The headline on a Saginaw News article published at the time of her death noted: “Mrs. John W. (Ben) Symons, 73, for years prominent in women’s affairs here, died Sunday.” The article continues, “A lifelong Saginaw resident, the former Helen Church was born June 23, 1895.” She graduated from Ossining School in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., and from Vassar College. She was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and the first president of the Valley Vassar College Alumnae Club here.
Throughout her life she was active in Saginaw. She served as a president of the Children’s Home and was a member of St. John’s Episcopal Church. Mrs. Symons was active in the community and served as president of the Junior League. Before that time, the local organization was known as the Service club and became part of the Junior Leagues of America in February 1934.
Mrs. Helen Church Symons married Mr. John Walter Symons on April 29, 1920. They had 4 children John Church Symons (who died young), Helen Ann Symons deGeus, Josephine Symons Lee, and David Church Symons. Mr. John Walter Symons was the son to Samuel Eaton Symons of Symons Bros. & Co. of Saginaw, Michigan. While their son David went on to serve as president of the company, Helen Ann and Josephine opened "The Symons Girls General Store" where they specialized in fine wine, imported cheese, and various food item.
Ready to try out Mrs. Helen Church Symons' recipe!
What you will need:
2 1/2 c huckleberries or blueberries
Pastry for 2-pie crust
1/2 c sugar
6 green grapes
Line a deep pie pan with pie crust, fill with berries that are lightly dredged in flour, sprinkle with sugar and salt. Cut up grapes, then add (the grapes improve the flavor). Put on top crust and bake in a moderate oven for 45 to 55 minutes.
*I used blueberries in this pie with a recipe for the crust I got from my grandmother. I assumed that a moderate oven was 350° degrees and I baked the pie for the entire 55 minutes.
Deana Coleman, our staff associate, tests out weekly recipes from the cookbook Savoring Saginaw.
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