Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Harold Severinson joins the family

My paternal grandfather Shirley Player died 15 March 1942, nearly a decade before Ol' Myrt here was born. So the paternal "grandfather" I knew was Harold C. Severinson. From I've found the marriage record of Harold to my grandmother Myrtle transcribed as follows, with the handwritten portions indicated in italics below:

State of Washington
County of King
Vol 141 (stamped)
Page 762 (stamped)
Marriage Certificate Series A 114977 (stamped)

THIS CERTIFIED that the undersigned Justice of the Peace
by authority of a License bearing the date the  30 day of June
A. D. 1945 and issued by the County Auditor of the County of King, did on the 30 day of June
A. D. 1945 at the Courthouse in Seattle
County and State aforesaid, join in LAWFUL WEDLOCK H. C. Severinson
of the County of King and Myrtle E. Player
of the County of King with their mutual assent, in the presences of
W R. Carter and J M Stewart witnesses.

IN TESTIMONY WHEREOF, whence the signatures of the parties to said ceremony, the witness and myself, this 30 day of June A. D. 1945.

Jos R. Carter [signature]
J. M. Steward [signature]

H. C. Severinson [signature]
Myrtle E. Player [signature]

William Hoar
Justice of the Peace
P. O. Address Seattle, Washington

[Below the signatures, the following was stamped]
1945 July 3 AM 8 38
Norman R. Riddell, Clerk
King County, Wash.

Though to my knowledge no picture from the wedding day remains, I do have this great pic of Harold taken about the same time. Pictured left to right are Ray, Ole and Harold Severinson. Ray is Harold's brother and Ole is their father. I wonder if they had gathered for the wedding ceremony?

I don't ever remember seeing Grandpa Harold in a suit. He wore wool plaid shirts and smoked cigarettes. I remember his bean bag style ash tray perched on the arm rest of his chair in the living room, just like the one pictured below, available at an Etsy store right now as a "vintage" "retro" item. Who knew then what damage could result from second hand smoke?

I heard from my cousin on Grandma Myrtle's side and from my Dad, a young Army physician at the time, that Harold had a drinking problem, so Myrtle took him away to live an isolated life out in the country in Longview, Washington, away from all the "bad" influences. But of course, I knew nothing of this as a child. Later, when I visited with Grandma Myrtle and Grandpa Harold in the 1950s and 1960s it was at their home in Puyallup, Washington. There was always a six pack of beer on the back steps.

PHOTO: from
On cold, rainy "Pacific Northwest" mornings Harold would arise early to stoke the fire in the coal furnace down cellar. There was no forced air heating or even those steam heat registers in this home, pictured in my blog titled Grandma Myrt's home in Puyallup. Instead the heat would rise naturally to the main floor of the home through a 12 inch by 36 inch wooden floor grate  in the hallway similar to this one.

PHOTO: from Vermont Country Store
My brother Mike and I would always vie for the prime position over the heat vent. I loved to stand on the grate and let the heat soothe my cold legs. The rising air was strong enough to "poof out" my Lanz of Salzburg flannel nightgown. Remember those?

Happy family tree climbing!
Myrt     :)
Your friend in genealogy.

Twitter: @DearMYRTLE
G+: +Pat Richley-Erickson
Second Life: Clarise Beaumont


  1. Do I remember those flannel Lanz nighties? I wore one last night, and guess what! I bought it at our last excursion to the Vermont Country Store, just like your link under the photo of the nightgown. My husband calls it my "granny gown".

    1. Heather, those Lanz nightgowns have the softest flannel! Glad you have a new "granny gown"!!