Part One of Four: Tribute to Jay Peterson (1920-1976), on the 40th Anniversary of her Passing, December 15, 2016 – Recent Examples of Her Legacy Being Acknowledged

Disclaimer: My references to the writings of others do not in any way imply that they share my views on this manner.  The opinions expressed here are my own and do not necessarily represent those of my family, friends or associates. 

Parts One to Four of This 40th Anniversary Series – Overview

It never ceases to amaze me that, even though my mother, Jay Peterson (1920-1976), has been gone 40 years as of December 15, 2016, her legacy lives on in numerous ways.  In the course of her relatively short life, she touched the lives of many, and continues to hold a place in the hearts of scores of people who knew her.

Jay Peterson, ca. late 1960s

Am dividing up this topic into four separate posts as follows:

• Part One of Four: Tribute to Jay Peterson (1920-1976), on the 40th Anniversary of Her Passing, December 15, 2016 – Recent Examples of Her Legacy Being Acknowledged

• Part Two of Four: Tribute to Jay Peterson (1920-1976), on the 40th Anniversary of Her Passing, December 15, 2016 – More Child-Rearing Information

• Part Three of Four: Tribute to Jay Peterson (1920-1976), on the 40th Anniversary of Her Passing, December 15, 2016 – Her Involvement With First-St. Andrew’s United Church

• Part Four of Four: Tribute to Jay Peterson (1920-1976), on the 40th Anniversary of Her Passing, December 15, 2016 – Her Involvement With Indigenous Issues, 1958-1976

Part One – A          Introduction

Jay Peterson, ca. 1945

Friend Colleen Thibaudeau (1925-2012) remembered mainly my mother’s “hands skillful and reaching out to us all/[S]he saw so clearly the picture that was intended and painted us all into it.”  Yes, indeed, my mother did such a good job of painting us all into it, that 40 years later, her intention is still getting recognition.
Part One – B            Recent Examples of Jay Peterson’s Legacy Being Acknowledged

In the last six months alone, there have been four instances of my mother’s initiatives being re-discovered or acknowledged.

Part One – B.1           My Mother’s Circa 1960’s Paintings of Children

In August 2016, my cousin John Tinker sent me (via my brother Stu Peterson) three of my mother’s circa 1960s paintings that had originally been on the wall of my father’s periodontal office at 281 Dufferin Avenue in London, Ontario, Canada.

When my father retired and cleared out his office in the late 1970s, he cut the paintings out of the wall and had them individually framed.  All the paintings depict children engaged in various activities.  They were likely inspired by my mother’s busy life raising four children.

I discuss the two I have had for some time in my May 11, 2013 post entitled “Jay Peterson (1920-1976) – Examples of Her Art, ca. 1939-1961.”  This post can be located by clicking on the “Jay Peterson” label in the right sidebar.

Out of the three I have recently acquired, I have chosen the one below–of the three girls holding hands–to share in this post because I think it is a concrete example of my mother painting us all into it.

Jay Peterson’s ca. 1960s painting of three girls

Part One – B.2           The Creation of the Apple Butter Marionettes at Leith, Ontario. Summer 1965

My brother, Stu Peterson, mailed me a family scrapbook, in August 2016, which contains photos and other memorabilia from the 1960s to 1970s.  In there, I found a Polaroid photo that my mother took, in August 1965, which showcases the creation of the Apple Butter marionettes at the Peterson summer residence in Leith, Ontario, Canada.  To see this photo, and to learn more about my mother’s connection with Apple Butter, go to the September 1, 2016 post, entitled “Apple Butter Off to the Western Fair Summer 1965.”

Below is a screenshot of my mother’s photo in the post. September 1, 2016 post screenshot

Part One – B.3           Museum London Acquired Second Baby Chair (“Peter Perch”)

Shortly after I received my brother Stu’s parcel in August 2016, I learned that a second version of my mother’s baby chair had been acquired, in June 2016, by Museum London, from Catherine McEwen,  In June 2005, Museum London acquired the first chair from Ed (Ted) Bartram.  The Museum has decided to keep both chairs because they have different characteristics.

For more information about the chair, please see the “Peter Perch” section of my May 4, 2012 “Jay Peterson (1920-1976)” post (click on the Jay Peterson label in the right sidebar to find it).  As explained in this post, the chair was initially called the “Babi-Sitter,” then the “Portable Baby Seat,” but most people who remember the chair refer to it as the “Peter Perch.”

Below is a 1958 photo of my brother, Don Peterson, in the baby chair, in the Peterson family kitchen at 283 Dufferin Avenue in London, Ontario.  (Our home was next door to my father’s office at 281 Dufferin–his office is mentioned in B.1 above).

Don Peterson in “Peter Perch,” 1958

The Service League of London sold the chair–in a $6 kit–from 1958 to 1967.  In 1966, the League made $3,000 on the sale of the chair alone.

Part One – B.4           Christmas Card Featuring My Mother’s Artwork in 2016 Ivey Family London Room Christmas Display

The fourth and final recent example is that my Christmas card, which features my mother’s circa 1950 artwork, will be on display in the Ivey Family London Room of the London Public Library during the 2016 Christmas season.

Since 2010, I have incorporated my mother’s artwork into Staples Copy and Print Christmas card templates, and have distributed them to family, friends and associates.  Consequently, this latest card is the seventh installment.

The 2016 artwork depicts my Aunt Lillian Fleming (1887-1982), who was the older sister of my maternal grandfather, John Stuart Fleming (1892-1989).  As you can see, the artwork is pasted to a piece of green cardboard, with a red bow adorning the top.  “Lillian” and “28” probably have something to do with the fact that it was a Christmas dinner place card setting.

Jay Peterson’s ca. 1950 Christmas artwork

In order for the drawing to fit into the template, I cropped out the backing and wording.  Below is a photo of Ivey Family London Room Library Assistant, Barb Scott, and I standing beside the display on Wednesday, November 30, 2016.

Leith Peterson and Barb Scott, London Room, November 30, 2016

And here is a photo of the card in the display.

Jay Peterson artwork in 2016 Chsitrmas card, London Room

For further information about the other six cards featuring my mother’s artwork, that were used from 2010 to 2015, click on the “Jay Peterson” label in the right sidebar and check out “Cards of the Season – The Art of Jay Peterson. . .” December 14, 2013, and “2014 and 2015 Additions to ‘Cards of the Season – the Art of Jay Peterson,'” April 11, 2016.


Peterson, L. (2006, May 27).  From party panache to practical.  London Free Press, p. F3.

Peterson, L. (2003, May 10).  Remembering Mom.  London Free Press, p. F3.