Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Well, here's a bit of Steanso history. This is a picture of my grandmother, Tyne Johnson, as a little girl (she's the one in the white dress) with her mother, Mrs. Kivisto, and her brothers, Ero, Tolvo, Lauri, and Eino. The picture was taken in Finland, circa 1900. My great grandmother died in Finland, and my grandmother immigrated to the U.S. (through Ellis Island) to come live with her father, but he was killed in an iron ore mining accident shortly after she arrived in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Anyway, my mom unearthed this photo recently and sent it to me. Those Kivistos may look like a somber group, but they're partying on the inside (actually, for some reason photographers weren't big on having their subjects smile back then- I have other old photographs of the family and no one is smiling in those, either). Anyhoo, three cheers to the Kivistos for coming to the U.S. so Steanso could be born here and spend his time complaining about the government and listening to rock and roll!! Posted by Picasa


Anonymous said...

smiling was not encouraged in photos because most people were missing teeth

The League said...

You know Mom and Dad once considered naming The League "Toivo" or "Lauri" in honor of these uncles. It was a near miss, to be sure.

And I don't know if you heard the full story, but Mom didn't unearth the photo. It ran in the Mining Journal in a Sunday supplement. Apparently the antique photo dealer in Marquette (where I got that pic of Theodore Roosevelt in Marquette) had made prints of the photo.

According to the photo-dealer, it used to be a big deal to have your family photo taken and turned into a post-card for relatives. The original this guy had was one of those post-cards, so it had everybody's name on it.

When the photo ran in the Mining Journal, all of Mom's buddies up in Marquette and Negaunee started calling her.

While an amazing tale, I think I am still glad nobody named me "Toivo".

J.S. said...

I'm also glad no one named you Toivo. Roundball is a more fitting moniker.

Anonymous said...

Great story!
My wife's father Lauri Kivisto, emigrated from Finland to Negaunee, when he was 12, in 1936.
His Father, Eero, died of black lung at 39 and Lauri was raised by Eero's brother Lauri, and Aunt Tynne. It sure sounds as though this the same family. Would love to know how to get a copy of the picture, we just got back from the UP yesterday and visited Eero and Lauri and Tynne's graves.
Drop us a line sometime,
Margie and Roger