Friday, August 15, 2008

Mom and Dad Get Acquainted

I mentioned in my last post that I was a half-breed; my father was Norwegian and my mother Swedish. Back in their day that was an unheard of combination. They just didn't mix socially at all. There was the Norwegian Lutheran church, and three miles away was the Swedish Lutheran church. My mother grew up a half mile from the Norwegian church, but every Sunday morning they rode three miles in a buggy or a car to the Swedish church. I guess it all goes way back to when the king of Sweden's armies overran Norway or some such thing. Swedes must not be very forgiving or something.

Anyway, Mom and Dad grew up on farms in North Dakota that were about three miles apart as the crow flies. Back then on Saturday nights there was usually a barn dance somewhere in the neighborhood. So one Saturday night, back in 1929, my mother went to a neighbor's barn dance, accompanied by several of her six brothers, of course. She was 24 years old at the time, and back then a young woman never went anywhere like that alone. She apparently caught my Dad's eye, because he came courting. This picture was taken June 16, 1929, the summer before the bottom fell out of the stock market and the Great Depression began.

That's my Dad's sister behind the wheel in the car. Young couples weren't allowed to date alone then, at least not in my Grandfather's house!!

Time went on and there must have been many more dates because they didn't get married until November of 1932.

I still have my mother's wedding gown packed away. It was pastel pink. I also have the shoes she wore. They were married in the parsonage of the Swedish church (of course) and then had a small dinner party at my grandmother's house. When I was going through her things after she died I found the Certificate of Authenticity for the diamond engagement ring that Dad bought her. He mail ordered it from Montgomery Ward and it cost $29.95. It's a beautiful ring with a quarter carat diamond and two sapphires on each side set in an antique filigree setting. She gave it to me and I have since passed it on to Lovely Daughter who wears it on a daily basis.

Speaking of barn dances and barns, here's a picture of the barn that was on my grandfather's farm (my Dad's dad) - the biggest barn in the entire county.

This picture was taken many years ago. The barn has since fallen down and the remains burned. How sad that it couldn't have been saved, but think of the expense of putting a roof on something that big. Imagine the barn dance you could have had in that hay mow - and all the hanky panky that could have gone one in the dark corners (snicker)!

Anyway, my paternal Grandfather was a big farmer. He raised a lot of cattle and farmed with horses, thus the big barn for all the livestock. He also homesteaded this property back in 1894. I'll tell you more about that another day.

Now I need to get out of my jammies, get some street clothes on and head to the grocery store.

Love, Lena


Shear said...

I love your stories...especially about your parents. What a beautiful couple they were.

Yvonne said...

That is a wonderful picture of their wedding day!

Carolyn said...

Thank you for your sweet note. I can't wait to get caught up on your new blog.

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful story! I love the pictures! I have a few of my mom and dad with a couple now I know why. ;)