A 145-Year-Old Family Tradition Continues This Christmas - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

A 145-Year-Old Family Tradition Continues This Christmas

In 1868, an ancestor of the Forman family, named David Linsley, received only one present for Christmas when he was six-years-old: a small brass top. That gift has now been passed down five generations. In 1868, an ancestor of the Forman family, named David Linsley, received only one present for Christmas when he was six-years-old: a small brass top. That gift has now been passed down five generations.
DEER PARK, Wash. -

This Christmas a family in Deer Park will carry on a tradition for the 145th year. In 1868, an ancestor of the Forman family, named David Linsley, received only one present for Christmas when he was six-years-old: a small brass top. That gift has now been passed down five generations.

"It's got a few holes in it, so it makes noise when it spins and it sits in this little rack here," said family member Dan Forman.

It is a small item made of brass.

"The top itself is hollow," Dan said.

To anyone else it is just an old toy, but to the Forman family, it is a connection to the past.

"Just the idea of that's the top we spun and the family's been spinning it now for a hundred years," said 89-year-old Robert Forman, the man who spins the top each Christmas for the family.

"We realized this is extraordinary," said Robert's daughter Lucy Jeanne.

Christmas 1868, the top was the only present Lucy's great grandfather received. He could not have possibly known it would still mean so much, so many generations later.

"You feel this sense of responsibility because this little six-year-old boy started it, you know, 145 years ago and you can't be the one to break it," Lucy said.

Break it, they will not. The family now plans their holidays around spinning the top.

"Dad usually has been the one to spin it first, then sometimes after we fight over who gets to spin it next," Dan said.

While everyone takes turns pulling the string, and watching it spin, there is one thing Lucy wishes she could tell her great grandfather.

"I would love to be able to just sit down at a table with him and say, we did it, we kept it going," Lucy said. "And, to let my great grandfather know, I think we did a good job."

Now with five generations watching each Christmas Eve, the top spins and stops, but the tradition will continue.

There have only been two years that the top did not spin on Christmas Eve. Once when David Linsley and his family were moving to Minnesota and it was packed in one of their horse drawn wagons. The second was when the family went on a trip to Illinois and forgot to pack the top in their suitcase. The Forman Family will spin the top this Christmas at a family home in Deer Park with as many family members watching as possible.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Motorcyclist killed in crash on Sherman Pass

    Motorcyclist killed in crash on Sherman Pass

    Monday, July 16 2018 1:58 AM EDT2018-07-16 05:58:31 GMT

    SHERMAN PASS, Wash.- A 53-year-old man was killed Sunday after a crash involving a motorcycle and transit van. The crash happened on State Route 20, just before 6pm on Sunday, about 14 miles east of Republic.

    >>

    SHERMAN PASS, Wash.- A 53-year-old man was killed Sunday after a crash involving a motorcycle and transit van. The crash happened on State Route 20, just before 6pm on Sunday, about 14 miles east of Republic.

    >>
  • Firefighter mauled by pit bull at scene of house fire

    Firefighter mauled by pit bull at scene of house fire

    Sunday, July 15 2018 3:47 PM EDT2018-07-15 19:47:12 GMT

    SAN LEANDRO, Calif. (AP) - Authorities say a Northern California firefighter was mauled in the face by a pit bull after helping extinguish a house fire.    The East Bay Times reports Alameda County Fire Battalion Chief John Whiting received "extremely severe facial damage" in the attack Saturday in San Leandro.    Division Chief Alan Evans says Whiting required extensive reconstructive surgery.

    >>

    SAN LEANDRO, Calif. (AP) - Authorities say a Northern California firefighter was mauled in the face by a pit bull after helping extinguish a house fire.    The East Bay Times reports Alameda County Fire Battalion Chief John Whiting received "extremely severe facial damage" in the attack Saturday in San Leandro.    Division Chief Alan Evans says Whiting required extensive reconstructive surgery.

    >>
  • 3 family members killed in southwest Washington crash

    3 family members killed in southwest Washington crash

    Sunday, July 15 2018 5:55 PM EDT2018-07-15 21:55:32 GMT

    KALAMA, Wash. (AP) - Authorities say a rollover crash on Interstate 5 in southwest Washington killed a child and two grandparents.    The Daily News reports that the crash happened Saturday afternoon when a northbound sport-utility vehicle struck a median near Kalama. The Washington State Patrol says it was driven by a woman transporting her parents and three children.

    >>

    KALAMA, Wash. (AP) - Authorities say a rollover crash on Interstate 5 in southwest Washington killed a child and two grandparents.    The Daily News reports that the crash happened Saturday afternoon when a northbound sport-utility vehicle struck a median near Kalama. The Washington State Patrol says it was driven by a woman transporting her parents and three children.

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • Streaker gets tackled by fan at Seattle Mariners Vs. Colorado Rockies Game

    Streaker gets tackled by fan at Seattle Mariners Vs. Colorado Rockies Game

    Monday, July 16 2018 10:21 AM EDT2018-07-16 14:21:36 GMT
    A fan in Colorado gets stopped in his tracks after streaking on the field during a major league baseball game.  It happening during Saturday night's Mariners and Rockies game in Denver, Colorado.  A man running away from security nearly escapes when he gets tackled by another fan as he runs up the stairs.  The man was then picked up off the ground and escorted out of the game.  As for the other fan, he continued to enjoy the rest of the baseball game.>>
    A fan in Colorado gets stopped in his tracks after streaking on the field during a major league baseball game.  It happening during Saturday night's Mariners and Rockies game in Denver, Colorado.  A man running away from security nearly escapes when he gets tackled by another fan as he runs up the stairs.  The man was then picked up off the ground and escorted out of the game.  As for the other fan, he continued to enjoy the rest of the baseball game.>>
  • Ithaca firefighters rescue raccoon that got head stuck in mayo jar

    Ithaca firefighters rescue raccoon that got head stuck in mayo jar

    Monday, July 16 2018 9:36 AM EDT2018-07-16 13:36:27 GMT

    ITHACA, N.Y. - Firefighters in upstate New York helped out a presumably hungry raccoon that got its head stuck inside a mayonnaise jar.    The Ithaca Fire Department says the raccoon was spotted in a tree during its recent predicament. The Ithaca Journal reports both city firefighters and a state Department of Environmental Conservation officer got the animal down. 

    >>

    ITHACA, N.Y. - Firefighters in upstate New York helped out a presumably hungry raccoon that got its head stuck inside a mayonnaise jar.    The Ithaca Fire Department says the raccoon was spotted in a tree during its recent predicament. The Ithaca Journal reports both city firefighters and a state Department of Environmental Conservation officer got the animal down. 

    >>
  • Prime time: A day of deals at Amazon, and at its rivals

    Prime time: A day of deals at Amazon, and at its rivals

    Monday, July 16 2018 8:29 AM EDT2018-07-16 12:29:16 GMT

    NEW YORK - Amazon is extending its annual "Prime Day" promotion to 36 hours this year and will try to lure more deal-seekers to the aisles of Whole Foods. Shoppers will have plenty of sales to choose from as other retailers offer promotions to try to take a share of the spending. Prime Day starts Monday afternoon. 

    >>

    NEW YORK - Amazon is extending its annual "Prime Day" promotion to 36 hours this year and will try to lure more deal-seekers to the aisles of Whole Foods. Shoppers will have plenty of sales to choose from as other retailers offer promotions to try to take a share of the spending. Prime Day starts Monday afternoon. 

    >>