Mary Jane Kettenbach

Lewiston Morning Tribune
Wednesday, February 8, 1939

Mrs. Kettenbach Taken By Death

Prominent Idaho Matron Active In Social And Church Work Is Called

Mary Jane Kettenbach, widow of the late William F. Kettenbach who died Jan. 5, 1938, mother of Mrs. E. V. Lorenz, Mrs. Sam Skillern and Mrs. Dryden Eberhardt, who for more than three decades has taken an active part in the musical, social and cultural life of Lewiston, died at 9:30 last night. Mrs. Kettenbach succumbed from a chronic ailment from which she had been suffering for the last four years. The body is at the Brower-Wann mortuary with funeral arrangements pending.

Before Mrs. Kettenbach was born, her parents, Daniel Marion White and Elizabeth Ruddy White, located on the Snake river in 1871 at what is now the station of Wilma, Wash. Her father was a pioneer riverman and livestock operator.

Born At Wilma

Mary Jane White was born in 1877 at the site of what was to be later called Wilma. The name of the village was later affixed by Frederick Finch, general manager of the Union Pacific railroad, by combining portions of the names of "William" and "Mary," following the marriage of William F. Kettenbach and Mary Jane White.

Mrs. Kettenbach spent practically all her life in Lewiston and the tributary territory except for occasional vacations abroad or on the continent. She was graduated from Lewiston high school in the class of 1895 when Carl A. Foresman was principal. On Oct. 17, 1895 she was married to Mr. Kettenbach.

She was a charter member of the Tsceminicum club and served successfully as president in 1910-11. During early cultural years in Lewiston she was intimately associated with the Cecilian club, a pioneer musical organization, and for years she sang in the Episcopal choir and later became the choir leader. Her charming voice, her poise, beauty and charm endeared her to associates.

Active In Church Work

She was one of the first presidents of the Episcopal guild where her willingness to serve faithfully and efficiently was demonstrated in her generosity in charitable enterprises.

She became affiliated with the Christian Science church in 1918 and was a member of the First Church of Christ, Scientist, Boston - the mother church - as well as the Lewiston church, where she was an earnest worker.

During the '90s and in the early 1900's the former Kettenbach home on east Main street was the center of social activities and around the hospitality of that home revolved Lewiston's society.

Mrs. Kettenbach is survived by her mother, Mrs. M. D. White, and a brother, William White, Lewiston; three daughters and eight grandchildren. The daughters are Eliza LeRoi Skillern and Sally Mary Lorenz, Lewiston and Wilhelmina Eberhardt, Willmette, Ills.

The grandchildren are Sally Ann, Cora Jean and Samuel Skillern, Jr., Elizabeth, Constance and Ann Lorenz; William Dryden and Eloise Eberhardt.

Contributed by Natalie Huntley

Return to Obituary Index

Return to the main Nez Perce Co., ID index page

Last updated Tuesday, 16-Aug-2016 10:52:17 MDT