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Johnson, Edith Edmund, 1893-



  • Existence: 1893-


Edith Bertina Edmund Johnson was born in Ottumwa, Iowa in 1893 to Anna Mathilda Hallander Edmund and John Peter Edmund. She attended school until the eighth grade and at age sixteen began working in a garment factory in Ottumwa. In 1916 she married Elmer C. Johnson and the couple farmed on the Johnson family farm near Fairfield, Iowa until 1942. Edith Johnson was a lifelong member of the Good Cheer Society and the First Lutheran Church of Fairfield, Iowa. She was also a member of the Lutheran Church Women (LCW), the LCW Quilting Club and she served on the bicentennial committee in 1976 for both the LCW and First Lutheran Church. Johnson had three children.

The Fancy Work Circle was founded in 1911 by Mrs. George Woods of Fairfield, Iowa. Over the years the club has made pillows for the hospital and comforters for the needy. It has also supported the American Red Cross and other civic activities. The club was originally called: Utile dulci, meaning the useful with the agreeable.

The Good Cheer Society began in March 1906 in the rural Fairfield home of Miss Fannie Cummings where five women met to discuss the organizing of a group of neighborhood women for the benefit of orphans. On April 4, 1906 twenty women met in the Cummings home and elected officers. The officers were instructed to draw up by-laws for the society and the name "Good Cheer" was chosen. The Orphans Home at Council Bluffs was chosen as the group's main project. In addition to raising money through dues and selling lunches at farm sales, the women made quilts, comforters and clothing for the Orphans Home. They also sent barrels of canned fruits and vegetables and periodically provided chickens and eggs. In addition to supporting the Orphans Home, the Good Cheer Society members provided sewing and knitting for the Red Cross and service men, donated money to the country's war chest and the school milk fund and held showers for neighbors following disasters. On the occasion of the society's seventieth anniversary in 1976 Mrs. Edith Johnson was honored as the oldest member of the club, having belonged for sixty years.

The Lutheran Church Women's Quilting Club began in 1960 at the First Lutheran Church in Fairfield, Iowa. By 1976 the group had made 120 quilts. They had also accumulated their own private mission fund which they used towards church projects. The LCW Quilting Club provided new drapes for the church's nursery, a new refrigerator for the kitchen, repairs on the electric clock in the social room and the installation of a microphone in the sanctuary. In addition to quilts, the club also makes layettes, bandages, robes and comforters.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Edith Edmund Johnson papers

Identifier: IWA0740

Longstanding member of Fairfield, Iowa clubs including the Fancy Work Circle and the Good Cheer Society.

Dates: 1922-2005