Monday, June 24, 2019

Marshall Illinois Marriage Announcements

Early village newspapers were really literary magazines. Front pages were filled with stories, poetry, advice, aphorisms, and what some took for humor—“How to Make a Cannon…Take a long hole and pour brass or iron about it.” What little news crept into front pages was from major cities, taken from other papers. Inside pages had local news, which for marriages was often poetic, gossip-filled, and sometimes scandalous (e.g., Samuel Tapscott and Susan Tingley, 14 Sep 2015 blog). The following marriage notices are from the Marshall Republican:

23 Apr 1909: In order to keep their friends from finding out the great secret Mrs. Lucy Swope and James Obrist went to Effingham Wednesday of last week and were married in that city returning home Thursday morning. This is the bride’s third adventure on the sea of matrimony and the groom’s first attempt at steering the matrimonial craft o’er life’s tempestuous sea.

27 Aug 1909: Monday morning the train on the Vandalia from the west due at 7:04 brought Mr. Jeff Walters and Goldia Mae Jacobs of Vevay Park Cumberland county to the County clerk’s office where they secured the papers authorizing them to trot in double harness and hied themselves to Judge Martin’s matrimonial parlors where they were soon made one. This was a runaway match but as soon as the knot was tied they turned right around and ran back again.

10 Sep 1909: Benton Willey, age 36 and Myrtle Gudgeon age 29, both of Terre Haute were married by Esquire Benson Martin in his matrimonial parlors at noon Wednesday. The groom was a former resident of this city and it is his first marriage. The bride is a bashful young creature, but has managed to survive the shock of two former marriages and seemed to enjoy the thought of a third matrimonial alliance.

12 Nov 1909: Saturday Austin Sweet, an attorney of Terre Haute met Miss Alma Shook of Yale, in this city. They secured a permit from County Clerk J.W. Fredenberger to trot through life in double harness. They then hunted up Elder John A. Sweet who tied the knot matrimonial for them. They had attempted to keep the marriage a secret from their Terre Haute friends, but on their arrival at their Terre Haute home Sunday they were greatly surprised at the reception given them by a number of friends who met them at the station.

26 Nov 1909: Grover Hybarger, son of Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Hybarger of Paris, who formerly lived here and Miss Bertha Sidenstricker also of Paris, were married secretly at New Castle, Ind., in July last. Mr. Hybarger was working at the time for the American Express company at Indianapolis and Miss Sidenstricker was visiting her brother there when they slipped away to New Castle where they were married. They revealed the fact to her brother, James Sidenstricker at Indianapolis but concealed it from their parents until recently when Grover was transferred by the American Express company to Paris when they divulged the secret and decided to set up house keeping.

20 May 20 1910: Sunday Abel Bennett, bachelor, and Mrs. Minnie Bennett, both of Orange township, were married at the home of Richard Keller of Orange township by Rev. T.C. Bailiff. The brides maiden name was Cox and we understand was the widow of a brother of the man of her second choice.

21 Jan 1910: A romance culminated here Tuesday when Oscar Mason of Mayfield, Kentucky, applied for a license to marry Miss Minnie Robinson of Parker township. Seven years ago Dr. John F. Kirksey of Mayfield, met and woed and won Miss Amanda Robinson, a sister of Mr. Mason’s bride and in a visit to her sister at Mayfield, Miss Minnie became a victim of cupids darts and capitulated to her southern wooer.

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Henny Penny

 I just heard yesterday of the death on 23 Jun 2019 of another Tapscott cousin, the gregarious Charles Henry Colvin, known to most of the family as “Henny Penny.”

Charles was a member of the Fauquier County, Virginia, Tapscotts, the only son of Henry L. and Viola (Tapscott) Colvin, and a great great grandson of Harriet Tapscott. Harriet, the progenitor of many of the Fauquier Tapscotts, is believed to be a granddaughter of Ezekiel Tapscott, via James and Elizabeth (Percifull) Tapscott (see blogs of 1/13/2013, 1/15/2013). That would make Charles and me sixth cousins.

Omitting passages naming some still living relatives, let’s let Henny Penny tell his own story (from a work in progress on Tapscott, Colvin & Nickens Ancestors by Nakia Lorice Long):

Hello family, This is Charles Henry Colvin, Nickname “Henny Penny,” My life started on 17 February 1934 at 1722 Montello Ave. N.E. Washington D.C. I attended Crummell Elementary School, Brown Junior High School, and Phelps Vocational High School for one and a half years, I transferred to Armstrong Technical High School where I graduated. While in High School I earned my Varsity Letter for playing baseball.

Upon graduating from High School I was employed by the Defense Department of the U.S. government from which I retired after 37 years of service. On December 1956, I was drafted into the U.S. army and served 2 years active duty, 2 years active reserve, and 2 years standby reserve duty before receiving my discharge. On 4 September 1960 I married Audrey Mae Whiting of Prince George Va. We had two children. . . . I retired in 1989 and moved to LaPlata, Md. Where I have been living since my retirement.

Charles’s death comes exactly five weeks before the 2019 Tapscott Reunion in Fauquier County (Mary Frances and I will be attending). We will miss you, Henny Penny.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Susan Frances Sanders

No. I haven’t died. It’s just that my new book, Henry’s Children, The Tapscotts of the Wabash Valley, is becoming considerably longer and more complex than anticipated.

Six children of Henry Tapscott the Traveler (the child of William the Preacher) and their descendants—William, John, James Wesley, Thomas, Nancy, and Jacob—have been covered. Bringing us to child seven, Sarah Ann Tapscott, wife of William M. Sanders, and that is a problem. For Sarah Ann and William had eight children, many of whom had several children. And generally there is too much information about Sarah and William’s descendants, not too little—too much to read, record, and digest. But there are still two unknowns, which Tapscott Family History readers might help me answer. And both involve Susan Frances Sanders, daughter of William and Sarah Ann.

Susan Frances is believed to have married Robert Jones in Marion County, Indiana, on 3 Sep 1873, but the sole evidence is a single marriage record with Susan F. Sanders as the bride and let’s face it, “Susan F. Sanders” is not an unusual name. And nothing is known of the origin or ending of Robert Jones.

And on 8 Feb 1877, just a little over three years after she may have married Robert Jones, Susan Frances Sanders is known to have married Joseph Shade in Clark County, Illinois. But Joseph’s first wife was Ada Swafford, about whom, like Robert Jones, we know absolutely nothing, other than that she married Joseph in Clark County on 1 Dec 1874.

Does anyone know anything reliable about Robert Jones of Marion County, Indiana, or Ada Swafford of Clark County, Illinois? Any chance we have a name wrong?

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

The Siverlys

Where have I been? I've been working day and night writing about the descendants of Nancy Tapscott and her husband William Siverly for my book Henry’s Children, the Tapscotts of the Wabash Valley.

Henry the Traveler, who populated the Wabash Valley with Tapscotts, had twelve children, and today I finished the history of child number five, Nancy. We are not even half way through. I’m eighty years old. I don’t have a whole lot of time left to finish this magnus opus.

But child five was an immense step. Nancy Tapscott and her spouse, William Siverly, had 160 descendants, stopping at the fourth generation (counting William and Nancy as generation one). This includes Alfred Siverly, whose existence is a little uncertain, but more about him later.

Of all Henry’s children, Nancy was by far the most prolific. So I feel I must say


Now back to work. Next in line is Nancy’s less fecund brother, Jacob.

Friday, October 12, 2018

The Cunninghams of Clark County

I was pleased to see a recent "NICE SEEING YOU AGAIN ROBERT" comment by Phil Cunningham attached to the blog "The Merry Cricket" (29 Sep 2015). Phil is the great great grandson of William H. and Mary Ann (Reed) Cunningham, an Ohio-born couple who founded the Clark County Cunninghams. It turns out that he and I are third cousins (through Jackson Lowry) and also fourth cousins (through Nathaniel Sweet). Way back in 2003, when I was still very much a family history novice, Phil shared with me the research he had done on the “Descendants of Fairy Lowry,” which included Cunningham history, helping me unravel the genealogy of James Cunningham, husband of Mary Mallory, daughter of Emma Tapscott.

“Gertie,” Ruby, and Mary Mallory, daughters of Emma Tapscott, were heavily involved in early nineteenth-century Possum Ridge teenage society. (Possum Ridge School was located in Anderson Twp, Clark County, about two miles southeast of Freedom Baptist Church across Hurricane Creek.) Among their friends were Ruth, Reba, and Joy Cunningham, cousins of James Cunningham. So, of course, it was inevitable that Emma and William Mallory’s youngest child, Mary (born 8 Sep 1903) should meet James.

Born in Marshall, Illinois, 23 Dec 1899, James (“Jim”) Cunningham was one of eight children of Andrew (“Andy”) and Elizabeth Catherine (Smitley) Cunningham, a Clark County farm family. In his younger days, James worked as a farmhand in nearby Humboldt and as a general laborer. In 1923 he was working for American Car Company, a streetcar manufacturer, when he and Mary were married 3 July at the home of Rev. R. (Reuben) S. Wheeldon in Auburn.

The married couple soon returned from their first home in St. Louis back to Clark County, moving from farm to farm—in 1924 to the Charles Cline farm in the Freedom area of Anderson Twp, by 1930 to live with Mary’s widowed father, William, by 1933 to the farm of Mary’s widowed aunt Edna Tapscott when Edna briefly moved to Marshall, and in that same year to “Mr. Hollenbeck’s farm.”

But farming was not for James. By 1933 he had joined R. S. Wheeldon, the preacher at his wedding, in running the Wheeldon and Cunningham grocery on Marshall’s Main Street. Although the market was almost destroyed in a fire that year, James continued in the business, which became the James Cunningham Market after Wheeldon moved to Palestine, Illinois.

Rev. Reuben S. Wheeldon was a leading figure in the Pilgrim Holiness Church, founding during his life, churches at several locations including Marshall, Palestine, and West Terre Haute. Known for his tent-meeting revivals, he ran grocery stores in many of those towns, selling groceries during the day and preaching nights and weekends. Working alongside Wheeldon, James Cunningham became increasingly active in the Pilgrim Holiness Church. In 1934 he served as a church delegate to a conference in Frankfort, Indiana, in 1935 he was visiting other towns as an evangelist while continuing work in Marshall as a “merchant,” and in 1937 he was made a deacon and a trustee of the local church. In 1938 James was the pastor of Asbury Pilgrim Holiness Church, about four miles north of Greenup, Illinois.

The Pantograph, Bloomington, Illinois, 7 Apr 1947.
In 1940 James was studying at Bible Holiness Seminary in Owassa, Michigan, while his wife was doing laundry. From then on the family moved from place to place while James served as pastor and/or evangelist in Robinson, Illinois, Dryden, Michigan, Cincinnati, Ohio, and Joliet, Illinois. Then, in 1956, he was offered the position of pastor of the Fort Lauderdale church in Florida, the state in which he spent the rest of his life.

Mary (Mallory) Cunningham passed away in Pinellas County, Florida, on 11 or 12 Apr 1970 and was interred in Mount Pleasant Cemetery in Clark County. James lived another three years before dying 27 Aug 1973 in Melbourne, Florida. His last position was pastor of the Wesleyan Church in St. Petersburg, Florida, the Holiness Church having merged with the Wesleyan Methodists in 1968. He was laid to rest alongside Mary.