Reflections on the Life of Stanford Matchie
September 29,1922 – March 12, 2010
Johnnie Matchie was a beekeeper for over 70 years and was a past member of the IHPA. He used to also volunteer at the Iowa State Fair in the IHPA booth.
Thanks to Mark Tintjer for forwarding the obituary to get a greater appreciation for the life of Johnnie Matchie.
Stanford (Johnnie) Louis Matchie was born September 29, 1922 in Marshalltown to Frank Joseph and Edna Catherine (Dunn) Matchie.
He attended various country schools in the Marshalltown area and on December 8, 1944 joined the Army. Johnnie took basic training in Texas. He served on the Philippine Island and in Occupied Japan. He was discharged on November 26, 1946.
On June 12, 1949, Johnnie and Arlene Hazel Pickett were married in Zion Lutheran Church of Radcliffe. After their marriage the couple lived near Beaman, Ackley and then moved back to Arlene’s family home five miles south of Radcliffe. He farmed all of his life until retirement in 1987.
Johnnie and Arlene had four children: Stanford Jr., Sharon, Steven, and Larry. He was a member of Zion Lutheran Church, Radcliffe Legion, and past member and board member of the Hardin County Farm Bureau.
Johnnie was an avid fisherman and enjoyed all things out doors. Since a teenager he kept bees and was called to rescue swarms from around the county. He loved storytelling and one of his favorites was about his own birthday. Throughout his life, birthdays were celebrated on October 29th until age 65 he discovered that it was September 29th. So he celebrated two birthdays every year after that.
He is survived by his wife Arlene of Radcliffe, IA; one daughter Sharon and husband Clifton Erhardt of Gaston, OR; two sons Steven and wife Anita (Topp) of Radcliffe, IA, Larry and wife Vonda (Van Meeteren) of Roland, IA; six grandchildren Morgan and Jessica Erhardt, Brett and Katie Matchie, Sara and Chad Matchie; two great-grandchildren Aidan Yeazel-Matchie and Chloie Shaffer-Matchie; four half-sisters Rosemary Rakes of Marshalltown, Catherine Williams of Grant City, MO, Joyce Gatton of WI, and Yvonne Jensen of WI; one half-brother Edward Meech of Marshalltown, IA.
Johnnie was preceded in death by his mother, father, stepfather Ed Meech, one sister Miriam Anne Matchie (infancy), one brother Francis (Pete) Matchie, one half-brother Robert Matchie, three half-sisters Marjorie Borton, Mary Meech, and Eilene Schroeder, one son Stanford Jr., one granddaughter Erin Matchie.
Let us give thanks to God for the life and memory of Stanford (Johnnie) Matchie.
Beekeeper’s Record & Journal
The following was reprinted with the permission of the estate of Richard Taylor. The material is from the book, “Beekeeper’s Record & Journal”, text by Richard Taylor, and designed and illustrated by Cynthia Diamond. This book (among other items) was graciously donated to the youth scholarships’ during the 2009 IHPA annual meeting in October at the Best Western Regency Inn in Marshalltown. After the meeting, this book was not taken and is now the property of the Iowa Honey Producers Association, Historian. I have enjoyed reading it, and thought the membership would also. As stated by Kim Flottum, Editor of the Bee Culture; “We have a Gem”. Peggy Ennis, IHPA Historian
This is a month for relaxing, at least so far as apiary work is concerned. The work is feverish, but it falls to the bees, not the beekeeper. The supers are all on, and before the month is over the first comb honey will be harvested.
July is the month of the basswoods. They bloom about the first week of July, their pale greenish flowers largely concealed by the leaves that shelter them. People, with the exception of beekeepers, are largely unaware that they are blooming, but the bees certainly know. Sometimes bees will gather from basswoods even during a light shower, and the position of the blooms, under the protecting leaves, protects them from the rain which would otherwise wash the nectar away. But hot days are necessary for a really good flow from this, or indeed any other source. It can hardly be too warm for the bees, provided the hives themselves are not subjected to the stress of extreme heat. It is abundant sunshine that causes the nectar to flow. The same warmth increases the activity of the bees, so that sometimes, on a hot July day, your scale hive will show a gain of twenty pounds or more. It is no wonder that the supers, which a week ago were almost empty, are sometimes now suddenly full, and you look with rejoicing at comb after comb, filled to the edges and capped with unstained, snow-white wax. It is hard for a beekeeper not to be happy in July. The anxious days of watching for swarms are over, the supers are piled on the hives, and the bees increase your prosperity from hour to hour.
Richard Taylor was born 1919 and passed away October 30, 2003 in New York. He earned his PhD at Brown University and taught principally at Brown University, Columbia, and University of Rochester. He was an American Philosopher, renowned for his dry wit and his contributions to Metaphysics. Although it is well known he was a philosopher – he was far better known as a beekeeper. It is often said – “I have never met a beekeeper who has not heard of Richard Taylor”. He owned 300 hives and from 1970 produced mostly comb honey. His significant contributions to beekeeping are - authoring many books on beekeeping - among these are the two; “The comb Honey Book” and “The Joys of Beekeeping”, and regularly writing articles for bee journals. His near legendary honey stand at the roadside in front of his country home operated on the honor system, secured only by gentle solicitations to honesty posted on its walls.
To “bee” continued next month……