Ever have that one relative whose story that you just can’t get out of your mind? I have several of those relatives like that but one that stands out for me is my 4th great aunt, Emma Drake Leist Herman. February of last year, I wrote about what I knew of her story which included the suicide of her last husband, Henry Herman, who drank carbolic acid they morning after they had a fight. As incredible as that tidbit was, Emma’s story continued to be fascinating as her death certificate revealed she died at 8 pm on 2 June 1916 at age 39 from shock with a contributory cause as lightning. What was she doing outside in a storm at 8 pm? Color me fascinated!
A while ago, I wrote about my husband’s great-grandfather’s story about being sold at the Ohio State Fair and how he changed his name from Clark to Moore. A Clark relative reached out to us recently on Ancestry to find out more information because we had so many matching names in our trees. She was a grand-daughter to Cecil Benjamin Clark, brother to my husband’s great-grandfather, Charles Lloyd Moore. I sent her a packet of papers and pictures along with giving her links to this blog. However, in giving her links to here, I realized that I hadn’t updated my blog with the discoveries I’d make in the Clark/Moore line. So here we are with an update to tell their tale…
For my Moffat genealogy club members, at Thursday’s meeting, I mentioned a small book that I find particularly helpful when I’m doing genealogy work. The book is called The Genealogist’s U.S. History Pocket Reference: Quick Facts & Timelines of American History to Help Understand Your Ancestors by Nancy Hendrickson. I hate to say that even as a history major, I’m absolutely terrible about remembering dates.
This book is so handy and amazing to have on your desk for quick look-ups. When I’m researching an ancestor, I don’t just want to know their birth and death dates. It’s all the stuff in between that’s interesting, right?
As part of the #30DayFHWChallenge, I am writing this letter to my second great-grandmother who was murdered in 1914 by her husband, William, before he shot himself as well. I’ve written about Esther and William’s sad story before and the tragic ending of their two orphaned boys who would go on to kill themselves when they were adults as well.
In my quest to understand what happened that horrible day, I’ve gobbled up every bit of information I can find regarding William and Esther looking for clues and signs to explain why this had to happen. Most people would probably just shake their head at the tragedy and move on, but as a victim of abuse myself in the past, I wonder if she knew it was escalating to that point of no return. This is my letter to her….
Awhile ago I wrote about the story in my husband’s family about their one great grandfather being “sold” at the Ohio State Fair to a farmer down near the southern Ohio border. Turns out, that this very thing, however unbelievable and far fetched, is absolutely, 100% true.
I reached out on a whim to the Ohio State Fair administration office and they answered within 24 hours. The Ohio State Fair has a historian named C. LaVon Shook and he wrote a book entitled A History of the Ohio State Fair in which he documents the Children’s Home Society offering “on the spot” adoptions of children. There was even an article in the Columbus Dispatch! (see below!)