Tag Archives: Guy Anderson

Dorcas Middaugh Brink, 12 Children, 6 Living

 

DORCAS MIDDAUGH (1826-1904)

HERstory

It would be great to be able to tell some new stories about Dorcas Middaugh Brink, my great-great grandmother. However, I already told you the major stories of that family when I wrote about Abraham Brink (1828).

That’s the story of women in history isn’t it?  I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry when I saw a major newspaper’s coverage of the historic event that took place in Philadelphia yesterday.  The headline read “With Nomination, Clinton Makes History“. Under the headline they published a huge photo of former President Bill Clinton.  So the historic even was the nomination of a former president?  Nah, it was that other Clinton–the WOMAN. Oh, yeah, women make history, too.

Sorry Dorcas. My bad, as they say in the 21st century.  I should have told the story of the birth of twelve children and the loss of six children, the growth of an Ohio farm and the perspective of my great-grandmother’s family from your viewpoint instead of from that of your husband, Abraham. But things being what they are, I have more information on him.  So here’s what I know about you grandma.

A Woman’s Life

Dorcas Middaugh was born to Jedidiah Middaugh and Ann Coddington Middaugh in Danby Township, Tompkins County, New York on May 2, 1826. Danby was and is a small town south of Ithaca New York, not far north of the Pennsylvania border.  Her father had been born in New Jersey, but her parents settled in New York when they married.  Dorcas had an older brother, and as she was growing up, at least two more brothers were added to the family. Sometime after 1840, the family moved to Holmes County, Ohio, where she met and married Abraham Brink.

Her mother and father-in-law, as well as her father and mother lived nearby when she was a young bride, and as her children grew up, they also stayed nearby.

At this point to fill in Dorcas’ life for the next 47 years, which included the birth of twelve children, marriages of the oldest and the birth of grandchildren–please read Abraham Brink Takes Root in Ohio.

After Abraham

When Abraham died in 1898, Dorcas went to live with her daughter Mary V. Brink, the widow of Joseph Anderson in a nearby township in Holmes County, Ohio. My grandfather Guy Anderson and his bride Lillis shared the house with his mother, Mary. Since I knew my grandfather Guy (whose 2nd wife was my grandmother) and he lived for a couple of years in the same house with HIS grandmother, Dorcas, I feel a connection to Dorcas Middaugh Brink.

In 1900, when the census report was filed, Dorcas reported that she was a widow, had 12 children, but only six were living. When you read Abraham Brink’s story, you will see that she lost three of her children in a very short period of time.

Lillis and Guy had a daughter in 1901 (My aunt Rhema Anderson Fair) and a son in 1903.  Lillis died, probably of complications from childbirth in 1903.

In March of 1904, Dorcas died and was buried in Wolf Creek Cemetery in Holmes County.

Dorcas Middaugh

Dorcas Middaugh Brink’s tombstone, Wolf Creek Cemetery, Holmes County, Ohio

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P.S. In October of 1904, my grandfather married his second wife, my grandmother, Vera May Stout.

How I Am Related

  • Vera Marie Badertscher is the daughter of
  • Harriette Anderson Kaser, who is the daughter of
  • Leonard Guy Anderson, who is the son of
  • Mary Brink Anderson, who is the daughter of
  • Abraham W. Brink.

Notes on Research

 

Antique Car Mania and a Road Trip that Went Wrong

In tomorrow’s 52 Ancestors Story, I talk about a journey that my mother’s family made annually from Killbuck, Ohio in Holmes County to my grandmother Vera Stout Anderson’s relatives in Guernsey County. Instead of food this week,we’re talking about a journey in an antique car.

Mother (Harriette Anderson Kaser) mentions in her story that her great aunt Elizabeth Stout “Lib” Cunningham was a terrific cook, but unfortunately, she doesn’t tell us what Lib cooked.  Instead she remembers all the details about every antique car, the road conditions and travel directions. Even though my mother was a home economics teacher for many years, she was always more interested in cars than in food preparation.

In her eighties and nineties, she could lovingly describe every car she ever owned.  And Grandma Vera Anderson and Grandpa Leonard Guy Anderson started driving cars as soon as it was feasible.  After the ones named below, in the late 20’s they owned a Stutz, which you can see here. My uncle Herbert Anderson posed beside that car in 1927. 

In her story that I relate tomorrow, Mother describes the red Maxwell Runabout that her parents were driving when she and her brothers were small.  From the pictures I have been able to find, theirs was probably a 1912.  Mother describes a round gas tank in front of a luggage box and that is missing on the earlier models I’ve seen pictures of, but it is present in 1912. Nevertheless, here’s a picture of a 1911 Maxwell Runabout, because I like to picture my Grandmother and Grandfather and their three small children in this bright red car.

Antique car Maxwell runabout

1911 Maxwell runabout. Photo By Greg Gjerdingen, Creative Commons License

Mother tells another story about a  later trip to Guernsey County, in another car, the Saxon. The Saxon was harder to find pictures of (with use permitted), but here’s one that was for sale. It is a 1917, which was no doubt more practical, although not nearly as much fun.

Antique Car, Saxon

1917 Saxon Touring Car.

Here’s my mother’s story of a trip that went wrong.

One time when we decided to go to Guernsey County, we had just gotten a new Saxon car.  We were pretty good chunks of kids by this time, pretty good size, and Grandma Stout was going with us.  Now Grandma Stout was a little bit like our mother.  She was a good traveler.  She liked to go and she never complained on a trip, no matter where she went or how uncomfortable she was.

We got down on the other side of Newcomerstown on this trip and it started raining.  It poured and it poured, and we started up a little hill–not a very big hill–and dad had to change gears.  When he changed gears, the rear axle broke on the car, and there we were –stranded in the car.  It was night by the time we got that far because we’d been so slowed down on the mud roads. They were mud roads out of [south of] Newcomerstown.  They had no pikes. [paved roads]

We looked out across a field and there was a light in a farmhouse out across the field and so …Dad decided that maybe we should try to get over there to get out of the car because we couldn’t stay in the car all night and he couldn’t see to do anything with it. So we started walking.

By this time the rain had slaked up a little bit, but it was wet and so messy.  We started walking and we came to a little stream and Grandma didn’t see the stream and she fell. We thought that she would be hurt, but she got up laughing and thought it was a really good joke that she had fallen the stream.

By this time the storm was over, and it was getting moonlight.  It was rather nice, and we could see. When we got to the farmhouse, we realized that we were not at any palatial place.  It was probably nine o’clock by that time.  The peple were so nice.  They were quite poor. You could tell that, but they tried so hard to accommodate us and find sleeping [places]. …there were my brothers, my Grandmother, and my dad and mother and I, so there were six of us dropping in on these people, and this poor farm lady put every one of us to bed.

I don’t know how any of us slept very well.  I think I did.  If I’m not mistaken, I slept with two girls that were in the family, and Grandmother slept in a bed with the hired girl. She said [later] that the bed didn’t smell very good, and Grandmother was pretty particular anyway.  She’d have been willing to sit up all night, but she knew that would offend the woman.  And Dad and Mother had a bed, and the boys shared a bed with their son.

In looking for pictures and information about the Saxon car, I came across a site dedicated to Saxons and their collectors.  They have a story there, The Suffragist Saffron Saxon, about a Suffragette who traveled across the country campaigning for the woman’s vote.  Since Grandma Stout read the New York Times, sent to her by her son Will, I like to think that she read that story and it influenced the family decision to buy a Saxon.

Of course I can’t provide concrete evidence, but the circumstantial evidence is strong. We know her son who lived in New York, sent her the paper. We know that her greatest desire was to live long enough for women to vote. And we know she was not bashful about expressing her opinion.

Perhaps she would have changed her mind after the night of the road trip gone wrong in this antique car.

Notes:

“Harriette Anderson Kaser’s Memories of Killbuck, Ohio in the late 1800′s and early 1900′s” were transcribed from an audiotape recorded in the home of P. W. Kaser, Fresno, California about 1980.  Paul William Kaser, her son, made the transcription.  Vera Marie Kaser Badertscher made slight edits.

Added material was taken from other notes of conversations with Harriette,

Wrangles the Praying Pony: 52 Ancestors #11- Harriette Anderson (Kaser)

Harriette Anderson (Kaser): 1906-2003

Many little girls pray for a pony. My mother had a pony that prayed.

Paul and Harriette Kaser 1983

Paul and Harriette Kaser 1983 (Around the time she recorded these memories.

It is the stories that Harriette Anderson Kaser left behind that help us visualize what life was like in her grandmother’s time, her mother’s time, and in the early 20th century when she was a girl, driving a pony cart.

Seeing a small town in Ohio today, it is sometimes hard to imagine barns in the back yard of houses in the middle of town and milk cows that were taken to pasture every day. But even though my mother eventually flew on an airplane, her life started in the age of transportation by horse (or pony) .

 

Doc Stout, Harriette and Bill

Doc Stout, Harriette and Bill Anderson

In that 1909 picture, my mother is nearly three years old, and is seated on her grandfather “Doc” Stout’s lap. She was born on August 15, 1906 and the picture was probably taken in May, 1909. Since she was a tiny tot in 1909, I will let her memoirs, recorded in 1980, speak for her. (To see the house she lived in when the family picture was taken, sitting on her grandfather’s lap, take a look at this article and  the house in the background of the 1909 photograph.)

But another house, in Killbuck, Ohio, was the one that she thought of as home. Front Street with grocery stores and the post office and other essentials, ran between the Killbuck Creek bridge and her family’s church, the Church of Christ, on the east edge of the village. The Stout home stood on Main Street, just one block from the main shopping street. The main road to Millersburg, the county seat, ran down Main Street, and the nicest houses in town were built along Main Street.

Here’s an earlier image of that house in town, when her own mother (Vera Stout) was a small girl.

Stout Family Home in Killbuck, Ohio

Dr. William Stout and family in front of family home, circa 1885. Doc Stout, Vera, Will, Maude, and Hattie.

Grandpa [Stout] had done quite well…so much so that he was able to accumulate enough to build his home and he was quite proud of that house.  This home became later our family home–I mean Guy and Vera Anderson’s family home.  We all still thought of this place as home, always.  The fact is, I was born in that place.

Mother [Vera Anderson] had come from their home in the country [ the house where the 1909 picture was taken] and so I was born at my grandfather and grandmother’s house in Killbuck, so the house is special to me.

You can see  the dirt street in front of this house in 1885. The streets were still dirt in the early 1900s, and there were far more horses than cars on the streets, so the streets were a play place for the children.

Grandmother [Harriette Morgan Stout] would rush to close our windows at daybreak. The windows were always open at night in the summertime, but she would have to close them during the day when the horses and buggies would go down through town and the dust would start flying.

When Guy and Vera Anderson moved into the big old Stout house (about 1911) a barn stood behind the house, along with the original summer kitchen and other small outbuildings, including an outhouse. In other words, it was not any more “citified” than the farm house they had lived in since they were married in 1904. When they first moved in, the house did not have indoor plumbing, and Guy installed the first bathrooms. 

The family kept a milk cow in the barn and little Harriette sometimes drove the cow out to pasture, over the bridge across Killbuck Creek and back home in the evening. But her prized possession was Wrangles, the pony.

Zane Grey filming

Zane Grey filming Riders of the Purple Sage

Daddy Guy (my grandfather) was a big fan of Zane Grey, and they named the pony after a Zane Gray story that mother said was called “The Wrangler.” [I can’t find a book by that name, but Riders of the Purple Sage, Grey’s breakout book and very popular western was published in 1912, and like most of his books, it does have wranglers in it.]

The pony had been beaten by the man who owned him previously, so if you walked up behind the pony where he couldn’t see you, he’d spook and run away.  Otherwise, he was gentle and obedient. The children (Harriette, Bill and baby brother Herbert) even taught him stunts, including “roll over,” and pray.

He’d get down on his knees like he was saying his prayers and put his head down.  We just had him doing everything, but if you ever walked up back of him, look out.  HIs heels went up in the air and he took off.

One time, Mother [Vera Anderson] bought a new rug and gave Grandma [Hattie Morgan] the old rug for her porch.  They rolled it up and put it in back of the pony buggy, and I was going to drive the pony down to Grandma’s which was just a block from where we lived.  Well, they must have put the rug across the seat and instead of going around and petting Wrangles and getting in the buggy, which would have been all right, I jumped up on top of the rug, and Wrangles took off.

Across the street was a row of trees beside a big porch, and a car parked next to the trees. Wrangles took off between a row of trees and the car, and when he went in there the buggy was wider than the space between the trees and the car.

You could not hold him, he just went right straight out of his harness and left me and the buggy sitting right in there between the tree and the car.  Well, Dad came over to find out if I was hurt.  I was scared to death, but I wasn’t hurt, and he said, “Now what you’ve got to do, you’ve got to get right on Wrangles and ride.”

Well, Wrangles just went trotting on down to the barn and went right in his stall and there he was, waiting for us.  Dad and I went down to the barn and I immediately got on his back and rode him.  He never ran off with me afterwards.

Finally our Dad decided we were too big for ponies and he sold him to another Lowe family in town that had some children.  We all cried.  Everyone was crying.  We were great big grown up kids, but we cried when we lost the pony Wrangles.  He was beautiful.

THEN AND NOW

I have fond memories of the Stout/Anderson house, also, as my mother and father and I lived there with Grandma Vera for short periods. The barn was gone by the time I can remember the house. After a piece of the barn’s roof fell down and hit one of my cousins,  the barn was finally torn down.

The newspaper article tells about my grandmother’s sale of the house in 1960, when she was 79 years old. This is the way I remember the house in the 1940s and 50s. Grandma Vera had enclosed the porches on the first and second stories and some of the ornate trim was gone.

This is what the house would have looked like when it housed the Anderson Restaurant, which you see in the banner at the top of the page.

 

 Stout-Anderson house newspaper article

Stout-Anderson house newspaper article

The Stout/Anderson home on Main Street in Killbuck, built in the early 1880’s was first moved around the corner in the 1960s to make room for a new grocery store parking lot. Decades later it was demolished. 

The old Stout farm, which became the Anderson farm, and the home of Bill and Sarah Anderson, was located on the old Route 62 where there was a “dead-man’s curve” in the road as you left the Killbuck Valley. The Stouts never lived on the farm, but used it for income. However, there was a cabin where the family spent time. The land is now a wildlife preserve with a sportsman’s club on the property.

NOTES:

“Harriette Anderson Kaser’s Memories of Killbuck, Ohio in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s” were transcribed from an audiotape recorded in the home of P. W. Kaser, Fresno, California about 1980.  Paul William Kaser, her son, made the transcription.  Vera Marie Kaser Badertscher made slight edits.

Added material was taken from other notes of conversations with Harriette, and from a Holmes County Hub (undated) newspaper article about the Stout home and a Wooster Daily Record article dated Thursday, December 15, 1960.

Birth, wedding and death dates, locations and occupations come from family Bible records, personal knowledge, and census and other official data.

A recorded conversation with Herbert Guy Anderson made in his home in St. Petersburg Florida in 2008 added some details.

Family photographs are in the author’s possession.
This has been a weekly post in the 52 Ancestors/52 Weeks Project started by Amy Johnson Crow at “No Story too Small.” Check out her weekly recap showing the list of participants for some ripping good stories.