Vigorous for her Age

Our sitter in this 1860s ambrotype photo is Mrs. Jemima P. (Goodfellow) Brittain. When she died in 1905, at the age of 93, she was the oldest woman in Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania.

Miss Jemima Goodfellow married Alem Brittain, a Methodist Reverend, in 1834. She was the mother of eight children.

Thanks to the detail oriented individual who penned the identification, we know the exact time and place where Jemima took her last breath. She died at her residence at 149 W. 1st Street in Bloomsburg at 9 p.m. on July 19th, 1905. And courtesy of a thorough local newspaper reporter we know that her death was attributed to a broken hip. Jemima sustained the fracture when she fell in her bedroom the past November.

Three years prior to that injury Jemima was said to be a “vigorous” woman for her age, with all her wits about her. During her lifetime she’d seen many inventions and discoveries, including steamships, railroads, the telegraph, and electricity.

Jemima was laid to rest in the Pine Grove Cemetery.

Sources:
Census records
Obituary from The Wilkes-Barre Record, Wilkes-Barre, PA ~ July 21, 1905
Wilkes-Barre Weekly Times, Wilkes-Barre, PA ~ February 1, 1902

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