Elaine and Jerry Owen, owners of Lady Hill Winery near St. Paul, have been going through family papers in their farmhouse, from which Jerry’s family has worked the land since the 1850s.

Early this year, the Owens ran across century-old letters penned by Jerry’s grandmother, Elfreida Zorn. She had written to relatives in Oregon City and mentioned sending them packages on the Willamette River ferry, including boxes of eggs, dinner rolls and pork chops.

For one note, the thrifty Elfreida wrote on the back of a 1914 Catholic Sentinel subscription sheet and contest entry form. The grand prize was a Maxwell touring automobile, which it seems went to someone else. One of the wines produced by the Owens is named after Elfreida. (Courtesy Elaine and Jerry Owen)