Lilia (Stephansson) Seifried




Life and Work

Lilia (Lilly Stephansson) Seifried, (1913-2001) granddaughter of the poet, Stephan G. Stephansson, was born February 13, 1913, and lived most of her life in the Markerville District. For many years she and her husband were caretakers of the Christinnson and Tindastoll Cemeteries. Known for her generosity, hard work and keen sense of humour, Lilly enjoyed playing cards with neighbours and held membership in the Markerville Good Neighbour Club, Vonin Icelandic Ladies' Aid Society, the Golden West Drop-in and Stephan G. Stephansson Icelandic Society.

Lilly's first language was Icelandic. During her school days at Hola, she helped local Icelandic children learn to speak English. After school, she spent many happy hours with her grandmother, Helga Stephansson, helping with gardening, baking and washing. In 1938, Lilly married August Seifried and was devoted to the animals on their small farm. On cold winter days she would have a pot of water steaming on the kitchen stove so the pigs would have warm water to drink. Especially dear to Lilly was her saddle horse, Glory, which she purchased herself, along with a bridle and genuine Icelandic saddle.



Although Aunt Lilly never had electricity in her modest farmhouse, it was a home well cared for. The floor was so spotless you could eat off it. I will never forget her meringue drop cookies (the kind that melt in your mouth - no chewing required!) and those delicious little star-shaped rosette cookies she made for special occasions. Whenever I see those cookies now, I still think of my Aunt Lilly who introduced me to them over 50 years ago.

As well as Aunt Lilly's food, a spirited conversation was something to anticipate in a visit to her home. After spending time with her, I always came away shaking my head in amazement at her vitality, her wit and her willingness to debate just about any topic imaginable. Just like her generosity, Aunt Lilly never lacked an interesting opinion or story to share with visitors.

- Lilly's nephew, Stewart Stephansson


  • Research and Writing: Annette Gray

  • Contributor: Stephan G. Stephansson Icelandic Society