Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Clara Alida (Coppersmith) Gresham (1908-1996)

Clara Alida Gresham

Clara Alida Gresham died March 20 in Aptos after an illness.

A Saratoga resident from 1948 to 1971, she and her husband were co-owners of Hakone Gardens before selling it to the city in 1965.

She was very active in the Saratoga Federated Church, serving on many committees including the board of directors. She was also a member of the Saratoga Foothill Club.

She is survived by her daughter, Darlene Harms of San Mateo; three sons, Eldon Gresham of Santa Clara, Ronald Gresham of Penryn, and Lowell Gresham of Prunedale; and 15 grandchildren and 18 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by a son, Conrad Gresham.

A celebration of life and a gathering of family and friends will be held April 27 at 11 a.m. at the Saratoga Community Center.

Contributions can be made to the Second Harvest Food Bank or a preferred charity.

This article appeared in the Saratoga News, April 24, 1996.

Charlotte Cunningham Finkel (1912-1996)

Charlotte Cunningham

Charlotte Cunningham, 83, member of an early-day Saratoga family, died Jan. 17 of complications from a hip injury suffered when she fell on the ice at her home in Southbury, Conn.

Cunningham, who took her maiden name in 1979 after the death of her husband, J. Manfred Finkel, was the daughter of Charles and Eva Cunningham, whose families came to Saratoga in the late 1800s. Eva Cunningham's father, J.M. Lipscombe, maintained an orchard at the present site of Saratoga High School. Charles Cunningham's father, E.M. Cunningham, had an orchard on Saratoga Ave.

Charlotte Cunningham attended Saratoga Grammar School and graduated from Los Gatos High School in 1930 because there was no high school in Saratoga. After she left Saratoga in the early 1930s to live in the East, she maintained close ties with Saratoga and was a frequent visitor here.

She had an abiding interest in local history and assisted her aunt, the late Florence Cunningham, in compiling material for the book Saratoga's First Hundred Years. She maintained her membership in the Saratoga Historical Foundation and was instrumental in establishing local historical societies when she lived in New York State.

She is survived by a stepson, Jack Taylor of New York City, and by several cousins.

A memorial service will be scheduled later at Saratoga Federated Church, followed by inurnment at Madronia Cemetery.
(Saratoga News 1-31-1996)

Virginia Wassum (c 1899 - 1997)

Virginia Wassum

Former Los Gatan Virginia Wassum died Oct. 16 in a Santa Cruz convalescent hospital. She was 98.

Born in Charleston, W. Va., she moved to the Santa Cruz area from Los Gatos following the 1989 death of her husband, Kemp. She was preceded in death by her son, William Hicks, a U.S. Air Force pilot who was killed during World War II. She was also predeceased by her brother and sister, Daniel Burns and Helen VanArsdale. She is survived by many nieces and nephews.

Memorial services have been held, with interment at Madronia Cemetery, Saratoga.

This article appeared in the Los Gatos Weekly-Times, October 29, 1997.