ANN AND CEDRIC LINDHOLM
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|Ann Bezanson was born in Minneapolis in January 1892. She was the fourth child, born after Pearl, Edith, and James. Five years later, sister Grace was born. Her parents, French-Canadians, married in Nova Scotia and then came to the U.S., and settled in Minneapolis. Her father was a mounted policeman for the Minneapolis Police Department, and later took on the job of private detective for several downtown department stores, including Powers.
All five children graduated from South High School in Minneapolis. After Pearl graduated and married, she got a job at Powers and later became a department head. She met a man, Cedric Lindholm, who worked in the shoe department. His father was an immigration agent for Sweden and the U.S. Cedric, who was born in Minneapolis and a graduate of West High School, had travelled with his parents and three siblings.
Pearl and Cedric became good friends, and he often visited the family. Ann said that Cedric was just crazy about Pearl. He asked Edith out to dances, but she later married another man. At the time, Ann was engaged to a Presbyterian minister, Arthur Noehren, who went as a medical missionary to the Persian Gulf. Ann went to Winona State Teacher's College, and wrote to him every day, as he did to her. When he was home for a visit, they decided to break off the engagement, and he later married a nurse.
Ann graduated from college after two years, with a teaching certificate. She started teaching at Hiawatha Elementary School in Minneapolis. During the next three summers, she supplemented her income with a variety of other jobs. She started taking evening classes at the U.of M. Cedric and Ann started going out dancing together. To Ann, he was fascinating, as he built marionettes, belonged to a magic club, and performed many of his tricks for her. But, when he asked her to marry him, she said that she wanted a man with more education and a better job. Cedric was now in love with Ann, so he found a new job, which was working with boys through Hennepin County. Judge Waite gave him a position as a probation officer, but he had to go to the U. of M. for classes. At the U., Cedric studied law, psychology, English, and drama and was an A student.
Ann now agreed to marry him, and the wedding was held at sister Grace's home. The ceremony was performed by Dr. Babcock of the Temple Baptist Church, and all the relatives were there.
Cedric and Ann moved into a lower duplex apartment, and she drove in her Model T Ford to Hiawatha School, where she would teach for 25 years. She began each morning with "Skippy", a girl marionette (made by Cedric), who talked to the children about their school work. She later gave Skippy to one of her students.
At the U., Cedric took over the English Class when the professor was gone. His interest in drama came from his mother, who was interested in the theater. When his mother was young in Sweden, his parents had a portable stage in the diningroom, and the family put on skits for fun. After classes at the U., Cedric was promoted to supervisor of Juvenile Court in Minneapolis, a job he held for 27 years.
In the fall of 1926, Cedric got the Park Board interested in running an ad in the paper on a puppet class he was starting. This was an extracurricular activity for adults. On the first evening, only three women showed up. One, Virginia Upson (later Houghtaling) was just a kid in high school. The class of four went ahead and built and operated several marionettes under Cedric's direction. He built a stage with two bridges. They performed the show, "Why the Chimes Rang", a couple times at Christmas. The class was then over, but Virginia remained friends with Cedric and Ann, who often visited the Upson family. They admired Virginia, who was so young, but dedicated to building marionettes, performing shows, and often pictured in the Minneapolis paper. Through Virginia and the Park Board, they soon met Irene Odegaard, Mildred Mitton, Bob Longfield, and Lem Williams. By the mid-thirties, about ten or so puppeteers had become friends and often met in each other's homes and workshops. Ann remembered soaking a lot of paper for the paper mache character marionettes that Cedric built. There was always talk about starting a puppet club.
Never having children of their own, they enjoyed helping raise his sister Ramola's two girls, Roberta and Hope. Times were so tough that Ramola and her husband could not afford living expenses. Ann and Cedric paid half their rent for seven years, high school expenses for the girls, college tuition, and many other expenses.
In 1937, they decided to build a house. They bought a lot on Park Lane, by Cedar Lake in Minneapolis, and had a colonial home designed by sister Grace's husband, who lived across the street. Grace had studied interior decorating, so she helped select the furnature and decorate the house. This project took about three years; meanwhile they lived in an inexpensive hotel in downtown Minneapolis, and came out to the site a couple times a week. Ann drove to work in their car, and Cedric went to work on the bus.
In 1939, the puppet group got together and started the Twin Cities Puppeteers Club. In 1940, Ann and Cedric moved into their new home, and he finished the basement and screened in the porch, with money he made from doing magic shows. They soon had the TCP Club over, and Cedric was Vice-President in the early 1940's.
Cedric ordered paper theaters by mail from England and France, and had a huge collection. He was very active as a wonderful magician.
After 25 years at Hiawatha School, Ann taught at Waite Park Elementary School for another 12 years.
In 1968, Cedric suffered a heart attack and was hospitalized. Ann wanted to take care of him at home, so she retired from teaching, which Cedric wanted her to do. He was bed-ridden and she took care of him for about a year. Always quite cheerful, he got the mail every morning in his wheelchair. His bed was in the living room, where he spent his time. Ann set up his little paper theaters all around the room, as they brought him happiness and contentment. Our TCP Club had our summer picnic at the Lindholm's in July of 1969. It was the day the first man walked on the moon, and they all took time out to watch it on television. Ann said that it was a privilege to take care of Cedric. Before he died on November 27, 1969, at the age of 82, his last words were, "I love you dear". Cedric was missed by friends and family. He had belonged to a number of organizations.
Ann continued living at 21 Park Lane. She started substitute teaching at Willard and then Grant Elementary schools, and then resigned six years later on Valentine's Day. She sold Cedric's paper theaters to a man from Chicago, who later displayed them in his bookstore.
Ann continued as a member of our TCP Club, and often had the group over to her house for meetings and summer picnics. She kept busy by volunteering for "Meals on Wheels", doing printing for posters, and getting around in her Buick.
Ann moved into the Retired Teacher's Residence in 1983, and enjoyed playing Bridge, Bingo, and attending events, there.
For three years, Ann paid for a Valentine party for everyone living at the Teacher's Residence. It was in remembrance of Cedric who always mailed Ann a Valentine. He said it was a special card, when it came in the mail.
Around 1998, Ann moved into the Ebenezer Home. She enjoyed visitors, and was very talkative and friendly to Diane Rains, Stu Janis, Paul Eide, and Karen Backes when they visited her in February 1999. In January 2000, a 108th Birthday Party was held for her at the Home. Paul Eide attended and took pictures for the TCP Website.
We have been fortunate to have had Cedric and Ann as members of our guild since it's beginning. So many lives were touched by their kindness and generosity.
Ann has said she feels so fortunate to have wonderful nieces and nephews who have taken her many places. Three of Cedric's marionettes are displayed in a cabinet at the home of a great nephew. Three great nephews and a great niece who are especially dear to her are Carl Witham, Robert Bezanson, Charles Lindholm, and Peggy Albertson.
Ann lived to be 110 years old. She passed away on April 19, 2002, having lived in three centuries.
She was a gracious and beautiful lady, whose positive outlook and love of life had to be much of the reason for her living so long.