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Elva Jane Johnson


Brett Anderson


6th Grade 1994, Tri-County School, Karlstad,MN


She was born June 17, 1922. Her parents were Esther andPhillip Johnson. She was born 1 1/2 miles east of Kennedy, Minnesota ona farm. Elva had two sisters and two brothers. She was the oldest in thefamily. Elva lived on the farm near Kennedy, Minnesota until she was 10years old. They moved to a farm north of Karlstad, MN. When she was little,she had several aunts and uncles that lived with their family. Elva's fatherwas a farmer. He milked cows and grew grain. In the summer, the kids hadto round up all the cattle. They walked bare footed most of the time ontheir shoes. They also raised chickens and turkeys. Most of their entertainmentwas going to the county fair. They also enjoyed picnics in the summer. They visited with family and neighbors. When Elva got older, she wentto dances in people's homes and they played cards. Saturday nights, theywent into town to buy groceries and to sell cream from the cows.

Elva went to school in Kennedy until they moved to Karlstad. Then she went to Karlstad School. She felt that it was very hard to moveto a new school. She finished school and graduated in 1940. In the winters,they rode to school in a "calose" which was a big box on skiswith a stove inside for heat. There were benches along the sides to siton. In the warmer weather, they rode in cars or a small bus. They hadno electricity when she was young, so she studied by lamp light.

Elva got married to Orville Anderson on November 8, 1941in the parsonage at Halma, MN. They lived on a farm three miles north ofKarlstad. They had three children. The first was Janice Anderson Wikstrom,the second was Connie Anderson Oistad, and the third was Orlin Anderson.

In 1943, when Janice was born, Elva remembers that theyhad to ration gas and sugar. Over the years, Elva had a few jobs. Shedid housekeeping for a couple of doctors. She was an elementary aide atthe Karlstad School for 11 years. During the years that Orville farmed,Elva helped out by cooking meals for the men and for the family. When theydid harvesting, she would bring the lunches and meals out to the fields. Elva always had to help with the house work even when she was young becauseher mother was sick a lot.

Today, Elva lives in Karlstad in her home and Orville livesat the Karlstad Nursing Home. They have been married for 52 years. OnOrville and Elva's 40th wedding anniversary, Brett E. Anderson was born. He was their last grandchild and very special to be born on their anniversary. Elva now has eight grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Information from Elva Jane Johnson

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