Laura (Jordan) Goff Turns 92 (Leora’s mother)

“One of Guthrie Center’s ‘young’ residents observed her 92nd birthday Wednesday [September 28, 1960], and many friends and neighbors called to extend congratulations, and many more unable to drop by or phone, sent cards.

“The celebrant was Mrs. Laura Goff, who has been a resident of this community for the past thirteen years. However she has been a Guthrie countian for many years of her lifetime.

“Beginning with her birth in a log cabin on a farm near Monteith, she grew up in that area and attended the schools in the county. After her marriage she resided in Nebraska for four years, and in Minnesota for two years, returning to Iowa and Guthrie county to again make her home. Mr. Goff died in 1930 and Mrs. Goff then resided in Omaha for 13 years, before returning to Guthrie Center to again take up her residency.

“Mrs. Goff has nine living children, and there are 12 grandchildren and 18 great grandchildren.

“Mrs. Goff feels a necessity to ‘keep on the go’ so that she will not get old with her years. She does the dishes each day for she [sic] and her daughter, Mrs. Leora Wilson, with whom she resides. She also takes complete care of her room, does cleaning and dusting in the home and goes for rides, and visits to the homes of her other children. As recent as two years ago Mrs. Goff accompanied her daughter, Mrs. Wilson to the west coast by plane to visit relatives.

“Daily papers are read by Mrs. Goff, as well as the local newspapers, and other magazines and literature which keeps her mind abreast of the activities of the community and world. She also hears well, and daily enjoys some television programs.

“Sunday, Merle [sic] Goff and daughter Phyllis, also Mr. and Mrs. Willis Goff and Mrs. Shirley McSharry and two children of Omaha joined Mrs. Goff for a birthday celebration in advance of the date.

“On Wednesday, grandchildren from Dexter and Earlham came to bestow regards to one of Guthrie Center’s grand ‘young, old ladies’.”

The Guthrie Center Times, September 29, 1960

Three of Laura Goff’s children lived in southern California: Wayne Goff, Ruby (Goff) Blockley, and Willis Goff.

Those daily TV programs were mostly “soap stories,” which were only 15 minutes at first, then grew to half an hour. The great grandchildren from Dexter were Joy and Gloria Neal. Those from Earlham were Richard, Robert, Dennis, and David Scar, the sons of Darlene.

Great Grandmother Goff lived until late 1962, when I was a freshman in college. How I wish I’d asked her about her growing up years!


  1. How fortunate for you to know her into your adult years! Both my great-grandmothers died before I was born. I only met one great-grandfather briefly when I was five.

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