ESTHER LENORE HINCHMAN, 108, of Berkeley Springs, WV, formerly of Davin, WV, died at home Nov. 20. Born Esther Johnson on Dec. 31, 1914 in Pike County, KY to Garfield Johnson and Cumi Tackett Johnson, she was the tenth of thirteen children. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband Woodrow Hinchman, her brothers Sam, Tom, Curt, Ireland, Joe, Neville, Basil, and Bert Johnson, and her sisters Elmina Dyer, Hattie Slack, Sarah Slack, and Edna Gray.
Esther graduated from Bloom Township High School in South Webster, Ohio in 1931, at the age of sixteen. On her nineteenth birthday, Dec. 31, 1932, she married Woodrow Hinchman, and they established their home on the Hinchman Farm near Davin. She lived in that home until the age of 102, when she moved to Berkeley Springs to live with her daughter’s family. Family was always paramount to Esther. The love and support she showed to her extended family, including many nieces and nephews, will live in our hearts forever.
Esther was a gardener and nature lover who held life memberships in both the state and national Garden Clubs. She was very knowledgeable about wildflowers, and served for many years as a leader at the WV State Wildflower Pilgrimage at Blackwater Falls State Park. She joined Hemlock Hills Garden Club in Man in 1963 and remained active in the club for over fifty years, serving seven two-year terms as club president. She served on the board of the state Garden Club and received many honors and awards for her work.
An insatiable curiosity about the world led Esther to be an avid reader and world traveler. She traveled extensively throughout the fifty states, plus Canada, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand.
Quilting was a passion for Esther. She made her first quilt, “Grandmother’s Flower Garden”, at the age of sixteen, and over her lifetime she created untold numbers of beautiful handcrafted quilts, many of them her original designs. Her quilts now decorate homes across America.
Esther is survived by her son Walter Ronald Hinchman of Prescott, AZ, and by her daughter Sharon Tebben, son-in-law Ron Tebben, and grandson Dirk Woodrow Tebben of Berkeley Springs, WV.
Visitation will be held at 11:00 AM on Saturday, Nov. 25, at D. W. Swick Funeral Home in South Webster, OH, followed by burial at Bloom Township Cemetery. Those wishing to honor Esther’s legacy of supporting environmental and horticultural education are invited to send memorial donations earmarked for the Esther Hinchman Scholarship Fund to:
West Virginia Garden Club, Inc.
c/o Martha Hilton, Pres.
202 Crowfield Circle
Lewisburg, WV 24901
Attn: Esther Hinchman Scholarship Fund