September 16, 1883 TO May 19, 1982
From the notes of Teresa Haldorson and Carol Healy:
Bessie Bertha Knauer was born September 16, 1883, in Pilz, Germany (Silezia), to Anna Barndt and Benno Knauer. When she emigrated to the United States she changed her last name to Kuner. Bessie's father died when she was about eight years old. He passed out while getting a drink out of a creek, and drown (Teresa Haldorson guessed that he may have had a heart attack). Bessie's mother went to Germany to work in a factory making drapes, and Bessie was raised by her grandmother on her farm in Pilz, Germany. Apparently, Bessie and her mother had a rather poor relationship. Bessie worked at a print shop in Berlin, Germany. The company put pictures onto calendars, many of which were exported to the United States.
Group photo of
employees of print
shop, Berlin, Germany
Bessie had one brother, Heinrich. Bessie and Heinrich attended Catholic Church and Catholic schools.
Bessie came to America in 1907, arriving in Boston, Massachusetts, moving on to Kansas City, and on to San Francisco. She was employed as a domestic servant in San Francisco, and spent two years in the Philippines with the family she worked for. She met Royal Wallace Healy enroute from Seattle to San Francisco. They were later married in a Baptist Church
in the Pioneer Square area of Seattle, on January 27th, 1915.
Donald Leo Healy was born on July 4th, 1916.
Shortly after their marriage, Bessie and Royal resided at the Heathmore Apartments, address unknown, and resided there through the Spring of 1916. They next lived in an apartment on Queen Anne Hill, Queen Anne Court, West Galer Street. This was in 1917. In 1918 they moved to an apartment at 602 N. 42nd Street, and later lived near Woodland Park, on Evanston. On December 2, 1918, they bought their first home on 20th NW, Richmond Beach (now Shoreline area), where Bessie started her own chicken farm. Because Royal was at sea so much of the time, a hazardous occupation, Bessie thought it prudent to provide for her family if Royal failed to return home. Her concern in this regard was quite justified as just months before, Royal had written her about his ship being torpedoed off the coast of England. On May 13th, 1920, Nadine Healy was born in the living room of this home. Both Nadine and Don were brought up in the Christian Science Church.
Bessie and Royal's last residence was 1139 North 76th Street, Seattle, just a couple of blocks from Green Lake.
Bessie enjoyed the symphony. In her quest for spiritual enlightenment, she was raised as a Catholic in Germany, became a Christian Scientist in early adulthood, and for the last forty years or more of her life was actively involved in the "I Am" movement. This movement believed that marriages should be platonic, which might explain the reduced membership at this time.