Saturday, July 31, 2010

52 Weeks to Better Genealogy: Challenge 31

In Challenge 31 of the 52 Weeks to Better Genealogy series, we have been asked to listen to a podcast and experience this form of media for learning.

To start this challenge, I just did a Google search for genealogy and podcasts, and I landed at The Irish Roots Cafe, and I could not tear myself away! To get to the podcasts from The Irish Roots Cafe, just click on the several selections on the right side of the web page. The green rectangles feature several podcasts under these categories:

  • Hello Fada
  • Hedge Row School
  • Irish Families Worldwide
  • Irish Songs & Recitations
  • Irish in America

In the podcast "Irish First Names and Spellings," you can hear the speaker pronounce several Irish first names, and learn how they evolved through time and geographical location. In the podcast on "Irish Wakes" you can hear about the customs associated with traditional Irish funerals and the celebration following the funeral. Enjoy listening to many Irish songs and readings from the selections included in Irish Songs & Recitations. You can hear the authentic pronunciations of the lyrics, and enjoy the music of Ireland. I have only scratched the surface of podcasts associated with genealogy and local history, but I certainly have enjoyed this exercise! Check out the podcasts at:

and you will have a rich learning experience!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Samuel D. Isaly Library of the Ohio Genealogical Society is Now Open

A recent news article from WMFD News in Mansfield reported tha tmore than 300 people attended a ribbon cutting ceremony Friday for the grand opening of the Samuel D. Isaly Library of the Ohio Genealogical Society. The new facility is located at 611 State Route 97 West in Bellville, Ohio and was named after Samuel D. Isaly in honor of his generous donation to the Ohio Genealogical Society Building Fund.

The library has much more room than the previous facility, and features individual study carrels, and a computer lab.

While I did not make the ribbon cutting ceremony held on July 23, 2010, when I stopped by the Samuel D. Isaly Library of the OGS today, I was still able to obtain a program and blue ribbon from the Grand Opening ceremony.

Pictured below are some books pertaining to Erie County, Ohio, in the stacks of the new library.

Now I can hardly wait till I have a free day to devote to several hours of research at this outstanding new facility!

Frank and Dallas Orshoski

Frank Orshoski was born on March 22, 1909, the third son of Joseph and Julia Orshoski. He and his wife, the former Dallas Owens, were the parents of three sons.

Frank was employed by the Medusa Portland Cement Company for 36 years. He passed away on July 30, 1963, at the age of 54 at his home in Bay Bridge, Ohio.

After the death of her husband, Dallas Owens Orshoski married Clayton Moyer. Dallas died on November 12, 1984, and she was buried next to her first husband at the Castalia Cemetery. By 1984, Dallas had already survived her first husband, her son, and a grandson. In spite of suffering these losses, "Dal," as she known to her family and friends, always kept a positive attitude outlook on life and a smile on her face.

Frank is pictured below (right),at his nephew Cliff Orshoski's wedding to Barbara Lindsley in 1956. A group of ladies from Bay Bridge (bottom left) are at the same wedding reception. Dallas Owens Orshoski is the fourth lady in the group.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday: Mrs. Cecilia Herb Kromer

Mrs. Cecilia Kromer's tombstone is found at St. Mary's Catholic Cemetery at Sandusky, Ohio. Her tombstone inscription is written in German.

Translated into English, it reads:

Here Lies
Cecilia Kromer
Born (Herb)
On 5th October, 1837
At Altdorf (Baden)
Died 29th May, 1876

Cecilia's husband Joseph Kromer, now widowed, is listed in the 1880 U.S. Census in Margaretta Township of Erie County, Ohio, with several children: William, age 23; Anthony, age 21; Joseph, age 20; Thrissa, age 14; Michael, age 12; and Anna, age 10. Later Joseph Kromer would marry Mary Ochs.

Extended hands, symbolizing Cecilia being welcomed into Heaven are found at a the base of her tombstone.

Scrolls and a wreath adorn the top of Cecilia Herb Kromer's tombstone.

Many descendants of Cecilia and Joseph Kromer still live in Erie County, Ohio to this day.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Sentimental Sunday: Steve and Emma Orshoski's 25th Wedding Anniversary

Steve Orshoski married Emma Yeager
on July 23, 1925. They celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary with a family party at their home in Bay Bridge, Ohio at the end of July, 1950. Pictured above are: Paul and Joyce Orshoski, Emma Yeager Orshoski, Emma's father Andy Yeager, Emma's husband Steve Orshoski. Steve Orshoski is standing immediately behind his mother in law, Lena Piehl Yeager. In front is Alberta (Bertie) Orshoski Gantz, Emma's oldest daughter, and Bertie's daughter Carol Marie Gantz.

Paul and Joyce Orshoski had just been married on July 1, 1950, so it was a summer of family celebrations! (Paul is the oldest son of Steve and Emma Orshoski.)

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: It's a Long Way to Tipperary

Randy at Genea-Musings posted his latest Saturday Night Genealogy Fun challenge:

Think hard about the genealogy research trip that you would take if money were no object. Where would you go, how long would you stay, what research would you do? What is your "dream research trip?"

There is no doubt in my mind, that if money were no object, my dream research trip would be to take my mother (who is facing some serious health issues right now...) on a research trip to Ireland. Her Irish ancestors on the Larkins side were from County Tipperary. We have no idea of their home town, even after years of searching. Most of the our Larkins ancestors are buried at the St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery in Sandusky, Ohio.

We know that Daniel and Patrick Larkins came to the United States about 1830, and lived in Connecticut before moving to Ohio. They worked hard, and loved their family and friends,....but oh why didn't they tell us the place of their origin? Below are pictured four generations of descendants of Patrick Larkins.

I found this sound file online, and it says so aptly, "It's a Long Way to Tipperary." Click here to hear the song.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Underground Railroad Markers at Sandusky's Shoreline Park

Because Sandusky Bay leads to Lake Erie, and then on to Canada, Sandusky played a key role in helping fugitive slaves find their way to freedom in Canada. Many area residents provided food and shelter to the freedom seekers, and arranged for transportation, usually in the dark hours of the late night or very early morning. The Underground Railroad was loosely organized, and involved some of Sandusky's most prominent businessmen and officials.

Known boats that were involved in abolitionist activities included: Walk-in-the-Water, Superior, the Arrow, United States, Bay City, Mayflower, May Queen, and the Morning Star. Several Erie County residents who were active in the UGRR are buried in Sandusky's Oakland Cemetery, including F. D. Parish, C.C. Keech, and Rev. Thomas Holland Boston.

Rush R. Sloane wrote about the Underground Railroad of the Firelands in the July 1888 issue of the Firelands Pioneer.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Mertz Monument at Oakland Cemetery

John Mertz died on November 5, 1928. He and his wife Ida are buried at Sandusky's Oakland Cemetery. John Mertz was born in Sandusky in 1859, the son of early residents Mr. and Mrs. Jacob Mertz. Mr. Mertz worked with his father in the sheet metal business, and in 1884 he formed a hardware store partnership with his brothers, which was known as J. Mertz & Sons. About 1919, John Mertz built a building at the corner of Water and Decatur Streets, and established a sheet metal factory there known as the John Mertz Manufacturing Co. He was also active in the real estate business in Sandusky and Erie County.

Funeral services were held for John Mertz at Grace Episcopal Church. Employees of the John Mertz Manufacturing Co. served as active pallbearers.

Born Ida Feick, Mrs. Ida Mertz died on April 15, 1945. She had been a member of the Grace Episcopal Church, the United Ladies' Sewing Circle, and the Women's Restroom Association. She was also associated with the Erie County Humane Society, the Sandusky Federation of Women's Clubs, Fortnightly club and the Sandusky Garden Club. Obituaries for John and Ida Feick Mertz are found in the Obituary Notebooks in the genealogical collection at the Sandusky Library.

While looking out at Oakland Cemetery from the back side of the Mertz monument, one can see the bandstand in the distance, and a panoramic view of the eastern portion of Oakland. Many of the tombstones in Oakland probably represent friends, family, and former business associates of Mr. and Mrs. Mertz.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday: Ottilia Starck

The young child of Mr. and Mrs. Otto Stark (sometimes spelled Starck) died on July 19, 1855. Unable to decipher the tombstone inscription just by looking at it, I checked the Oakland Cemetery interment card, as well as the ERIE COUNTY, OHIO CEMETERY CENSUS BEFORE 1909, to double check the listings for Stark/Starck. Ottilia Starck was the baby's name, and she died at age four months. U.S. Census Records, available online at Heritage Quest indicate that the Otto Stark family had moved to St. Louis, Missouri by 1870. They left behind the graves of Ottilia and Amelia Stark in Sandusky, Ohio at Oakland Cemetery, but then went on to have two more sons, Otto Stark, Jr. and Leopold Stark.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Sentimental Sunday: Moseley Hall at B.G.S.U.

Many years ago I was an education major at Bowling Green State University. Moseley Hall is one of the earliest buildings on the BG campus. It was named for Professor Edwin L. Moseley, who was on the BGSU faculty from 1914 to 1936. Prior to teaching at BGSU, Professor Moseley was a science teacher at Sandusky High School.

Several photographs of Professor Moseley can be seen at the Sandusky History website. An outstanding biography, entitled Edwin Lincoln Moseley : Naturalist, Scientist, Educator, was written by Relda E. Niederhofer and Ronald L. Stuckey in 1998. Several scientific publications written by Professor Moseley are found in the ClevNet library catalog.

Edwin Lincoln Moseley passed away on June 6, 1948. He is buried at the Oak Grove Cemetery in Bowling Green, Ohio. Biologists, botanists, and science educators today still find his studies extremely helpful, especially those dealing with the plant life of the Northern Ohio area.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

William J. Dingle, Granite Cutter

According to the September 19, 1904 Sandusky Star, Mr. W. J. Dingle purchased the monument works of A. Hornig, near Oakland Cemetery. The article continued, "The shop has been fitted up with pneumatic tools and other new and modern machinery." W.J. Dingle followed in his father's footsteps, as an article in the May 6, 1919 issue of the Sandusky Star Journal states that William J. Dingle's father, Mr. J. H. Dingle, was a granite cutter at the Hughes Granite Works in Clyde, Ohio. The Hughes Granite Works was later known as the Hughes Granite and Marble Company.

In the 1900 U.S. Census, we find William J. Dingle, age 18, living with his parents, James and Sarah Dingle (spelled Dingel in the 1900 census), with his sister Olive, and an adopted sister named Martha. James H. Dingle's occupation was listed as stone cutter, while William's occupation was stone cutter apprentice. By the time of the 1910 U.S. Census, William J. Dingle was living in Sandusky with his wife Katherine. It was William's first marriage, and Katherine's second. William J.Dingle listed his occupation as granite cutter at a monumental works. In the 1920 Census, William J. Dingle indicated that he had come to the U.S. in 1884 and had become a naturalized citizen in 1908.

Mrs. Katherine Dingle passed away in Sandusky on May 29, 1929. She was survived by her daughter from her first marriage, Mrs. Eugene Christen of Lima, Ohio. Following the death of Katherine, William J. Dingle moved to Arizona, and by 1934, the Balconi Brothers were the proprietors of the Sandusky Monumental Works. (The Balconi family has been connected with the monument business in Erie County for well over 80 years.) William J. Dingle died in Tucson, Arizona on July 17, 1943. His cause of death was asthma and silicosis. Mr. Dingle's death certificate is accessible via Family Search Labs.

The remains of William J. Dingle were brought back to Ohio, so that he could be buried with his parents at McPherson Cemetery in Clyde, Ohio.

Though William J. Dingle was not born in Sandusky, Ohio, nor was he buried there, his granite business was important to the residents of Sandusky and Erie County in the first part of the twentieth century.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Frank and Audria Deme

Audria Deme was born Audria Flick on April 20, 1909, in Crawford County, Ohio. Her parents were William and Ella Schell Flick. She graduated from Crestline High School. Following a divorce, Audria and her daughter moved to Margaretta Township of Erie County, Ohio in the late 1940's.

After moving, Audria met and married Frank Deme. Frank was born in Florida, but spent most of his life in the Bay Bridge area, a small village in Margaretta Township. Frank came from a large family of Hungarian descent. He served in the U.S. Air Force during World War Two. For 20 years, Frank and Audria owned and operated the Log Cabin Inn, in Bay View, Ohio. The restaurant was popular among boaters and tourists. It was conveniently located near the old Sandusky Bay Bridge. Many business meetings, family dinners, and cocktail hours were hosted at the Log Cabin Inn. On Mother's Day and Easter Sunday, it was hard to find a parking spot at the popular restaurant.

Pictured above is a serving plate from the old Log Cabin Inn. Many a platter of home fried potatoes were served on this plate, especially at dinner meetings, when customers were served banquet style. Steaks were a specialty at the Log Cabin. Many customers came back again and again, and got to know the waitresses personally.

Frank and Audria eventually sold the Log Cabin Inn, and moved to Florida, where they owned the Kerri Ann's Children's Clothing Store at Lauderdale by the Sea. Mr. and Mrs. Deme were totally devoted to each other, and they worked long hours in the businesses which they owned. Audria dressed stylishly, and always had her hair done in an attractive style throughout her life. She appeared at least 20 years younger than her actual age. Audria Deme died on October 4, 2004, at the age of 95. She was survived by three grandchildren and several great grandchildren. Frank missed Audria terribly. He passed away on July 16, 2006. Frank and Audria Deme are buried at Meadow Green Memorial Park,in Huron, Ohio, near Audria's daughter Betty.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Wisdom Wednesday: Discussion with my Aunt Betty

When I was about seven years old, a little girl, close to my age, was killed in an automobile accident. My parents knew her parents, and at the funeral home, my father got tears in his eyes, to think of a child's life ending so soon. I had never seen my dad have such an emotional reaction.

Later that week, I was talking to my dear Aunt Betty, who lived next door. (Aunt Betty and her husband Wayne are pictured below, with two of their three children.)

I asked her how God could let such a young person die. She explained to me that I should think of all the people who die as being like a bouquet of flowers....well, God didn't always want to pick flowers that were wilted, and that God must have wanted a fresh, young flower for his heavenly bouquet. It made perfect sense!

How we miss Aunt Betty's common sense and her words of wisdom!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday: Mary Hartwell

Mary Hartwell's tombstone is found at the Sand Hill Cemetery in Erie County, Ohio. She died on July 12, 1829, in her 17th year. The weeping willow on her grave marker is a universal symbol of mourning.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

52 Weeks to Better Genealogy: Challenge 28

In Challenge 28 of the 52 Weeks to Better Genealogy series, we have been asked to spend some time with patents and trademarks.

I have found that the easiest way to navigate U.S. Patents is via Google Patents. By entering the key words of Larkins and Sandusky in the Google Patent search box, the first "hit" was Patent Number 1,027,346 for a Music Leaf Turner, that was issued on May 21, 1912. My great great grandfather, Thomas F. Larkins, never achieved riches or fame with this patent, but I was delighted to find someone in my family tree on Google Patents!

You can read a bit more about this patent below:

Go to Google Patents to see if anyone in your family has been issued a U.S. Patent. Searching can by done by any combination of name, location, or keyword of the item which was patented.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Bernard Lodick

Bernard Lodick was born in West Meath, Ireland to Charles and Bridget Lodick in 1836. He came to Sandusky in 1850. Bernard Lodick married Jane McManus in 1873. Sadly, she died in 1878, when her only child, Mary Elizabeth, was just seven years of age.

For many years, Bernard Lodick was a carriage manufacturer at the corner of Jackson and Washington Streets in downtown Sandusky. (Later this location would be home to the Post Office, and now is the site of the Merry Go Round Museum.) His name appears below in the 1867 Sandusky City Directory, published by M. T. McKelvey, and available full text at the Internet Archive.

Bernard Lodick passed away on July 10, 1914 at the home of his niece, Mrs. John J. O'Reilly, on Shelby Street in Sandusky. His funeral was held at the home of his niece, and burial was in St. Joseph's Cemetery. An obituary for Bernard Lodick appeared in the July 11, 1914 issue of the Sandusky Register. Mr. Lodick was survived by his daughter, who was now known as Sister Antonius at the Mount de Chantel Academy in West Virginia.

Friday, July 9, 2010

101 Best Genealogy Websites for 2010

Click here to view an article from Family Tree Magazine about the 101 Best Websites of 2010. Best of all, they are all free!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

G. A. Boeckling

George A. Boeckling
was a salesman and a real estate agent. He was born in Indiana in 1862. In 1897 he became general manger of the newly formed Cedar Point Pleasure Resort Company in Sandusky, Ohio. Under Boeckling’s leadership, Cedar Point was transformed from a summer picnic area to a thriving amusement park, attracting visitors from miles away. Mr. Boeckling spent several decades expanding the amusement park, adding flower gardens, rides, and several hotels. Customers flocked to Cedar Point during the summer seasons under Boeckling’s management. They came by the interurban, the Pennsylvania Railroad, and by steamship. Starting in 1908 the steamer G.A. Boeckling started providing local transportation between the city of Sandusky and Cedar Point.

In 1922 the Sandusky Register called him “the man who made Cedar Point.” George A. Boeckling died July 24, 1931, and is buried at Oakland Cemetery.

This portrait of G. A. Boeckling is located in the lobby of the Hotel Breakers at Cedar Point.

Click on the image below to see how the Hotel Breakers appeared in 1905. This painting is also found in the lobby of the Hotel Breakers.

The steamer, the G.A. Boeckling, was named after Cedar Point's general manager. It took passengers across Sandusky Bay, from the city of Sandusky to Cedar Point, from about 1908 through 1952.