Friday, May 7, 2010

My mother and my heritage........

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This is my Mother's Day tribute to the women who's legacy I follow.  The women who loved me, guided and molded me, and set the examples I live by today.  They were hard working, independent with a mind of their own, strong women! (M-m-m sound like anyone you know?)

On the left,in the photo, is my Grandmother, Inga Berg, born in Hitra, Norway in the 1880s and my mother, Jennie, also, born in Hitra.  In 1909, they came to the U.S. with my Grandfather and settled in South Dakota.

Inga was a very gifted and talented seamstress.  She used those talents to support her family and to pay for the materials to build their home. I never met my Grandmother, she passed away at age 40, several years before I was born.

Inga's mother, my Great Grandmother Anna, was an independent woman who remained in Norway.  Her husband came to America in the early 1900 but she choose to stay in her home land with her son and daughter

My mother, taught by her mother, was a excellent seamstress.  My Mom, however, branched out and in the 1920 started working in the dry cleaning business.  She and my father, would go on to own and operated several dry cleaning business through out their working lives.

Their daughter, me, worked every Saturday, through my high school years, in their cleaners.  Did not love it!  But, it would not have done me any good to complain.

My mom was generous with her time!  She enjoyed helping others, was very involved in her church and the community, careful with her finances, taught me to appreciate antiques and how to refinish and refurbish just about anything!

My mother passed away on Easter 1998.  I still miss her and think of her everyday..........she is my Guardian Angel!
I promised my Norwegian relatives some photos of the quilts my mother made, so here they are.........
quilts 006  quilts 005This quilt with the red crosses she made in 1918, when she was 14 years old.  My mom was very organized, many items like this, had notes attached with the details of when and where they originated.quilts 004 
quilts 007This quilt she made for me in the 1980s, when she was in her early 80s.  I think the pattern is "Maple leaf". 
The next photos are all things my grandparents brought with them from Norway.
quilts 009 quilts 010 Both of the woven blankets came from Norway, I only know, for sure, that the brown and gold one was made by Anna Berg, my Great grandmother.
quilts 014
Embroidered by my Grandmother with her initials "I" and "B" for Inga Berg.  She must have done this in the late 1800s.
And, lastly, the wonderful embroidery from Norway called.......Hardanger, or Norwegian drawn work, more examples of my Grandmother's handiwork.quilts 016
What precious treasures these are, each one made with loving care by strong, but gentle, hands and a creative vision.  I carry within me each of these women.....!
What wonderful Mother's Day gifts from our "foremothers".... left in my care, for their preservation, and to share with the women who follow me!
Thanks, Mom, for everything and I love you.  Happy Mother's Day.

3 comments:

drmyers said...

Wow grandma! They would be proud to see the beautiful blog you have created in their honor! We are blessed to have been "handed-down" our fore-mother's attributes! Happy Mother's day! Love, Cyndi

Marit Irene said...

Thank you for the picture´s Jan. And the interesting story you have vowen in to the Happy Mother´s Day. I hope all of us who read this, would have a Gardian Angel like you have! The quilt´s is very interesting since I love to sew quilt´s too. I think I will try to sew the one with stars.
In the heading of my blog, you will find one of my Guardian Angel´s. It´s a picture of my grandmother Inger.

Shabbyrosetreasure said...

OH my these are such beautiful quilts and your heritage sounds so full and rich!
Love your pretty blog,
hugs,
Olivia