'Grandma Bruns'

By dhowell - Posted on 03 January 2008

A woman born before the Civil War deserves a niche in Manchester's history. Mrs. Caroline Bruns came to the United States from Schalla, Germany. She was no prominent figure, no social belle. She married Lewis Bruns and had two sons. Her husband died in 1907 and, in 1920, she came to Manchester to live.

During her lifetime, which spanned more than a century (101 years), she knew nothing of the luxuries of life. She lived alone without "modern" conveniences and pumped water from a well, planted her garden and kept house well.

But she was "Grandma Bruns" to a community. Friends, neighbors and the children who skipped past enroute to school knew her for her unfailing warmth, good humor and for her music. She could be heard for hours of the day and evening playing her organ and singing German hymns. But they never heard her complain.

After she fell while adjusting a curtain in 1957 she was taken to a Nursing Home. Children of Emanuel Sunday School with teacher, Miss Amanda Leeman, came each year to help her celebrate her birthday with cake. This custom they started on her 90th birthday.