Saturday, June 09, 2007

Grandma Tisdale

Today was the birthday of Winnifred Kirkland Tisdale, aka Winnie, who was born June 9, 1883. Unfortunately she died 9 months before I was born, so I never had the joy of meeting her, but by all accounts she was a wonderful lady. She was the mother of my Grandma Hopkins that I write about frequently. In nearly every photo she tilts her head to the do my son, my mother and I! It's not a conscious effort, it just happens somehow. Strange. I love this photo taken in 1903 or 1904, in Grand Forks, North Dakota where she worked as a milliner. Her mother and two of her brothers stayed in ND and she went with her father and one of her brothers to Washington State shortly after this photo was taken. They first settled in a small town (even smaller today) called Toledo. In 1904 my Great Grandfather F.W. Tisdale was pastor at the Methodist Church in Toledo, WA and he had the pleasure of making the acquaintance of Miss Winnifred Kirkland who played the organ for services. She had been trained in music and playing the organ by a Professor James in Grand Forks. The two fell in love and married January 1905, embarking in a journey that eventually included me and my family. I wish she were alive as there are so many things I would like to ask her about her life as a young bride on the prairie near Minot, ND where they moved and her years going town to town because that was what teachers often did in those days. (Great Grandpa went to teaching after being a minister and ended up as a school superintendent in Lake Stevens, WA) My Aunt Grace, while recently visiting, told me that Winnifred told her that one day a "twister" came and picked up the buggy and team she was driving along with her and her two toddlers, my Grandma Holly and her brother Clifton. She said she was not afraid, she knew God would put her back down! I would have been terrified, if not for myself, for my babies! I hope we get to "visit" people in Heaven because I really would love to get to know her myself. And I am thankful for the Godly woman that she was and the seed she sowed in her children which bore fruit in my own life.

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