Monday, June 19, 2017

1977 Tatt Ballantyne Fisher letter -June 17

Mrs. Fred B. Fisher
Box 213, 705 2nd Avenue
New Cumberland, WV 26407

Sunday, June 19
Dear Jean,

Sure was glad to hear from you when I was in California.  I was just there for the month of March.  Ruth Stevens went with me.  She enjoyed Jean's two boys.  I hated to come home.  I have your letter in front of me so I'm here to tell you we didn't miss any of the bad, bad winter.  Wasn't it terrible.  I about froze in this house.  I just kept the thermostat on 68 for I couldn't stand it any lower.  Never took so many aspirins but I got by with no colds, etc.  Believe everyone felt better even though it was so cold.  One morning it was 20 below and I had to look at thermometer again to really believe it.  Seemed like the olden days.

Ann's husband, Clarence Cline, died on June 9th.  I wasn't able to go over.  Couldn't make it my myself and when I called John he was sick in bed with flu.  I talked to Ann several times and she is doing fine but later I'm afraid for her.  She only weighs 114 pounds and that is bad for Ann.  Natalie and Norman were there and they said Ann is just skin over bones.  I don't think she will be with us long.  Page took her out to his home in Sacramento Calif. on Friday, so the rest with them will be good for her.  Clarence was sick for about four years and real bad the past eight months.  He had a malignant growth on his colon when operated upon and it then went to his liver.  Its a blessing he's gone but he suffered so much and it was hard on Ann.  Two of her boys lived there near them in Moorestoen [Moorestown?], New Jersey.  They moved them to Moorestoen from Camden several years ago.  Hawley lives in Spokane, Wash. and he was the only one who didn't come.  You know he is fifty-one years old.  Ann had eight children and they have all done real well.  Hawley is out of Marines now (after 30 years) and Bill, who lives in Orlando, Fla is out of Air Force after 30 years.  They had twenty grandchildren and six great grandchildren.

Lois and Tom Bruce were at church several weeks ago.  They sat with me.  I hadn't seen them since they left here.  Both looking good.

The 4-H director bought Margaret's home.  They had an auction and got rid of everything.  Jack Evans bought your Uncle Bert's home.  That was some place to rid out.  I felt sorry for Bob & Cindy.  Bob had no idea what belonged to who!!  They are at the cottage now.  Bob is looking for work closer to here.  Indiana is too far away.  Let me hear from you .

Love, Tatt

* * * * *
From note added to 1972 Tatt Ballantyne Fisher letter -Oct.23 (published in the blog on Oct. 23, 2012):  Tatt, born 1906, was the middle daughter of Charles Alexander "Alex" and Mary Conley Ballantyne.  She lived in New Cumberland most (if not all) of her life.  She married Fred Bradley Fisher (1900-1964) also from New Cumberland.  Three of her four children are still living and I am in contact with her daughter Natalie.  The nickname "Tatt" carried over from her childhood when her younger sister Natalie could not pronounce Elizabeth.

Alex – Tatt and Natalie's father – was a younger brother of Nathaniel Wallace Ballantyne.  Nathaniel was the grandfather of the Ballantyne-Dailey-Uible cousins.  The common ancestors would be Alex and Nathaniel's parents, our great-grandparents, Alexander Bell and Irene Freeman Ballantyne.  Read more about Alexander Bell Ballantyne here:

Tatt's sister, Natalie Virginia Ballantyne Kessel Parsons (1909-2000), is mentioned in the letter as having recently lost her daughter.  Natalie is also the mother of a second cousin most of us have met, Kenneth "Pat" Kessel, though he is a child from Natalie's first marriage and the Mary Jo mentioned was the daughter of Natalie and Norman Parsons.  Natalie had two children with Kenneth Kessell: Pat and Gretchen, both survive.  With Norman Parsons she had four children: Mary Jo, Dickson, Robert & Thomas, only Thomas survives.

Tatt and Natalie had an older sister, Anna Irene (1904-1981).  Anna married Charles Cline and had eight children including a set of twins.  Their daughter Mary Frances Pizella Gavey, is the one who organized several family reunions in the late 1990s and produced several booklets about family history.  She now lives in New Jersey and I am also in contact with her.  [Last I heard in 2016, she was not doing well. She died on November 18, 2016, at the age of 88]

Mary Elizabeth "Tatt" Ballantyne Fisher died in 1993, at the age of 87, after falling and breaking her hip. 

* * * * *
Other relevant blog posts include:

1936 Ballantyne Party -Sept.10
1964 Fred B. Fisher Obituary -Apr.20 (with pictures)
1966 HH NYC Public Library postcard -Mar.7
1972 Tatt Ballantyne Fisher letter - Oct. 23
1993 Natalie Fisher letter - May 18
William E. Cline (1931-2012) - 2nd Cousin
Alexander Bell Ballantyne 1841-1885

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