from "Dadda" by Alexander Lee
After Mormor passed on, Dadda looked for a housekeeper. He finally engaged a Mrs. Stubberud – we called her ‘Stubby.’ [KMC note: She was actually Mormor's niece, the daughter of her sister Olava and a widow, Stubberud was the name of her farm. ]

   Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners were not the same, but the family still gathered to be with Dadda. She would serve meatballs with jello desserts. It was never the same. She was a strong Norwegian woman, who did a good job of cleaning and straightening up.

[ed. note - most of the following is probably incorrect and surely colored by family resentment. According to relatives in Norway she did not return to them a wealthy woman. I will try to get a copy of the will.

   She had been there about a year when she began telling Dadda that the neighbors were talking, since she was an unmarried woman living with a widower, in the same house.

   She kept at him until to have some peace, he married her.

   She must have felt that she had it made, after that. But she was never very popular, although we were all very polite to her.

   Dadda had been lending money to many people wanting a home for themselves. He took second mortgages with a good interest rate. He felt that he was helping people while at the same time making a good investment. But after the 1929-30 great depression the second mortgages soon became worthless. But he was still well-off. He passed on in 1931.

   Stubby was with us when the lawyers read his will. She had been left $75,000, and immediately remarked, "Is that all I get?" The family was shocked. It turned out that there was very little else, except some properties, and the second mortgages.

   Stubby went back to Norway, a wealthy woman, shortly after that.

The following is a rebuttal of the above description of Anna Stubberud sent by her great-nephew. Also note that Anna, the mother of Maren Lee and her daughter Olava are listed as living at the farm Stubberud with Anna "Stubby" in 1901 according to the local history book:

"Stubby" was my father's aunt. My father was christened Henry to honour Mr.H.Lee. I am well past 80 and I grew up with Aunt Anna living on the upper floor of my parents' little country house. She rented two tiny rooms. No bathroom. She lived there for many years. The last years of her life she lived in Mjoendalen, a small town west of Drammen. Also in Mjoendalen she rented two tiny rooms. I knew Aunt Anna until she passed away. She was dear to us.

With $75,000 Aunt Anna would have been a very very wealthy woman in Norway. I do question this information. I knew her from when she returned from N.Y. until she died and I never noticed any sign of wealth. On the contrary, once a month she would pick up her little pension and she would survive on that little money. Never bought new clothes, never traveled.

Mr.H. Lee met Aunt Anna during one of his several visits to Norway. I do not know if she was married then. I do know her husband passed away and having no children she became the sole heir of a nice farm. My father told me that H.Lee worked very hard trying to convince Aunt Anna that she should come to N.Y.

She must have sold the farm before leaving for N.Y., so she did not come empty-handed to the Lee family. I am sure Mr. Lee invested the money wisely. Coming back to Norway she had no farm, and to my knowledge, no money.

I remember Aunt Anna as a very religious woman. She was softspoken. She never uttered one critical word about any one of the Lee family, or any one else for that matter. She never said so, but I am pretty sure her years in N.Y. were unhappy ones.

When Anna died, she left little behind. Her wedding ring, a tiny wristwatch (not working) in white gold. No money. Not enough to have her buried. Her little belongings were sold at an auction to to pay for her burial . She left me her Bible.

Please understand that some of my "information" is second hand, mostly from my father. I was not born or I was very young when parts of this drama unfolded.

- Kjell Stubberud, Dec 2011

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