Saturday, May 30, 2009

Ambrose Lieb, Stone Cutter

An ornate cross is found at the top of the monument which honors Ambrose Lieb, who died in Sandusky, Ohio on June 2, 1916. According to his death certificate (available at Family Search Labs) Ambrose Lieb was born to Herman Lieb and Elizabeth Gollas in Germany on December 28, 1845. An obituary appeared in the Sandusky Register on June 3 and June 6, 1916.

Ambrose Lieb was "one of the most highly respected citizens of the community." He passed away at his residence on 918 Shelby Street. He had been a resident of Sandusky for almost fifty years, and worked as a stone cutter and mason. Ambrose Lieb was survived by his wife, five sons, four daughters, twenty-one grandchildren, and four sisters, three of whom resided in Germany. The funeral for Ambrose Lieb was held at St. Mary's Church with Rev. Joseph Widman officiating. Burial was in St. Mary's Cemetery.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Albert and Elnora Nims

According to THE NIMS FAMILY: SEVEN GENERATIONS OF DESCENDANTS FROM GODFREY NIMS, edited by Elizabeth C. Suddaby, Albert A. Nims was born on April 24, 1841 at Parker's Corners, Ohio to Joel B. and Huldah Munn Nims. He married Samantha Elnora Sweet in 1875. Samantha Elnora Sweet was the daughter of Benjamin and Amelia Sweet. She was orphaned at a young ages, and was raised by Rev. W. T. Hart, pastor of the Ridge Congregational Church.

Samantha Elnora Sweet Nims died on September 4, 1908 at Bellevue, Ohio. Albert found her death to be such a shock, that he never fully recovered from the loss and he died nine months later, on May 26, 1909. Both Albert A. and Samantha Elnora Nims are buried at the Strong's Ridge Cemetery in Huron County, Ohio. The name of their young son, Reuben Nims, also appears on their tombstone. Reuben died in 1891 in Bellevue, Ohio.

More information about the Nims Family can be found at the Nims Family Association website.

Monday, May 25, 2009

I. F. Mack

Isaac F. Mack was the longtime editor of the Sandusky Register, having been associated with the newspaper from 1869 until 1909. He was a Civil War Veteran, and was very influential in securing Erie County as the location for the Ohio Soldiers and Sailors Home, now the Ohio Veterans Home.

In 1892 Mack was elected Commander of the Ohio Department of the Grand Army of the Republic. Isaac F. Mack was inducted into the Ohio Veterans Hall of Fame.

Mr. Mack was very opinionated, and expressed his views often in his newspaper. Charles E. Frohman wrote a biography of I. F. Mack entitled SANDUSY’S EDITOR. I. F. Mack died in April 1912, and he is buried in Sandusky’s Oakland Cemetery.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Benajah Wolcott, Keeper of the Marblehead Lighthouse

The Marblehead Lighthouse, which overlooks Sandusky Bay, has been in operation since 1822. At the Ohio Department of Natural Resources website for the Marblehead Lighthouse State Park, we read that Benajah Wolcott was the first keeper of the Marblehead Lighthouse.

Benajah Wolcott was a veteran of the Revolutionary War, and one of the area’s first settlers. Benajah and his wife, the former Rachel Miller, and their family lived in a stone cabin a short distance from the lighthouse. The cabin, now known as the “Keeper’s House,” was built by stonemason William Kelly. Mr. Kelly had also been the mason in charge of building the Marblehead Lighthouse.

Benajah Wolcott died of cholera on August 11, 832. After his death, his wife Rachel became the lighthouse keeper. Seasonal tours are available of both the Marblehead Lighthouse and the Keeper’s House.

The Wolcott Cemetery is located about a half mile behind the Keeper’s House. The cemetery is open to the public, but there are chains on the gate that need to be unfastened and reconnected after your visit. Surrounding the cemetery is undeveloped wooded land, resulting in a very peaceful setting.

(Click on the image to the left, for an enlarged view.)

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Andrew Orshoski, World War Two Veteran

Andrew "Andy" Orshoski was born in Dorcester, Virginia (now West Virginia) on March 9, 1911 to Joseph and Julia Orshoski. Around 1917 the Orshoski family moved to Bay Bridge, Ohio, where a cement factory was located. Andrew worked for 27 years at the Medusa Cement Company, and he then worked as a maintenance man for the Margaretta School system in Castalia, Ohio. Andy, whose nickname was Pancake, often gave candy to the school students. The family legend was that when Andy was faced with a particularly terrifying situation during the Second World War, his hair suddenly turned white. Because his hair was the color of pancake flour, his buddies called him Pancake.

On November 18, 1943, Andrew Orshoski enlisted in the United States Army, at Fort Hayes, Ohio. He served with Battery A of the 55th Field Artillery Battalion. Has was a cannoneer, and was involved in battles in New Guinea and Luzon. Andrew Orshoski earned many awards during his military service, including:

Asiatic Pacific Theater Ribbon, with Two Bronze Stars
Philippine Liberation Ribbon, with One Bronze Star
Good Conduct Medal
Purple Heart

World War Two Victory Medal

Andrew was wounded on May 4, 1945. He left the Army on April 3, 1946, from Camp Atterbury, Indiana.

On November 30, 1980, Andy Orshoski died at the Medical College of Ohio Hospital in Toledo, Ohio. He was survived by his wife, the former Mary Clark, and daughters Linda and Debbie. Andrew Orshoski was buried at Restlawn Memorial Park in Huron, Ohio. The VFW conducted services on Tuesday, December 2, 1980. (Click on the image below, for a larger view.)

Monday, May 18, 2009

Mr. and Mrs. Theodore Hosmer

A beautiful sculpture adorns the monument for Theodore and Louisa Townsend Hosmer. (Some records list Mrs. Hosmer's name as Louise.) According to an 1890 issue of the Magazine of Western History, Theodore Hosmer was born in Sandusky, Ohio in 1843 to Sidney and Elizabeth Camp Hosmer. (Elizabeth was the daughter of Major J. G. Camp.) During the Civil War, Theodore Hosmer served in the 145th Ohio Volunteer Infantry. In 1870 Theodore married Louisa Townsend, daughter of Sandusky pioneer William Townsend. They had one son, Alexander Hosmer.

Theodore Hosmer had many different business ventures. In 1873, he went to the state of Washington to help select a western terminus for the Northern Pacific Railroad. He was in charge of clearing the land and laying out the town, to prepare the area for the coming of the railroad. The Northern Pacific Railroad Co. organized the Tacoma Land Co. and placed Theodore Hosmer as general manager. He held that position until he resigned and left the city in 1882, due to his wife’s poor health. After Mrs. Hosmer’s death in 1885, Theodore Hosmer returned west. He became president of the Tacoma Light and Water Company. He had also served as the first Mayor of Tacoma.

On January 28, 1900, Theodore Hosmer died in Tacoma. His body was taken back to Sandusky, Ohio for burial. He is buried with his wife Louisa in the North Ridge section of Oakland Cemetery. In Tacoma, Washington, there is a street named for Theodore Hosmer. You can find an image of Theodore Hosmer and his former home by searching for "Theodore Hosmer" in the Image Archives of the Tacoma Public Library.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Adam J. and Arthur Tight, Victims of the 1929 Cleveland Clinic Disaster

The 1929 OBITUARY NOTEBOOK, housed in the Archives Research Center of the Sandusky Library, contains three pages of articles reporting on the deaths of Adam J. Tight, a well known Sandusky contractor, and his son Arthur Tight. The father and son both died as a result of of being overcome by poisonous fumes after a series of explosions which swept through the Cleveland Clinic. The explosions began in the X-Ray department. A total of 123 individuals died and 92 people were injured in the Cleveland Clinic disaster.

On Wednesday, May 15, 1929, Arthur Tight went to the Cleveland Clinic for an examination, and his father Adam accompanied him. Both men died shortly after the explosion in the X-Ray Department, which was followed by fire. Carl Sartor of the Frey Funeral Home brought back the remains of Adam Tight, while Ed Andres from the Charles J. Andres Sons Funeral Home brought back the body of Arthur Tight. Mrs. Tight was devastated by the news of the death of both her husband and son.

Members of the Elks Lodge and the Knights of Columbus paid their respects to the Tight family on Sunday. Funeral services for Adam and Arthur Tight took place on Monday, May 20. Arthur's funeral services were conducted first at the family residence on Carr Street, and then a high mass was held at St. Mary's Catholic Church, with the Rev. Father W. C. Zierolf as celebrant. Adam Tight's funeral services were held on Monday afternoon at the family home, with Lutheran pastor Rev. Theodore Stellhorn officiating.

Besides the widow, Mrs. Catherine Tight, Adam Tight was survived by a son Alvin, and a daughter Mrs. Eugene Thomas. Alvin Tight, a college student at the time of his father and brother's deaths, later become a successful physician in Sandusky. Adam J. Tight and Arthur Tight were buried in St. Mary's Cemetery, along with Mrs. Catherine Tight, who passed away in 1962.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Tombstone Tuesday

Jacob Stauble died on May 25, 1859, in his 66th year. He is buried at St. Joseph's Catholic Cemetery in Sandusky.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Karl W. Kurtz

Karl W. Kurtz worked for many years in the advertising business. He worked as the advertising and general services manager for the H. C. Godman Co. in Columbus during the 1930's. Later he served as the first advertising director of the H and S Bakery in Sandusky. In a part-time position, Mr. Kurtz had a radio show on W.L.E.C. Radio. Because his radio program was based on unusual facts and stories, he became known as "The Oddity Man." "The Elderlies" column, written by Karl Kurtz, appeared in the Sandusky Register from 1974 through 1978.

On May 15, 1980, Karl Kurtz passed away. He was a member of Emmanuel United Church of Christ, Lions Club, Y.M.C.A. Senior Men's Fellowship Club, and had several Masonic affiliations. Karl Kurtz was survived by his wife, the former Elizabeth Covert. He was buried in Oakland Cemetery next to his first wife, Lillian Kintz Kurtz. An obituary for Mr. Kurtz is found in the May 15, 1980 issue of the Sandusky Register. Bound copies of Karl Kurtz's "Elderlies" columns can be view at the Sandusky Library. Ask the Reference Services Staff for assistance.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Native American Burial near Sandusky Bay

Recently, two Native American burial ceremonies were held in Danbury Township of Ottawa County, overlooking Sandusky Bay. On Friday, May 8,2009, a chief of the Piqua Shawnee Tribe held a ceremony for the burial of the remains of a Native American female.On Thursday,May 7, a chief from the Wyandotte nation held his own ceremony.

An article describing the Danbury Site is found online at the website of the Ohio Archaeological Council. A blessing of the Native American burial ground was held in May, 2008.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Steen L. Parker

Steen Leroy Parker was the second child born to Leroy and Ada Steen Parker in January, 1908. He worked on the family farm in Perkins Township for many years, and later was employed by Esmond Dairy and Apex, an appliance manufacturing company in Sandusky. During World War Two, Steen Parker served with the Seabees, primarily in England.

Steen Parker married Doris Wheeler in 1927. They had three children, Steen Thomas Parker, and daughters Joyce and Sally. Doris passed away in 1943. Steen married Ruth Renwand in 1944, and they had children Patricia and Charles.

Steen Parker was known for his sense of humor. Steen L. Parker died May 10, 1949, shortly before daughter Joyce's high school graduation. He left five children and two grandchildren. Steen Parker is buried in the Parker family lot at Perkins Cemetery.

Steen and Doris Parker are seen here in the mid 1920's.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

William H. Gilcher Monument

Hewson Peeke, in his book A STANDARD HISTORY OF ERIE COUNTY, wrote that William H. Gilcher was the son of Peter and Christina Boos Gilcher. William was born on July 2, 1843. He was a prominent Sandusky businessman, active in the lumber and transportation business, the Norwalk Electric Company, and other business ventures. In 1868, William H. Gilcher married Minnie Rosenbaum (some sources list Minnie's first name as Tinnie or Tina), the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Frederick Rosenbaum. Minnie died in 1890. Twelve years after her death, William H. Gilcher married Julietta Stimson of Ashtabula.

At Sandusky's Oakland Cemetery, is a large family plot in remembrance of the Gilcher family. William H. Gilcher died on March 9, 1922. The main Gilcher monument is also inscribed with the names of Minnie Rosenbam Gilcher, and two of the children of William H. and Minnie Gilcher: William A. Gilcher, who died in Norwalk in 1925, and Minnie Gilcher, who died as an infant in 1870. Four spheres are located in the four corners of the Gilcher family plot. The cemetery's bandstand can be seen in the background.

Leading up to the monument, from the roadway, are two more spheres. On one sphere are the words Mother and Father.

The other sphere features the first names of two of the Gilcher children, Will and Minnie.

A Great Lakes steamer was named for W. H. Gilchrist. Sadly it went down in October of 1892, when all aboard perished. The loss was estimated at $200,000.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Ohio Veterans Home Cemetery

There is a large cemetery on the grounds of the Ohio Veterans Home in Sandusky, Ohio. The facility was formerly known as the Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Home. The institution was built between 1886 and 1887, primarily as a result of the members of the G.A.R.'s concern for the well being of Ohio's aging Civil War veterans. On November 19, 1888, the first seventeen residents arrived at the Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Home; all were Civil War veterans. Originally, the home provided the veterans with housing and food services. Beginning in 1950, the Home began providing nursing home care as well.

Honorably discharged soldiers and sailors who served the U.S. government in any of its wars and reside in the state of Ohio qualify for admission to the home. Fees for residents of the Ohio Veterans Home are based on income. In 2003 a second Ohio Veterans Home was opened in Georgetown, Ohio. Both facilities are run by the Ohio Veterans Home Agency.

A search of the Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System retrieved the name of Royal W. Lane who served in Co. B. of the 103rd Ohio Volunteer Infantry.

Edwin T. Thorson served as a sergeant in the 15th Minnesota Infantry during the Spanish American War.

Several photographs of the Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Home, taken by Ernst Niebergall, are available to view at Lake Erie's Yesterdays. Death records of the veterans who died at the Ohio Veterans' Home between 1889 and 1983 are available at the Archives Research Center of the Sandusky Library.

As I viewed the hundreds of tombstones which represent the lives of so many who served our country, I was filled with gratitude for the sacrifices of the men and women of our Armed Forces.