Locations listed are located in Pennsylvania (USA), unless otherwise noted in post.

27 March 2015

Follow Friday: A Hodgepodge

 
This week I have to admit genealogy took a back seat. It was my first full week back to work (I work seasonally at a nursery – LOVE IT!) and my kids had some medical issues (one still does actually) but I did get some reading done.

EIN Presswire sent me a news release concerning a new online Jewish database. The Knowles Collection links generations of Jewish families from all over the world. It has reached its one-millionth record milestone and is now easily searchable online. The vast majority of new contributions are coming from families and private archives worldwide. The free collection can be accessed at FamilySearch.org/family-trees.

The National Genealogical Society conference is 13-16 May 2015 in St. Charles, Missouri. The early bird registration deadline is this Monday, 30 March 2015. For more information see the registration brochure.

Blog posts worth reading:

  • Dear Myrtle has finally published a How To that makes Hangouts easier to navigate. If you plan on attending Mondays with Myrt, her post this past Tuesday is a must!
  • Diane Haddad wrote of Angie Harmon’s recent appearance on “Who Do You Think You Are?” in her Genealogy Insider blog. Harmon is one of my favorite actresses and I found her Revolutionary Veteran, Michael Harman, most interesting. Harman (spelled with two As on the show but I noticed Haddad spelled it like Angie’s) wintered at Valley Forge … as did my husband’s 6th great grandfather, Jacob Eckman! (Side note: my Jacob was one of the few men to have actually died at Valley Forge – 20 May 1778 – as this was an encampment. There was no fighting at Valley Forge.)

My New Follows at Twitter:

To clarify, these are new people I followed this week.


  • @JohnHouchins – a fellow genealogist
  • @Angie_Harmon – yes, the actress!
  • @Originsnetuk – British & Irish resources
  • @Irish_Genealogy – an Irish family historian
Follow me

 

Follow Friday is a genealogical prompt of GeneaBloggers
                

© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015

On This Day: Hershbergers keep hotel in Christiana

Christiana will soon have new hotelkeepers, it was reported On This Day in 1880. J. Hope Hershberger and his wife would be moving to Christiana, Lancaster County, “in a few days” to keep hotel. The Hershbergers are currently the host and hostess of the Kennett Square hotel. 

About the Hershbergers
From 1867 to 1872, Hope held a tavern license for the White Horse Inn (White Horse Hotel) in Londonderry. He then held a tavern license for the Kennett Square Hotel, in Kennett Square (Chester County), from 1873 to 1879. 

By June 1880 they were in fact at the hotel in the then Village of Christiana in Sadsbury Township. He was 53 at that time. His wife was 42. Living with them was his six year old niece Bertha Cox, four borders and two servants. 

The 1870 Census shows Hope as being a farmer in Cochranville, Londonderry Township, Chester County. His wife, Vienna, keeps house. They have a domestic servant and a farm laborer living with them. 

Vienna passed away on 6 November 1891. Hope passed on 1 March 1893. They are buried together at the Upper Octorara Cemetery in Parkesburg, Chester County 

Sources:
Ancestry.com. U.S., Find A Grave Index, 1600s-Current [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012.  

Chester County Tavern Petitions, 1700 – 1923. http://www.chesco.org/DocumentCenter/View/4010  

Lancaster daily intelligencer. (Lancaster, Pa.), 27 March 1880. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. 

Year: 1880; Census Place: Sadsbury, Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Roll: 1143; Family History Film: 1255143; Page: 498C; Enumeration District: 174; Image: 0699 

Year: 1870; Census Place: Londonderry, Chester, Pennsylvania; Roll: M593_1323; Page: 336A; Image: 672; Family History Library Film: 552822 

 

On This Day is a prompt I started this month to further explore historical events.
                

© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015

26 March 2015

On This Day: Salisbury remembers George Boots

Salisbury Township recalled George Boots On This Day in 1880. The Intelligencer’s correspondent writes of the death of Boots, one of the area’s oldest citizens.  

Boots is described as being colored, living on Welsh Mountain, and peculiar. He has “claimed that he had seen 150 returns of Christmas Day,” although his exact age is unknown. Boots had been able to recall the Revolutionary War as well.

Source:
Lancaster daily intelligencer. (Lancaster, Pa.), 26 March 1880. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. 

 

On This Day is a prompt I started this month to further explore historical events.
                

© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015

25 March 2015

On This Day: Father of dead baby charged

George Shultz was charged with fornication On This Day in 1880. Shultz fathered the dead female baby who had been discovered the week prior. The mother was Christina Denning. She had placed the child in a box. 

The deceased decomposing infant was discovered on the 17th when an unpleasant odor was discovered. Denning had been imprisoned until she was cleared of any criminal intent. The child had been stillborn.  

Source:
Lancaster daily intelligencer. (Lancaster, Pa.), 25 March 1880. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. 

 

On This Day is a prompt I started this month to further explore historical events.
                

© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015

24 March 2015

Tombstone Tuesday: Walter & Christie Winter

  
Walter H. Winter (6 August 1860 – 22 February 1934) and his wife Christie G. (11 September 1857 – 6 September 1946) are buried together at the Zion Reformed Cemetery in New Providence.

The Winters, according to the 1900 US Census, married in 1883 but had no children yet at that time. They lived in East Drumore, where Walter was a farmer. They had two boarders living with them: Roy Eckman, and Harry Miller. The 1910 US Census shows they employed a 12 year old servant girl, Grace Moss. Grace was the daughter of Jeremiah and Emma Moss, who were neighbors of the Winters, according to the 1900 Census. 

By 1920, the couple sold the farm and lived by themselves in Providence Township. Walter was now a laborer in a garage.  

In 1930, Walter and Christie are still in Providence but he is now a foreman. Living with them is their 19 year old daughter Lyndelle Aulthouse and her one year old son William G. Aulthouse. Lyndelle married when she was 17 and the 1930 Census still shows her as married but no husband is listed. 

Walter is the son of Cyrus and Kate Winters, of Strasburg, according to the 1880 Census. Walter’s death certificate lists his parents as Silas Winters and Catherine Marks. The cause of death was myocarditis. His wife Christie was the informant and lists her maiden name as Kauffman. 

Source:
Ancestry.com. Pennsylvania, Death Certificates, 1906-1963 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014.  

Year: 1880; Census Place: Providence, Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Roll: 1143; Family History Film: 1255143; Page: 420D; Enumeration District: 170; Image: 0545  

Year: 1900; Census Place: East Drumore, Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Roll: 1423; Page: 2A; Enumeration District: 0086; FHL microfilm: 1241423  

Year: 1910; Census Place: East Drumore, Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Roll: T624_1353; Page: 5A; Enumeration District: 0033; FHL microfilm: 1375366 

Year: 1920; Census Place: Providence, Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Roll: T625_1584; Page: 2A; Enumeration District: 118; Image: 975 

Year: 1930; Census Place: Providence, Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Roll: 2059; Page: 14A; Enumeration District: 0106; Image: 29.0; FHL microfilm: 2341793

 

Tombstone Tuesday is a genealogical prompt of GeneaBloggers. 
© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015

On This Day: Puddlers strike at Safe Harbor

The puddlers at the Safe Harbor iron works went on strike for a wage increase. The works are, On This Day in 1880, are now closed and 150 men are now without employment.  

A puddler involved the manufacture of iron. Puddling was a process converting pig iron into wrought iron using a reverbatory furnace. Hence, a puddler was one who puddled.
 
The Safe Harbor iron works is located in Southern Lancaster County.

Source:
Lancaster daily intelligencer. (Lancaster, Pa.), 24 March 1880. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress.

 

On This Day is a prompt I started this month to further explore historical events.                 

© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015

23 March 2015

Fearless Females: A timeline

March is Women’s History Month and as such, today’s prompt focuses on my paternal great grandmother, Bessie Matys Hruszczak. The prompt for the Fearless Females Challenge is: Create a timeline for a female ancestor using your favorite software program or an online timeline generator such as OurTimelines. Post an image of it or link to it.  

I am a strong believer in timelines so I thought I would love this one. Not so much. The program asks for a name ad birth and death year. It provides world events. The timeline that OurTimelines created for Bessie is: http://www.ourtimelines.com/cgi-bin/makehist.pl  
 
 

My simple timeline:
1895 – Bessie is born to Joseph Matys and Olena Vaspleship
1904-1905 – Russian-Japanese War
1912 – Immigrates to America in October (that April the Titanic had sunk); settled in Coatesville
1914-1919 – WWI (US entered in 1917)
1915 – Marries Panko Hruszczak
1916 – 1st son Theodore born
1918 – 2nd son Joseph born; 1st son Theodore dies in flu epidemic; Prohibition begins (thru 1933)
1919 – 3rd son (also) Theodore born
1921 – 4th son Nicholas born
1922 – 5th son Paul born
1925? – daughter Katie born
1926 – daughter Mary born
Bet 1928-1930 – daughter Helen born.
1929-1930 – Great Depression
1930 – daughter Ann born
1932 – 6th son Peter born
1939-1945 – WWII (sons Nick and Paul both served)
1950-1953 – Korean War (son Pete served)
1963 – US President John F Kennedy assassinated
1964-1975 – Vietnam Conflict (grandsons served)
1968 – husband passed
1972 – Bessie passed 

 


Fearless Females is a daily prompt throughout March celebrating Women’s History Month initiated by Lisa A Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist  
© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015

52 Ancestors: Same

I hold many things in common with my ancestors, the least of which is DNA, so this week’s 52 Ancestors Challenge was tough for me. Each week Amy Johnson Crow, of No Story Too Small, challenges fellow GeneaBloggers with her 52 Ancestors Challenge. This week’s prompt is:  What ancestor is a lot like you? What ancestor do you have a lot in common? Same name? Same home town? 

Hometown:
I am originally from Coatesville, though like many family members, I was born at Chester County Hospital in West Chester. Many of my family – on both parents’ sides – lived at one time or another in Coatesville. Family members who have lived in Coatesville at some point in their life are simply too numerous to name (that and many are still living).  

Religion:
I was raised Roman Catholic. Many family members on my maternal grandmother’s side were Catholic, or at least raised Catholic. Like many, I left the Catholic faith. Like many of my dad’s side, I now practice Orthodoxy. Specifically I am Ukrainian Orthodox.  

School:
Growing up, I attended Coatesville Catholic Elementary School. One of my cousins was in the same grade as me. At least three cousins and my sister attended there as well. After CACES, I went to Octorara High School. To my knowledge, only my sister and I attended there, although a cousin works there now. After high school, I attended Lock Haven State University. While I think I was the only one to attend LHU, my Aunt Helen (Helen Still Webster) also attended a State School. She attended West Chester State Normal School. 

Hobby:
Obviously my genealogy is my obsession! My Aunt Helen was such an asset. She provided so much information of family members she could recall. Her recollections, as well as copies from the family bibles, took me back several generations when I first started back in high school. 

There are so many similarities between myself and many family members. I also have many differences, which will be discussed in next week’s 52 Ancestors! Until then … 

 

52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks is a weekly genealogical challenge issued by Amy Johnson Crow, of No Story Too Small.
© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015

On This Day: Commercial College opens in Lancaster

A commercial college is announced On This Day in 1880. The college will provide young men training in business education, penmanship, bookkeeping, and other related classes. The college will be held in the “new” Rhoads & Bro’s building on West King Street. The teachers are Messrs. Mosser and Weidler and the college is slated to open on the 29th 

Source:
Lancaster daily intelligencer. (Lancaster, Pa.), 23 March 1880. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress.

 

On This Day is a prompt I started this month to further explore historical events.
                

© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015

22 March 2015

My Family Calendar This Week

Birthdays
Happy birthday to Teddy Ruzchak! May God grant you Many Years. Teddy’s father Theodore and my grandfather were brothers. 

Memory Eternal
Today is the 209th anniversary of the passing of John Jacob Eckman. He is hubby’s 4th great grandfather. He was born in 1756 to Johannes Peter and Mary Magdalena Bushong Eckman. In 1782, he married Catherine When. They had seven children together.  

Jane W. Still Lewis is my 3rd great aunt. She passed away 86 years ago Monday. She was the daughter of George David and Sarah Bing Still. She married Benjamin Franklin Lewis, to whom she had one child, Sarah Lewis. 

Margaretta Still, born in 1836, she was too was the daughter of George David and Sarah Bing Still. Like Jane, she is my 3rd great aunt. She married Thomas Naylor. She had four children. 

My 2nd great uncle Hugh O’Flaherty passed away 68 years ago Tuesday. He was the son of Dennis and Martha Durkin O’Flaherty, who both immigrated from Ireland. Hugh married Katherine Dee in 1904. They had six children. 



My Family Calendar This Week will be a weekly feature.  
© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015 

Census Sunday: Connecting with J Jones Still of Chester County

J. Jones Still has shown up near – but never in – my Still family over the years. Yesterday he was mentioned in my On This Day post about a burglar/murderer who had broken into his Malvern home in 1881. That made me think about him again. 

He appears in Willistown, Chester County, in the 1880 US Census. Malvern, at that time, would have been a village within Willistown Township. He was a 48 year old carpenter. His wife, Sarah, was 44. They had two daughters: 10 year old Bessie, and seven year old Bertha J. The ages on the census were scribbled over and hard to read so these may not be accurate. The street the family lived on is not mentioned but the census does show him living next to a Charles Still and his family. 

Ten years prior, in the 1870 US Census, J. Jones (28) was a wheelwright. His wife Sarah was 34 and kept house. Their daughter Bertha is two months old. The Census was taken in July that year. They lived with a 60 year old Henry Still, a wheelwright as well, and his 67 year old wife, Elizabeth. Relationships were not provided in 1870 so it is merely an assumption that Henry is J. Jones’ father. Clearly, the enumerator switched the daughters up in the 1880 Census. 

J. Jones Still, an 18 year old laborer, was living with Henry and Elizabeth Still, presumably his parents, in Kimberton, West Vincent Township, Chester County, in 1860. Henry, 50, is a farmer. Elizabeth is 56. The 1860 US Census also reveals a Rebecca Jones, 78, living with them. Although relationships are not indentified in the Census, it would make sense that Rebecca is Elizabeth’s mother.  

Eight year old John J. Still appears in Phoenixville Borough in the 1850 US Census. He lives with – again presumably – his parents: Henry, 40, a storekeeper; and Elizabeth, 46. Living with them is also 73 year old John Jones and 69 year old Rebecca Jones. At this point, I believe the Jones are Elizabeth’s parents. 

A possible connection:
Using what I gleaned from the US Census records, I did a quick search on Ancestry.com under the Public Family Trees. I never use the trees as fact but rather as direction and leads. Often I come across people who do not document but today I lucked out! I found this J. Jones Still, born 1842 to Henry and Elizabeth Jones Still, on the public family tree of an “anitalarry1.” Their tree – which is what caught my attention – is titled “Seltenreich/Seltenright Family Tree.” 

Why am I so excited?
My Margaret Still (my 4th great grandmother) had her son out of wedlock in 1808 so finding documentation on her family before she got pregnant and “put out” has been like the most difficult jigsaw puzzle I ever did. Margaret’s parents are Charles Still and Margaret Rhoades. She had three brothers: Charles, born 1779; Henry, born 1780; and Jacob, born 1782. Charles married Catherine Seltenreich! 
 
 

Why am I still hesitant?
As a former reporter, I am big into documentation. I literally have post it notes everywhere because nothing gets entered in FTM until I can document it. I only have four of Charles and Catherine Seltenreich Still’s children, and Henry is not one of them. Everything else fits though (people, dates, places, etc.) from anitalarry1’s tree, so I am confident that I have just connected J. Jones Still finally, albeit distantly, to my Still line.  

My next step:
My next step is naturally to look over anitalarry1’s research and go through and attempt to document myself. In addition, I will send them a message. Perhaps – through all this collateral research – I may find answers regarding my Margaret! 

Sources:
Ancestry.com. Public Family Trees. Seltenreich/Seltenright Family Tree by anitalarry1. 

Year: 1850; Census Place: Phoenixville, Chester, Pennsylvania; Roll: M432_765; Page: 92A; Image: 187 

Year: 1860; Census Place: West Vincent, Chester, Pennsylvania; Roll: M653_1094; Page: 814; Image: 363; Family History Library Film: 805094 

Year: 1870; Census Place: Willistown, Chester, Pennsylvania; Roll: M593_1325; Page: 330A; Image: 674; Family History Library Film: 552824 

Year: 1880; Census Place: Willistown, Chester, Pennsylvania; Roll: 1113; Family History Film: 1255113; Page: 41D; Enumeration District: 037; Image: 0148 
 
 

Census Sunday is a genealogical prompt of GeneaBloggers. 
© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015

On This Day: Gas explosion at Shenandoah mine

A gas explosion On This Day in 1883 occurred at the Packer colliery, No. 2. The explosion caused several men to be “severely and fatally burned.” The men were identified as: James Litchman, William Litchman, William McAndrew, John Murray, Martin Toopy, and a Polander whose name was unknown. The Litchmans were father and son. The colliery was part of the Lehigh Valley coal company, located at Lost Creek near Shenandoah, Schuylkill County, PA. 

Source:
Lancaster daily intelligencer. (Lancaster, Pa.), 22 March 1883. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. 

 

On This Day is a prompt I started this month to further explore historical events.
                

© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015

21 March 2015

On This Day: Lancaster Daily Intelligencer tracks murderer


The Lancaster Daily Intelligencer tracked a murderer On This Day in 1881 through various accounts, including a burglary in Leaman Place.

The home of Charles Lafferty, the station agent at Leaman Place, was broken into on 22 February 1881. A pair of pants, $40, and a valuable watch were taken. At that time, there was no reason to suspect anyone other than a recent loafer. 

Samuel Clugson was murdered at his Valley Forge home when he surprised a burgler. The burglar/murder left behind his clothes, which contained a pawn ticket for an Elgin watch. The watch was pawned at Consolidated Loan office in Baltimore, Maryland 

The watch had been made, it was determined after an examination, for H. F. Andrews. Andrews is a jeweler in Strasburg, Lancaster County. The watch is described in detail. Andrews, confirmed, through his records, that the watch had in fact been sold to Lafferty on 21 December 1872.  

Police continued on the trail of the murderer after another burglary. This burglary, which happened on 18 March 1881, was in Malvern, just six miles from Valley Forge (Chester County). It occurred – here is where my interest got piqued! – at the home of J. Jones Still. The burglar took only food and a change of clothes. This time thought the burglar/suspected murderer left behind a footprint. The police tied the incidents all together nicely and believed they had a good description of the culprit. 

J. Jones Still
This is one relatively (no pun intended) geographically close Still but I have not been able to connect him with certainty to my Still line. That said, I believe he may be distantly related. It is so hard sometimes tracing my Still line since Margaret got “put out” by her father, Charles Still. Nonetheless, a copy of this article from the Daily Intelligencer will get clipped and put into my general Still folder where I have much other information about J. Jones Still. 

Source:
Lancaster daily intelligencer. (Lancaster, Pa.), 21 March 1881. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. 

 

On This Day is a prompt I started this month to further explore historical events.
                

© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2015