Barbara Weigel Ivanov
Born: 11-28-1903 in Zealand
Died: 10-23-1973 in Napoleon
Buried in Napoleon Catholic Cemetery
I spent a lot of time with my Grandmother after her husband, Grandpa George, died. She would care for us ( Lucy and me) or me when Mom and Dad were gone. We spent the night with her many times. She lived until I was 24 years old and married. She always drove a big Oldsmobile. She liked to fish a lot, and took me with her. I caught my first Northern with her and Grandpa at West Lake. Grandma took us to Lake Isabel at Dawson and fished after Grandpa died. Grandma took me to Beaver Creek to fish when I was about 10-12 years old. There was a large group of carp swimming up the creek. Grandma rushed back to me and we both got down in the creek and somehow, I think with pails, scooped 15-20 carp out of the creek.
When I stayed with her, she always would make us eat a big breakfast, eggs, meat, toast, milk and a bowl of cereal. When she entertained, she would always have at least two kinds of meat, maybe three. I remember making pork sausage with her in the basement of her house. When we were done, she made me take a big package to the nuns. I now own the sausage stuffer. She farmed until her death. Grandma son, Ben farmed her land for her on a share. She owned her own tractor, an old Cockshot. After her death, Ben bought her land.
I remember before Grandpa died going into the living room after supper and listening to the radio (before TV), while Grandma was washing dishes. When Grandpa died, he was taken to the house (customary) to lie in state. I remember coming down the stairs and closing my eyes so I wouldn't have to look at him. After the funeral, she wouldn't go into the house at first until someone checked it. Grandma later sold that house and moved to an upstairs apartment, then into a motel apartment while she was looking for a different house.
She decided to work as a cook for about a year during her apartment year. She worked for the railroad as a travelling cook in the summer on a crew that moved around. She cooked and lived in two cars that traveled on the railroad. When she started this job, she started smoking cigarettes. I remember her looking very ungrandma-like, throwing her cigarette on our lawn before she came into our house. She wasn't a good smoker, I don't think she inhaled and she looked very amateurish smoking. She went to Mexico during this time with another lady. There are pictures of her in Mexico looking like a tourist.
She bought a very nice home and retired there. She did her own lawn and garden work and was a big Bingo fan. She drove to Bismarck every week to play Bingo. She died in the Wishek Hospital of cancer. It was very long and drawn out, she lost a lot of weight and was in a lot of pain. Then Dr. Goodman decided to give her strong pain medicine. She was then able to sit up. Mom fixed her hair one night when Joyce and I were there and told her we were expecting Shane. She said, “That's nice.” She was around 100 pounds. Her false teeth didn't fit but she had enough energy to plan her funeral. She left word that her grandchildren had to go to confession, and Dan and Jeff had to have their long hair cut so they could attend the funeral. She was a very strong Catholic and always one of the top givers to her church.