Learning from the past, living in the moment, and leaving footprints for the future. Stories of lov

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Sunday's Obituary - Lewis Gelbach

Lewis Gelbach was born at Bettlehausen, Westphalen, Prussia, Dec. 26, 1833; came to Duncannon, Ps., with his parents in 1846, latter in 1857, to Lancaster, Wisconsin.

October 7, 1860, he was united in marriage to Maria Sophia Napp. They lived in Lancaster until December 1869, when they moved to Hurricane, where his wife departed from this world January 24, 1900.

In February 1901 he again moved to Lancaster, where he died Saturday afternoon about five o'clock, June 26, 1909, at the age of 75 years, 6 months.

He left to mourn his departure six sons and three daughters: John C. of Grangeville, Idaho; Charles H. of Kooskia, Idaho; William L. of South Lancaster; George F. of Albany, Wisconsin; Mary E. at home; Nettie L. (Mrs Charles Dolphin), of South Lancaster; Fred N. of Houser, North Dakota; Ida L. (Mrs Samuel E. Kemper), of Lancaster; Warren A. of Mt. Vernon, Washington.

Also thirteen grandchildren, three brothers and one sister: George of Spokane, Washington; Charles and Daniel, and Mrs Elizabeth Baker of Duncannon, Pa.

Mr. Gelbach was a loving husband, kind father and as honest, true and good hearted a man as could be found anywhere.

Why should our tears in sorrow flow
When God recalls his own,
And bids them leave a world of woe
For an immortal crown?

Is not e'en death a gain to those
Whose life to God has given?

Gladly to earth their eyes to close
To open them in heaven.
His toils are past, his work is done,
And he is fully blest!
He fought the fight, the victory won,
Then entered into rest.

Then let our sorrows cease to flow,---
God has recalled his own;
But let our hearts, in every woe,
Still say, Thy will be done.

Mr. Gelbach was a member of the Odd Fellows Lodge of Lancaster. He also was a firm believer in the teaching of God, always attending church when his health permitted. Mr. Gelbach also enjoyed company and meeting his friends to the last.

The funeral was held Tuesday afternoon at the M. E. Church which was filled with sympathizing friends who gathered to pay their last respects to the departed one. Rev. J.T. Morgans delivered a touching sermon.

The remains were laid to rest by the side of his wife in the Hillside cemetery.

from a Lancaster, Wisconsin newspaper

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Thankful Thursday - The Wreck

I'm grateful that no one in my family was injured when this large truck crashed into my grandparents business and took the gas pumps out as well as the awning that covered them.  If my great grandfather, grandfather, grandmother was pumping gas, they would have been killed. It was also not uncommon for customers to be standing nearby or even children playing for the main house sat right next door.  I'm surprised that there was no fire or explosion.

They way it looked prior to being hit.
My mother is the little girl watching her grandfather pump gas.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Sunday's Obituary - An Honorable Man Dies

Russell Cardey
My 3rd Great Grandfather

Potosi, Wisconsin - Jan 29, 1894

Another name is entered in the record of immortal life-- another father, friend and fellow mortal has gone to his reward, where all tears are wiped away-- all sorrows cease and partings are no more.

On Friday night, the 26th, as the clock chimed the midnight hour, the spirit of Russell Cardey passed quietly to its maker; death printed on his placid features, the insignia of his pallid realm. From the warm precincts of the mortal-- became a dweller in that better land where the stars are dimmed with passing clouds-- where the moon withdraws her silver beams, and the sun
itself often hides its glories behind the dark clouds of adversity, the good old man passed away-- became a dweller in that better land where the stars never fade and whose glories are undimmed through endless years. Blissful transition from the cold, dreary pastimes of earth, to the radient, endless joys of eternal life.

The history of Mr. Cardey extends over a period of nearly seventy-seven
years. He was born at Palmyra, in Tioga County, NY, May 8, 1817. His
father was of Irish birth and his mother's family from Vermont, named
Stephenson. She died when Russell was only 17 months old, leaving him nearly
an orphan in the world. When a boy he lived mostly among strangers and
struggled for a living. He was married at Hamburg, Erie County, N.Y., August
8, 1842, to Miss Mercy Ann Hampton, aunt of George W. Hampton of Lancaster.
They lived happily together forty-four years; two children survive them.
George W. Cardey(-157) who resides on the old homestead where he was raised and
where mother and father now both lie buried, and Mrs. Philip Roesch who
lives in Potosi. Mrs. Cardey was a woman of much intelligence and many
excellent traits and her death which occured March 22, 1888, was sincerely
mourned by her family and friends.

The deceased first came to Wisconsin in 1839, where he labored for day
wages taking Mineral Point money for pay, which proved worthless. Getting a
log cabin in the Hurricane woods, he returned afterward to NY for his
esteemed wife who came cheerfully to pass her younger days in the wilderness of
Wisconson. They lived frugally, toiled industriously and were rewarded with a
pleasant home in which to spend the evening of life. He removed to his
present farm in 1850, building a comfortable stone house thereon and adorning
it with shrubbery, vines and fruit trees. His vines bore the largest berries
and his bushes the brightest flowers, in all the country side. It was a
pleasure and delight to go, on a bright autumnal day and there see standing in
all their exuberance of growth and bright array of foliage and flower, the
result of their tasteful industry; one could listen the while to the quiet,
intelligent conversation of those whose industrial hands and ideas of
refinement and pleasure, had made the prairie and the hills bloom as a garden;
and now, when long years of toil and approaching infirmities admonished them
the sun of their existence was decling, they could enjoy in ease, contentment
and pleasantness, their bright beautiful earthly home.

The husbandman has gone-- the hand that trailed the vine and planted the
lovely flowers is cold in death. May we not hope, in the paradise of God,
where they are transferred, they may find kindred employment, and congenial
tasks-- where faddess (sic) flowers and perennial fruits forever flourish
beneath the sweet dews of heaven and the smiling sun of righteousness.

To those who personally and well knew Russell Cardey, to dwell upon his
worth and speak of his many kindly traits of character, were a useless task.
His integrity, his constancy to truth, his sincerity of heart, his undeviating
adherance to the line of rectitude, in all his transactions with men, however
simple or unimportant, were proverbial and well known. No man ever received
wrong at his hands knowingly, and no man doubted his word once pledged. To do
right and live honestly and peacefuly with the world, were the aim and object
of his life. Thus, for over a half century, he dwelt among his neighbors
without strife or offense; and, now, in the fullness of his years and the
plentitude of his honors, peacefully and tranquilly, he has departed from the
scene of his labors. The memory of his long, useful life, his peaceful
character, his ernest and dilligent ways will survive the tomb and become a
sweet and enduring heritage to his family and friends.

Mr. Cardey was a member of the M.E. church with which he fellowshiped for
many years, he was more, he was a member of the human family, seeking truth,
virtue and holiness in the lowly walks of life, and by work, deed and example
striving to make the world better, lovelier, happier for his having lived.

The funeral took place Sunday from the family residence some five miles
northwest of Potosi. The services were conducted by Rev. Mr. Curtiss, of
Ellenboro, pastor of the United Bretheren Church. There was a large

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Treasure Chest Thursday - The Harbor City

My great grandfather. William Russell Roesch, Mayor of Eau Gallie, Florida and founder of the Eau Gallie Record newspaper, once said, " The writer has made his home here since 1883 with varied degrees of success in a financial way, but always looking forward to the time when Eau Gallie would become one of the foremost cities of the east coast". 

He was always promoting the area that he loved.  When he arrived here in November of 1883 he said of this place, "With a lavish hand nature has bestowed upon this little city many things that have been withheld from other less favored localities.  No place has a brighter prospect for the future".

In the early 1900's William put together this booklet, "Eau Gallie, The Harbor City", to describe all that the area had to offer.  It tells the story of Eau Gallie's accomplishments, history, fishing, transportation, boating & water sports, school & church's, graves, gardens and farms, It's location, health, conditions and surroundings, and it's future. The remainder of the book are old photographs of all the historic buildings in Eau Gallie, including Roesch's Highland cottages on Highland Avenue.

This booklet belonged to his daughter-in-law, my grandmother, Florence. She signed her name along the top. This treasure has been passed down to me.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Amanuensis Monday - Ever Been Broke

William standing in failed crop
By 1932, due to the terrible depression, many banks had closed their doors.  Money was difficult to come by and jobs were just not available.  The watermelon crop he grew to earn money by selling them dried up and turned to dust for there was no rain that summer. With no money, it was difficult to even buy food. His wife had wilted to 96 pounds and he became a stick of a man.

So my grandfather, William Phillip Roesch wrote this letter on December 10, 1932 in desperation to find work.

"Dear Colonel:"

     "In spite of the fact that for the first time in many long, lean years we of the Democratic faith are about to be allowed to come within smelling distance of the trough containing the dainty morsels known to the vulgar as federal jobs.  Along with about sixty per cent of our citizens I am getting ready to make a play for the postmastership at Eau Gallie, and am taking the liberty of using your name as a reference as to my political faith, general cussedness and disability.
     "Of course this is looking far into the future and anticipating what will happen, but when the time gets ripe I will certainly appreciate your support of my application.
     "I believe I spoke to you one time about a slight change we want made in Eau Gallie's charter at the 1933 session of legislature, but being so full of political warring at the time I have forgotten the conversation.  At present our City clerk is an elective office and a number of us believe that it should be made appointive.  Will it be necessary to advertise our intentions and if so how and for how long a time?
     "Thanking you for past favors and awaiting our reply concerning above,
I am,
Very truly yours,
W. Phil Roesch"

(1) Noah Butt replied on December 13, 1932

     "I have yours of the 10th and wish to advise you that it will be my pleasure to assist you, along the line mentioned in your letter, at the proper time.
     "When the time is right for such a move prepare for my signature such endorsement as you wish me to sign."

Two years later on Jan 21, 1934 my grandfather wrote Noah Butt once again.

"Dear Colonel:"

     "Referring to our correspondence of December 1932 concerning my application for the postmaster's job in Eau Gallie. 
     "The Civil Service Commission will hold an examination about February 5th to fill this position.  Should I be in the list of eligibles I will need your help.
     "P.S.  I have not forgotten the fact that I am indebted to you to the tune of a few dollars, but, colonel, have you ever been broke?  However, if the Lord or Mark Wilcox will smile on me maybe I can catch up again."
Very truly yours
W Phil Roesch"

Later that year Bill received a copy of a letter from Noah Butt that he had written to the (2) Honorable J. Mark Wilcox, M.C.  It Read:
      "The undersigned, being a qualified Democratic elector and a patron of Eau Gallie, Florida post office, respectfully recommend W. Phil Roesch to you as my choice of those eligible for the position of Postmaster of Eau Gallie and assure you any effort you may make toward securing such appointment for Mr. Roesch will be appreciated."

Ultimately, William was not appointed for the postmast position.

(l) Colonel Noah Butt, former speaker of the Florida House of Representatives and was chairman of the Canaveral Port Authority.

(2) Honorable James Mark Wilcox was a U.S. Representative from Florida.  He was graduated from the law department of Mercer University, Macon, Georgia in 1910 and admitted to the bar that same year.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Mystery Monday - Native American or White Man

William P Conant is my 5th great grandfather.  What I do know is that he was a soldier from Wareham, Massachusetts who served in the Revolutionary War. He was honorably discharged according to the records that I have.  It also appears that he had two names,   William Conant, the other Solsbury Hitchman.

I believe that William was a ative American, hence the difficulty finding his parentage. I believe this for a couple of reasons:

1)Conant Hill in Wareham was discovered to be a native ceremonial site. Records indicate it was owned by a William Conant.

(2) At the Fearing Tavern Museum a document was discovered stating William Conant's service in the revolutionary war as a "Salisbury/Solsbury Hitchman" , his pay of $20 and calling him a Native; the second paragraph states that he owned land that was sold to a Mr. Lothrop and he received pay for said land.

William Conant and Bethiah Lothrop married March 31, 1768 by Rev. Roland Thatcher in Wareham, Ma. I have them having a daughter Sarah Conant nine months later on Dec. 24, 1768 in Wareham, Ma.
It looks like he served (pvt) in Rufus Lincoln's company (John Brook's regiment), MA Continental Line, Wareham, MA.

(3)Footnote has Salisbury Hitchman applying for Revolutionary War Pension.

Could it be that William Conant's Native American name was Salisbury Hitchman?

It is somewhat of a mystery.  It is my understanding that he was born Solsbury Hitchman, an Indian.  However, it was not uncommon during this period that the Conant men were taking on a white mans name, so I am told. It would be exciting to discover that I have an American Native as an ancestor.

 If anyone can help in deciphering I would appreciate the help. 

His military records is as follows:
Hitchman, Solsbury (also given Solomon), Wareham. Private, Capt. Nathaniel Hammond's co.; enlisted July 17, 1775; service, 5 mos. 20 days; company stationed at Wareham and Rochester for defence of seacoast and was discharged Dec. 23, 1775; also, list of men mustered between May 7 and May 14, 1777, by James Hatch, Muster Master for Plymouth Co.; Col. Bradford's regt.; age, 20 yrs.; residence, Wareham; enlisted by Capt. Eddy; enlistment, 3 years; also, Corporal, Capt. Rufus Lincoln's co., Lieut. Col. John Brooks's (7th) regt.; muster rolls for Jan.-March, 1781, dated West Point; reported deserted Jan. 1, 1781; also, Private, same co. and regt.; muster roll for May, 1781, sworn to at West Point; also, muster rolls for Sept.-Nov., 1781; enlistment, during war; also, list of men entitled to $20 or 200 acres of land, agreeable to resolve of March 5, 1801; 14th Mass. regt.; residence, Wareham.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Workday Wednesday - Gold Rush

Thomas Warren Pierce, my paternal great grandfather was born January 17, 1842  in Rock Village, Middleboro, Massachusetts.  He ventured off to California with his friend Phillip, like many other young men, in search of their fortune during the gold rush.

 Like most, what he didn't find was gold. He did take note however, of how others were spending their hard earned cash. The men were purchasing picks, shovels, boots, pans and other supplies in their pursuit of finding very little.  Most lost the money they went west with, very few in comparison left being a rich man.

Thomas went home, became a door-to-door salesman for a time in the town of New Bedford saving his money.  It was here that he met his future wife, the widow Mary Ann Besse.   They were wed on May 27, 1865 in Mattapoisett, Massachusetts.

The couple moved back to his hometown of Middleboro, where he put his gold hunting experience and knowledge to work.  He learned that men needed supplies and he would be the one to supply it.  He eventually became owner of the Pierce Hardware Store.

During his whole career he was always considering carefully the wants and needs of his customers and the growth of his business was attributed to his integrity.  His entire working life was devoted to his business and almost to the day of his death was offering advise and council as to the conduct of business.

After being confined in bed for a short of period of time, Thomas died at home on June 27, 1910 from heart trouble at the age of 68 . 
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