John Levi (Levy) STRITE

John Levi (Levy) STRITE

Male 1898 - 1991  (92 years)

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  • Name John Levi (Levy) STRITE  [1
    Born 27 Oct 1898  Tama, IA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Census 1900  Tama, IA Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    • Age 1, living with parents, George and Lue Strite, siblings, Gladys and Velma; also Catherine Coffits, John Coffits, George O. Coffits, Genevieve Coffits and a servant, Carrie M. Cook.
    Census 1905  Tama, IA Find all individuals with events at this location  [3
    Residence 1918  Minneapolis, MN Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    • 2716 Hennepin Ave.
    Census 1920  Minneapolis, MN Find all individuals with events at this location  [4
    • Age 21, living with George, Lue and Velma.
    Census 1930  Minneapolis, MN Find all individuals with events at this location  [5, 6
    • Age 31, living with mother, Lue, 59, at 4936 10th Ave. South
    Residence 1934  Minneapolis, MN Find all individuals with events at this location  [6
    • 4936 10th Ave. S.
    Census 1940  Minneapolis, MN Find all individuals with events at this location  [7
    • 4936 10th Ave. S.; living with mother, Lue
    Occupation Machinist; window decorator; 1918: Draftsman at Waterloo Bay Tractor Co. in Minneapolis; 1934: commercial artist  [1, 4, 5, 6
    Died 16 Feb 1991  Red Wing, MN Find all individuals with events at this location  [8, 9
    Buried 19 Feb 1991  Minneapolis, MN Find all individuals with events at this location  [10, 11
    • Lakeview Cemetery, Section 21 Lot 509 Grave 7
    Notes 
    • From the newsletter at Haven Home in Red Wing MN:
      "John Strite has been a resident of Haven Homes since 1971. Before coming to Red Wing, John lived in Wisconsin, Minneapolis and Tama, IA, his hometown.
      "John was born on Oct. 27, 1898. His father worked in a mill that made egg cartons while his mother tended her home, John, and his two sisters.
      “As a 3-year-old, John and his family moved to Stevens Street in Minneapolis. He attended Calhoun Grade School where he was considered a very intelligent boy, especially in history. Much of his knowledge was learned on his own in the many books that he read in his spare time. John remembers racing home from school from a gang of boys on his roller skates. The gang was always looking for some individual to prey upon. John worked at a factory that made pulleys when he was in eighth grade. He worked there until he was 21. John did not get to finish his education due to a fall and the loss of his memory when he was in the ninth grade.
      "John's uncle, Charles Strite, received a patent on a toaster for restaurant use. With financial backing from John's father, the toaster sold well and later the Strite family received royalties from the sales. When John's family moved to Wisconsin, John went to work in the factory that made the toasters. At first, he wasn't accepted because of being a relative of the "boss" but his fast, efficient work was appreciated and he was soon accepted by fellow workers.
      "When John's mother was injured in a car accident, he stayed home to care for her. After her death, John worked at various machinist jobs. He tried some inventing, also. An idea that he had, making windows that would self-close when it rained, was eventually bought and used on t he ships of the Hamburg American Boat Co. for use in the ventilation windows for the cargo. He also had an idea for a system for keeping boats upright during storm or strong winds, but hadn't the money to pursue the patent.
      "John has enjoyed canoeing, ice skating, rollerskating, watching television and reading. His main enjoyment now is walking. He will walk three to four miles each day during the summer. On those walks, he still thinks of all the ideas for inventions he has floating around in his mind and how it would be wonderful to get patents for them all."
    Person ID I75  Tree1
    Last Modified 26 Dec 2014 

    Father George Trevor STRITE,   b. 25 Feb 1869, Anamosa, IA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 27 Dec 1928, Rochester, MN Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 59 years) 
    Mother Louise (Lue) Catherine COFFITS,   b. 19 Jun 1870, Central City, IA Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 3 Jul 1941, Minneapolis, MN Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 71 years) 
    Married 29 Nov 1894  Cedar Rapids, IA Find all individuals with events at this location  [12, 13, 14
    Photos
    Louise Coffits
    Louise Coffits
    Louise Coffits holding Franklin James Grist Jr., with Virginia Grist at her side.
    George Trevor Strite and Louise Coffits, house at 4936 10th Ave. South in Minneapolis
    George Trevor Strite and Louise Coffits, house at 4936 10th Ave. South in Minneapolis
    Louise Coffits, Gladys Strite and John Strite
    Louise Coffits, Gladys Strite and John Strite
    Remembrance from Virginia Grist:

    This the front door of my grandmother Lue's house [Louise Coffits], which George bought for her. He must have died soon after that. And that is John Strite, mother's brother, who always lived there with her. He was very quiet, and had a canoe and exercised a lot!

    This is 4936 10th Ave. South, and a very nice house. It had a cool basement with a pool table in it. When it was very hot, we ate meals in a makeshift kitchen there. There was a garage in back with a flat roof, where we went to watch shooting stars! Fun!

    When in Minneapolis, we always had Sunday dinner there with Aunt Mae [Mary Leona Coffits] and Uncle Will Dunn, a barber. Aunt Mae was very sweet to us. their daughter Ethel [Dunn], who I adored, was maybe 10 years older than me. June [Flemming] and Doris [Flemming] and I played with handmade quilts that we were allowed to make into houses. The grown-ups ate in the dining room with the pink crystal and good china. We kids ate in the nice kitchen.
    4936 10th Ave. South in Minneapolis
    4936 10th Ave. South in Minneapolis
    Home of Louise Coffits and George Strite;

    Google map below shows how the house looked in 2010.


    View Larger Map
    Histories
    Letter from Gladys, Nov. 7, 1918
    Letter from Gladys, Nov. 7, 1918
    From the days just before Armistice Day.
    Family ID F35  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Photos
    John Levi Strite
    John Levi Strite
    Velma, John and Gladys Strite
    Velma, John and Gladys Strite
    On Lake Harriet, Minneapolis, MN
    Louise Coffits, Gladys Strite and John Strite
    Louise Coffits, Gladys Strite and John Strite
    Remembrance from Virginia Grist:

    This the front door of my grandmother Lue's house [Louise Coffits], which George bought for her. He must have died soon after that. And that is John Strite, mother's brother, who always lived there with her. He was very quiet, and had a canoe and exercised a lot!

    This is 4936 10th Ave. South, and a very nice house. It had a cool basement with a pool table in it. When it was very hot, we ate meals in a makeshift kitchen there. There was a garage in back with a flat roof, where we went to watch shooting stars! Fun!

    When in Minneapolis, we always had Sunday dinner there with Aunt Mae [Mary Leona Coffits] and Uncle Will Dunn, a barber. Aunt Mae was very sweet to us. their daughter Ethel [Dunn], who I adored, was maybe 10 years older than me. June [Flemming] and Doris [Flemming] and I played with handmade quilts that we were allowed to make into houses. The grown-ups ate in the dining room with the pink crystal and good china. We kids ate in the nice kitchen.
    John Strite and Louise Coffits
    John Strite and Louise Coffits
    At 4936 10th Ave. South in Minneapolis
    Louise Coffits and John Strite
    Louise Coffits and John Strite
    At 4936 10th Ave. South in Minneapolis
    John Strite
    John Strite
    At 4936 10th Ave. South in Minneapolis
    John Strite and Gladys Strite
    John Strite and Gladys Strite
    John Strite, Gladys Strite, and Ethel Dunn
    John Strite, Gladys Strite, and Ethel Dunn
    Virginia Grist:
    Probably near the retirement home where John lived the last years of his life.

    Ethel was a retired librarian in the same area and looked in on him sometimes.

    I do remember helping clean out John's apartment. This must have been in the '70s. Much junk: old clothes, no books, but a stack of his pastel drawings, large and on newsprint. Probably made in the '20s. Fragile. They interested me. His technique was excellent. He must have been self-taught, He was always a loner and kind of strange. Often the pastels featured moonlight scenes, most of them dark, mystical landscapes. Never any people in them. I doubt that anyone ever saw them! I still have some, thinking I would show them to an art teacher. I also have a box of his big soft pastels. Hard to use because they are so fat. I should give them to the art teacher!

    Mother always sent him birthday cards and post cards. And, yes, she felt responsible. There is a picture of him: erect, solemn. I do remember some letters from the Haven Home about him and his daily walks. But I doubt he made any friends. So sad. It was fortunate that Mother found a place for him. And it was good that she knew he was cared for, and that Ethel went to see him some.

    Ethel was a darling, and I last saw her at the 1973 family reunion at the lake. She was well and so enjoyed being with family
    John Strite
    John Strite
    Gladys Strite:

    Baking doughnuts
    John Strite, 80, and Linus
    at New Haven Home

    Fall of 1978
    Red Wing, Minn.
    John Strite
    John Strite
    At Haven Home in Red Wing, MN
    John Levi Strite and Ethel Dunn (on the right). The woman in back is unknown.
    John Levi Strite and Ethel Dunn (on the right). The woman in back is unknown.

    Histories
    Article from the Haven Home Newsletter, Red Wing, MN
    Article from the Haven Home Newsletter, Red Wing, MN
    Gladys Strite
    Gladys Strite
    Memories of Tama, her brother John, Ethel Dunn and the Strites
    At least one living or private individual is linked to this item - Details withheld.
    Reminiscence from Gladys Strite about 1930
    Reminiscence from Gladys Strite about 1930

    Recordings
    The Story of Virginia Grist's Birth (10 minutes)
    The Story of Virginia Grist's Birth (10 minutes)

    Gladys Strite tells the story of Virginia Ann Grist's birth in 1921. Interview took place at her apartment in San Francisco on 22 July 1988. On hand were Melissa Gray, Grace Louise Grist and Virginia Ann Grist.



    • Friend Trix Watson has her daughter, Margene, about the same time.

    • Franklin: "Ma, it's a girl, but I don't care."


  • Sources 
    1. [S21] World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918.

    2. [S37] 1900 U.S. Federal Census.

    3. [S75] Iowa, State Census Collection, 1836-1925.

    4. [S22] 1920 U.S. Federal Census.

    5. [S19] 1930 U.S. Federal Census.

    6. [S90] U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.

    7. [S175] 1940 U.S. Federal Census.

    8. [S9] Social Security Death Index.

    9. [S31] Minnesota Death Index, 1908-2002.

    10. [S210] Susan LaVelle.

    11. [S179] .

    12. [S4] (Self-published, J. Hart Rosdail, Chicago, IL (June 30, 1937)).

    13. [S159] Iowa Marriages, 1809-1992.

    14. [S245] Iowa, Select Marriages, 1809-1992.


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