Kienow Family History and Heritage

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Harold Kenow and Louise Kops

Harold and LouiseHarold "Shorty" Kenow was born on September 6, 1904. His parents, Albert and Mary Smetana Kenow, lived on the northwest corner of 1st Street and Irving Avenue in Faribault. Shorty got his name from the kids who played street hockey near their house. Since he was the smallest player in the game, he was soon called Shorty. The name stuck with him throughout his life.

According to Shorty, they used a tin can and sticks cut from tree branches. Their favorite sticks came from the plum trees growing along the Milwaukee Railroad tracks. The boys would take a saw and go hunting for just the right branch to cut!

Shorty attended Trinity Lutheran School for 8 years and went on to Faribault High School until he was 16 and could quit and go to work. He worked at, or for, Farmer Seed, Sheffield-King Flour Mill and the Shoe Factory before starting work with Nuttings in 1924. His first job for Nuttings was shoveling snow at the Nutting home. Later he worked on the outside crew for Nuttings before moving inside to the steel shop where he made floor trucks. He was later promoted to foreman in the steel department in 1940.

He used his metalworking skills to make much of the chancel furnishings for Peace Lutheran Church in Faribault. The hammered wrought iron communion rail, pulpit, credence table, baptismal font and hymn boards are all examples of his handiwork.

Perhaps he was better known for his garden where, in addition to a variety of vegetables, he had planted a large number of flowers to add color to the neighborhood. Many can remember his famous turtle soup cooked over an outdoor fire with a variety of vegetables from the garden!

Shorty met Louise "Red" Kops at the old National Guard Armory on Central Avenue in Faribault during a roller skating party. Shorty noticed Red (who didn't skate) and stopped to talk to her. They started dating and were married in 1929. After their marriage, they stayed with Pat and Alma Kenow for a while before buying their first house at 1728 2nd St. S.W. In 1941, they purchased a home at 1132 N.W. 7th St.

Louise Kops was the daughter of Theodore and Marie Dubeau Kops. She was born in North Dakota and moved to Redcliffe Canada while still a young girl. She told of picking up "Buffalo Chips" to be used for fuel in the family stove. After her father died in 1920, the family moved back to Faribault.

Before her marriage to Shorty, she had worked at the Seabury Divinity School and for the Headmaster at Shattuck. Many of us will remember her cooking skills and the divinity candy she made at Christmas time was an indescribable treat! Her interest in keeping up with family caused her to keep many obituary notices and other announcements and save them as a kind of family history.

They celebrated their Golden Anniversary in 1979. Louise died in 1981. Harold died in 1995.

This story also appears in the Kenow Family Album, compiled and prepared by Harold and Louise's oldest son - Harold.

Last modified on 2010/9/23 by skenow

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