TALES from the FRONT PORCH
Ringgold County's Oral Legend & Memories Project
CARRIE ALICE (STEVENS) JONES
July 28, 1873 – December 24 ,1949
Carrie was about 2 ˝ when she moved with her parents, Ralph and Nancy Stevens, from Norwood, Illinois to Ringgold County, Iowa where she lived the rest of her life. On July 3, 1895 she married Albert Marion Jones at Diagonal. Albert was born January 22, 1865 in Warren County, Iowa. All of their children were born at Goosepond Corner near Benton, Iowa. Zell was the first born followed by Lois, Homer, Alma, Ralph (who lived only a short time), Wade, and Annabelle. After 23 years of farming, Carrie and Albert moved to Diagonal near the school playground. That provided much enjoyment for Carrie especially during the winter when she quilted in front of their bay window while watching the children on the playground.
Those are the statistics but there is much more to the life story. The hand written diary by Carrie from 1930 till her death in 1949 was loaned to Ray Bear, her grandnephew, who enjoyed learning so much more about this wonderful woman and her family. Her caring, warmth, strength, and leadership show through each of the many years in her diary. The closeness of the family was evident from the many family dinners and visits. The closeness also included the many brothers and sisters of Carrie. As the years passed, the closeness encompassed many of her grandchildren and those of her extended family.
A few days in the life of Carrie and her family are shown below. But to truly appreciate Carrie you have to read about all of the many days.
Monday, July 28, 1930
This is my 57th birthday. Lois sent me goods for a print dress and Harold’s picture with his dog. Alma gave me a flower bowl. We washed and Annabelle took the car and a load of J.E. children to Creston for a picnic. I went to Mt. Ayr in the P.M. to Mrs. Anna Cain’s funeral. It is another hot day.
Thursday, November 27, 1930
This is Thanksgiving Day. It has been a cold day with a little snow on the ground. Wade took Ray Hawthorne & family to Corning to a football game today. Zells, Homers and Almas were here for dinner. They all went to a dance at Clearfield tonight. Wade and Annabelle went here to a B. B. game. Albert & I are here alone.
Wednesday, February 18, 1931
It has been cloudy, snowed some but is warm this evening and it is all gone this evening. I went to see Mrs. Nuak this P.M. I had a letter from Lura today and answered it. 55 years today my folks landed in Iowa. I was 2 ˝ years old. I have lived in Ringgold Co. ever since.
Saturday, 11 April 1931
Four years today my Mother died at the age of 76. She fell in the night and broke her hip March 13th. She was here all the time. We had her bed in the dining room. …
Friday, January 4, 1935
A clear cold day again. Thawed a little. Albert, Annabelle, Ileve, Marion & I left home before sun-up this morning & stopped in Mt. Ayr for Annabelle to get a permanent. Then went in to Aunt Annie Saltzman’s for dinner. In the evening we all went to Zells for oysters. We came home early so Wade could go to the B.B. game between Maloy & Diagonal. Diagonal beat 33 – 32.
Wednesday, July 3, 1935
Another hot day but no rain. I canned 6 pints peas then went to Aid a little while. Bessie, Alice Mae, Mrs. McMannis and 3 children were here this P.M. I had a letter from Lura and Lois today and wrote to Lura. Albert & I were married 40 years this evening.
April 8, 1942
Another chilly day & cloudy. Doc, Donna & Gary Bear were here this P.M. awhile.
July 4, 1942
Partly cloudy & cool. Albert at Rudolphs raking hay. Had a good letter from Wade. We went to Annabelles awhile this evening and for supper. Clarence & Jessie came later. Lura & Lyle came from Creston for the evening. Alice Mae came to Almas the 3rd.
March 25, 1945
A cloudy morning & not cold at 58. We are going to Homer Stevens for dinner. Edd & Sarah are to be there. …
May 2, 1945
…The war is over with Italy. Berlin quit fighting today. It is reported Hitler killed himself today. …
May 8, 1945
… Pres. Truman declared war with Germany ended and this is VE Day. …
July 1, 1945
… This has been a great day for us celebrating our 50th anniversary today as so many couldn’t come on the 3rd. We received a lot of nice gifts - $40 in money, and 74 cards. There were 45 here for dinner and 70 callers in the P.M. We served cookies, ice cream and strawberries. …
August 6, 1945
… Someone invented the greatest bomb ever and dropped it on a city in Japan and it done a terrible destruction. The Germans were working on one like it before they surrendered to the Allies. …
August 8, 1945
At 2 P.M. Russia declared war against Japan and was to begin at 4 P.M.
August 27, 1945
… Japan signed unconditional surrender tonight at 9 P.M. President Truman declared September 2, 1945 as V.J. Day. …
July 27, 1946
They had a bad hail storm several miles east of here. Missed Zell and Boyd but hailed out Doc Bears crop.
November 11, 1946
A nice clear cool day and muddy. We went to Doc & Donna Bear’s sale this P.M. and was a good one. From there we went to Annabelles awhile. All well. Boyd shucking corn.
September 6, 1947
A hot day. I went to Homers a while this P.M. He & Edith started to Portland, Oregon this evening on the Great-Northern train at 7:10. Will change at St. Paul and expect to get there Tuesday at 9 A.M.
November 27, 1947
Thanksgiving Day and we have so many things to be thankful for. This has been a nice day and not very cold. Albert has been sick all day with stomach and bowel trouble. Geraldine asked us to come over there for a turkey dinner but he didn’t feel like going. Zell came at 11 A.M. for dinner. Bought sausage, apple pie and baked beans. I had cherry pie. It was too muddy in his field to shuck corn. He has 6 or 8 loads out yet.
April 14, 1948
Boyd 36 today. A nice day. We made garden this P.M. R.B. & Ruth Stevens started to Colorado near Denver today to live on a ranch they bought.
January 13, 1949
A clear warmer day thawing a lot of road ice. We had Dr. Nakins to see Albert this A.M. He is so weak and wore out all of the time.
January 15, 1949
A sorryful day for us. Albert died suddenly at 8:28 A.M. with coronary heart attack. Didn’t have to suffer very long but bad. Couldn’t get in from the toilet. Got Homer Stevens & Arnold Kerrdes to carry him in the house. The Dr. came but does nothing for him. Relaxed and went easy at the last. The children all came but Lois. She had the flu and was having a blizzard.
January 17, 1949
A lovely cold day. We had the funeral at 1:30 P.M. A large crowd at the church. Raymond Fogle sang The Lord’s Prayer as a solo. Had Nola Simpson, Marjory Reece, Raymond Fogle and Paul Varner sing We Are Going One By One. Rev. Beher of the Pres. Church was the minister. Wade, Velma, Homer & Nina stayed at Homer’s Saturday night and at Howard Fry’s tonight. …
Wednesday, December 21, 1949
A snowy day, quit a while this morning, hard again this evening. The Xmas Carolers were just here and sang for me.
It was thought the Carolers were the last to see Carrie alive. It was also thought she had a stroke Wednesday night from which she did not recover. Relatives found her unconscious at noon on Friday and Carrie passed away at her home in Diagonal, Iowa on Saturday, December 24, 1949.
Carrie Alice (STEVENS) JONES was interred at Diagonal Cemetery beside her husband. Carrie Alice's
OBITUARY. Family Page for the STEVENS Family
Photograph courtesy of Deloris (GRAVETT) and Ramon L. "Ray" Bear
Courtesy of Deloris (GRAVETT) and Ramon L. "Ray" Bear, November of 2009
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