Thursday, March 31, 2011

Cameron, PA Notes-Frances Elizabeth Schwab Murray

The pace of my posting has slowed now.  I am at the end of Frances' writings.  I hope it it has been/will be entertaining and useful to readers.  Up until now, I have interspersed some posts about my family research with posts that are transcriptions.  Going forward, I won't have Frances to provide a foundation.  I wish there were more because, well... just because.

Thanks, Gram.

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The old house in Climax Hollow was lived in by the German family.  A daughter, Gertrude, was a school teacher in Emporium and Cameron.  She was one of my mother’s teachers. 

The Post Office in Cameron was a store and Post Office combined in 1907.  Shortly afterward, John, his brothers Edward and Alfred built a much larger store on the lot where Bill Howlett’s home is locate.  John and wife Edna ran the store and Post Office until they moved to Emporium in1913.  The store was sold to a Mr. Salter until it burned down.  The Post Office was then run by Mr. Edward Stewart, later by Mrs. Roy Page, then Mrs. William McVain.  The last postmaster was Joseph Schreffler, then the Post Office was closed and mail delivered by Star Route.  Canoe Run’s one and only postmaster was Fred Webster.  It was located in the company store.  It was run by Mr. Webster back in early 1900s.

Cameron had two large hotels at one time.  Green Mayo, one of the Mayo Brothers that did lumbering in Cameron built the Cameron House Hotel in 1867 (ed. note: the 1887 date originally  posted was a typo) and ran it for three years.  Al Walker ran the hotel for years then Ed McFadden took over the hotel.  When he died, his son, John, ran it until it was torn down. His family also had their living quarters in the hotel.  The Cameron House Hotel was across the railroad from the depot. Some of the foundation was still there in the early 1900s.

Green Mayo ran the hotel for a few years, then built the big boarding house and it was run by Mrs. Perkins as long as the Mayo Brothers lumbered in Cameron. 

The Valley House was located on the corner lot across from Bill Howlett’s place at the Y of the roads.  I don’t remember anyone’s name, but as a teenager, I worked a little at both hotels.  There was another hotel, long before my time.  It was built behind the depot, between the depot and the main road.

The Hunts Run Lumber Company built the big dam across the stream for their saw mill that was just below the boarding house.  The saw mill was later sold to Mr. Barrows who built his house on the hill opposite to where the little church stands.  In the early 1940s that house was sold to my two uncles, Ed and Alfred Schwab.  They had the house moved down to the flat behind the church where it stands today (1973).  That was a moving job to remember—not even a pane of glass was broken.  Nothing was removed except four steps to the front porch.

The first store built in Cameron was built by Mr. Quintard, who was president of the corporation from New York that ran Mount Hope Coal.  Their offices were in the store.  The first Post Office I remember in Cameron was in a small store owned by Mr. McConnel.

Most any kind of grain was raised in Cameron, such as corn, wheat, rye, buckwheat.  My dad used to bring his grain to the mill in Emporium where they’d grind it and take grain in exchange for the flour and feed.  All kinds of vegetables were raised.  In 1914, my dad and Ray Page raised cantaloupes, sold them by crates to a restaurant in New York.  They combined their crops in order to fill the order.  At that time we lived next door to Pages on what was at one time the Ed McFadden farm.

Dr. J.D. Johnston came to Driftwood to replace Dr. Beale, who went to the Maple Avenue hospital in DuBois.  Dr. Johnston used the office in the McDonald Hotel at Driftwood that Dr. Beale used.  Dr. Johnston stayed at the Riley’s Hotel.  I worked there at the time.  He was in Driftwood for a short time, there he brought his wife and new baby girl, who is now Mrs. Mary Donovan, to Driftwood in late 1913.  Dr. Johnston came to Emporium to work in 1914.  He had his office over what was then Vogt Shoe Store, now known as Brown’s Boot Shop.  He stayed at the Warner Hotel until he moved his family into the former Julian home on Broad Street.

Dr. Bryant located in Driftwood before he moved to Emporium.  Dr. J. D. Johnston also located in Driftwood before he came to Emporium in1914.






Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Canoe Run and Cameron Mining-Frances Elizabeth Schwab Murray



My role as Frances Elizabeth Schwab's amanuensis is coming to a close.  
This is the penultimate post of her 
writing.

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1874-start of mines and coke ovens
1905-end of when mines had good coal
1906-1908-opened other mines, but coal proved no good for coke
1911-1912-end of mines & ovens and Canoe Run


Canoe Run was known as Coal Shutes (ed note: a reference to the coal chutes) until 1903 or 1904 and about that same time Bradytown got its name also.  Up until then Bradytown was always known as The Mines or Mt. Hope. My mother was born in Coal Shutes in 1876.  The mines were operating then.  The Averell Harriman family built the coal chutes and ovens.  Andrew Brady was Superintendent of Emporium Iron Co. which took over Harriman works, named the mines after himself, built new homes on the hill for the miners’ families, about 20 in all. The houses were torn down sometime after World War I.  Also a school was built there and Carolyn Leckner was the first school teacher in Bradytown.  Mr. and Mrs. William Greenalch ran the boarding house up there.  The houses were about one mile from the tipple where the coal was run down into the crusher by the ovens in buckets on wire strung from tipple to crusher tower. A railroad ran from in front of the mine tunnels out tot the switch back beyond the tipple.  They had several high buildings for compressors and pump houses—and barns where they kept the mine mules.  Mules that was used at the mines couldn’t be used at the coke ovens; the mine mules were all smaller for they went way back into the tunnels to haul out coal in small, low cars holding about one ton of coal. 

I’ve gone into the mines with my dad.  At first the tunnel would be about seven feet high, but as you went further, it got lower and lower and, in one, the miners had to lie on their side to get at the coal 18 inches high.  That was called the Brady Drift.  Another was known as the Stewart Drift because it was put in on what was once known as the Stewart farm.  It was built in 1899 or 1900 by a firm from Ridgway, Elk Company I think they were.  The Stewart farm was owned by my great grandfather, Charles Stewart, Sr.

Before the June flood of 1889, there was houses built all along the level ground in Canoe Run, but the flood swept them away.  Later homes were built only on the higher ground. Closer to the ovens.  

There was about 100 veins, 50 on each side, a wide driveway on the top where the mules used to pull carts of coal.  The ovens had huge covers on the top, very much like sewer covers used in our streets.  The ovens were coaled from the top.  My grandparents ran the boarding house about 20 or 30 feet away from the cleated ramp that the mules went up and down.  In 1904 a company store was built , and awhile before, along bridge across the river.  Watching the men work was a big event to us kids.  The new crusher tower was built about 1900 by Hall, Kaul & Hyde of Ridgway.



Canoe Run Coal Buckets

I’ve been asked to tell a little about the coal buckets that used to bring the coal from the tipple at the top of the hill using wire rope strung from the tipple to the 3-1/2 story crusher built at the end of the coke ovens in Cameron.  That crusher was built by the Hall, Kaul & Hyde firm of Ridgway.  I remember the day after one bucket fell, loaded with coal, into the river.  It made a big impression on us kids, as we had planned to steal rides on the full bucket the day before the bucket fell.  [ed, note: The bucket was been retrieved and restored for the local museum in 1976.]

Ned Bray, son of Andrew Bray, who was Superintendent of Emporium Coal & Iron Co. and whom Bradytown was named for, rode the bucket down.  It was a dangerous thing to do, as the bucket tipped and emptied themselves and the full one started down before the empty one began to go back.  They worked just like the ski lifts do now.  It’s a wonder some of us kids weren’t killed, as we roamed over the coke oven top, up the steps to the top of the high crusher and sneaked into the tipple at the top of the mountain to try to sneak a ride down on the coal-filled buckets.

The New York corporation was supposedly composed of Averril Harriman, Delano (FDR’s maternal grandfather) and the president of the corporation, Quintard, who else was in it I could never find out.  Quintard built the first store in Cameron and in the store he also had the corporation’s office.  The corporation was called the Mount Hope Coal & Coke Company.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Notes on the Churches


I’m nearing the end of my transcription of my grandmother’s papers.  Although I plan to continue blogging about my family research, I feel a little sad to be near the end of this particular project.  After this one, only two more posts left from Frances.


Emporium area Churches-Frances Elizabeth Schwab Murray, with additions from Riley Murray, as told to Frances

Ed Dundon built a Catholic church in Sterling Run during early logging years.  It was used only a few years as the loggers and their families moved away.

Dr. James Brennan was the first priest in Driftwood at the St. James Church.

The first Catholic Church that I remember was located on the corner of East 6th Street and Chestnut Street, where years later Jack Quigley built his home.  Jack’s son lives in the home now (1972).  When the church was built, I do not know, but as a young boy, I remember the old empty church slowly rotting away.  I have no idea what year the present church was built, but I fought fire there in 1913 when the steeple was hit by lightening.  The high towering steeple was never rebuilt as it was before. (RM)  I remember so well the new steeple was finished and the bell rang for the first time.  Mrs. Mike Dolan, her daughters, Rose, Kathryn and Clarice, and myself stood on the back porch of the Hotel Dolan while the bell rang out so clear. (FM)

Church affairs at Cameron, before the present-day and only church ever built, was very few. Church was held in the schoolhouse so upkeep was nil.  We had church whenever the circuit minister was able to come Sundays.  The yearly picnic in the Rockwell Grove was the highlight of all of us kids.  Everyone went and spent the day.  School was every Sunday morning and up until 1915 we always had Wednesday night prayer meetings.  We took turns in conducting both the Sunday school and prayer meetings.  I understand service is now being held quite often in the little church and they have regular Sunday school each Sunday.

Emporium Presbyterian--Church ladies raised money for the church with quilting bees, ice cream socials and suppers.  We always had big crowds at our Christmas parties with Santa passing out the gifts.  Young and old looked forward to the Sunday school picnic at the Sizerville Park.  The rest of the town churches did about the same things, too.

Emporium used to have revival meetings in the Keystone Park.  I believe the Free Methodists were the ones who conducted the revivals.  There was also a tabernacle built where Acky McDonald has his garage.  Howards Saw Mill furnished the wood to build it.  The traveling evangelist was a very good speaker and a lot of folks went forward.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Sorting Saturday-Spiders, flooding and moving...oh, my!

Sorting Saturday is a daily blogging prompt used by many genealogy bloggers to help them post content on their sites. Any tips on how to go about sorting through a closet or box of stuff, what to do with what you find, organizing, supplies and tools you might need, etc. What about having to clean out a parent’s home once they’ve passed? This is an ongoing series by Michelle Goodrum at Turning of Generations.


We recently moved my 90-year-old mom from Arizona to Virginia to be near family. In a few weeks I'll be visiting my mom and organizing and archiving cartons of photos and memorabilia that we shipped from Arizona and that had been in storage for decades.  It will be a lot of work, but I feel really lucky that we even have these things.  Oh yes, there’s a story here.  A crazy one. (family members you can skip this one--you've probably heard it more than once)

Last November my brother and I made a trip out to start some sorting, organizing and donating.  Upon our return, I planned out the move in detail.  We would arrive back in Arizona on a Sunday and fly out, Mom in tow, on the following Wednesday morning.  It would be hectic, but doable.

We arrived on the scheduled Sunday, the weather was beautiful and we drove out to the White Tanks where my dad’s ashes were scattered.  It was a lovely afternoon.  After dinner I decided we should tackle the cartons of photos and memorabilia.  We kept more than necessary, but both my brother and had trouble what might be special or important for future generations.  We separated the cartons into Keep and Toss.  The keepers went into the walk-in closet and the toss stayed in the hallway.

Then Monday, at 4 am, the fire alarm sounded at my mom's building.  At 4:10, "Mom, is your upstairs neighbor's shower always this loud?"  At 4:15--OMG there's water pouring in around every fire sprinkler head and ceiling fixture opening. Like garden hoses on full blast.  At 4:45 the apartment was in ruins.  We had raced through the apartment grabbing artwork, photos, knick-knacks, a wonderful Kachina collection….Thankfully, the walk-in closet had no ceiling fixture and was the last area to flood.  We managed to save clothes, files and photos.  Everyone was safe, but dazed.



The scoop on what happened--the woman living upstairs is afraid of spiders, thought she saw a tarantula on the ceiling, took a swing at what was actually the fire sprinkler and snapped the head off (making it an open pipe), lost her hold on the cane which flew across the room, knocking a mirror off the wall and the mirror dropped, connecting with an outlet, causing an electrical arc, filling the apartment with smoke.   You can't make this stuff up.

It was pretty crazy.  We originally had a moving company scheduled for the next day and the return flight on Wednesday.  We had to cancel the mover (no furniture to ship) so we had one day to pack and ship everything we had salvaged via UPS (22 large cartons).  Tuesday night ended with the three of us in a hotel near the Phoenix airport putting a  serious dent in a bottle of Southern Comfort that we couldn't ship.

I think I’ll print this out and add it to one of the archive boxes so future genealogists will know how lucky they are.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Those Places Thursday-Yes, More from Emporium, PA

This is a continuation of historical information my grandfather dictated to my grandmother, Frances Elizabeth Schwab Murray, in the early 1970s.  It’s mostly just a rundown of various locations, but I hope it will be useful to someone researching the area or the families.

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Emporium Businesses, Homes, Schools-Riley Murray as told to Frances Murray

In the days before electric refrigeration, the railroads had to use ice for their refrigerators in the Pullman dining cars, as well as pack ice in the refrigerated railway express cars for their perishable products, so a trestle was built so the ice could be placed in the top of the express cars.  The ice was brought in from Lime Lake. The railroad ran on both sides of the trestle and the men would push the ice in carts, or buggies as they were called, up the trestles and dump the ice down in the top of the refrigerator cars.  Some of the ice would spill onto the ground and after the trains pulled out, the kids used to take their wagons, go to the trestle and fill up with ice that had fallen beneath the trestle, take it home to their own ice box or some would sell the ice cheap.  This trestle was built east of Quaker State gas station. Some of the railroad tracks can still be seen today.

Do you remember when E. H. Hick, on duty at the Pennsylvania Railroad tower, threw the wrong lever and caused a wreck at that ramp into the railroad depot?  Riley Murray ran the wrecker at that roundhouse.  New roundhouse was built in 1918.  The cars, the wall was pushed in, but not one pane of glass was even cracked.  You can see the dent in the brick wall by the window today.

Across the railroad tracks on Broad Street is the Cottage Hotel.  It was owned and run by Mr. and Mrs. Doug Petty.  The Commercial on Broad street was run by several different people, but for the past 75 years or more, owned and ran by Mr. and Mrs. Butler, these later years by their third daughter, Mrs. Bea Bear.

On Hemlock Street, where Murrays Service is located was a block works where Fred Bliss made concrete blocks, later John Thomas made it into a garage.   On Third Street was a machine shop and small foundry run by Allen Randolph and Nick Boar where Kautz Plumbing is now.  On Third Street was the Emporium Supply Co., run by Strayer and Rentz.  Pop Strayer was well known in them days.  He owned and lived in the house now occupied by the Kenneth Signor family on East Allegany Avenue.  Mr. Rentz built and lived in the house that Jim Klees lives in on 4th Street.

There was a grocery store on 4th Street.  Later on it became a laundry owned and run by Floyd Hilliker.  Later Hilliker ran the Hilliker and Murray Garage.  Now it’s the Keystone Garage.  On the corner was Justice of the Peace Larabee’s home.  Next to Larabee’s home was a dressmaker shop.  Dr. Smith married the dressmaker after his first wife died.  A left-handed shoemaker by the name of Yonkie was on the other side.  Schless Green house was next to the dressmaker shop.  Across the street was Maz Glasl, Sr shoe and repair shop.  I bought the shoes I was married in from Mr. Glasl.  On the other side of the Schless Green house was Annie and Pat MaHanney’s candy store. (Mike Dolan’s sister and brother-in-law)

Pete Beatty ran a cigar store on 4th Street where the Sears Roebuck store is now.  It was known as the Smith Building which was built in 1908. Don Minard ran a store on the corner of 4th and Broad; years later the First National Bank was built there. Murray Overhiser ran the store where the Cabin Kitchen now stands. Theatorium opened on Broad Street about 1906.  Moved to 4th Street in 1907 where Skip Kibe is.  Closed in 1929.

The Opera House.  I’m not sure, but I think the Farrells first built it as a skating rink, with level plank floors.  Was made into a picture show place. In 1915 and was run by Thomas Andrew and brother-in-law John Vail until their sons took over.  The water trough was in the middle of 4th and Broad Streets.  No idea when placed there, but was removed in 1910 when the street was paved.  There was hitching posts all up and down the streets.  The drinking fountain was put in about 1915.

First place in town to have electric lights was where the coffee shop is now.  At that time it was a saloon run by Dan McDonald.  Mr. Kraft owned a bottling works located on Broad Street where the Motor Coil parking lot.  Later on it was used as an ice plant where they made 50 pound cakes of ice.

Mr. and Mrs. John Parsons owned and ran a store where Mrs. Ben Erskins now lives.  He built a new home on his vacant lot next to the store.  They never lived in the home, as they disagreed on furniture.  She wanted all new ones.  So, after the death of Parsons, the home was sold to Charlie Rishell.  After the death of Mr. and Mrs. Rishell, the home was sold to the Presbyterian Church for a manse. 

Mrs. Ben Erskine’s house was built by Mr. Dodson who ran the drug store, known as the French Pharmacy, on the corner of 4th Street where the A & P store is now.  Mr. Dodson was the father of Mrs. Neil Coppersmith, Sr.  Verne Heilman, son of Dr. Heilman ran a hardware store next door to Judge La Barr combination furniture and funeral parlor.  Later it was run by Mr La Barr’s son-in-law, Charles Rishell.  After Rishell’s death, Neil Coppersmith took over the entire building.  It is now a furniture and appliance store.  Across the street from where Carl Kelly has his insurance office was once the office of Dr. Gallaher’s optical parlor.  He was also a Justice of the Peace.  Frank Munday had a harness shop where the laundrymat is now.

Leckner ran a shoe store where the Silco store is now.  After Mr. Leckner’s death, the store was run by his daughter and his son-in-law, John McUlchay.  Next to the Leckner store, Charles Carmello ran a store.  These have all been replaced by Silco.  An Adams Express office was located in what is now Phil’s shoe store.  John Logan was manager of the office.  His daughter married Guy Felt of the Guy and Mary Felt nursing home.  John Day ran a grocery store where the liquor store is now.  There were no electric ice boxes or such, but Mr. Day kept his vegetables fresh by using a cold water sprinkling system.  Next door to Mr. Day’s store was once a grocery store run by Alex McDougall.  John Day built the house on 5th Street where the George Rishell now resides.  Before that house was built, the Presbyterian Church was built on that lot.

Balcom and Lloyd ran a general store where Jasper Harris & Sons is now.  The Cameron County Press-Independent printing office was in the upstairs over the store.  The Press moved in 1910 to what was known as the Climax Powder office, but is known now as the Emporium Water Building.  John Blinzer ran a barbershop on the corner of 4th and Broad.  Jimmy Quinn was one of the barbers.  Mr. & Mrs. John Blinzer ran the first 5 and 10 cent store in Emporium in the Metzer Building where McCorys is now. 

Milford "Smitty" Smith, Pressman, Typesetter, left, John Raymond Klees, Publisher, 
Emporium Independent, right.

On Broad Street where Johnson garage is, Fred Logan had his livery stable, sold hay, grain and feed.  Later on he built a new building to become Logan Garage which was destroyed by fire in 1928.  The fire was caused when Billie McDonald ran into the gas pump while driving the Borough roller.  The garage was rebuilt at once.  Next to Logan’s Garage was a blacksmith shop run by Joe Fisher.

Across the street where the Post Office is, there used to be a miniature golf course, built and run by Jack Norton, who was the electric engineer for the Emporium power plant.  Jack tore up the golf course after a few years and the grounds were used by carnivals that came to Emporium.  The ground was owned by the Warner Hotel, later sold for the Post Office building.

See by the Echo that Joe Olivetti has bought the house on East Allegany and now has torn it down.  That house was built by the St. Charles Hotel which Olivetti also bought and tore down.  Seems as though the idea in Emporium is to tear down and rebuild instead of restoring the old homes that could have easily been restored.  They were built when homes were meant to last.

Seeing the house torn down (1973) brought back a few memories that had almost been forgotten.  That house was built by Charles Fay, who also built the St. Charles Hotel, but my memories are of another family who lived in that house; Blane Monroe, his wife, and two daughters.  Mrs. Monroe was the former Jeannette Porter, daughter of the famous author, Gene Stratton Porter.  The Monroe family lived in Emporium for several years.  They hired my sister, Roberta, as nursemaid for their daughters.  When they returned to Philadelphia, they took my sister back with them.  She lived in their home until the girls no longer needed her services.  Mrs. Monroe later left her husband, went to California, where she married a man by the name of Meekem.  Mrs. Meekem took up writing herself, and after the death of her mother, Gene Stratton Porter, Mrs. Meekem finished writing several books her mother had started working on at the time of her death.

The first house built where the Coppersmith funeral home is located-who built it I don’t know-but a family by the name of Newton lived there.  When the house was torn down, as a small boy I got the big bell that was on the front door.  It was an extra large bell as Mrs. Newton was hard of hearing.  Joe Kaye built his house on the Newton lot.  Years later two wings of the house burned, but Mr. Kaye never rebuilt them, but lived in the house as we know it today.

The Rhinehul’s house on Broad Street was built by Mr. Garrity.  It’s been there as long as I can remember.  Dr. Bryan and his family lived there. One of the Bryan girls was a schoolteacher.  She taught in the Emporium school.  I don’t remember her name.  I think it was Nina.

Fred Julian built the house next to Garritys.  Julian also built the Climax Powder Co.  Dr. D. Johnston moved into his home in 1914.  His family still lives there now in 1972.  Next to the Julian home on 5th and Broad Streets was the home built by J.P. Felt who owned the flour and feed mill.  After J.P.’s death, his son, dentist Dr. Leon Felt, lived there with his first wife, the former Carolyn McQuay in 1912 or 1913. Divorced.

B.W. Green, a lawyer, built the home on 6th Street now owned by Tom Tompkins.  Mr. Green had his law office on the corner of 4th Street and Broad, where the Emporium Trust Co. is as of today.  James Creighton built his home on the west side of B.W. Green.  Thad Moore built his home next to Creighton.  Next Creighton was Bill Grose’s home.  It was torn down later to build the Climax house in1903.  Bill Wyman lived in the Climax house for years.  Next Dynamite Smith House.  Max Balcom’s father lived in the house on the corner of Maple and 6th.  Next Gould house corner of Maple and 6th.  Joe Kaye built the house Mrs. Mark Orr lives in now.  Corner 5th and Maple, Pete Beatty house, is now owned by Mrs. Violet Hammersly.

The Weidenberger house on West 6th was built by Lynn Cravens.  Dr, Heilman built the house on 4th Street across from what is now known as the Sylvania Club.  But that was the home of Henry Achu who had it built for their residence.  Two of the oldest houses left standing today, 1966, is the Swartwood home, occupied now by their daughter, Helen, and her husband.  Mr. and Mrs. Henry Lloyd and the Harry Andrews homes both located on the east end of town. 

Emporium had a horse-drawn bus used to meet all the trains at both depots.  Dave Hayes owned the bus and horses.  He ran the livery stable which was right behind the present Post Office.  The fire department had a long ladder and I remember when the Henry Achu home burned, some of the fireman were riding to the fire on the bus, and, as the fireman swung the corner of 4th and Broad Street, the ladder swung to the side and swept the fireman off the bus.  That was in 1912.

The early fire department begun in 1893 consisted of hand drawn hose carts with a firehouse called a Hamilton hose house in where Pat Lewis has his store.  They had a gas whistle mounted on a pole by the hose house.  The Mountaineers were located on Broad Street where the Borough building is now.  Their gas whistle was on the corner of 4th and Broad where the bank is.  The Citizens hose house was on Locust street.  In what was later the Sons of Italy Lodge room, back of what is now Joe Olivetti’s store, the gas whistle was on a pole by the East End Post Office.  The first fire truck was bought in 1916, an American LaFrance truck.  Later on another truck was bought.  As the town grew so did the addition of more fire equipment.

A lot of old-timers will recall where the Macabee Lodge was located.  Today the sign is still on the outside of the building.  It was also known as the Metzer Building.  (Riley Murray)  The Lady Macabees had their Lodge there, too.  Now the Ladies Lodge is know as the North American Benefit Association.  I joined the Lodge 50 years ago when it was known as the Women’s Benefit Association.  Run entirely by women, the first president was a woman from Warren, PA.  It is now the leading women’s fraternal organization in Canada. (Frances Murray) 

The McGinnis Steel Mill was located on Cameron Road: east of the present Press Metal.  The steel mill went from Emporium to Corry, PA.  A cheese factory was located where Ed Horning now lives.  The milk plant (no pasteurized, raw milk was the kind sold at the time) built in Plank Road Hollow.  Later turned into a home now owned by Ruby Broker. 

The Gus Haupt and Charles Zarps blacksmith shop was located in the vicinity of what is now the fire house and city hall.  Zarps shod oxen, for which special shoes had to be made.  Later John Narby and Augustus Zarps ran shops in the West End, while Charles Zarps had his in the East End. 

Mankey Furniture factory was located on Pine Street, east of the football field—made all kinds of furniture.  It was working 1894, as my brother worked there at that time.  It closed about 1900.

Dr. Bardwell, Dr. Falk, and Dr. Fullmer all had offices and lived in the house where Dr. Hackett is now.  Dr. Leon Felt, dentist, had his office where the Lathrop Dental Office is located.

Grist Mills-The only flour mill was owned by J.P. Felt where they had one bin for flour, but sold two kinds out of it.  It was called Felt’s Best.  Mr. Hausler ran a feed mill, ground only feed.  Later Mr. Battin ran it and the last one to run it was Ted Rogers that I remember.

Schools
Plank Road (now used as a shooting club), Rich Valley, West Creek, Sizerville, Whitmore Hill, Bradytown, Canoe Run, Huntley, Cameron Mason Hill, Sages Farm. The first high school built on 6th Street was built in 1893, finally torn down in 1974.

Miscellanea

First known orchestra in Emporium was composed of John Coy, first fiddle, Clark Harrington, second fiddle and Elaine Coy, bass fiddle, and was called Coy’s Orchestra in 1871.

Jack Wiley and Cyrus Sage and Braynard Mathews operated a saw mill just below Sages farm.

Some of the private homes had sidewalks made of flagstone, others had wooden plank walks.  The concrete walks were put in a few at a time, as it ws hand mixed.  Fred bliss did most of the concrete work in Emporium.

Magazines were many.  Saturday Evening Post.  Liberty.  Harpers Weekly.  A lot of westerns.  Women’s Home Companion.  Comfort.

There was about five houses built on what is now the airport.  I presume there is a lot of men who remember Cora Brooks, who lived on what was known as Cooks farm, up Rich Valley way.

Alex Mason took the last big log raft down the Driftwood Branch.  He also took the last raft down the Sinnemahonig River.  It was rafted near Wright Mason farm in 1915.

Parsons Dry Cleaning shop used to be the Emporium Library.

Another building has an old time sign outside the third floor--the Smith Building. 

Mike Tulis came to Emporium to work on the railroad when it was first being put through.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Oh what fun...

When I was transcribing this, I was very taken by my grandfather's use of the word "needed" instead of "wanted"  in the section about fishing.  I think that reflects a different relationship with the environment and a refreshing lack of entitlement than often seen today.

Holidays and Entertainment-Frances Murray, with additions from Riley Murray as told to Frances Murray

Holidays in Cameron
Thanksgiving wasn’t celebrated very much, mostly a little extra for our dinner.  No turkey.  We raised or own chicken and that’s what we had.  Birthdays was just a day when you were one year older.  We always had a Christmas tree.  Strung our own popcorn, made our own popcorn balls and other homemade trimmings.  Our gifts were mostly all wearables and dinner a lot like Thanksgiving dinner.  With a family of 13, She didn’t have time to do any fancy cooking.

Our Sundays’ time of getting up was same as usual.  First we got dressed in our best clothes.  Off to Sunday school and church.  We weren’t allowed to play on Sundays.   We went for long walks, no cars to ride, no stores were open on Sunday.  You did your shopping on Saturdays.  Long hike over the pipeline into Hunts Run, into Cameron, and back home.  Halloween was the time we took wheels off wagons, putting the fronts to the back and vice versa, upsetting the little houses built in the backyards.  4th of July was spent shooting firecrackers, setting off dynamite—just making as much noise as possible.  Watch parades, they always had 4th of July parades and dances.

Circus
It was the only one to ever play in Keystone Park.  They had a terrible time getting to the Park.  Broad Street bridge would not hold the heavy wagons, so the elephants had to haul them across the creek.  It rained that night and it took all the next day before the circus could get started on their way.  During the First World War, a large circus was booked to Emporium, but when they got here, they couldn’t find a place big enough to set up tents.  All they did was water the animals and move on.  One circus was held on 4th street now, now Howard’s Circle. (RM)

Fishing licenses came in about 1919 and I bought one for $1.10.  Before that you needed no license, you caught as many fish as you needed, and you fished anytime but Sundays.  I never did much hunting so I don’t remember when licenses had to be bought. (RM)

Lots of hunters came to Cameron to hunt, especially grouse, which was plentiful, very seldom saw a deer though there was lots of bear.  One of the yearly hunters was a big time baseball pitcher, an Indian by the name of Chief Bender.  He always brought along his hunting dogs and stayed at McFaddens Hotel.  George Stewart acted as his guide.  Hunting and fishing was the pastime to the men in Cameron.  Not on Sundays.  Summertime was berry-picking time in the hills of Cameron, such as huckleberry which we sold for 10 cents a quart, black and red raspberries, plenty of blackberries.  The red raspberries sold for 25 cents a quart.  And up in Mooley Hollow, lots of wild gooseberries, but the state had them all dug up because they were said to spread a blight.

The old time Cameron County fair was the big fall attraction.  The exhibits were things you see at today’s fairs in smaller counties.  The farmers tried to outdo each other on their entries, so did the women.  In 1913 my father won a prize for his entry of the biggest head of cabbage and tallest sunflower—also on the cantaloupes. 

The bandstand and dance parlor was always an attractive spot.  We used to come to Emporium on the 6:30 evening train with a big group.  The railroad would stop the 11:30 night train to let us off at Cameron, but we had to have at least a group of ten or more.  Hayrides were seldom used in Cameron as the people who had the horses and wagons were too busy doing their farm work, but wintertime was sleigh riding.  The big box sleds, filled with straw, plenty of blankets and we were bound either to Emporium or Sterling Run, perhaps to a church affair or a dance, sometimes to Emporium to the home of Mrs. Isabel Ensign for an oyster supper.  These trips took many hours of travel each way as there was no roads as we know them today.  No snow plows either and snowfalls were much heavier than of today.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Fearless Females-Brick Wall

In honor of National Women's History Month (http://www.nwhp.org/whm/history.php), Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog (http://www.theaccidentalgenealogist.com) presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month. March 20 — Is there a female ancestor who is your brick wall?

This is not my ancestor, but it could be someone's brick wall. I just was looking for a reason to post this during National Women's History Month. It seems like 1929 is too recent to have an employer acting in loco parentis, yet the letter shows it is so.  I guess I shouldn't be surprised since it wasn't until that same decade women had the right to vote in the US.

I wanted to know the daughter's name and age. I found Rose's naturalization record with the address in the letter and one possible 1920 census record had a Rosie Bahar, but no daughter. Nothing obvious in 1930. So her daughter, for me, remains nameless.





Saturday, March 19, 2011

Sports Center Saturday-Dizzy Dean, Satchel Paige...and Dad??



During WWII, my dad played baseball for the Kittyhawks at Wright Field in Ohio.  In 1945 he pitched in an exhibition game with Dizzy Dean against Satchel Paige and the Cincinatti Giants.  He's the player in the center in the photo.  (An aside---one of my favorite quotes is from Satchel Paige: "Don't look back. Something might be gaining on you.")

Friday, March 18, 2011

Gaskill, Part 2-Witchy Woman

Yesterday I took the Gaskills from Pennsylvania back in time to New York.  Today we head to New England.  Richmond, New Hampshire specifically.  Or what almost became Richmond, Vermont.  Curious?  When we look back at the American Revolution, it can be easy to think of it as a point in time, a single event with the unvarying support of aggrieved colonists and resulting in the simple straight-forward creation and acceptance of The Constitution. History lovers know there is always more to the story. In this case, before states’ rights became a prominent issue, there was the issue of towns’ rights.

The History of the Town of Richmond, Cheshire County, New Hampshire by William Bassett, published in 1884, provided me with some genealogical information on Silas and Wilder Gaskill, as well as providing a snapshot of the times.  In 1781, just eight years before my Gaskills move to New York, there was a considerable amount of turmoil as the new nation began to face the practicalities of governing.  There were a variety of proposals concerning state boundaries affecting the town of Richmond, along with some other New Hampshire towns.  One option was the creation of a state called New Connecticut, but this was not supported by the bordering states or Congress.  On March 19, 1781, responding to an invitation from Vermont, the Town of Richmond voted to secede from New Hampshire and join Vermont.  My great-great-great-great-grandfather, Silas Gaskill, was one of the chosen representatives to meet with the Vermont General Assembly.   However, New Hampshire had not given up its jurisdiction and, although there was some violence and lingering animosities between towns and the state, the seceding towns were eventually excluded from Vermont.  There continued to be political disputes until 1783 when Richmond finally voted to accept the state constitution.  Then in 1788, a convention was held for ratification of the Federal constitution.  Jonathan Gaskill, Silas’ brother was Richmond’s representative and one of those who voted against ratification.  Well, New Hampshire did ratify the Constitution and within a year, Silas and some family members had departed for New York.  And in 1790, Jonathan committed suicide.  Whether this was politically, financially (or otherwise) driven is unknown, but Jonathan did die insolvent.

But, what of Silas before New Hampshire?  It is likely he arrived and helped settled Richmond around 1765, having departed Cumberland, Rhode Island with his new wife Sarah Jillson.  I’ll fast-reverse now to Silas’ father, Jonathan, who moved from Salem or Mendon, MA to Cumberland.  Jonathan was born in Salem, MA in 1704 to Samuel Gaskill and Bethiah Woodin.  You can probably guess where this is headed.  Samuel’s father, who was also named Samuel, was born in 1663, and his mother was Provided Southwick, born in 1641.  That brings us to the next story.  Samuel senior had become a Quaker and, with the Puritans persecution of Quakers, became intimately involved in the Salem Witch Trials.  Abigail Soames (Somes) was living in his home, as house guest or housekeeper isn’t clear to me, but what is clear is that she was arrested and indicted for witchcraft:


To Constable peter Osgood  
     You are in theire Majest's names hereby required to apprehen and forthwith bring before us Abigaile Soames Single Woman, now Liveing at the house of Sam'l Gaskill in Salem; who stand accused of Sundry acts of #[Sundry] Witchcraft, (or high suspition there of) donne or Committed by her Lately. on the Body of Mary Warren & faile not
Dated Salem, May the 13'th 1692 P us *John Hathorne Assis't
*Jonathan. Corwin Assis't

(Reverse) 
Abigaile Soames

I heave Aprehended the person of 
Abigall Soams Acordinge to warrante exprest on the other side and heave broughte hir to the how of mr Thomas Beadles pr me *Peter Osgood Constable in Selem

May the 13; 1692

(Essex County Archives, Salem -- Witchcraft Vol. 2 Page 50 

Of all the things I’ve come across in my family research, I am most proud of this-- Samuel and his wife Provided signed a petition in defense of John Proctor and his wife, both accused of witchcraft:

We whose names are under witten havinge several yeares knowne John Procter and his wife do testefy that we never heard or understood that they were ever suspected to be guilty of the crime now charged apon them and several of us being their neare neighbours do testefy that to our aprehension they lived christian life in their famely and were ever ready to helpe such as stood in need of their helpe
      Nathaniel Felton sen: and mary his wife
      Samuel Marsh and Prescilla his wife
      James Houlton and Ruth his wife
      John Felton
      Nathaniel Felton jun
      Samuell Frayll and an his wife
      Zachriah Marsh and mary his wife
      Samuel Endecott and hanah his wife
      Samuell Stone
      George Locker
      Samuel Gaskil & provided his wife
      George Smith
      Ed Edward: Gaskile
 Essex County Archives, Salem -- Witchcraft Vol. 1 Page 28 

from:  Charles W. Upham, Salem Witchcraft, With an Account of Salem Village and a History of Opinions on Witchcraft and Kindred Spirits (1867)

As always, I find I have a lot of gaps to fill in, but Samuel’s father, Edward (Gaskill/Gascoine), born in 1603 in Stafford, England, died 1690 in Salem (probably not the Edward on the list above) leaves me at my initial goal for the finding the first Gaskill of my line to immigrate to America.

P.S.  Edward Gaskill married Sarah Parker [9/18/2011: Additional research indicates there is no confirming source for the Parker name for Sarah].  I can't help but recall the first episode of WDYTYA when Sarah Jessica Parker finds ancestors involved in the Salem Witch Trials.  Just sayin'.





Thursday, March 17, 2011

GASKILL, Part 1-You Are My Shining Star




Perna Gaskill, 1886

Both my maternal grandparents died before I was born.  Maybe that’s why so much information was lost on that side.  My maternal grandmother was Perna Mae Gaskill, born in 1884 in Emporium, PA.  We share middle names.  I’m sure Pernie was a fascinating woman, but I will be forever grateful my parents had the foresight not to give me her first name.  Although I never met her, in my mind she is the relative I imagine I am most like.  Some of it is just coincidence--Perna took over the family publishing and printing business after her husband died when she was 52.  I retired recently from a career in the printing industry.  My grandfather suffered from "sick headaches", which we now call migraines.  My husband is debilitated by them.  Some of it could be genetic, I suppose--Perna was Independent-minded (which I think I am, or stubborn, depending on who you ask).  She was an early proponent of Planned Parenthood and birth control and was an avid admirer of Margaret Sanger.  It was as controversial then as it has become now, though it surely was harder then for a woman to be outspoken.  (In the US, women didn't have the right to vote until Perna was 26.)  As I would learn during my research, the Gaskills have a history of speaking out and standing up for their beliefs, but we’ll get to that in due time.

My great-grandfather, Everett Gaskill, born in 1845, died in 1916 before my mother was born, so yet another gap where some history was lost.  My mom had heard he was a drummer boy during the Civil War, but knew nothing else of his life or family, not even where he was from.  I was able to confirm he was a Private in the 15th Regiment of the New York Engineers from January 30, 1865 to June 13, 1865 and the census records led me from Pennsylvania to New York.

The census research census research helped me find his parents, James and Elizabeth Gaskill in Tioga, NY.  I also found some amusing census records in 1870 where Everett became Ever Ettie the housekeeper.  But the census wouldn’t help me find James’ parents because it meant going to 1840 or earlier and therefore had head-of-household names to review.   So I started my mad Googling of the name Gaskill and Tioga, New York.  I turned up the 1785-1888 Historical Gazetteer of Tioga County, NY.  I found a town by the name of Gaskill’s Corners, NY and I found listings of a Silas Gaskill and sons Joseph, Wilder, and Uriah.

Those names provided just the fuel I needed to continue. Apparently the Gaskills married into some prominent New England families and I found a treasure trove of historical reference books and genealogical family histories.  It sure looked like James’ parents were Wilder Gaskill and Mary Studwell, but I was somewhat reluctant to accept these histories without more evidence.  Eventually, with the help of the Tioga, NY Historical Society, I recently received more information, including a copy of Wilder’s will.  James was there, so now I had a document with the link to Wilder.

Moving backward in time from James, much research had been done, but there were stories along the way which I found interesting—the little glimpses into the past that make the names and dates all real.  In 1789, Wilder had moved to New York from Richmond, NH, along with his father, Silas and his brothers, Joseph and Uriah.  They were early settlers in Tioga, NY and were involved in governing the community. In 1800, Silas and Wilder were both elected pathmasters (responsible for keeping the trails clear) in Tioga.  And while in Tioga, Silas and Wilder witnessed what was probably a meteor.  Meteors were not well-known phenomena until the middle of the 19th century.  This sighting came at a time when scientists were challenging previously accepted explanations for what we now commonly call shooting stars.  In a sign of the impact of the Age of Enlightenment, the author of the newspaper article looked to science rather than superstition for the explanation:


Posted with permission, source provider: GenealogyBank.com


Tomorrow: GASKILL-The earlier years, New England


My Irish Heritage-Is it all Blarney?

I wrote about the Murrays earlier.  I uncovered inaccurate family stories, stories that served to impede discovery of where the Murrays came from and when they came to the US.  The story that they came from Ireland is not too far-fetched with the name Murray.  Assuming that consistency over decades of census data is an indication of reliable information, all I know is that my great-great-grandfather was born in 1812 in Cayuga County, NY and that his parents were born in NY.  That would mean my supposed Catholic Irish ancestors were here well before the Irish Famine immigrants.  That would mean my ancestors immigrated to colonial America or to the newly formed United States.

Well, we know what they say about assumptions...

Until there is more data online or I have the opportunity to make a field trip to Cayuga County, I'm not sure there's much I can do.  Without better data, I could end up wasting huge amounts of time.

What if my ancestor's name wasn't really Murray?  Aagghh!!

Later today I'll post on a family line I know more about so I'll feel I've actually accomplished something.

UPDATE 12/9/13

A recent DNA test result shows my Murray line is connected to Niall of the Nine Hostages. Looks like it wasn't blarney!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Fearless Females-Lunch

Lisa Alzo of The Accidental Genealogist blog presents Fearless Females: 31 Blogging Prompts to Celebrate Women’s History Month in honor of National Women’s History Month.  Today's is:


"If you could have lunch with any female family member (living or dead) or any famous female who would it be and why? Where would you go? What would you eat?"



I have to pick one of each option.

The relative I'd want to have lunch with is my maternal grandmother, Perna Klees.  She died before I was born, so I would like to have known her.  I'll be posting a little about her tomorrow.  We'd have lunch at The Source at the Newseum since she was publisher of a newspaper.

The famous (yet little-known) female I'd have lunch with is Hypatia.  She was a Greek scholar, scientist and mathematician living in ancient Alexandria, Egypt.  Guess we'd have lunch at our local Greek restaurant.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Pennsylvania Powder Company Plant Explosion, January 7, 1957

My post today starts with some background about the dynamite industry in Emporium and concludes with a letter from my grandmother about the 1957 explosion and articles from the local weekly, Cameron County Press-Independent.  My family was very linked to the Pennsylvania Powder Company. My great-great uncle, John Schwab, was president of the company and my grandfather, Riley Murray, was an employee.  (And my uncle, James Klees, was publisher of the paper.  Ah, small towns...)





**********************************
Excerpted from Businesses in Emporium – Riley Murray, as told to Frances Schwab Murray

Gun Cotton & Picric Acid Plant (1914)
Emporium was known as the powder town.  It was here dynamite was made for the Panama Canal.  So, when the United States wanted to build a gun cotton and picric acid plant to manufacture it for use overseas during world War I, they chose Emporium, knowing the town had all the requirements needed:  men who knew the powder business and railroad outlets to all lake and seaports.  At that time we had trains running steadily to Erie, Buffalo, NY & Philadelphia.  The tannery was located where the high school and football field are now built.  The tannery had a railroad spur to their plant so the government built from the tannery up the flat to where the bridge crosses into Rich Valley, using the entire flat between the Rich Valley Road and the creek.   The grounds were enclosed by a 6 foot wire fence with barbed wire fence topping and armed guards patrolled that fence every hour of the day and night.  The gun cotton did not explode as did the dynamite, but when anything went wrong it was an instant flash of fire.  Buildings were built with outside chutes to slide down for a quick getaway, but few men made it to the door, it went too fast, and at night it would light up the sky like daytime as far away as Cameron.  Picric acid was a terrible acid.  I think it was used to make mustard gas.  As long as it was made here we never had any birds, nor leaves on the trees.  It ate the window curtains full of holes.  On damp days, if you went outside, your eyes would burn and you would begin to cough.  The men who worked at the picric plant, skin and hair turned yellow, the red heads turned green.  Oh, we had all colors of people up here in the old hometown.  The married men’s wives with white hair had the same color, too.  Wages were very high so there was no trouble getting workers.  Although they were here for a short time, they came by the coach carload, but shortly left by the baggage car.  Few knew their names except the railroad men who had to send the bodies back to their hometowns.  Some of the masonry works still can be found on the flat where the plants were built.  They had special, cave-like forts built into the hillside on the opposite side of the plants where they tested out the gun cotton. 

I never worked there.  At that time I was a boilermaker on the railroad at the roundhouse, worked there until 1922.  Then I went to the Hercules Powder plant, worked there until they moved to New Jersey.  Then I went to Pennsylvania Powder, worked until the end, as they never rebuilt after the explosion of January 1957.  Hercules & Pennsylvania Powder made dynamite and gelatin while the new plant made smokeless and picric acid.   At the smokeless plant they searched the men going in and out every day.  They didn’t allow anyone to take pictures from the road—or close by.  So far as I know, no pictures of the plant is around.

*****************************

Letter to Riley Murray, Jr., eldest son of Frances Schwab Murray
Postmarked January 12, 1957
3¢ stamp



Saturday morning

Dear Bus & family,

I’ve been trying all week to get my wits together long enough to write, but after they’ve been jarred out of you, and each night you relive the terrible ordeal all over again…I’m not much good at anything right now.  Dad [ed. note: Riley Murray, Sr.] went down to the plant Thursday morn.  They’ve started to clean up, got it going pretty good (the clean up), but this deep snow and terrific cold is hard on those guys who have always worked indoors, so they freeze out quick. 

Monday morning Dad left the house at a quarter to 4—taxi had to get him as the car was being fixed.  I went back to bed, but just couldn’t get to sleep.  Dad’s strange actions that morning had me on edge  [ed. note: He had strange premonitions].  I lay on the davenport bed (we’ve been sleeping downstairs since Christmas), looking down at the plant thru the big window, when this terrible big flash lit the sky.  I jumped and just hit the floor, half way between the bed and dining room table when I was knocked into the birdcage.  The things on the one dining room window by the bathroom went onto the floor.  I was looking out of the window when you could see dirt and rubbish high in the air. 

Dad was sweeping snow off the drums at the box house when it let go. He was thrown by the concussions, rolled almost to the change house and then back.  He tried to crawl under the drums, out of the way of falling stuff.  When it quit coming down, he ran and blew the whistle and it was just seconds until it tooted.  Then he called the office to send doctors and ambulances—Connie [ed. note: Erickson] was in the office, it took all the windows out there--the sink off the wall and Connie went outdoors under the porch. 

The one paper I sent you had a pretty good account of what happened, but no mention in any paper of the 3 men who were the real heroes, and none of them worked at the plant either.  Erwin [ed. note: Frances’ youngest son] ran right into everything, looking for Dad and started to help him to get air to Paul Streich and Charlie Tauses in the glycerin mix.  The air started to go so Erwin called by his shortwave (he just got it at Christmas).  Byron [ed. note: Frances’ middle son] was on the one end of the office (plant) so they rushed a compressor from the borough plant down.  Erwin and Ray Erwin took it while Dad and Bobbie Baker cut in the lines.  Erwin said when he asked Charlie how much air he had to have, he said, “40 pounds, but I can do with less, but if it goes below 20, that’s it for us all.”  Several times the compressor balked, and they never could get it up to 40, but Ray and Erwin stood there and worked it along.  Erwin said he was in the South Pacific and scared a good many times, but never as bad as when that compressor balked after what Charlie had said.   But he’d made up his mind, the compressor would never go below 20 if Ray and he had to move it by hand—an impossible thing to do.  But he said he moved beams and things Monday all by himself—he couldn’t even budge on Tuesday. 

Byron said when Erwin called by shortwave and said you can relax now, we ran her thru [ed. note:  i.e., using the compressed air, they safely mixed the glycerin with the acid], Smithy’s [ed. note: William Smith] legs let him down and he went to the floor.  When Erwin came up to the office, Byron said he was as white as a sheet and soaking wet with sweat, as was Ray, Charlie and Paul.  Charlie told us last night, he never thought Erwin and Ray could pull them thru after the air stopped coming once.  But Paul Streich said., “Steady, Charlie.  Murray’s a damn good mechanic, he’ll get her going steady.”  Byron stayed down at the plant office on the shortwave until 4:30. 

Anyone who had their radio on here in town would have been drove crazy by the telecast Frank Berman was putting put.  I was lucky to get my call thru to you as soon as I did for later in the day, no calls could get thru.  Poor JoAnn [Schwab] heard the news over the radio and she tried to call all day, didn’t get thru until 11:30 Monday night.  I got calls from the Epleys in Kentucky Tuesday morning—Philadelphia and N. J. Monday night,  Oil City and Bradford Monday.  This phone was a madhouse for the entire day and for the first hour every woman who had a relative at the plant, called me, thinking Dad would be able to call before their husbands could.  Smithy was just leaving for work, he was just going out the door, when he was thrown off the porch.  He had intended to go out at 6 and help the fellows in the mix house , but he had taken home a lot of book work and had stayed up until one-thirty working on it, overslept—so missed being the 4th one.

Whiting Herrick’s place was really banged up worse than anywhere else.  He has started a petition to have the plant stopped from rebuilding, but I don’t think he’ll have to bother, as it would have to be rebuilt from start.  They found 23 buildings now has been destroyed or damaged and the one magazine they thought was ok, they found had the door blown off entirely, even the frame (the lower one). 

They found a lot more of the remains Thursday and had a joint funeral service Friday night at Coppersmith’s, we were there.  Dad was up this a.m. 9 o’clock.  They took Wykoff to Sinnemahoning to bury.  Will return for Knisley, take him to Castle Garden.  Then Barton to Lock Haven where military services will be held.  He had 3 small children, 3 girls, youngest 5 weeks old. 

Geo. Streich, you remember him, he gave up the powder plant a year ago this coming spring.  He was so glad Monday he’d left, but he didn’t stay around long.  He died from a heart attack, 2 o’clock yesterday morning, so we are going to see him tonight at Coppersmiths. 

Dad’s back still bothers him, but is getting better-he feels better now that he can be busy.  Minard Sprung has a punctured lung.  He has tube drainage, but is coming along good.  Walker is up walking around the hospital, all the rest are home. 

So, all in all, it was a terrible tragedy for the 3 who were taken, but it could have been so much worse.  And we know no one goes until your time is called and miracles still do happen.  I’ve got to quit and go to the store, but I could write of this for hours.  Everyone is ok here now.