Friday, March 4, 2016



Jenny Maria Aspegren, my great-grandmother, was born 4 March 1869 at Karsikko farm, Simo, Lappi, Finland.  Today is the 147th anniversary of her birth. Karsikko is an isolated farm near the Gulf of Bothnia, where the Northern Lights can be seen about two hundred times in a year.

Jenny married Tapani Nayha 3 January 1892. While he was away working as a river boat captain, Jenny took care of the farm and their family. They had nine children, all of whom grew to maturity, at a time when the child mortality was 50%. Jenny farmed and preserved food, cooked and cleaned. She was very handy, and she made wooden skis for the children.She was an outstanding tailor, able to make men's suits and do all the fancy work on fine clothes, with French seams and other details. Jenny was an excellent cook and she passed her skills on to her children.  When WWII came, and staples such as salt, sugar, flour and coffee were scarce, Jenny's daughters in America sent regular bundles of food back home.

Jenny died 20 December 1944. She was 75 years old.

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