Uncle Dave's book

Saturday, October 18, 2014

52 Ancestors #42: Eloise Margaret Knock

     Eloise Margaret Knock was born on 23 May 1916 in Iowa City, Iowa.  Her parents, Carl John Knock and Hannah Theodora Mallgren were both the children of Swedish immigrants. Eloise was very proud of her Swedish heritage.  She was the one who told me that the name Knock was assumed by her grandfather, Carl G. Knock,  and his brother when they came to America. Without this data I would've had a tough time finding them in the Swedish records! Carl John Knock was a Music Professor and the College Choir leader at Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, Minnesota.  Hannah was the College librarian, thus they met. They were married in about 1915.

     Eloise was born in Iowa City in 1916, by September 1918 they were living in Holland, Michigan where he was a professor at Hope College. In the 1920 Census they were living in Saunders, Nebraska where he was the Principal, Normal Department, at Luther College. Unfortunately, on 28 Jan 1923, Carl died of pneumonia.  Eloise was only 4 1/2 years old. Her mother must have had a rough time having become a widow with a young child. By the time Eloise was 8 or 9 her mother had a nervous breakdown. She died in Mounds Park Sanitarium in St. Paul, Minnesota on 1 Feb 1929. Eloise was about 12 1/2 year old.

     At this point Eloise had the good fortune to be taken in by her mother's brother, William Mallgren.  The oldest son of John Mallgren who immigrated from Ryda, Skaraborg, Sweden, William was ten years older than Hulda. He was married with seven children of his own, the youngest of whom was one year older than Eloise.  Eloise loved her Uncle Bill and always spoke very highly of him. One can tell that he treated her well and as one of his own.  Eloise hinted that his wife was not quite so happy about having an extra child around. But Eloise loved her cousins and kept in touch with them the rest of her life. Her family was always very important to her and she loved to talk about them, visit them, etc.

     Eloise went to college and nursing school in Saint Peter and became an RN by 1940.  One of the first things she did was accept a job in Hawaii. Through the Passenger Lists on Ancestry we find her leaving Los Angeles in Oct 1940 and arriving in Honolulu 30 Oct 1940. She seems to have stayed there until February 1941 when we find her departing Honolulu and arriving in Los Angeles.  I think it is admirable that she had the adventurousness to travel to Hawaii on her own. Apparently she liked Los Angeles, because she got a job working for Dr. James C. Negley, a urologist living in Glendale. She soon met and fell in love with his son, James C. Negley, Jr. They were married on 12 Sep 1942. Jim was in the Coast Guard and not long after their marriage, Jim left for the Pacific theater.  In 1944 Eloise is listed in the California's Voters Registration record as living in Glendale at 315 Loma Prieta Ave., a registered nurse.  In 1946 she is again listed but so is Jim at the same address so he was back from the war by then.

     After the War, Jim went to Oregon State University in Corvallis to study forestry.  Here James Patrick was born on 12 Mar 1946.  The family moved to McMinnville where Jim worked in the Oregon State Patrol and Dennis was born on 20 August 1948.  Jim obtained his degree in Forestry and the family moved to Reno, Nevada where Jim worked as a Game Warden for the state. Kathleen "Kasey" was born there in 1954.  Jim ran into a little trouble when he cited people from the Las Vegas gambling casinos for hunting and fishing violations. When a restructuring of the Game Service occurred the opportunity was taken to let him go. In the meantime he had gone back to University and gotten his Master's Degree. So he soon got a position in Modesto, California and the family moved there. Jim worked in the Modesto Police Department and then helped found the Police Science Program at Modesto Junior College. Eloise continued working as a nurse.

     Then , on a duck hunting trip in 1963, Jim was injured in an automobile accident and became seriously paralyzed. He spent over a year in hospitals and was a quadraplegic for the rest of his life. This must have been extremely stressful for Eloise who was his main caretaker. He returned to teaching for awhile but then health issues made this impossible. To compound the stress, finally it was too much for him and Jim took his own life on 27 Jun 1971. Pat by this time was married and starting on his own career, Dennis had just finished college and Kasey was still at home in High School. Eloise managed to carry on with her own life and keep the family going. She retired not long after.

     During her retirement, Eloise did quite a bit of travelling. She took the train across Canada, She went to Vegas and Reno. She went to Hawaii. She took an Alaskan cruise and a Caribbean one.  She toured China. She went to Europe. She visited Ireland with her sister-in-law, Barbara, and visited Jim's mother's family. One of her favorite trips was her visit to Sweden including visits to Varmland and Skaraborg where her father's and mother's ancestors were from. She even went to Egypt and rode a camel. She loved to travel and see new places. She was active in her Lutheran Church.  She had a regular Bridge Club. She visited her various Knock and Mallgren cousins. She always had Thanksgiving and Christmas at her house with her children and spouses in attendance. They often came for Easter, Mother's Day and the Fourth of July as well. She loved to have her children come and she really loved to see her grandchildren! She had three, Pat's son, Michael and Dennis' two, Sean and Devin(her only granddaughter). She loved them, bought them many gifts and generally spoiled them as a grandmother should.

     In September 1987 she took a trip to Australia with one of her cousins.  She had complained a little on the trip of not feeling well but nothing apparently wrong. The day after they returned from the trip she had a heart attack and died immediately. It turned out that she had atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) for years and had never told the family. She didn't want to be considered "ill" or told no to be active so she hid it. At her house after the funeral I recall one of her Bridge Club friends telling me how she always talked about her granddaughter, "who talks almost as much as I do!".  She was a good woman with two major tragedies in her life but she managed to move on from those and take care of her family.  She was able to do the travelling that she really enjoyed and saw quite a bit of the world and she died having just done something she loved..

No comments:

Post a Comment