Maude Lee Cline

January 1st, 1884

Introduction to Maude Lee Cline Backlund / Stone / Jeffers

According to the Cline Family Tree.com website (as of April 10, 2010) Maude Cline was born about 1884.  A year 1900 census says she was 16 then.  So I shall use January 1, 1884 to post all the information that I know about Maude Lee Cline Backlund (“Mrs. Backlund”, “Maude Jeffers”, “Mrs. Jeffers”).  Some of her letters may be posted under the date on which they were written, photographs common to other peoples lives may appear also posted on other dates.  The point is that everything that I know about Maude will be posted here or linked from here.

I have been fortunate to have inherited so much important information about Maude. The pictures, letters, papers came from my grandmother Hemme (Hemme Naratte Backlund Martin).  She was Maude’s sister-in-law by Maude’s marriage to Hemme’s brother Alfin Backlund.

Hemme spent a great deal of time and no small effort in genealogical record keeping and research.  Her family, even extended family, was important to her.  The record we offer here of Maude is Hemme’s record; I have only done the typing and scanning and posting on the web.  Thank goodness Hemme saved Maude’s letters so that Maude’s life could more easily come alive.

My current effort regarding Maude comes by way of the encouragement and inspiration of “Mary” (a Cline) and author of much on the Cline Family Tree website.  She has encouraged my posts.  She has asked permission to “repost”, as opposed to link, the information that I have regarding Maude.

Mary has a point.  Every person feels possessive about their family.  “It’s my mom, not yours”, is often the attitude of even the best of siblings.  Families are really not like that.  One persons “sister-in-law” is often another persons sister.  A great aunt is someone else’s great-aunt too.  There are probably few things as frustrating as having a picture of yourself that someone else says you cannot have because they own the copyright “forever and a day” (or for fifty years or seventy or ninety or a hundred).  The same is true for other family members, especially people from the past, now dead, who you find hard to visit and talk to and ask questions of from beyond the grave.

So Mary, you are right.  I’ve thought some thoughts and planned some plans and come up with my answer.  The answer is “Qala Bist Blue”.  A “Qala Bist Blue” specific designation means that the picture or the document is in the Public Domain.  It means that you (and others) can use the designated photographs, the designated letters, the designated letters expressed in typed text exactly as YOU want.

I would prefer of course if pictures were not used in religious rituals or dedications.  I would hope that letters are not rewritten to censure a valid thought.  The purpose is not to malign or belittle the living or the dead; but to celebrate life and to spread the record of the struggles because life is about that – the struggle.

Credit and attribution are always good.  We climb higher by reaching from the shoulders of those that have come before.  Their work and efforts are our point of true beginning; the world did not start with us.  The family did not start with us; that IS the point of family now isn’t it.  And the other word is “share”.

Dedication:  With no slight or intent at disrespect to either Mr. Stone or Mr. Jeffers:  This page is dedicated to the memory of “Alfin and Maude”.

Donald Clayton – April 11, 2010

Note:  This series of posts is arranged in a “read down” format.  As you read down time progresses.  The one thing to remember is that to continue the journey you should select “Previous Entries”, not “next entries” at the bottom of the page.

[First posted:  2010.04.11 / SundayMaude Lee Cline]  

Maude Cline about 1900

January 1st, 1884

 Maude Lee Cline portrait circa (about) 1905 - age ?21

Maude Lee Cline (probably) at about 16 years of age in Kansas City, Kansas.

Studio Photograph from the Hemme Naratte Backlund Martin collection – This picture is contributed to the Public Domain under the parameters of Qala Bist Blue.

The writing on the photograph is Hemme’s writing.  The date too is hers “about 1900”.  The very lightly embossed seal in the lower right of the photo indicates “…… Allen – KCK”; this is the mark of the photographer, he might have pressed down a little harder.

What we do have is the picture; and with the picture a reminder to make notes (better on the backs) on the pictures that YOU have so that the “next gen” (next generation) or two won’t need to wonder about the “why, when, and who”.

Questions:  We know that Maude Lee Cline was (probably) born in Metz, Missouri (Vernon County) and that she then moved to Amoret, Missouri sometime during the next sixteen (16) years.  The census of 1900 puts Maude in Amoret, Missouri (Bates County), a location about 50 miles south of Kansas City.  If the date of this photograph is correct it appears that the above Studio Portrait was made on a trip Maude made to Kansas City, Kansas when she was 16.  By 1904 Maude (at age 20) is photographed by Alfin in Kansas City where she is apparently living.  The question is:  When did Maude move to Kansas City, Kansas?

Note:  An edited version of this photograph also appears on Cline Family Tree.com credited to Barbara Backlund Herdman , daughter of Jay Loyall Backlund and Dorothy Colby Backlund.   The photograph is described as “Young Maude” – if anyone else has a copy of this picture with additional information please contact this site.

[First posted:  2010.04.11 / SundayMaude Cline about 1900]

Alfin and Maude circa 1904

January 1st, 1884

Alfin Backlund and Maude Cline circa 1904

Alfin Backlund and Maude Lee Cline circa 1904.

Alfin Backlund Photograph from the Hemme Naratte Backlund Martin collection – This picture is contributed to the Public Domain under the parameters of Qala Bist Blue.

Alfin Backlund took this picture of Alfin.  His “big box camera” had a timer so that he could be in the photographs he took.  “Stand here Maude; look to your right – I’ll be right with you”.  Maude’s smile clearly indicates that Alfin is so clever.  Alfin clearly thinks that Maude is “something else”.

The photograph was probably taken (staged) in a city park in Kansas City, Kansas.  Given Alfin’s humor the setting says in regard to Maude, “I’m stumped”.  You’ll have to see other photographs of Alfin before you believe me.

[First posted:  2010.04.11 / SundayAlfin and Maude circa 1904]

Maude Cline and a friend

January 1st, 1884

Maude Cline and a friend in Lasita, Kansas

Maude Cline and a friend in a photograph by Alfin Backlund circa 1904.

Alfin Backlund Photograph from the Hemme Naratte Backlund Martin collection – This picture is contributed to the Public Domain under the parameters of Qala Bist Blue.

Maude is pictured in a Kansas corn field, probably at the Backlund Farm in Lasita, Kansas (Riley County).  Hemme, Alfin’s sister, remembered well “the big box camera” that Alfin used to take this picture; what you cannot see is Alfin carrying the camera on the train down to the farm from Kansas City (Kansas) so he can take this picture of Maude (and friend).  However, all was not in vain; he took other pictures while there.  It must have been quite a week or weekend.  But then again there was the job of lugging the big camera back to Kansas City

Note:  This photograph also appears on Cline Family Tree.com credited to Barbara Backlund Herdman , daughter of Jay Loyall Backlund and Dorothy Colby Backlund.   Barbara dates this photograph as 1904 which suggests that Alfin and Maude had a four (4) year courtship.

[First posted:  2010.04.11 / SundayMaude Cline and a friend]

Alfin Backlund Post Card – July 7, 1906

January 1st, 1884

1906.07.07

George Washington 2 cent stamp (red).

Return address:  None

Addressed to:  Miss H. N. Backlund – R.R. #1 – Bala, Kansas – Riley County

HNB in Bala (lasita), Kansas

This is where I run up against a board and not a bill board either.  Got Past too.  Alfin.

Alfin Backlund Post Card from the Hemme Naratte Backlund Martin collection – This image and this text version is contributed to the Public Domain under the parameters of Qala Bist Blue.

Alfin Backlund was an engineer.  He worked his way up at the Municipal Light and Power Company in Kansas City.  In the process he had to take tests (exams) and pass.  As you can see by this card he did.

The Card:

City Hall - Kansas City, Missouri - 1906

City Hall – Kansas City, Missouri – 1906

[First posted  2010:04.17 / Saturday –  Alfin Backlund Post Card – July 7, 1906]

Alfin Backlund Post Card – August 4, 1907

January 1st, 1884

1907.08.04

George Washington 2 cent stamp (red).

Return address:  None

Addressed to:  Miss H. Backlund – R.R. No. 1 – Bala, Kansas

Alfin message to sisters in Bala, Kansas 1907

8 – -4 – 07

Kansas City

To you –

I am on my journey and will get there by and by.  This is beautiful scenery here abouts.

Yours Nifla

Alfin Backlund Post Card from the Hemme Naratte Backlund Martin collection – This image and this text version is contributed to the Public Domain under the parameters of Qala Bist Blue.

It may be good to get to know who you might marry.  This is Alfin here, named “Nifla” for the moment (Alfin spelled backwards in case you’re slow).  That’s his point.  A slow donkey, his feet almost touch the ground and Alfin has his hat and is all dressed up in perfect Alfin style.  It is the theme in so many pictures; irony and wit.  No wonder Maude married him (and his sisters loved him too).  What a guy!

The Card:

Alfin (Nifla) Backlund on a donkey - 1907

Alfin Backlund “aka Nifla” in his favorite pursuit in photography – humor.

[First posted  2010:04.16 / Friday –  Alfin Backlund Post Card – August 4, 1907]

Alfin and Maude get married

January 1st, 1884

Alfin Backlund and Maude Lee Cline (Backlund)

Alfin Backlund and Maude Cline (now “Backlund”) in their studio wedding portrait.

Studio Photograph from the Hemme Naratte Backlund Martin collection – This picture is contributed to the Public Domain under the parameters of Qala Bist Blue.

Alfin and Maude were married on March 18, 1908 in Kansas City, Kansas (Wyandotte County).  Alfin was born on May 27, 1878, so he was 30 years old at the time of his marriage.  Maude was born on an unknown date in (probably) 1884, so she was 24 when married.

Questions:  There appears to be almost no record of where Alfin and Maude were married, or who came to their wedding – only “Kansas City”.  Alfin’s family seems not to have been invited, or could not make the trip to Kansas City.  The only clue that I have to this mystery (as of April 15, 2010) is a photograph taken by Alfin of the Second Church of Christ Scientist in Kansas City.  The building is not pictured on the web, but an address suggests that it was at “31st and Troost Streets” (unclear whether the Kansas or Missouri side).

Alfin seldom took pictures of public buildings, except when under construction (makes sense since he was an engineer); so this picture of this church is an anomaly unless as Hemme wrote on the back of the photograph that it was “the Masonic Temple“.

The problem with that theory is that there is another Masonic Temple on the Missouri side of Kansas City (built in 1911) on “Harrison” that does not seem to be a church.  It is possible, but unlikely, that the older church pictured by Alfin became the temple or the temple became the church.  The alternative conclusion is that Maude was a Christian Scientist when she was married, which would explain a tremendous amount about Maude’s life if it were true.

I will post the picture in the hope that someone will help solve this mystery and to indicate where Alfin and Maude might have been married.

The question is:  Does anyone have any documented information about where Maude and Alfin were wed?

[First posted:  2010.04.14 / WednesdayAlfin and Maude get married]

Possible location of Maude and Alfin’s wedding

January 1st, 1884

Second Church of Christ Scientist - Kansas City - circa (about) 1908

Second Church of Christ Scientist – Kansas City – circa 1908

Alfin Backlund Photograph from the Hemme Naratte Backlund Martin collection – This picture is contributed to the Public Domain under the parameters of Qala Bist Blue.

Alfin and Maude were married on March 18, 1908 in Kansas City, Kansas (Wyandotte County). This may be the church in which they were wed, Maude’s choice obviously (being the bride).

There appears to be almost no record of specifically where Alfin and Maude were married, or who came to their wedding – only “Kansas City”.  Alfin’s family seems not to have been invited, or could not make the trip to Kansas City.  The only clue that I have to this mystery (as of April 15, 2010) is a photograph taken by Alfin of the Second Church of Christ Scientist in Kansas City.  The building is not pictured on the web, but an address suggests that it was at “31st and Troost Streets” (unclear whether the Kansas or Missouri side).

Alfin seldom took pictures of public buildings, except when under construction (makes sense since he was an engineer); so this picture of this church is an anomaly unless as Hemme wrote on the back of the photograph that it was “the Masonic Temple“.

The problem with that theory is that there is another Masonic Temple on the Missouri side of Kansas City (built in 1911) on “Harrison” that does not seem to be a church.  It is possible, but unlikely, that the older church pictured by Alfin became the temple or the temple became the church.  The alternative conclusion is that Maude was a Christian Scientist when she was married, which would explain a tremendous amount about Maude’s life if it were true.

I post the picture in the hope that someone will help solve this mystery and to indicate where Alfin and Maude might have been married.

[First posted:  2010.04.15 / ThursdayPossible location of Maude and Alfin’s wedding]

14 North Valley Street – Kansas City, Kansas

January 1st, 1884

14 N. Valley - KCK - 1908 - Alfin Backlund photo

Alfin and Maude’s first home – 14 North Valley Street – Kansas City, Kansas.

Alfin Backlund Photograph from the Hemme Naratte Backlund Martin collection – This picture is contributed to the Public Domain under the parameters of Qala Bist Blue.

Alfin and Maude may have lived somewhere else during their first few weeks of marriage, but the letters suggest that they moved into this house before April 30th of 1908; let’s call it May Day, because May Day was good then and it was spring and the whole world seemed to lay ahead.  The world and America were at peace, there were new things like automobiles and airplanes, and everything was “going electric” so Alfin’s future seemed assured.

[First posted:  2010.04.14 / Wednesday14 North Valley Street – Kansas City, Kansas]

Alfin Backlund letter – April 30, 1908

January 1st, 1884

1908.04.30

George Washington 2 cent stamp (red).

Return address:  14 North Valley Street – Kansas City, Kansas

Addressed to:  Miss H. Backlund – R.R. No. 1 – Bala, Kansas

1908 Envelope from Kansas City to Bala, Kansas

14 North Valley st., K.C. Kas.

April 30th 1908

Dear sisters, –

I am going to try to write you a few lines this evening and let you understand that I am still your brother and that Maude and I are more glad than ever to here from you whether it be jokes, preachings, lectures, quotations, or anything else that you may want to send us we like it all.

Well we have had our supper and talked to an insurance agent for a little while and now we will have a piece of pie to sweeten upon.

Yes I have eaten half a pie and Maude is nearly through with her pie too.  We are going to have five hundred dollars insurance on our furniture and house-hold goods and although that would not replace our treasured things yet it will give us quite a nice little start should misfortune be our lot.

I am taking a days vacation tomorrow and I intend to take one every now and then.

I just received a check from John for $200.00 this evening and I will try to get it cashed tomorrow.  Now with it we are fixed in fine shape financially and have such a cozy home too and we will be looking for a call from you in the near future.  And although you have not said so I do hope you are coming to see us soon.

I do not get to stay out late in the evenings now as I used to several months ago, and I don’t care to do so either because I have such a nice place to spend my evenings now.  I am using a new fountain pen and I like it fine.  I let one fall twenty five feet yesterday and smashed it.  I have to work, very much the same as I did before I got married, at the plant and all goes as usual there.

Well I will write more tomorrow.

Brother Al

May 1st, 1908,

Well we received your letter today and you say you think it will be impossible for you to come down here this summer.  Well I do think you can and should at least Hattie and Hemmie needs to come and learn something of city life and business.

Well Mr. Thompson has been here this afternoon and stayed to dinner and he left, then an insurance agent called and I spent half an hour talking to him and now I will try to write a little more.  I have so little time to write that I don’t get started to say anything before I have to quit.

I received a check from John last night for two hundred dollars and now I must express my thanks to you for sending it back and I must say as I have said before that I never expected to get it back at all when I gave it to you and I hope you are not cramping yourself in any way in returning it.  And if you do need any of it this summer please don’t hesitate to tell me so as I am just as much ready as ever to give you any assistance that I can and when I say “I” I really mean “We” (Maude and i.)

And as I said before We do want you to pay us a visit this summer.  Well I must close now and wish you good luck.

Your brother

Alfin

Alfin Backlund Letter from the Hemme Naratte Backlund Martin collection – This text version is contributed to the Public Domain under the parameters of Qala Bist Blue.

Notes:  “A call” is not a telephone call, it refers to a knock upon the door.  Alfin works at the Kansas City Municipal Light and Power Company as an engineer.  The “twenty five feet” is the distance from the brass railing on the inside second story of the generating plant to the tiled floor below.  The “Miss H” on the envelope could and did refer to all three of Alfin’s sisters – Huldah, Hattie, and Hemmie (“Hemmie” was the way the Americanized teachers spelled Hemme’s Swedish name).  Huldah was the oldest of the three, all were teachers – hence the loan for school and the ability to repay the loan (as teachers).  And oh yes, Hattie and Hemme do go to Kansas City in the summer to see (call on) Alfin and Maude.][First posted:  2010.04.14 / WednesdayAlfin Backlund letter – April 30, 1908]

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