LAKE COUNTY INDIANA
Printed in accordance with the vote of the Association, August 25, 1909
REPORT FOR 1909, COMMENCING SEPTEMBER 1, 1908.
EVENTS AND REMARKS.
Some of us who meet here to-day, August 25, 1909, met here one year ago, and surely the remark and the full statement is appropriate, that we who meet here and are yet in health, owe for our continued life and health, new gratitude to God.
The first event for this record is the marriage, September 2, 1908, of Guy Crisman and Gertie Fay Norton, both born in Crown Point; both members of old families.
On the same day Hiram Barton and wife celebrated their fiftieth marriage anniversary at Merrillville. Many persons present, and many presents.
On Saturday, September 5, the Dinwiddie clan held another reunion. Number present, 160. Among these was young Freeman Morgan, son of Rev. Freeman Morgan, and wife, who were missionaries for several years in India, and a grandson of Judge David Turner, now a tall and graceful and very promising young man, six feet and four inches in height. He is a nephew of A. Murray Turner, of Hammond, who was also present, the two representing well in stature their old Scottish ancestors.
On Tuesday or Wednesday, September 8 or 9, boy life again went out by accident in Lake county. Four boys of the Hammond Washington school were digging a cave in a sand bank, and were constructing the tunnel, when the sand roof suddenly came down upon them, covering two completely, and the other two up to their shoulders. Help soon came, but one boy was dead when taken out - Harry Ricketts, 15 years of age, a promising, kindly-hearted boy, son of Mr. and Mrs. Tom Ricketts, of Hammond. The other boy, Louis Molt, also 15 years old, son of Mr. and Mrs. Fred Mott, was taken out unconscious, but recovered.
It is said that the boys had been warned of the risk in making such excavations, but they always replied, "No danger."
Indian summer commenced September 13 and continued for some time, smoky, no wind, warm; September 20, mercury up to about 94 degrees.
September 26, Saturday. This day there was held at the Sigler House, on the west side of Cedar Lake, the first anniversary of the organization founded last year at Lowell, composed of members of the different schools taught several years ago by H. H. Ragon. These schools were known by the names of Pleasant Grove, Orchard Grove, Robinson Prairie, Lowell, Bailey and Buckley. A large number attended, among them many invited guests. The weather was very favorable, and all evidently enjoyed the dinner, the exercises, the music and the greetings. Mrs. Sigler certainly deserved hearty thanks for her great kindness in opening her rooms and furnishing the articles needed.
October 13. This evening, Tuesday, at about 11 oclock, our honored citizen, Thomas J. Wood, finished the battle of life. His friends trust that he could say, as did one long years ago, "I have fought a good fight." He was born in Ohio September 30, 1844, graduated at the law school of the University of Michigan in 1867, soon came as a young lawyer into Lake county, was married to Miss Mary E. Pelton in 1870, was elected State Senator in 1878, and member of Congress in 1882, having thus reached the third position in this land. He was a worthy member of the Methodist Episcopal church.
A WEATHER RECORD.
October quite a mild, pleasant month. O. Dinwiddie reported apple blossoms in his orchard October 17. October 18, 76 degrees at noon; 21st, Indian summer; 22d, a robin seen; 31st, ice, 26 degrees.
Tuesday, November 3. Election day. A very red sunrise. A good, day for voters to go out. November 4 the news comes that Wm. H. Taft has been elected president. Some are disappointed and some rejoice. The political gatherings in Lake county have been very large this year. The weather to-day very unpleasant.
Mrs. Sarah Manahan was this day 82 years of age, and Mrs. O. G. Wheeler gave, in her honor, a birthday dinner.
November 7. According to the election returns Lake county now has at least 9,500 Republican voters, 5,391 Democratic, 125 Prohibition, 303 Socialists, 8 People's Party, 28 Social Labor, and 78 Independent voters, making a total of 15,433.
Another marriage is now entitled to a place in this record. On Wednesday evening, November 18, Miss Rae I. Rockwell, daughter of Jules Rockwell, great grand-daughter of Pioneer Rockwell of 1836, was united in marriage with Victor Dyer of Hammond. Many guests.
Also another. Miss Ora Farley, our well known and esteemed postoffice clerk at Crown Point, great grand-daughter of General Joseph Jackson, pioneer of 1837, also of Benjamin Farley, pioneer, was married November 21 by Rev. E. R. Horton, to Mr. W. Ellwanger, of Chicago.
The weather. Some snow November 14. From 18th to 21st, Indian summer. A lone robin seen on the 18th. The day delightful. Doors open as in midsummer. About 50 degrees at sunset. A beautiful, strange bird seen on a lawn in Crown Point; color nearly like a blackbird, but a smaller bird; neck very glossy, same as a robin. Looked lonesome.
Died at Shelby, December 3, 1908, Miss Emily A. Fuller, a member of the large Fuller family, some of whom were early settlers of this county. She was born near the Robinson Prairie school house, but lived in Shelby many years, where her mother died July 1, 1898, and her father February 16, 1905. She was 42 years of age.
Died, Sunday night, December 27, Jacob Hayden. He was born March 11, 1831, and came, when six years of age, in March, 1837, with several other children of Nehemiah Hayden, to Lake county. He was 77 years of age.
January 6, 1909. The year has opened with cold weather, 8 degrees below zero this morning, and 4 below at noon.
Died, January 7, at the home of his sister, Mrs. J. A. Beattie, Henry Holton, second son of Volney Holton, a pioneer of about 1840. Henry Holton was born February 21, 1846, and was nearly 63 years of age.
January 10. Dedicated to-day the German Evangelical church building, the first dedicated building for public worship in the town of Gary.
The Poultry and Farm Product display held at Lowell the first of January a large success.
Early in the morning of Wednesday, January 13, Mrs. Nora Bibler went to sleep in death. Born October 18, 1826, coming to Lake county in 1851, she had gone beyond 82 years of age.
Died on the same day, at his home in Washington City, W. W. Cheshire, for many years a prominent and very active citizen of Crown Point, one not to be forgotten. He was born October 22, 1830. The burials of the two bodies were on the same day, although hundreds of miles apart, the one 78 and the other 82 years of age.
January 15. Ice harvest begun at Cedar Lake and lasted five days. Ice nine inches in thickness.
January 16. Mr. and Mrs. A. D. Palmer celebrated their 50th marriage anniversary. Then living 9 children, 22 grandchildren, and 14 great grandchildren.
January 18. Monday, about 11 p. m., Mrs. Susan Clark passed away from the earthly life. We miss her presence here very much, as we miss several others who have left us. She was born September 18, 1828, a daughter of Henry Wells, who was a pioneer of 1835. She came here, therefore, as a child, before Crown Point was, or even Lake county.
According to the weather records, January of this year, 1909, has been generally mild and wet. One record is, "Saturday, 23d, warm, 62 degrees. Sunshine. Little birds bathing in a shallow pool of water as in midsummer. It was cheering to see a sparrow so free from care and enjoying." But the weather changed.
January 30. A severe snow storm. A southeast rain storm met over Lake county a northwest snow storm. Strong wind. Drifts. Trains delayed.
In February, from 13th to 16th, quite a storm, called by the papers "very severe." Trees and wires loaded with ice; some broken.
February 26. Died, at his home in LeRoy, Justus P. Baldwin; born in New Jersey February 8, 1835, a resident of Lake county since 1848, and so a resident for about 61 years, and 74 years of age. An active, a useful, a devoted Christian man.
A BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION.
Rev. John Bruce was born February 29, 1824. On Monday afternoon, March 1, 1909, members of his Bible class in the Lowell Methodist Sunday school, and other members of the same school, with their pastor, Rev. T. F. Drake, made him a pleasant birthday visit, congratulating him on having passed into the 86th year of his life. There were appropriate remarks and prayer and singing, as well became the occasion and the visitors.
The first Jewish wedding in East Chicago, according to the Globe, took place June 14, 1891, the ceremony conducted by Rabbi Hauter, of Chicago. The second was in February, 1897, by Rabbi Moses, of Chicago. On Sunday, March 14, 1909, was celebrated the first Jewish marriage in the East Chicago synagogue by Rabbi Kraus, the pastor. The parties were Max Adelman and Bertha Dickstein. "The ceremony was according to the orthodox Jewish rites, very impressive and beautiful." The service, it is said, was in the Hebrew language.
Many nationalities are now represented in Lake county, and many observances of marriage and burial rites occur. Northern Lake county has become quite a miniature of the strangely mixed life, of the present day, in the large and newer cities. It is a singular life to be called American.
One of the very aged of the women of the county is now Mrs. Ellen Murry, of Indiana Harbor, 91 years of age. She was born in County Waterford, Ireland, is well and hearty, having "perfect hearing and eyesight," and "needs very little assistance in getting about." On March 17 she helped to celebrate St. Patrick's day.
Died, March 19, at Portland, Mich., Samuel Lathrop, a pioneer in St. Joseph county of 1833, and an old settler in Lake county of 1845. He was nearly 90 years of age.
Died suddenly at Brookfield, Ill., March 27, Harry Church, grandson of Richard Church, a pioneer who came in 1836 from Michigan, but earlier from New York State, and who had six sons and four daughters. The body of Harry Church was brought to Crown Point for burial. The names of the six sons of Richard Church were, Darling, the father of Harry and Edwin Church, these once citizens of Crown Point; Austin, John, Charles, Munson and Eli. The daughters were, Valona (Mrs. Leonard Cutler, who lived to be over 100 years of age, the mother of Hudson, Sophia, Martha and Mary Cutler); Sarah, Mrs. Alonzo Cutler of LaPorte; Hannah and Lydia, Mrs. Hand of Wisconsin, not now living. Of this once large pioneer family there are now no descendants in this county. They were for some years an influential family, and in our records their names should surely have a place.
SOME FAMILY RECORDS.
The latest intelligence that has reached me concerning members of families once well known around Cedar Lake and at Crown Point comes through my brother in Kansas under date of December, 1908. He says that Eli Church died in California, sitting on his stage. He says of Munson Church that he lives in Ellsworth, Kansas, where he saw him, and that he seems very natural to him, as he recalls what he was many years ago. He refers to his having married Charity Clark, who was noted, as is somewhere recorded,
for beautiful penmanship, though of a style quite different from the Cedar Lake penmanship. Whether any specimens can now be found I do not know. Her death is mentioned and that she left one child, a daughter, now Mrs. Thomas, a widow, living in Ellsworth, and reputed to be quite wealthy, having two children, one son, a banker, and having a summer resort in Michigan. Connected with Charity Clark
were some sisters by the name of Wheeler, the Wheeler family living at one time on the west side of Cedar Lake, at what became the residence of Henry Sassee, Jr., and afterwards at what become known as Tinkerville and now Creston. One of these Wheeler daughters was named Harriet, and she was married January 24, 1856, by Rev. J. M. Whitehead, to John F. Davis, son of Brinkley Davis, brother of Mrs. Philander Cross, of Mrs. Charles P. Post, of Mrs. Susan _____, and of Daniel Davis. John Davis,
my brother states, "is in Los Angeles, worth $100,000." And, he says, "Simeon Wheeler, the deaf boy," whom possibly a few may yet remember, "is in Oregon, reputed very wealthy from fortunate investments." Among the boys of Cedar Lake fifty years ago no one would have selected Simeon Wheeler as the one to become wealthy.
Died, at his home in Crown Point, Wednesday morning, March 31, at 5 o'clock, Reuben Fancher, who came to Lake county in 1855. An old settler in the county, although not a pioneer, a citizen of Crown Point for many years, active, enterprising, useful, a pleasant, genial friend, he, like so many others whom we miss, has passed from among us. He was nearly 75 years of age. He has living now in Crown Point two daughters and one son.
On the same day, March 31, the body of Mrs. Clara Houk Nourse was brought here for burial from what had been her home, through a short wedded life, up in Wisconsin. She was 36 years of age, was born in Crown Point, and had taught in the public school six years.
There came into my hands, March 31, from H. L. Davidson, a very interesting and valuable publication for the Historical Secretary, called the Whiting City Almanac for 1909. It is filled with facts and figures in regard to this young city, whose population is now placed at 7,000. As a town, it states, Whiting was incorporated October 1, 1895, and became a city, with mayor and councilmen, in May, 1903.
Died, in Washington, D. C, March 31, Mrs. Bessie Boone Cheshire, well known in Crown Point, 74 years of age, a teacher and a resident here for many years.
April 7, 1909. Lewis Edgerton, of the Creston pioneer Cedar Lake family, died this day at Grass Creek, in Fulton county, and his son died a few days before his father. With these the Edgerton name, through Amos Edgerton, ends. Three daughters are living, great-granddaughters of Horace Edgerton.
Died, April 9, Mrs. Julia A. Post, born March 24, 1826, a resident of South East Grove for sixty years, 83 years of age.
April 9. Snow, showers and sunshine between the showers.
April 11. Roy Nelson Halsted and Pearl Rose Demmon, both representing old and early families, were married at Crown Point.
Mrs. Margaret Endress, mother of Mrs. J. Babbitt, died on Wednesday evening, April 14, at the home of her son, east of Crown Point. She was nearly 80 years of age, and had resided in Center township 53 years.
Died at her home on Lake Prairie, April 16, Mrs. Susan Morey, a daughter of Dr. Thomas Peach, wife of Ephraim Morey, mother of W. H. Morey; born in New Hampshire March 2, 1826, and 83 years of age; one of that band of New Englanders who made the "New Hampshire settlement" in the heart of Lake Prairie some fifty-four years ago.
Some one ought to write out the half century of history that belongs to that central part of the beautiful Lake Prairie, a history rich in incidents clustering about the names of Little, and Gerrish, and Peach, and Plumer, and Ames, and Wason, and Morey.
April 27, at 5 p. m., Edwin Michael of Lake Prairie passed from the scenes of earth.
April 29. A severe storm swept over our region.
May 1. A promising, smiling May morning, but a snow cloud soon covered our sky; now and then the flakes poured down like winter, and all the promise of the morning disappeared, although dandelions had blossomed April 23.
Death comes even in May. Mrs. Susan Warner, an early resident near Orchard Grove, for many years past residing in Crown Point, died at her home at 7 a. m. May 5. Born in Monroe, Conn., October 29, 1827, she was 87 years old and 6 months. She leaves one son and two daughters, and two grandchildren.
May 13. The news arrived in Lowell of the death, in Tacoma, Wash., of the early prominent merchant, John W. Viant, on Sunday, May 2. He was born in Canada West, September 18, 1834. He commenced business in Lowell in 1857, and was an active, useful citizen.
As Decoration Day, May 30, came on Sunday this year, some observed it on Saturday, as at Hebron, some on Sunday, and some, following the Governor's proclamation, observed the day on Monday.
June 1. Bright, no wind, a burning sunshine.
June 8. Some heavy rainfalls. The ground saturated.
At about 4 o'clock in the early morning of June 9 Mrs. Babbitt, wife of John Babbitt, passed away from her North street home. She was nearly 50 years of age.
An event of large interest to the Roman Catholic community took place on June 15, called the Silver Jubilee of the pastor in Crown Point, Rev. Philip Guethoff, making 25 years since his ordination. The event brought many of the Catholic clergy to Crown Point, and the celebration was well carried out.
June 22. Strawberries of home growth abundant; ten cents a box, three boxes for twenty-five cents.
June 26. Facts sufficient have now been gathered for a record to be made of the grand automobile races of June 18 and 19, 1909, at Crown Point, near which place was the grandstand, so called. This stand was an immense structure, in length 864 feet, in depth 60 feet, in height about 25 feet. The number of seats, 10,000. Amount of lumber used, 400,000 feet. Used in construction, 59 kegs of nails. Contract price for construction, $10,000. There was great disappointment in regard to the number of people in attendance, that number falling far short from what the citizens of Crown Point and Lowell had been led to expect and for the care and comfort of whom they had made large provision. There are no means of determining the real number present. The estimates of the three papers, the Star, the Register and the Lowell Tribune, differ widely. From some actual counts that have come to my knowledge, I can record here with safety and certainty, that more than a thousand, and perhaps as many as two thousand, automobiles were on the grounds around the twenty-three-mile course, a large number of them passing through Crown Point. One man counted one hundred that passed by him in fifteen minutes, and they were coming in for hours. It was a grand display of man's locomotive invention, rich looking carriages, or cars, carrying in themselves their motive power, as do steamers on the water.
Placing the average number of occupants of one carriage at five, there were coming in automobiles on Friday 5,000, in buggies probably 4,000, on the cars at Crown Point 1,000, and at Lowell 2,000, and in automobiles at Lowell 2,800, and citizens around the course 3,000, thus forming a basis for estimating the number in attendance on Friday at 20,000. On Saturday there were eleven trains that brought visitors on the Erie road, each train having about ten cars, and one train brought 700 passengers, but another train had only 200, an average being at least 500, thus giving for the eleven trains 5,500 on Saturday morning. On the Panhandle road there were five trains and fifty cars, but some of the cars were not full. Allowing an average of sixty for a car and the number on the five trains would be 3,000. Allowing again 1,000 buggies bringing 4,000 visitors, and coming on cars to Lowell 3,000, and again citizens of Crown Point and Lowell and the inhabitants around the course being placed at 3,000, and we have, allowing 2,000 automobiles on Saturday, bringing 10,000, a basis for placing the whole number at 30,000.
The editor of the Lowell Tribune says, and probably no one had a better opportunity than he for making an estimate, "In our opinion not over 50,000 people were present both days, and this estimate is probably too high."
In regard to speed, the Lowell Tribune has some statements which I am quite sure are accurate. The fastest mile on Friday was made "at the rate of a little over 71 miles per hour."
This was made by Joe Matson in the Chalmers-Detroit racer No. 19, who won the race on Friday, making 233 and 74-100 miles in four hours, thirty-one minutes and twenty-one seconds. The second one in the race, sixteen cars starting, was only seven minutes and forty-two seconds behind. The fastest mile on Saturday was at the rate of 87 ½ miles an hour, or a mile in 40 and 1-10 seconds. On Saturday the distance, seventeen "laps," was 395.66 miles, made in "8 hours, 1 minute and 39 seconds, the average speed being 49.26 per hour." This was the speed of the winner of the race Saturday, Louis Chevrolet, the driver of No. 10 Buick. For this race, which was for the Cobe cup, there were twelve entries. However disappointed all were in the number coming from Chicago and elsewhere, the race itself was considered very successful. The promoters of it were the members of the Chicago Automobile Club.
A weather note. June 28 quite hot, mercury up to 88 degrees, and some claimed 90 degrees. July 4, a cool day, 60 degrees, a thick coat comfortable. From July 11 to 17 a perfect hay week.
July 19. John Mangold and wife celebrated on this day their golden wedding.
July 20. The particulars came to-day of a sad tragedy that took place in Colorado Springs, Colo., on Monday morning, July 5. Lewis H. Warriner, on that day, observed as the anniversary day of the nation, took his own life. Ill health and insanity caused by nervous prostration, his friends believe, caused the rash and fearful act. He was born near what is now called Creston, then known as Fenkerville, a son of Edwin B. Warriner, grandson of Hon. Lewis Warriner, pioneer of 1837, who was the first Lake county citizen to represent the county in the State Legislature. Both Edwin B. and his father were active and honored citizens for many years, but left the county at length for a new home at Kankakee. Lewis H. was for many years mail agent on the Illinois Central railroad. His health failed, and in 1907 the family left Kankakee for Colorado. His children, nine now living, are: Harry and Walter, both married, Walter having four sons and Harry one daughter, and two other sons; two daughters, twins, Maud and Mabel, and four others, Charlotte, Ida, Ella, and Ruth Naomi, and my authority says: "They are all splendid children. Maud can do anything, as they all can. In Colorado Springs Maud has earned from $80 to $90 a month."
As the name Warriner may not again come into our records, and as the dust of three members of that pioneer family, in nameless and unknown graves, is sleeping in that burial mound on the east side of Cedar Lake's blue waters, it seemed appropriate to refer to these Warriner descendants here, adding also this note: that a son Eddie and a daughter Lucy, children of Edwin B., and descendants of his sister, Fanny Warriner Hunt, are yet living in the Far West. The Warriner name, honored in New England annals, is likely to live.
A temperance record.
The first Sunday in August, which was the first day of the month, was an unusual day for Lake County. On that day, according to trustworthy reports, for the first time since Cedar Lake became a summer resort, no intoxicating drink could be obtained. The saloons were all closed. The Governor instructed the Sheriff and the Sheriff notified the saloonkeepers what to do, and they did it.
The Lake County Times of August 5 says: Little Cornell De Kygler, 7 years old, was instantly killed at 5:30 last night near Highland by a Chicago automobile. Thus the life of our children is crushed out. The inhabitants on that Ridge Road are becoming almost exasperated at the speed and the recklessness of some of these machine drivers.
Drowned in the Kankakee River, near Shelby, August 7th, Charles Vernon Latta, 12 years of age, son of Mr. and Mrs. M. T. Latta, of Shelby.
Died, August 7th, Mrs. Grace Burdette Taylor, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. James C. and Jane Palmer, at the home of her parents in Lowell. She was born at Creston August 1st, 1882, and so was 27 years of age.
Died on Monday, August 9th, at her home, a few miles southeast of Crown Point, Mrs. Jacob Fauser, daughter of John and Barbara Houk, born in Wurtemburg, Germany, November 1st, 1835, coming with her brother, Mathias Houk, to the State of New York in 1859. She was married August 28th, 1859, nearly fifty years ago, to Jacob Fauser, and came to Lake County in 1865. She was nearly 74 years of age and leaves, besides her husband and two brothers, ten children and fifteen grandchildren.
August 10th. On this day the East Chicago Globe reached its tenth anniversary in the hands of Allison P.
Brown, he having become editor and publisher August 10th, 1899. Mrs. Brown, the editor's wife, for four years did most of the office work, being a good compositor, and both having been successful teachers. They have published a paper which contains good language, free from the blemishes found in some of our papers, and caring for the interests of morality and religion. Their son, Francis Brown, now takes charge of the linotype machine in the place of his mother.
A NEW DEPARTURE.
Five of the Crown Point churches and their pastors, commencing August 1st, arranged to hold their Sunday evening meetings on the public square in front of the court house. The gatherings have been large, and quiet, and orderly.
Died on Thursday, August 12th, 1909, at her home in Auburn Park, Illinois, Mrs. William Sigler, not quite 79 years of age. She was born November 17th, 1830, was known in childhood as Margaret Isabel Lee, a sister of Thomas B. Lee, of Crown Point, and a descendant of "Light Horse Harry" Lee, of the Revolution. May 14th, 1848, she was united in marriage with Wm. Sigler. She left seven children, of whom Charles Sigler is one. For twenty-four years the Sigler family were inhabitants of Lowell, and then removed to Cook County in Illinois.
Many old family names are passing out from our records.
Quite a change has taken place in raising wheat. As a crop it had been almost abandoned in the county, but this year it is estimated that the amount of wheat raised in the three southern townships is about 20,000 bushels, and 5,000 bushels of this amount was raised on the large marsh farm of John Brown.
The hay and oats, for which Lake County has been noted, have been good crops this year, and corn and potatoes are now promising large yields. Lightning has caused more than usual destruction this year, striking barns and burning hay.
The improvements of the year have been many. Costly residences have been constructed, towns enlarged and improved, sidewalks built, and streets paved or macadamized, and changes made over all the three northern townships.
From an address delivered at East Chicago, a name that came into the report for 1889, a few statements are here taken. The address is supposed to have been made by their mayor, and the year is 1909. He says, "Twenty years ago our city was founded." He gives for the population 18,000 people, and says that they now have 3,000,000 dollars' worth of pavement, and "one of the finest city halls in the State."
Gary is rushing on into city life. Six churches seem to have been organized there, five of the pastors claiming a residence of from one to three years.
Although the larger part of the population of the county is in the cities and towns, for the richest hopes of
domestic virtue and happiness we must still look to the well tilled farms, where can be seen in the summer time the waving grain, the green pastures, the herds of cattle, the thrifty orchards, the ever beautiful flowers, and where are heard the songs of birds, the hum of bees, and the glad voices of well fed, active, healthful children.
May intelligence and virtue, not forsaking the towns, ever dwell within our country homes.