Today’s post is a special guest post, written by my 1st cousin, Jim Edstrom:
“My grandmother, Harriet Louise Bone Edstrom, was born on this day [May 21] in 1903 in Chicago. The name on her birth certificate actually reads, “Hattie Louise,” but she always went by her middle name. She was a devout, good-natured person whose love for her family knew no bounds. She and my grandfather lived above his locksmith shop in Wausau, Wisconsin, and I remember how she used to give my brothers, my cousins and me money to buy doughnuts at a nearby bakery. I was only 5 years old when her great heart stopped beating in 1967, but I have a vivid image of her. My clearest memory of her must have been when I was about four years old and I watched her lay out a large dish of broken chocolate in the living room. She stepped out, leaving the chocolate and me to our own devices. Idly I wondered how it would taste. I decided this would require leaving the realm of speculation. I took one piece and found it satisfactory, but I realized I needed more data to draw substantive conclusions. Thorough clinical investigation requires repeatability; any scientist will tell you that.
So I resumed my inquiries. And within the space of five minutes I was alone in the living room, having deduced that the chocolate was quite acceptable. And then Grandma returned.
“Why, James, whatever happened to the chocolate?”
I was gratified to be able to answer promptly. “Carl ate it.”
She shrugged, winked at me, and said, “I guess I’ll just have to put out some more, won’t I?”
Sixteen years later I finally broke down and confessed what I had done to my grandfather. He grinned and replied, “I think she probably knew.”
She once remarked that her favorite quote was a few lines from Thomas Campbell’s poem “Hallowed Ground”:
But strew his ashes to the wind
Whose sword or voice has served mankind—
And is he dead, whose glorious mind
Lifts thine on high?—
To live in hearts we leave behind
Is not to die.
Harriet Louise Bone Edstrom lives on in the hearts of her family…”