My Mother

Mary Elizabeth Cornwell Wilkinson daughter of Ida Rose Matheny Cornwell was born Jan. 7, 1889 in Mexico.  Her parents had gone there to work on a coffee plantation.

When they came back to the states, Ida Rose died leaving a 4 yr. old to be raised by her father, Job Cornwell.  In order for Job to make an income, my mother was left to be raised by a couple named Kirkpatrick in San Luis Obispo, Ca.

Sometime in Mother’s early life, the Kirkpatricks moved to Leliam, WA.  Mother enjoyed her life there with her many friends, the church, and the Rebbeca Lodge.

At some point in her early 20’s, she met my father, Jesse Wilkinson, whom she married in 1912. The Wilkinson’s then moved to Auburn, WA.  And then to Tacoma, WA, where I was born.  In 1921, this family of 4 (my sister Elva, I, Mother and Father) moved to Portland, Or., where they bought a grocery store on 24th and Ankeny.

All was well until my father had a stroke when I was about 9.  Mother then had to take over the job of the grocery business as well as raising a family and nursing a sick husband.  Three years later I had a serious accident and needed a lot of care.  My dad finally died in 1946. By then the grocery store was sold and a variety store bought.  All these years, mother was the bread winner of our family.

She learned to drive in 1924 and in later years, drove to Alaska.  She carried the pioneer spirit to the day she died Oct. 6, 1973.  Lesta Kneebone 89 years old

[Jasper Matheny > Ida Rose Matheny Cornwell >
Mary Elizabeth Cornwell Wilkinson >
Lesta Wilkinson Matheny Kneebone]

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