photos. I said to my sweet Thomas that I did not intend to go back and scrap book every picture but making sure they were all named might be a reasonable thing to do. Maybe all of us need to take a lesson from Oliver. IS there a speedy way to do it without hiring an intern?

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Four Generation PIcture JESJ

It is always a pleasure to share pictures of four generations. This is Great Grandma Julia Rye, her daughter, Ella Rye Anderson, Ella's daughter, Shirley Anderson Hagen, and Juanita Hagen.

It appears to have been taken at Ella's house at 1206 North Knight Avenue.

Shirley can help us out here. Was it a specific holiday? We know it is a special occasion because the four of you are together and that is special in itself. There is no evidence that it is around a holiday; although Grandma is dressed very, very well. Could it have been her birthday in late October? Is Shirley wearing loose fitting clothing? Is that a clue?
We talked months ago about hair and how women would put a foundation on their head and wrap the hair around it to make their hair look fuller. Is Ella wearing a wig in this picture? Did she wear them often?
Joy to all who have four generations to celebrate.
And Shirley helps us out in this picture by adding:
Mom (in a wig), me (NOTpregnant)!!! and Grandma Rye holding Juanita. Juanita was 4#11oz. when she was born..we brought her home when she was 1 week old at 4# 7oz. J appears to be 4-5 mo. old? I'm thinking it may have been Christmas 1973? J was such a little person when she was small, it's hard to remember! It might've been Vince's 2nd birthday? if it is, Marv Lundeen from the TR Times came over and took pix. (Marv Lundeen took a group photo of all the Hagen generations which was published in the paper).

NO it isn't Vince's 2nd BD..I looked like hell in that picture!

Of course it's taken at Mom's on Knight Ave. Mom used to come home with new wigs when she'd been to see Nora in Spokane.

Maybe it's Christnas 1973? That would make J 4 1/2 mo. old. Now I'm curious..I'll have to look in my albums to see if I can solve this mystery.
With Shirley working on it, you know the mystery will be solved!!!
Thanks, Shirley!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Great Green Globs of Glue

In an old trunk in a garage, a photo album like-scrap book was found. The album was one of those with the black pages. The author of the book had placed the pictures in the book using glue. She had talked about each picture with a short note. The book was prepared for her parents; the feature was her son.

The art of scrap booking is not new. The rage of cut, paste, and mount has been around for a long time. When we mount pictures permanently on any surface, it is going to change how we can remove them, let's say 50 years from now. We all know all the products available now are acid free. Are we guaranteed that in two generations these pictures are still excellent?

Can we be certain that in a few decades the digital photos are still good?

Who would have known the pictures taken in the late sixties would wash out even if they were carefully mounted?

What sort of condition are those black and white Polaroid pictures that you swiped with preservative are in now?

Did the pictures your children took and processed themselves remain in tact?

When Grandma mounted the pictures on her black paper album with glue, how would she have known the pictures would be stained through where the glue was? Would she have realized that pictures mounted front and back of a black page with glue that one photo may be destroyed when trying to get them off the surface? No, I do not believe grandma knew.

I have not been able to restore the Polaroids. The images are so light there is nothing left. The pictures mounted on old black paper can be preserved. One simply scans them. Home processed pictures have negatives and one can scan those 35mm negatives.

The pictures that have been cropped can be scanned to make bigger pictures; we will never know what was cut out. I have found pictures that I know the female was cut out of the prom picture because the person married someone else.

A a scrap book retreat last March, I watched people trim 4 x 6 pictures to fit on pages they were scrap booking. The beauty of scrap booking is the page is a total thought. There may be several trimmed pictures on a page but they are all one subject. It is generally not random disorder as are many of the pictures in old albums.

Most of us who take pictures have digital camera. We know what the shot looks like, if it is bad we can do an instant retake. It appears most people are taking their pictures to a processing machine or up loading on the Internet to have their pictures finished. Some folks have huge memory cards and just view their pictures on their cameras.

I am a cross breed. As a child, I was able to go to a photo studio and process my pictures as part of a Girl Scout badge. I got hooked on enlargements and cropping. I have hundreds of pictures that tell a story and a few truly excellent photos. I am really critical of my own pictures. I like to process my images at home because I can diddle with them. I like to take tight shots. I like my subject to be right there. I don't want anyone to have to search for the subject. If the subject isn't obvious, I can crop it to make it obvious. Home processing is not cheap but it is a fun adventure.

A couple of years ago, I brought a memory stick from a friend's camera to a photo machine. I was happy to see one can crop and highlight pictures. If this is your method of printing your images, take a little more time and see just what the options are. When you load those pictures, ask yourself, what is the picture?

Today I am going to a scrap booking retreat. I am bringing three projects. One is 10 Summers of Fishing. Another is my son's wedding. The third is my march to scan all the old pictures from the trunk. Obviously I will be multi-tasking; run the scanner and work on either of the albums at the same time. Will I bring books I have finished to share? Yes. Why? Because all of us scrap booking differently and we learn from one another.

Will I crop? Yes. Will I mount? Yes. Will two generations from now shake their heads and say, "What was she thinking?" Probably.

The trunk is packed. The inventory fills up the back seat. Do I really need all that stuff? We will see. Does it seem complicated? Perhaps. Is it? Not to me.

Think about this. One photo at a time. One scrap book page at a time. Start small and try not to get over loaded. Make it fun. Make it your project and let someone admire your work in a couple of decades. Do it for yourself.


Thursday, October 18, 2007

Gregory James Ranum--Remembered

1943 Estes Park, Colorado
The coat and hat that grandma made
Greg when he came home from Germany

My brother, Greg James Ranum was born on this day in 1940. He was the first child of Stanley Kenneth and Ella Deloris Lundberg Ranum. Greg lived in Rosewood when he was little. He lived at the once known as the store and in the house that Olaf built. Olaf's house was moved to town and remodeled.

And I remember..............

· I REMEMBER being in the barnyard in the winter and watching him ride the ponies backwards while hanging unto their tail.

· I REMEMBER the parakeet waiting for him to come down for breakfast so Chips could sit on his groomed hair and pull on the Vaseline Tonic embedded hair. I can hear the bird squawking as Greg pushed him off

· I REMEMBER when I thought I was doing him a favor by painting his bike lime green with house paint and wondered why he was so mad about it.

· I REMEMBER watching him figure skate in hockey skates at the old arena with someone named Pigeon.

· I REMEMBER the boys in the neighborhood playing hockey in the street and using clumps of snow for goals. I remember them not being happy when the cars, which honked to get them out of the way, would purposely run over their goals.

· I REMEMBER him riding behind the boat at Lake Park in a red inner tube and how fun it looked.

· I REMEMBER when Mother tried to give Grandma Ranum part of his bedroom set and how he simply took it out of her hands and said, “This is mine; I don’t want to give it away”.

· I REMEMBER chasing fire flies with him and rubbing them on my red hat hoping they would still glow on the Fourth of July.

· I REMEMBER him dancing the shag at the auditorium when no one else knew what it was.

· I REMEMBER an open arena called Central and how he never seemed to need to go into the warming house even on the coldest of days.

· I REMEMBER him pleading with Mother to buy mittens for a poor family where the children wore socks on their hands to keep warm.

· I REMEMBER all of us smoking Chesterfield cigarettes taken from the unlocked office desk.

· I REMEMBER him eating powdered Jell-O© right out of the box. He like strawberry the best.

· I REMEMBER the two of us taking the Massey Harris tractor and the wagon to pick up bales of wild hay somewhere far from the farm.

· I remember going to Winnipeg, Manitoba where he bought something called stride pants which were big in the knees and tapered at the ankle.

· I remember him getting his front teeth knocked out from a hockey puck.

· I REMEMBER when the Wenneberg kids, the Hanson boys, and Greg and I would all get on the toboggan and fly down Hanson’s hill stopping just before the river bank.

· I REMEMBER the song he taught me which he had learned at YMCA Camp.

· “I was standing on the corner
Doing no harm
Along came a policeman
And grabbed me by the arm
He took me to a little red box
And rang a little bell
Out popped a squad car
That took me to my cell

It was five o’clock in the morning
I looked upon the wall
The roaches and the bed bugs
Where playing a game of ball
The score was five to nothing
The roaches were ahead
Along came a bed bug
And knocked me out of bed.

It was six o’clock in the morning
And the guard came around
He brought me my breakfast
It weighed a half a pound
The coffee was tobacco juice
The bread was very stale
And that’s the way
They feed the bums
And the Fargo Moorhead jail

· I REMEMBER that he always slept in the bottom of the boat while walleye fishing and that he caught the most fish.

· I REMEMBER him mixing water and Vaseline Hair Tonic in the brown sink in the master bathroom, and then applying it with a comb and the mirror being spotted with residue there after.

· I REMEMBER that Dad got him ready to go fishing with friends early one morning and how disappointed Dad was when he opened the garage and saw the Chevy had been rolled. He told Dad he had gone down a steep hill too fast in Red Lake Falls. Later the two of them took the Oldsmobile to Red Lake to see where it happened. It wasn’t what really happened. Actually he got into a fight with other people his age and they rolled the car over the hill. It is the same group of guys that broke out all the windows previously.

· I REMEMBER him locking me in the air on the two seated Ferris wheel and screaming for someone to come and let me down.

· I REMEMBER the two of us walking in the woods looking for Judy Lee when she was lost during a group fishing trip.

· I REMEMBER him fuming because the cat had kittens in his dresser drawer and mother wouldn’t move them for a few days.

· I REMEMBER him picking me up with the Goliath with eight people already squeezed into the sub compact car.

· I REMEMBER going to the Six Twenty Club in Minneapolis and Greg wanted to order a full turkey dinner. Dad told him if he just wanted the meat to just order meat and if he ordered a full turkey dinner he would have to eat it all. We were there a long time as he worked on getting all the vegetables down!

· I REMEMBER when he protected me from the dog that used to jump on me on the way home from third grade. It seemed like he always had a hockey stick and his skates around his neck. The dog knocked me down and Greg whacked him with his stick. That was the last time the dog jumped on me. The owners saw the ‘check’ and called Dad. Greg explained he was just defending his sister.

· I REMEMBER when his front bridge broke. He said it was when he was playing hockey. What really happened is he had a match book stuck in them and someone tried to take it breaking the bridge.

· I REMEMBER when he wrapped his ’59 Oldsmobile around a pole in Sauk Center and how Mother didn’t want me to go get him. I went anyway.

· I REMEMBER him ‘storing’ crab apples in a tackle box in the loft of the barn on Oakland Park Road.

· I REMEMBER him standing on a tree over the lake and swinging on a rope to land in the water at YMCA camp near Lake Park.

· I REMEMBER wondering why he let the steer out of the barn when he knew he shouldn’t be untied. Greg called the steer EL FONZ Z Bull, the rest of us called him Old Hickory. After the steer got out, Greg jumped on a pony and tried to round him up. The more he tried, the more the steer evaded him. When Dad saw what was happening he told Greg to stop chasing him. We got Hickory back in the barn with a pail of oats; he was 100 pounds lighter.

· I REMEMBER the two of us deciding to play Monopoly© only for it to end in a fight and tossing everything into the box. Each time we made the decision to play the game we would have to sort the money first. We made up the rules as we went. It generally turned into a race horse sort of game. It always ended in a fight. Always.

· I remember lying on the floor listening to Hopalong Cassidy records and following along in the book. I remember we were supposed to turn the page when you heard the ding. Greg knew the records by heart and played all the parts, including the ding. The side kick, Dusty would sing:

I am just a cowboy
With neither aim nor goal
I need a pal to lean upon
To teach me right from wrong

He can ride and shoot
And he’s plenty smart to boot
That’s Hopalong Cassidy.

· I REMEMBER he had a pony named Babe on Oakland Park Road. She was a dark brown Welsh, or under 50” at the shoulder. She was always looking for greener grass. Greg always had to go get her. I rode her once; she took me under the trees and brushed me off.

· I REMEMBER when the piano was sold and the space was replaced by a two piece Danish Modern HIFI. It was placed in the living room to get maximum enjoyment from the music. It had woofers and tweeters. When we went to Larson’s music to get long playing records, (33 1/3) we bought three. Glenn Miller for Mother and Dad, Platters, and Peter Gunn. Now,Peter Gunn was a suave, sophisticated, hep to the jive, groovin' to the oh-so-cool jazzbo-beat, PETER GUNN was like nothing ever seen before on television or anywhere else, really. He was a new kind of eye. While other dicks hung out in rundown offices, swilling rotgut, living hand to mouth, loners till the end, cloaked in rumpled trench coats and angst, Gunn hung out at Mother's, a swank jazz club, wearing his Ivy League finest, pitching woo at his best gal, singer Edie Hart, drinking nothing more than an occasional tasteful martini. The music was written by Henry Mancini.

· I REMEMBER him carving paratrooper boots on my plaster of Paris sculpture of a laughing fat man.

Gregory James Ranum
October 18, 1940 February 14, 2002

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Mystery of the Four Women

The gentleman in the picture is Reverend Olaf Anderson.

We don't know who the women are.

We know they are graduates of something.

If you were a minister, what sort of teaching would you be doing?

We think it is a confirmation class.

Yet, don't they look just a little old?

How old were you were when you were confirmed?

Do these women look thirteen?

The picture was taken in Thief River Falls.
We know the first picture was taken in 1912 as it was cropped from a picture where his son, Lloyd was a baby. Which picture looks older to you?
Since Reverend Anderson had churches in Rosewood and in Plummer, I am thinking it is a confirmation group from Plummer.
Let's do this: Let's send this picture to someone in the city of Plummer and see if we can get some leads! The only churches in Plummer now are both Lutheran.
The email is written, facts to follow!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

LaVerne Bloom

It never ceases to amaze me how quickly our lives pass before us. Take the case of the LaVerne Bloom family.

The first picture shows them being married. Do you recognize anyone? Yes! That is Dorothy Anderson Schneider as the flower girl and Enid Mellem Sande as part of the bridal party.

The next photo is of their daughter, Cheryl who, with this picture won a beauty contest. She certainly was a darling, don't you think?

The Bloom's moved to Sunflower and worked in the ammo dump for a time before moving to Indiana where they would live and raise their daughter. Cliff and LaVerne were good friends for their entire lives. They kept in touch. In 1963, Cliff, Mel, LaVerne, Evie, and Cheryl went to Las Vegas in the fall for a talent show. We don't know the outcome for Cheryl's contest, there are no letters to back it up.

The last picture is of their anniversary.

In sorting through the boxes of pictures and cards from Walt and Ella's house, I found something that LaVerne had written. I want to share it with you because it is one of the few times I have seen that men can actually write about their images.

This is called Evie's Prayer. It is a letter written by LaVerne Bloom. LaVerne Bloom was the son of Carl Bloom and Nina Mellem Anderson Bloom; a half brother to Lloyd Anderson; they shared Nina as the mother.

"I want you to know how Evie's last days here with me ended before going home to be with her Lord and Savior.

Evie was diagnosed with bone cancer. It was weakening her bones so much that is was difficult for her to even walk. The last few weeks she was with me, the cancer had spread rapidly into her liver and lungs. Finally, her system could take no more and after just a few days in the hospital, she went home to be with the Lord on October 11, 1997.

............As I left the driveway at 5:45 AM the morning of October 11, approaching the street, a white dove crossed my view right in front of my car's windshield. The dove disappeared in the eastern sky just as the sun was breaking through. I did not think too much about it at the time, but I was puzzled about seeing a dove; I could not remember seeing a dove in Indiana. Evie had died before I got to the hospital. When I received Evie's death certificate, I noticed they had placed the time of her death at 6 AM. The white dove had special meaning to me."

Oh that I had wings like a dove I would fly away to my final resting place. Psalm 55, verse 6.

Monday, October 15, 2007

The Life and Times of the Clifford T Rye Farmily

Today's blog is about Cliff Rye, the son of Julia and Henry T. Rye. We are hopeful all of you have an uncle who impressed you. If you do not, I am certain he had enough to go around. Go ahead, adopt this magnificent person and his wife, Mel.

I like to use the newspapers to give us a time line.

Clifford and Murvin Rye and LaVerne Bloom attend air show in Thief River Falls. Murvin is Cliff's brother and LaVerne is the son of Nina Mellem Anderson Bloom. Brother, Murvin, would be Cliff's best man at his wedding.

Visitors at Mr. And Mrs. Lloyd Anderson home where Mrs. Carl Bloom and LaVerne and Mr. And Mrs. Henry Rye and Clifford.

Clifford Rye is in Kennedy looking for work.

Clifford Rye visits Mr. And Mrs. Louis Cloutier in Perham. By now, his sister, Nora was married. We will feature Nora and Louis Cloutier at a later time.

Mr. And Mrs. Henry Rye receive news that Clifford is in Chicago visiting LaVerne Bloom.

Clifford Rye and Axel Bloom left Monday for Warren where they will seek employment

Clifford Rye and Murvin Rye are at Calvin, ND where they have about 20 days of threshing.

Clifford Rye returned home Monday after having spent sometime at Perham at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Louis Cloutier

Clifford Rye of Sandpoint, Idaho arrived at the home of his parents, Mr. And Mrs. Henry Rye Friday afternoon where he will spend about 10 days visiting.

Mr. And Mrs. Henry Rye entertained the following guests at a goose dinner Sunday; Clifford Rye of Sandpoint, Idaho, Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd Anderson, Dorothy, Richard, and Robert.

Lloyd Anderson took Clifford Rye to Warren Sunday and from there Clifford went to Fort Snelling for his army examination. This was in April.

Clifford Rye is with the Signal Corp of the Air Force and is stationed in Atlantic City, NJ

Pfc. Clifford Rye is now stationed at Lowry Field, Denver, Colorado where he will attend the Aircraft Armament School and later the Aerial Gunner’s School

Sgt. Clifford Rye of Las Vegas, Nevada arrived Sunday evening at the home of his parents. Mr. And Mrs. Henry Rye where he will spend his furlough. He will resume his duties as aerial gunner at Salt Lake City, Utah immediately after furlough.

Dinner guests at the home of Mr. And Mrs. Henry Rye on Christmas day were Sgt. Clifford Rye of Las Vegas, Nevada.

Sgt. Clifford Rye left Wednesday from Grand Forks to Salt Lake City, Utah where he will continue his work.

Word has been received from Sgt. Clifford Rye that he is now stationed at Airdrome, Okla.


Word was received from Sgt. Clifford Rye of Ardmore, Okla. that he had been in an accident while landing an airplane. Something went wrong with the landing gear, so they couldn’t get it down and in that way the plane had to be landed without a landing gear. Nine crew members gathered in the radio room, which is only about five feet square. The pilot being the only one not in the radio room. The plane was damaged quite a bit but the crew was lucky not to have anyone seriously hurt. Sgt. Rye was the only one who was hurt in the accident and he received a cut above the right eye but reports that is healing nicely.

Sgt. Clifford Rye, stationed somewhere in England, has received another promotion, he is now a staff sergeant

S/Sgt. Clifford Rye who is stationed somewhere in England, has been awarded the Oak Leaf Cluster medal. He was given this medal July 17, 1944.

S/SSgt Clifford Rye, who is an aerial gunner on a B 17 somewhere in England has completed his missions and will return to the States, according to news received by relatives here last week

S/SSgt Clifford Rye spent the weekend at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Walter Steinhauer

S/Sgt. Clifford Rye called at Thief River Falls on Monday afternoon

Sunday evening callers at the Lloyd Anderson home were S/SSgt. Clifford Rye, Oliver and Ralph Rye and Miss Ilene Rye and Melvina “Luckseer”.

Clifford Rye, who has spent about six and a half months overseas returned to the states November 4. He arrived at his parental home Friday, November 10. He will spend a 21 day furlough with relatives and then will report to Santa Ana, California.

Miss Melvina G LaCoursiere; the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Frank LaCoursiere of Red Lake Falls, and S/Sgt. Clifford T. Rye, son of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Rye of Rosewood, exchanged their nuptial vows Wednesday evening, November 29, 1944 at 8 o'clock.

The single ring ceremony was read by candlelight by HA Larson in Black River Lutheran Church; which was beautifully decorated with ferns and bittersweet. Mrs. Carl Mosbeck played the wedding marches and also supplied other nuptial music.

The bride entered on the arm of her father to the strains of the "Bridal Chorus" from "Lohengrin". She was lovely in a gown of white chiffon with a shirred satin bodice. She wore a pearl crowned fingertip veil and her dress extended into a long train. Her only jewelry was a pearl necklace, gift of the groom and tiny earrings, gift of the bridesmaid. She carried a large bouquet of pink roses.

The flower girl, Diane Larson, wore a blue chiffon gown with a locket, gift of the bride and groom, and a basket of assorted flowers. Little Bobby Anderson, nephew of the groom, bore the ring on a white lace-trimmed pillow. ((There is a story about him being promised a gallon of ice cream. It has also been stated that he stood over a furnace grate and all wondered if the ring was going to fall off))

The bride was attended by Miss Lilly M. Hovden of this city, who was attired in a pink gown of net over satin. She wore a string of pearls and earrings, gifts of the bride, and carried a bouquet of white chrysanthemums with matching flowers in her hair.

Mrs. George Swanson sang "I Love You Truly" and after the vows were exchanged, she sang, "O Promise Me" accompanied by Mrs. Carl Mosbeck.

The two mothers, wearing dark dresses with corsages of pastel shades, entered on the arms of the ushers, Ramon and Veral Mosbeck. The groom was attended by his brother, Murvin Rye of Rosewood. All the gentlemen wore pink rose boutonnieres.

A reception was held at the church parlors for several relatives and friends. The bridal table was decorated with pink and white streamers and was centered by a three tiered wedding cake topped by a miniature bride and groom. Several of the bride’s friends assisted in serving including Mrs., Roy Larson, Richard Mosbeck, Samuel Mosbeck, and Harry Helgenset.

The bride is a graduate of the Northwest School of Agriculture in Crookston with the class of 1943 and since that time has been employed in this city.

S/Sgt. Rye attended rural school at Rosewood, and in March of 1943 he enlisted in the army air corps and has been serving as a left wing gunner in the Eighth Air Force B-17 Flying Fortress named "Lucky Lassie." He received the Distinguished Flying Cross for extraordinary achievement during bombing attacks on enemy targets in Germany and occupied Europe and has flown on missions to Berlin, Munich, Stuttgart, and many other Germany war production centers.

S/Sgt. Rye also received his wings, the air medal, a presidential citation, and his campaign bars. He left Sunday night to report for duty at the Santa Ana, California and his wife will leave next week to join him.

09 17 1945
S/Sgt. Clifford Rye received his discharge orders from the US Army Air Corps Thursday, September 20 at San Bernardino, California.

November 1945
Cliff Rye and daughter, Linda Mae, and Mr. and Mrs. Frank LaCoursiere of St. Hilaire. Linda was born in August of '45.

Cliff, Mel, and Linda would stay in the area until the spring of 1947 when the papers state they were visitors from International Falls, MN. The trio would visit in the Thief River Falls area numerous times.

In August of this year, the paper reports the Cliff Rye family visited from Sunflower, Kansas. The Korean War was in full swing and Sunflower was an ammunition making depot. Cliff owned a gas station near Sunflower called "Gas Island". Mel worked at the defense plant.

In the early sixties, they were living in Lawrence, Kansas and owned a roller rink. They would build houses or townhouses for a few years and move to Leavenworth, Kansas and start another rink.

Linda married Ralph Ageson from New Jersey. He was stationed at the Air Force Base in Topeka when they met. Ralph and Linda would take over the rink in Leavenworth and Cliff and Mel would move to Osage Beach, Missouri.

Linda and Ralph had two children; Jon (1968) and Chris (1970). Ralph died in 1998.

Cliff died in 1988.

Mel moved to Leavenworth and will celebrate her 81st birthday on October 29.

It would be hard to find a finer, harder working family.


Saturday, October 13, 2007

A Wedding

Cliff and Mel Rye

This lovely couple went to the altar to in 1944. They said vows that would be kept until the groom died in the late eighties. His wife continues to celebrate life. They were a dear couple rich in personal ideas and like ideals. They worked together to form a marriage union and business union as well.

The little boy with the gopher curl in his hair was promised a gallon of ice cream for his services as a ring bearer. It is understood there was concern about the floor furnace grate, the pillow and the rings.

This little boy is now grown up and will attend the wedding of his own son today. At a dinner of the wedding party, nothing was heard of promises of ice cream at weddings as it was 60+ years ago.

Where you ever part of a wedding party? Perhaps you were an aunt and cut the cake, or a sister-in-law and opened gifts or encouraged guests to sign the guest book.
It is an honor to be a party of any celebration.
I will light a candle
Won't you light one for them as well?

Friday, October 12, 2007

1 2 3

The children in this picture may remember having it taken. They may all have a copy of the picture. It is called the 1,2,3 picture.

Why is it called the 1,2,3 picture? Because the children were
1 Bob
2. Dick
3. Dorothy had not yet turned four. It was taken in early September.

One of the interesting things about old pictures of the forties, is the ones taken in studios are often colorized. This picture is colorized but it is a proof. That means it was offered but of all of this particular print, this is the only one I have seen tinted.

My son and I experimented with colorization using black and white film and food coloring. It had its merits. Years later, I copied the picture unto water color paper and doodled with it. I have a habit of overdue and it made a muddy, army green Easter egg sort of mess. So if you wish to try colorization, make copies, or use software.

My worn shoes are in California, I off to hug a red wood. Isn't there a song that goes, "It never rains in California" ?

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Her Name is Lora

Her name is Lora
She was born on this day in 1954
She is the daughter of Ralph
Who is the son of Henry
Who was the son of Nels
She was less than 10 when I met her. On a few occasions, we would stay over night with her parents, although we lived less than 20 miles away.
Lora had this look of surprise on her face. She has a wonderful smile. The first time we did a sleep over, she came in early in the morning and sat on the bed and cleared her throat. When we woke up, she looked at us in surprise asking if she had awaken us. When one played a game with her, win or loose, she was surprised!
Lora had her own daughter in the mid eighties. She was an infant at the time and I haven't seen either of them since. How fortunate for this little girl to have a mother like her.
It wasn't until I was shifting though the pictures from the old trunk in the garage that I met up with both of them in still images. Lora still has that element of wonder and she and her daughter share a beautiful smile.
Happy birthday to a beautiful soul. May your light and smile shine today and always.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


OCTOBER 10, 1854 - NOVEMBER 9, 1949

*OCTOBER 24, 1927

A birthday party was celebrated in honor of T Mellem's seventy-third birthday last Sunday and the following persons attended: Mr. and Mrs. SS Nordgaard and family from Viking; Mr. and Mrs. Henning Backlund and family from Stratcona; Mr. and Mrs. Peter Mellem; Mr. and Mrs. Emil Mellem; Mr. and Mrs. Carl Mellem, and Mr. and Mrs. Carl Bloom from this place. A number of presents where left in remembrance, and the afternoon was spent socially.

OCTOBER 18, 1928

T. Mellem celebrated his 74th birthday in the midst of a number of his children and neighbors last Sunday. Mellem plans to leave on Wednesday for a two weeks visit with his daughter Mrs. Henning Backlund and family at Roseau and may be accompanied back by the Backlunds who plan to make an auto trip here.

OCTOBER 7, 1929

Twenty two relatives and friends met at the T. Mellem home on Sunday to give him a surprise on his 75th birthday. Beautiful remembrances were left and the afternoon was spent socially and terminating with lunch.

OCTOBER 14, 1937

T. Mellem was pleasantly surprised on his 83rd birthday when a number of relatives gathered at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Emil Mellem. Those present were, Mr. and Mrs. Carl Mellem and Family; Mr. and Mrs. Peter Mellem and family; Mr. and Mrs. Emil Mellem and family; Mrs. Carl Ranum; Mr. and Mrs. Christ Evanson; Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd Anderson, and Mr. and Mrs. Charley Larson and family of TRF. T Mellem was presented a blanket from the group that had gathered in his home. A large birthday cake with 83 candles was the center piece of the lunch table. The afternoon was spent in visiting and at 4:00 PM, the group listened to The Covenant Time on the station KFAM.

OCTOBER 16, 1941

T. Mellem was honored on his 87th birthday Sunday where the following gathered at the Carl Bloom home in his honor, Mr. and Mrs. Pete Mellem and Joyce; Mr. and Mrs. Emil Mellem, Ervin, Enid, and Harlan; Mrs. Clarence Mellem and Douglas; Rev. and Mrs. Duerre; Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd Anderson, Dorothy, Richard, and Robert; Mrs. Minnie Mellem; Fern Mellem, and Mr. and Mrs. Carl Bloom. A bed lamp was given to Grandpa Mellem by the group and also Mr. and Mrs. Henry Rye. Lunch was served by the self invited guests at the close of the afternoon of visiting.

OCTOBER 12, 1944

A surprise birthday party was held at the Mission church Sunday afternoon to honor T. Mellem who celebrated his 90th birthday on Tuesday, October 10. The speakers of the afternoon were Rev FG Duerre and Rev. O Sande. Mrs. Hjalmer Sunsten and Vernon Backlund of Roseau, grandchildren of Mr. Mellem, sang two duets. Fern Mellem, Enid Mellem, and Inez Hellquiest also sang. Rev and Mrs. O Sande sang two Scandinavian songs. Lunch was served at the Minnie Mellem home by all the children immediately after the service.

Those attending from a distance were Mr. and Mrs. Henning Backlund; Mr. and Mrs. Marvin Backlund and children; Mr. and Mrs. Vernon Backlund, and Mr. and Mrs. Hjalmer Sunsten and family all of Roseau, Mr. and Mrs. Backlund of Strathcona; and Mrs. Carl Olson of Newfolden.

Mr. Mellem was given a cash purse as a token from his children, grand children, and all who attended.

OCTOBER 17, 1946

A group of family and friends helped T Mellem celebrate his ninety-second birthday at his home Wednesday. Those who attended were Mr. and Mrs. Pete Mellem; Mrs. Carl Bloom; Mr. And Mrs. Emil Mellem and Harlan; Mr. And Mrs. Lloyd Anderson and children; Mr. And Mrs. H Rye and Oliver. Gifts from the group were presented to T Mellem and Lunch was served.

OCTOBER 28, 1947

Grandpa Mellem was honored on his 93rd birthday last Friday evening at the Emil Mellem home. Those who helped celebrate that evening were Mr. And Mrs. Henning Backlund and Mrs. Hjalmer Sunsteh of Roseau, Mr. and Mrs. Ronald Sande and LaVerne Bloom of Thief River Falls. Mr. and Mrs. Pete Mellem; Mrs. Carl Bloom; Mr. And Mrs. Lloyd Anderson and family, and Mr. And Mrs. Emil Mellem and Harlan. A lovely decorated cake which was baked by Mrs. Rolland Sande was the centerpiece of the lunch table. Grandpa opened a large number of cards and gifts. He received cards from California, Washington, Michigan, New York and Oregon. In the afternoon of the same day, Mrs. Martin Swenson called on Grandpa Mellem and presented him with a gift and a card.

A birthday party was given in honor of Mellem on his ninety-fourth birthday on Sunday. Birthday cakes were brought by Mrs. Hjalmer Sunsten of Roseau and Mrs. Rolland Sande Thief River Falls. Dinner was brought by all. Guests were Mr. and Mrs. Henning Backlund and Mrs. Hjalmer Sunsten and son Gary all of Roseau; Mr. and Mrs. Rolland Sande and son of Thief River Falls; Mr. and Mrs. PC Sorenson of Fargo; Mr. and Mrs. Perce Farrier and daughter Patty of Winnipeg; Mr. and Mrs. Pete Mellem, Vernon and Joyce; Mr. and Mrs. Emil Mellem, Ervin and Harlan, and Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd Anderson and children.
OCTOBER 13, 1949
The friends and relatives of Mr. T. Mellem gathered at the home of Mrs. Carl Bloom*** on Sunday to help Mr. Mellem celebrate his 95th birthday.
NOVEMBER 11, 1949
Funeral rites will be conducted by Rev Norman Ericson of Viking at the Rosewood Mission Covenant church Friday afternoon at 2 p.m. for Thorenus Mellem, 95 who made his home on a farm near Rosewood for 65** years.
Mr. Mellem who has been confined at a local hospital for some time, passed away Wednesday afternoon. He is survived by five daughters, two sons, 36 grandchildren, and 56 great grandchildren and 9 great great grandchildren.
NOVEMBER 11, 1949
This community wants to express their sincere sympathy on the death of their aged father, the bereaved Mellem family on Thorenus Mellem. He passed away at a Thief RIver Falls hospital Wednesday afternoon at the ripe old age of 95. The funeral rites were held at the Rosewood Covenant Church on Friday afternoon with Rev Ericson officiating. Pallbearers were Martin Swenson Sam Oswald, Albert Lappegaard, Selmer Haugen, Emil Helliquist and Victor Ranstrom and the burial was made at the Wildwood Cemetery in Rosewood, Minnesota.
NOVEMBER 17, 1949
Rev. C Norman Ericson of Viking conducted funeral services Friday afternoon at the Mission Covenant church at Rosewood for Thorenus Mellem, 95, who passed away at a local hospital on November 9. The body was laid to rest in the church cemetery.
Mr. Mellem was born October 10, 1854 in Trysil, Norway. He was married to Miss Pauline Pederson in Norway on November 16, 1875 and immigrated to the United States in 1882 working as a farm hand at Fargo, North Dakota until 1883 when they moved to New Solum Township near Rosewood.
On October 9, 1949 Mr. Mellem observed his 95th birthday at the home of his son, Emil at Rosewood. He has spent the past eleven years at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Carl Bloom at Rosewood.
He was a charter member of the Rosewood Covenant Church of which he also served as treasurer for 75 years. He was one of the organizers of the Rosewood school and served on its board for a number of years.
Survivors include six daughters:
Mrs. Nick Bergvall of Texas
Mrs. Alfred Carlson of New York
Mrs. Carl Larson of Spokane, Washington
Mrs. John Berglund of Pontiac, Michigan
Mrs. Henning Backlund of Roseau, Minnesota
Mrs. Carl Bloom of Rosewood, Minnesota
Two sons:
Pete Mellem of Rosewood, Minnesota
Emil Mellem of Rosewood, Minnesota
Also surviving are 36 grandchildren, 56 grandchildren, and 9 great-great grandchildren. His wife, two sons and two daughters preceded him in death.
According to the Minnesota Department of Health, Certificate of Death, T. Mellem died at St. Luke's hospital in Thief River Falls. He had been a patient there for 21 days. He was 95 years and 29 days old when he deceased. His body was prepared for burial at the Gulbranson Mortuary.
Neil D Nickerson MD states he saw him from October 15 to November 9 in hospital. Mellem died at 11:45 AM of broncho pneumonia with senility and exfoliative dermatitis as other diagnosises.
*The dates used are the day of publication
** Later publication states 75 years
*** Different document states it was at the Emil Mellem home
Happy memories to all who knew and loved him as well as those who have heard stories about him.