Bio: Ahlborn, Shirley Rowe
Contact: Loyal Public Library

----Source: Excerpt from "The Centennial History of the York Center United Methodist Church, 1880 - 1980..


Born in the early 30's to Milford and Irene Rowe, I attended the York Center Methodist Church from birth to 1951.

I remember the wonderful Sunday School class we had behind the old organ. We were taught by Mrs. Bertha Searles, who must have been a saint to put up with our jabbering and wiggling. She read a Bible story every week and always stopped in the exciting part so you just had to come back to see how it ended. We had two Sunday School programs a year, Children's Day in June and Christmas with songs, recitations and plays.

I also remember by Grandma Sadie playing every Sunday. When she'couldn't, my mother, Irene, would fill in and she is still playing.

Do you remember the beautiful bouquets of flowers brought most every Sunday by Susie Benedict, Rene Mortimer or Grandma Rowe, from their gardens? Sometimes in the cold, hard winters the roads weren't plowed or cars wouldn't start and Grandma and I would walk the l 1/2 miles to church on Sunday afternoon. (In the winter services were held in the afternoon.)

Two ministers made a deep impression in my life--Rev. Jewell who confirmed me in 1941, along with a large class, and Rev. Lee Holmes. During his stay we were in high school and had a large M.Y.F. group.

I attended Merry Vale School for eight years and graduated from Granton High School in 1950. 1 then went to Minoequa, in northern Wisconsin, to work at a resort owned by Lynn Rowe's father-in-law, and met my future husband, Gilbert Ahlborn. In the fall of 1951 we were married in the York Center Methodist Ch rch by Rev. Lee Holmes.

We have made our home in Minoequa ever since, Gilbert and Shirley Ahlbern with the exception of the years 1956-1959 when we moved to York Center while Gilbert worked in Marshfield. We lived in the Russell VandeBerg house (formerly the Alvin VandeBerg home where lots of quilting bees were held).

One son, Dennis, was born to us and he attended first grade at Happy Hollow (county farm) School. I taught a Sunday School class those three years we were there.

Dennis married Bonnie Carey from Oconto, Wisconsin in 1975, and they have one daughter, Jessica Lynn, born January 21, 1980.

So many good things have happened to me in my life, and I believe it all started from the good basic training experiences I had in the little old country church that my ancestors helped organize.

Just think of the many, many lives that have been touched by this little country church through one hundred years.



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