1919 — 2013
Matie Jamison Barker was born in Milton, Calaveras County, Calif., in July 1919, the last of five daughters of Rev. Joseph and Rose Jamison. The family lived in various places in Northern California until moving to Placerville when Matie was 13. She loved school and enjoyed singing with her sisters from an early age. She loved to play the cello, piano and accordion.
Matie graduated from El Dorado County High School in three years (1936) and started working as a bookkeeper at Cal-Door in Diamond Springs. She married Stan Barker in 1939 and raised two children, Alma and Joe. She was active in the Girl Scouts and PTA. During the 1950s and early 1960s she loved working at the Mountain Democrat, which was owned by Clarence Barker, Stan’s father. She started the column, “Heard Over the Back Fence,” wrote news and worked as a receptionist. She enjoyed having parties for family, friends and community organizations at her home in Placerville.
After the Mountain Democrat was sold in 1964 Matie and Stan moved to Sparks, Nev., where they published the Sparks Tribune for several years. Matie was an active member of the Soroptimist Club, serving as President in both Placerville and Sparks, and became the Regional Governor in the late 1960s. She moved back to Placerville in the early 1970s and worked at various jobs, including bookkeeper/accountant at Florence’s on Main Street. Later, she worked as caregiver for a few elderly parents of friends.
To the end of her life, Matie enjoyed flowers, good food, visits and phone calls from family and friends and her home and back yard in Placerville. She was loved and cherished by family, friends and caregivers. She is remembered fondly by her daughter, Alma; son-in-law, Pete; grandsons, Liam and John; granddaughter, Kate; four lively great-grandchildren, Kalani, Kai, Liana and Keenan; and several nieces, nephews, in-laws and other extended family and close friends.