Tag Archives: family

Sex, Booze and Pie Crust, The Top Ten of 2014

What you were reading at Ancestors in Aprons in 2014

As everyone knows, sex and booze sell.  But here food goes over pretty well, too!

strawberry-Rhubarb pie

Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie made Agnes Badertscher’s way with tapioca.

I look at these statistics at the end of the year in hopes that I can figure out what you like the most, so we can bring you more of it.  (*That “we” is not an affectation, I owe huge thanks to contributors–particularly Brother Paul and Sister-in-Law Kay, whose writings and research help scored in the first- and third- most read articles.)

Since we* write about food and family, in almost equal parts. I was curious to see which category you read the most, and fascinated to see that of the top ten viewed pieces in 2014, the outcome was 5 and 5. On the other hand, five of the top six were about food!

So here’s the count down of the top ten most-read articles:

10. Civil War Deserters: Erasmus Anderson Letter #7 As with the case of Naughty Pilgrims below, I think we are attracted to the people who do not obey all the rules. This is the only one of the Civil War letter from Pvt. Erasmus Anderson that made the top ten, but that series was my own personal favorite section of Ancestors. If you’re a Civil War buff, follow the 16th Ohio Volunteers from Cincinnati to Vicksburg with this index.

9. Mysterious Case of the Missing Wife. 52 Ancestors #15 Mattie Worley In which a great-uncle goes West, makes his fortune and his official record makes a wife disappear.

Jesse Morgan on plaque

Squatters Riot Plaque, Sacramento, listing Jesse Morgan, squatter. From Roadside America.com

8. Mystery of ’49er Jesse Morgan: 52 Ancestors #25 Here my brother writes of the dramatic death of our mysterious great-great-grandfather Jesse Morgan–shot on the street in Sacramento.

7. 52 Ancestors: #1  Rhema Anderson Fair  To kick off my 52 Ancestors effort, I chose a favorite relative, my inspirational Aunt Rhema.  I suspect the numerous long-lost Fair cousins contributed to the popularity of this one.

6. Polenta? NO!  Grandma Cooked Corn Meal Mush An amazing number of readers fondly remembered or still eat corn meal mush. For those who haven’t tried it–there’s a recipe.

Pilgrim Punishment

5. 52 Ancestors: #46, My Bassett Ancestors–Naughty Pilgrims.  The 52 Ancestors challenge presented by Amy Johnson Crow at No Story Too Small, had me telling the stories of my ancestors–positive or not. I have to admit that title was created as click bait, but I love finding the unexpected.

4. Perfect Pie Crust gives my favorite pie crust recipe. The tradition of good pie crust, if not this exact recipe comes down from my grandfather to my mother to me. Apparently, a lot of you are looking for Perfect Pie Crust.

3. Family Restaurant with Home Cooking introduces the people and the Anderson Restaurant in Killbuck, Ohio that is pictured on the masthead–my Grandparents and helpers. And I share a favorite pork chop recipe.

Dalton Dari-ette, opening day 195 , (before Dick Kohler owned it). Picture used courtesy of Dalton Dari-ette

Dalton Dari-ette, opening day 195 , (before Dick Kohler owned it). Picture used courtesy of Dalton Dari-ette

2. Vintage Family Restaurant: Dalton Ohio Darriette, where Kay Badertscher writes about her Uncle’s classic drive-in. (Complete with recipe for one of their specialties.)

Broken piece of hardtack from collection of Minnesota Historical Society.

Broken piece of hardtack from collection of Minnesota Historical Society.

1.  Civil War Rations: Hardtack and O. B. JoyfulThe MOST READ post of 2014: My brother helped me by contributing information gained in his years as a Civil War reenactor.

What missed the list? What was my favorite?  I have already mentioned the Erasmus Anderson letters.  But here are two that I thought deserved more readers. I concentrated for a few months on the Puritan ancestors from Massachusetts, and in September visited the home of the Howe family. These two are members of that branch. Check them out and let me know if you agree they are worth reading about.

52 Ancestors: The Wheeler Dealer, #37, Samuel Howe

52 Ancestors: It’s All Relative, #35, Hepzibah Death

So much for looking back at the top ten of 2014.  Now let’s look back at the Civil War in 1861, and then the centuries and ancestors that came before.

Road Trip Adventures With Family Travelers

It’s not enough that my ancestors hang around my kitchen while I cook. They want to go on every road trip with me, too.

I certainly had a lot of travelin’ ancestors. Of course if you live in the United States and you’re not an American Indian, you had some people somewhere in your background who were adventurous enough to leave their native lands. But once they got here, some stayed put. Not mine!

This week I’m on a car trip, and so naturally, I am thinking about the ancestors and relative who took road trips. 

Florida was always a popular destination, and I can do an entire photo essay of ancestors having their pictures taken picking oranges and posing with alligators. But here’s an interesting group. The formidable woman in black is my great grandmother Hattie Stout. George Stout was her brother-in-law, and Maude was her daughter.

Road Trip to Florida

Dr George Stout, Maude Bartlett, Hattie Stout, Mrs George Stout, Carlos Bartlett Circa 1906

In the early days of automobiles, Grandma and Grandpa Vera and  Guy Anderson went on frequent car camping trips, tent camping trips and also stayed in cabins.  Ohio is blessed with many beautiful small lakes and wooded areas.  Grandma and Grandpa were even caretakers for a State Rest Stop between Killbuck and Millersburg for many years.  I remember riding with them up to the stop where they would sweep out the restroom, and pick up litter. Here they are in the Stutz car at a place identified as Rocky Hollow.

Road Trip

Vera Anderson Camping at Rocky Hollow, Ohio with Stutz Car. Late 1920’s

I’m no expert, and would welcome guesses from someone with more expertise, but I think this is a 1927 or 1928 Stutz, which would mean the camping took place late 20s or early 30s.

There’s a Rocky Hollow that is part of the Shawnee Forest and Shawnee State Park in sourthern Ohio, and also a Little Rocky Hollow in beautiful Hocking County that is now a nature preserve.  There are probably a hundred or so other places by that name, so I don’t really know where this road trip camp site was. If you know where they might have camped, please let me know in the comments below. But isn’t the Ohio Shawnee Forest beautiful?

Rpad trip to Shawnee State Park

Shawnee State Forest in Ohio. Photo by Brandon C.

The young men in our family seemed to routinely take off on long trips.  Guy Anderson left home determined to join up in the Spanish-American War, but got there too late.  My father, Paul Kaser, took a road trip to Texas with some of his friends from high school. They ran out of money and had to come home.  My uncle Bill Anderson left a note with his mother and father when they lived in Columbus Ohio and said there was no work, so he was leaving for California.  He was about 19 and at loose ends. My mother was attending Ohio State University. I don’t think he actually went, because he married Aunt Sarah not long after that, but California has been a draw to others in the family that you’ll hear about later. Ah, yes, Jesse Morgan, I’m pointing at you.

The older women were not to be outdone by the young men.  Hattie Stout traveled to New York City to visit with her son William Morgan Stout.  Grandmother Vera  took a bus to California by herself in her late 60s, and rode back to Ohio with her son Herbert Anderson, his wife and family. I was about ten and remember being scandalized that such an OLD woman would go all the way across the country on a bus. My Aunt Blanche Kaser, (Mrs. Keith Kaser) who lived in Millersburg, traveled all over by Greyhound bus, once coming to visit us when we lived in Scottsdale. She was in her early 70s when she was gallavanting by herself.

My mother loved cars and when she was in her nineties, she recited for me the list of every car she had ever owned. One of her treasured trips was a road trip to Chicago for the World’s Fair in 1933 with Aunt Sarah Anderson and my Grandmother Vera.  (Mother and Father did not marry until 1938.)  She said, “I don’t know what we were thinking. We just got in the car and went with no reservations and no idea at all of what we would do when we got there.”

Road Trip to the Smokey Mountains

Vera Marie at one year old with mother, Harriette Kaser in the Smoky Mountains. 1940

I have always loved road trips myself. No wonder. My first road trip took place when I was one year old.  My parents and grandparents and Aunt Maude Bartlett set out for The Great Smoky Mountains in Tennessee.  The National Park was dedicated in the fall of 1940, so they would have been there shortly before Franklin Roosevelt inaugurated the park. (Which is a good thing, because my grandparents wouldn’t have gone near the place if FDR was around.)

Road Trip to the Smokey Mountains

My first road trip. Here being held by my father Paul Kaser. Grandma Vera on right, Great Aunt Maude on the left and my grandfather Anderson in the background. 1940

All the usual tourist attractions drew our family members. Here’s Great Aunt Maude Bartlett at Niagara Falls with her brother Bill Stout, his wife Jean and Maude’s husband Carlos. The picture was taken early in the 20th century. (Love the hats!)  And then a later picture of Maude at Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia.

Road Trip to Niagra Falls Early 20th Century

Jean and Bill M. Stout, Mude and Carlos Bartlett at Niagara Falls

Road trip to Williamsburg.

Maude Bartlett at Colonial Williamsburg. Perhaps same trip as Smoky Mountains.

Grandma Vera loved travel with a great fervor, and whenever anyone had a trip in mind–across the country or to a nearby lake for a picnic, they would ask Vera to go along.

Anderson Family road trip 1950s.

Top: Herb Anderson, Vera Anderson, Herb’s Wife Pat, Herb’s mother Pauline Anderson, Herb’s Daughter Michelle. Bottom- Pauline and Michelle at lake. 1961

My father once said that Vera Anderson was such a traveler that if you said “we’re going…” before you got out the where, she’d say “Let me get my hat.”  He said he suspected that when she died, if someone walked up to her coffin and said, “Vera, we’re going…” she’d get up out of the coffin.

When Ken and I moved to Arizona, my mother and father were sorry to see us leave Ohio, but more than that, they were excited because now they had an excuse to travel west.  Ken and I and our three boys drove many times from Arizona to Ohio, always taking a slightly different route and stopping at different roadside attractions.

Ironically, when Grandma Vera died, Ken and I were on yet another road trip–this one to the 1964 New York World’s Fair. We drove back to Ohio where we learned of her death and stayed for the funeral. I kept wanting to walk up to the coffin and say, “Vera, we’re going….”

Ancestor Tracking: Great-Uncle Will, Willie or Bill Stout

William Stout

Ancestor Great Uncle William Morgan Stout (1938) 65 years old, according to family notes.

 

It is time to move on to some other members of the family in my ancestor tracking. Since I have talked quite a bit about Vera Stout Anderson, I’ll start with her older brother, William Morgan Stout (1873-1944), known as Bill Stout or Will Stout.

My great-uncle carried the name of his father Doctor William Stout and his maternal grandfather, Jessie Morgan. One of these days I’ll tell you why it has always seemed very odd to me that Uncle Bill’s mother decided to give him the name Morgan.

 

 

The Gay Nineties in Manhattan

My favorite of all my ancestor pictures is this one from 1909 of Uncle Bill Stout and his wife Jean at a dinner party.

1909 Diner in New York City

Great-Uncle Bill Stout and wife Jean at dinner party with friends.

“”””‘”Taken Jan 21-09 about 10:30 p.m. In dining Room of the Brown’s apartment 545 W 138 St.”  These notes were made on the back by Jean, bless her heart. She introduces the people from right to left as Brown, Yarnell, Bill, Benedict, Brown, Yarnell, Jean and Benedict.

So Jean is the pretty lady with her chin in her hand, and Bill is the guy with the heavy black mustache. I have great fun trying to figure out what they had for dinner, served up in all those lovely china and crystal dishes. Isn’t that a sherry decanter I see? And they are having after dinner coffee.Looks like someone on this end of the table didn’t eat his/her vegetables. What’s the guy on the right have in his hand? Is that a remote switch for the camera, or more likely a very fat cigar?

Uncle Bill Stout was born in Killbuck, Ohio, but lived in New York. Since he is the only member of the family who wound up in the big city, it is interesting to see how and why that happened.

Bill Stout at School

Ancestor William Stout

William Stout, a college swell (circa 1892)

Here he is as a college student, at 18 years old. (And I’m NOT the one who drew a circle around his picture!) I’m sure that the family had high hopes for their only son, since papa was the town doctor and came from a family loaded with ambitious men. They included his uncle Frank Stout, an attorney in Omaha.

However, Bill Stout, it seems, liked to party. His father, a strict church goer and teetotaler, finally had enough and turned his back on Bill.

There is a family legend that a woman living in a nearby town, who was a bit of a Bohemian–an artist– took a fancy to the much younger man and decided to finance his law school education in New York. So off went Bill to law school.

Note:  UPDATE May 2017.  I have learned that Will apparently didn’t spend much time at Mt. Union, but instead in October 1895, he enrolled for four years of college at St. Lawrence University in the town of Canton in upstate New York.  In his freshman year (he was already twenty-two years old) he was selected as captain of the baseball team. In May 1899, he graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in the College of Letters and Science.

Although he was listed with his parents in the 1900 Census in Killbuck, Ohio, under occupation, the entry was “at school.”  He must have enrolled in law school after graduating from St. Lawrence College because he graduated in 1900 from New York Law School.

William Stout college days

Wm Morgan Stout in back of carriage riding in Central Park perhaps

New York Law School

If his obituary, which says he graduated in 1891, is correct he was part of an exciting academic rebellion. Given the other things I have learned about Bill Stout, that would not surprise me in the least.

Since New York Law School was officially founded in June 1891, it is possible that Bill Stout started school at Columbia College School of Law and joined the group of students and professors who rebelled against controls imposed by the board of that school.  They founded the new New York Law School which quickly became (and remains) one of the outstanding law schools in the nation. This story would also explain why my mother always said that Bill Stout attended Columbia. Updated May 2017

Bill Stout Makes a Life in New York

At some point around the time he was in law school, he met and married his wife Jean.  She had been married before and had one daughter, according to my mother’s oral history. Uncle Bill Stout adopted the daughter, who mother remembered was named Margaret and owned an antique store as an adult. I have no idea if she took the name Stout, but it would be interesting to find out more about that relationship.

UPDATE: May 2017 He never returned to Ohio to live. About 1906, he was hired by the Interboro Railroad (streetcar line) and according to his obituary he worked there for 34 years, until he retired in 1940.

The family reconciled very quickly. Or at least his mother visited him in New York and I have a picture of her on a double-decker bus.  Not only that, but his mother and father sent my grandmother Vera to live with Bill in New York for a short time — and that’s another story.

Bill and Jean were big travelers, my mother said, and they would go through Killbuck, Ohio and visit from time to time, but if I ever met them, I was too young to remember. Since he and Jean had no children of their own, and the adopted daughter did not stay in touch with our family, I know very little about them, but from the sparkle in his eyes in his photographs, and the stories about his independent nature, I think I would have liked him very much.

I have not made a great effort to track William Morgan Stout’s life, but I do have a note in family archives that his address was 537 W. 149th Street in New York. (I don’t know at what time period, but suspect it may be when my grandmother stayed with him in 1899-1900.[NOTE: Details, details. I have discovered the source for that address was the back of a photo of his mother taken in the late 1920’s. Looks like the photographers note to send him a copy, so he lived on 149th Street in the 1920’s.]) I did a cursory search for on-line city directories and found W. Morgan Stout, lawyer, listed at 21 Park (that would be office) and in the same entry: home 461 W. 155th Street in 1907. I did find some more information and a picture. Read about it in 3 Historic Houses and a Kidnapping.

Retirement

UPDATE: May 12, 2017  When Will retired in 1938, he and Jean moved from Manhattan to Farmingdale, New Jersey.  Since the Stout family’s first settlements were in New Jersey, there are still many, many Stout families there, and no doubt Will was in touch with some of his Stout relatives.  I’m happy that he had family around, but frustrated because I now have to wade through numerous William Stouts in order to find my great-uncle!

For a long time, I was frustrated that I could find no record of his death in New York or New Jersey. However, I finally discovered an obituary–in Palm Beach, Florida.  After three years in New Jersey, Will and Jean had moved to Palm Beach, a fashionable retreat for Easterners, and he died there in March 1944.  I also learned that he had been cremated, which explains the lack of tombstone.  I have yet to find a will (which I believe a lawyer would have had) or a death certificate. But I’m working on it.  The obituary says that his ashes were returned to Farmingdale. However, Jean, his wife, disappears from view, just as she is invisible before their marriage. 

Can you help with my ancestor tracking? I would love to know more about Jean and her daughter.

Since I don’t have first names for any of those people in the dinner picture, I’m hoping someone will see the picture and recognize someone. There’s a good chance that at least one of those men is a lawyer.

Do you have any ancestors who might have been acquainted with lawyer William Morgan Stout or the people he dined with in New York City, 1909?

Notes on Research (Added May 2017)

Oral History from Harriette Anderson Kaser, Bill Stout’s neice, from 1990’s and early 2000’s.

Family photographs in the author’s possession.

U. S. Federal Census, 1880, Killbuck, Holmes, Ohio; 1900, Killbuck, Holmes, Ohio; 1910, Manhattan, Ward 12, New York, New York; 1920, Manhattan, Assembly Dist. 22, New York, New York; 1930, Manhattan, Kings, New York, New York; 1940, Farmingdale, Monmouth, New Jersey

New York State Census, 1905 Manhattan, New York, New York ; 1915, New York, New York, New York

Florida Death Index 1877-1998, Ancestry.com, William M. Stout, 1944, Palm Beach

Ohio Births and Christenings Index, 1774-1973, Ancestry.com,  Willie M. Stout

U.S., Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007,
William Morgan Stout, SSN 063098893 Life Claim, 17 Aug. 1938.

U.S., World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918,  William Morgan Stout, Sep 1918, : New York; Registration County: New York; Roll: 1786805; Draft Board: 146

The Post Standard, Syracuse, New York, “Will Graduate from College of Arts and Science”, May 21, 1899. Source: fultonhistory.com, Repository: New York Public Library.

The St. Lawrence Plain Dealer, “St. Lawrence College Entrance Class”, 2 Oct. 1899, Source: fultonhistory.com. Repository: New York Public Library

Unknown Newspaper, Obituary with dateline “Killbuck, March 31”. Possession of Paul William Kaser.