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Family of William Oren Johnson and Almeda Myrtle Misemer


Husband Notes:

From Lawrence Co. Births/deaths, 1883-1893:
Johnson, male; 6th child, b. 10 Aug 1884.
Mother: Mary Jane West, age 36, b. TN.
Father: Wm. Perry Johnson, age 35, b. TN.
Chas. Moor, M.D., Lawrenceburg.

*William Oscar Johnson lived in Lawrence Co his entire life except for a
period of about two years when working in a defense plant in California in WWII.
He was a farmer, blacksmith, and car salesman.

*On 1920 census he is listed as a "horse shoer" at "the shop". He and Almeda
(Medie) were living with eight of the nine children on Crawford St. in Mt.
Vernon.

*The family moved from Stinson to Spencer/Paris Springs in Mar 1912. Jack
Merrell was 6 weeks old and they wrapped him in blankets warmed by rocks
heated in a fire for the cold trip in an open wagon. William Oren bought a
farm north of where I-44 now runs, and all the boys grew up playing and
fishing in Goose Creek. The family moved back into Paris Springs at least two
more times, once to the house built by William Oren Johnson and brother-in-law
John Gist. They moved briefly to Crawford St. in Mt. Vernon, long enough to be
listed on the census, but stayed less than a year and moved back to the farm
for a few months before finally settling into the "Halderman" house on West
Water St. --From interview with Opal Johnson Fry. -jjr

From Carroll Fry: "When Bill was about 9 years old the family lived in a big
house up on a hill. Bill was supposed to be driving a team somewhere and
couldn't get the mules to move. He built a fire under the mules. He then ran
to Hugh {his brother} to protect him from his dad." --interview - jjr

Obituary: [from saved clipping, handwritten date 14 Aug 1951} William O.
Johnson, 68, died at 6:45 Tuesday morning at Springfield Baptist Hospital
after a lingering illness. He was born in Paris Springs, MO., and was a
lifelong resident of this vicinity except for two years spent in Santa
Barbara, Calif. [Much of Almeda's family was in the Santa Barbara area.] He
had been living in Mt. Vernon for many years. Survivors include his wife,
Almeda, of Mt. Vernon, four sons, Elmer of Bakersfield, Calif., Everett of
Phoenix, Ariz; Jack and Herbert of Mt. Vernon; four daughters, Marie
Schmidlkofer and Daisy Hawkins of Mt. Vernon, Opal Fry of Topeka, Kans.,
Beatrice Huggerich {sic} of St. Louis and fifteen grandchildren. Funeral
arrangements are incomplete, but will be under the direction of H. D. Fossett
Funeral Home.

* Standard Certificate of Death: cause of death listed as ...heart disease
with coronary thrombosis. Lists burial on 17 Aug 1951.

Wife’s Notes...

From Dianne Prevo: My fondest memory of Grandma Johnson is spending the night
with her watching wrestling on TV which she firmly believed in (as being real)
and then staying up the rest of the night playing canasta. We would eat what
we could find, wouldn't do dishes because she could do that when she was all
alone.

And I can remember going to her house when they lived on College St., in the
big house, and Karen Sue would be spending the summer with her. Karen Sue
would go across the street to Maberry's market and buy a hershey bar and we
would play doctor and nurse, and the hershey bar would be the medicine, and
that's how we gobbled down the hershey bar, in doses. Karen Sue was boss,
cause she was the oldest. --Phone interview by CReed 7 Feb 1998.

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