Adele Goetze and Kenneth J. Johnson,
Kenneth J. Johnson (b. in St. Paul, Minnesota, d. May 30, 2012 in Bismarck, North Dakota) married Adele Cecilie Goetze (b. in Young America, Minnesota) at Carlisle Barracks, PA.
Adele was born i Young America, Carver County, Minnesota. Her family moved to Waconia when she was two years old where she grew up. She was educated and worked as a nurse. Kenneth was born and grew up in St. Paul. More about Adele, her parents and ancestors here...
Kenneth was educated as a doctor of medicine and worked in a hospital.
Adele and Kenneth had four children, among them the daughter Xanthe, who married Jon Arne Storflor Sæter (editor of the Johnson Ancestry web site).
4. Xanthe (born
in the1950's in Bismarck, North Dakota). Married Jon Arne Storflor Sæter).
Read more about this family here...
1937 Adele Goetze of Waconia scored 98.7 points out of a possible 100 and
won Minnesota 4H State Health Championship in a competition between 82 girls
from 82 counties.
fame: In the national newspapers
education for doctor
– the musician
education for nurse
After I finished that year home, which was very depressing because I was wondering what was going to become for me. I wanted to get out of the small town and get an education. The Morovian minister actually helped me very much. He'd take me in for my interviews and helped me get my act together so I got into training.
There were three months where you sort and file and we went to the University to get our extra courses, at the University of Minnesota. We had to pass all those in order to get into the main training which was more hands-on, not technical aspects. The first day on duty as a probee (we were called probes, I don't know why), that was the day Pearl Harour was bombed, December 7th, 1940. I was so excited when I came off duty because I had brushed somebody's false teeth and emptied a bed pan. But nobody was listening to me because I was greeted with the news that war was declared. So from there on, it was an accelerated program. We worked 12 hours a day, four hours of classes in there, and just worked very hard because everybody was going off to work in the munition factories, and yet we were supposed to do everything ideally because the next morning the head nurse would examine all our work that we did the night before. So sometimes we only had about four or five hours of sleep. We worked the 11 o'clock shift and did not get off till 12, and then you'd have to get up at 6 o'clock to get back to work at 7. This went on for three years. I don't know how we did it, but we did.
from nurses' training from the Episcopalian-related hospital. The
day we graduated, in September 1944, we were all worried about getting drafted.
The last six months of our training, we were issued cadet uniforms. They
had measured me very carefully. I got the uniform and it was two or three
sized too big. It fits me now. We went to morning devotions and
sang songs and then we'd go to work. I was always the organist. It was a
pump organ – it was fun. Then we'd go to work and that would get us through
the day. I think it helped, because it was very stressfull times."
and Ken meets in September 1944
Adele tell what happened, "I thought, 'Okay, I'll go out there.' I had to take the train because he couldn't afford flying. I bought him a Christmasgift, a $15 pen. I thought, if he isn't serious, I'm not going to give him this pen. I got to Carlisle and by golly, we decided we were going, well, first he just wanted to be enganged. I said, 'If that's the case, I have to go in the service because they're going to be drafting us.' He didn't want me to go in the service and I thought, you have nothing to say about that. I don't know if that pushed him over the line, but he finally asked me to marry him. Better to marry me and make me an honest woman than to have me go in the service. So we decided to get married."
«I couldn't find a wedding dress as the war was on. There was just nothing in the stores. It was pre-Christmas, December 23. So I just finally found a yellow dress that got braided into a rug by my mother. The story was it was a Saturday and nobody was open to take a picture. Ken and I were walking on the streets of Carlisle and one of the photographer places had a door open. We went in and he took our picture. Otherwise, we wouldn't have had a picture of our wedding.» (Adele G. Johnson 1999)
Then Adele and Kenneth went to Connecticut to visit Kenneth's brother, Theodore, who was a Baptist minister there. From there on, Kenneth was shipped around and shipped around.
Adele joined him at Hawaii after the war was over. She was able to only because Kenneth had checked to make sure a position for nurse was available. (It was extremely hard to get to Hawaii then.) She flew on an Army plane with general's wife, etc. Then she worked at Kauikeolani Childrens' Hospital in Honolulu. That city is a few miles from Schofield Barracks when Kenneth lived on that Army post. He took a bus to Honolulu to see her. Later he secured a cottage in Shofield, with great difficulty because of Army red tape, so thay could live together.
you have any memories of Word War II to tell?"
since 4 years old
"It was long before I was old enough to go to kindergarten. An older little boy invited me to go with him on a walk of exploration. We were gone a good part of the day, on a long, long walk. At the end of our journey we saw a yard where there was a pen a little over a foot high, shaped like a miniature A-frame, bottomless and movable. Each slanted side of the “A” was solid wood; each end of the pen was open with horizontal narrow slats some 1 1/2 inches apart. Inside was a brown mother hen. Her chicks roamed freely in and out of her pen. I stood entranced.
When we finally returned to my house, there was my frantic mother, who had called the police to help find a lost little boy. In retrospect, the mother hen, who seemed to me to be so far a way, lived only two blocks away!"
Kenneth continued birding all his life, during which time he traveled and camped in all fifty states and ten Canadian provinces. During World War II, including combat in Okinawa he observed birds whenever feasible. He has written about birds in Senior Lifestyles and Birdwatcher’s Digest, and written monthly the Birds column for the Bismarck Tribune, North Dakota. He has done 82 Breeding Bird Surveys for the U.S. and Canadian governments.
Travelling all over North America for birds
Adele with son camping in Big Bend National Park, Texas, in 1957. Photography by Kenneth J. Johnson
I had been an outdoor girl all my life, little did I know when I married
handsome Dr. Kenneth J. Johnson in 1944 what I was getting into. After his
Army combat duty we were able to spend the last nine months of service in
Hawaii together, where I got a job in a children’s hospital as a nurse.
Ken was at Schofield Barracks in Oahu, Hawaii. It was there I discovered
he was an avid bird watcher all his life. So after that, all travels and
destination involved national parks, national monuments,
of three books – the first at 89 years of age!
Kenneth did for many years of his adult life make exact minitiature replicas of grain cars from private grain elevators and railroad companies. He made them on the basis of studies in the field when his family was travelling all over the country. He drawed or pictured the cars on location and made the replicas at home. The car collection counts aroud 400 cars and was donated to North Dakota State Railroad Museum in Bismarck where they are displayed.
Johnson furniture "inherited" by General Custer...
Love seat, wooden, with red velvet upholstery, dated 1890.