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My Grandmother

Mary Lou Wilson


Marc McElwain


6th Grade 1997, Tri-County School, Karlstad,Minnesota


Mary Louise Turner Wilson was born March 8, 1938 in KlamathFalls, Oregon. She grew up in Merrill, Oregon. She lived there until shewas 18 years old. She lived with her mother, father, one brother, grandparents,aunt and uncle, and four cousins that were all girls.

They played games like Tarzan and Jane, and a lot of school. They played Cowboys and Indians with stick horses. They played jacks,catch, and marbles. They lived on the outskirts of town. They had a lotof animals. They had a great big garden and a creek that ran through theirproperty.

They had a lot of apple trees in their yard. Their schoolbuilding was three stories high. They used to play around on a great bigslide that was the fire escape in the summer.

Whenever relatives were over, she'd climb up a tree andread books. She had a paper route when she was in grade school and Jr.High.

When her dad got sick, her mother bought a restaurant andshe would work there after school.

She loved to dance waltzes, jitterburg and everything thatwas Elvis. Being a teenager for her was exciting.

She liked football and basketball games. She met friendsat the soda fountains.

Her brother had a Model T with a rumble seat that theyhad fun riding around in town.

She never saw a T.V. until she was 18 years old, but shedid have a radio. She liked to sit around and listen to the Lone Ranger,The Shadow, The Green Hornet, and rock and roll.

In High School, she was in one act plays. She also wason the drill team. She never played sports because there was never anygirl sports back then. She liked to run in the summer and play softballon the girls team.

She was in a band and played the French Horn. She quitin six weeks because she didn't get along with the teacher. Her high schoolteam name was called the Merrill Huskies.

Her first job after graduation was a car hop. Her firstday on the job she tipped two milkshakes on the driver's lap. Then shewas a nanny in Portland, Oregon. She left there to be a telephone operatorin San Francisco. Then, she moved back to Merrill, Oregon with her grandmother. That's where she met my Grandpa Wilson.

After they went back to Oregon, my grandpa came out. Theygot married in Merrill where they lived for three years. Her first twochildren were born in Oregon. When their second child was nine months oldthey moved to Stephen. When they were in Stephen, they bought a meat market.

They ran the store for seven years and had three more children.

When the youngest children were five years old, they movedto Karlstad where they bought another meat market. After seven years, theysold the store and went into the dairy business. During this time theyhad another child. Everyone had to help milk cows and haul hay. Once,her youngest daughter, who was only four at the time, almost ran her overwith the tractor. Grandma said they had many other animals, such as, puppies,one cat, lambs, a pet pig who thought he was a dog, and three Shetland ponies,and two of them would be hooked up to a surrey and everyone would go fora ride.

She now lives in Karlstad and still works everyday. Shehas fourteen grandchildren and I'm the oldest of them all.

yday. Shehas fourteen grandchildren and I'm the oldest of them all.