Friday, June 29, 2012

August Charles Farschman--Real Estate Mogul


The scanned Elyria, Ohio newspapers out on ancestry have provided me with a new focus on my husbands, paternal great grandfather, August Charles Farschman--real estate mogul. ;-D


Through the early 1900's, August had a candy, tobacco and billard establishment on Broadway in Lorain.  To supplement his income, he also was employed in a local dairy and at the National Stove Company. By 1920 August had purchased property on 12th Avenue (Street?) in Lorain and two years later he owned property in Axel where he ran a gasoline station and grocery store until about 1932.

The following newspaper clippings show that August had some additional real estate transactions in Lorain County.








Other Flipside Blogs for August Charles Farschman:

Farschman History--The "C" Stands for Charles
Treasure Chest Thursday--August C. Farschman Money Bag

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© 2012, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Mont Mettie Munger--Writer and Composer


Mont Mettie Munger, my maternal grand uncle, has been quite a man of mystery. As I mentioned in a Flipside blog back in November, 2009, I have no stories of him other than his playing the player piano with GREAT showmanship. Now I am wondering if it WAS a player piano, or simply Uncle Mont showing his piano prowess tickling the ivories for REAL.

This week, for some unknown reason, I was putting Mont's name into the google search engine and up popped some new and interesting information.  I found three Library of Congress listings for Mont M. Munger, Pittsburgh, composer and author.  Wow....somehow that little piece of family history was lost through the decades. 


It appears that Uncle Mont composed two little ditties back in 1938:  On a Honeymoon Up in the Sky and Do You Remember Dear.  Uncle Mont was not on Tin Pan Alley when he crafted his two songs and neither were on the Pittsburgh Top Ten; however, an accomplishment none the less.  I wonder if the untimely death of his wife, Lucy Stark Munger in 1927, were the basis of the songs.


The book, a 265 page vanity press, Song of Heaven, was published in 1958.  It would be fun to find a copy.  I imagine it was given out to family members and friends and again, it too has been lost to the ages.....unfortunately, probably to Pittsburgh land fills.

Mont's genealogical information is all out on a Tombstone Tuesday blog.  I noticed I did not give any of his work details.  During his younger career, Mont was a stenographer with a steel company and then a clerk in an office, both in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  In the 1930's he was a traveling salesman with a paste cleaner company.  Records show he was self employed in the 40's and a Pittsburgh Directory lists him as employed with an office supply company, perhaps his own.

Mont did not remarry after Lucy's death. 
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© 2012, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Philip Seewald--Jeweler and Clock Maker Extraordinaire


Philip Seewald and Louisa Lang Seewald are the maternal 3x great grandparents of my husband, Ted.  Philip is the son of Ludwig Seewald and Sophia Correll.  He was born on September 26 1799 in Sippersfeld, Bavarian Palatinate, Germany.  Louisa, daughter of George Ludwig Henry Lang and Catherine Scheutz, was born on February 26, 1802 in Bavaria, Germany.

The immigration and gradual movement across pioneer America of the Seewalds from Philadelphia to Tiffin, Ohio is well documented in the History of Seneca County published in 1880  by William Lang, page 255-257.  As noted in the books article, all three of Philips sons; John Louis Seewald, William Henry Seewald and John Philip Seewald, carried on the family trade of jeweler.

At the end of the Seewald section of William Lang's book, it mentions that Philip Seewald began making tower clocks in his later years.  Lang credits Philip Seewald with the building of the clock located in the clock tower near the Seneca County Courthouse.  I  found an article in the Advertiser Tribune, Tiffin's local newspaper, that groundbreaking for the courthouse was begun in 1883.  The tower clock was made by Seewald and Hart, Tiffin, Ohio.  Since Philip Seewald died in 1878, it begs the question--was the original clock in the tower built by Philip or his son, John Louis?  Or, perhaps, the original clock was simply in a tower standing alone in the Tiffin town square before the Seneca County Courthouse was built.

Another one of Philip's tower clocks is still in operation in Hudson, Michigan.  According to an article in the Toledo Blade, March 1, 1982, page 6, Future of Old Clock Has Hudson Wound Up, the Hudson clock was originally in Fremont, Ohio and was subsequently moved to Hudson in front of John Philip Seewald's jewelry store.


The Seneca County Courthouse and clock tower were razed early this year following protests by local groups and even a failed request to the Ohio Supreme Court.  There was a quote by a local resident that I found in a Toledo Blade article, "Watching the 107-foot clock tower of Seneca County's 1884 courthouse come down piece by dusty piece Thursday, the resident conceded most people considered the tower ugly." "I wasn't too fond of it either, been but the original one was underneath it and it could've been brought back," he said.  I know my Aunt said that the clock that was destroyed was not the Seewald clock; however, it seems from the above quote, the razed tower and clock may have been built over the original one.

I have been working lately on my husband's Seewald genealogy and it was amazing to learn just how many descendants of  Philip Seewald continued his business in jewelry and clock making.  The Seewalds fanned out across America and generations have provided new customers with beautiful articles of jewelry and time pieces.

Other spellings of Philip Seewald:  Phillip Seewald, Johann Phillip Seewald
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Seewald Cousins

Third Cousins Once Removed
Elaine, Ted and Gloria

Why do I blog????  Here is a recent instance.  Back in January I wrote about my son finding a piece of his Lang history at the Western Reserve Historical Society in Cleveland, Ohio at What Could I Say But Good Eye. That piece generated a flurry of e-mail activity from two women who also called the Lang Family of Tiffin, Ohio their family. 

After plenty of travel planning on their part, Gloria and Elaine arrived in Ohio last week digging into their Seewald/Lang roots.  My husband and I had the pleasure of their company here in Cleveland on Saturday for dinner at The Blue Point Grill.  I'm afraid we occupied our table for well over three hours--probably to the consternation of the restaurant...lol

Ted's cousins continued on their genealogy trip to Hudson, Michigan where their mutual grandfather, Philip Seewald, built the town clock, which is still in existance.  Philip Seewald is Elaine and Gloria's great great grandfather and he is Ted's great great great grandfather.

Two days were spent in Tiffin, talking with Ted's aunt and uncle, visiting Greenfield Cemetery where so many Tiffin pioneers are buried and taking in the Tiffin Historical Society and Tiffin Glass Museum. 

Their final day in Ohio will be in Berlin--a non genealogical day--browsing the numerous Amish shops.

Elaine and Gloria....I don't know if you have this newspaper clipping.  It is a wonderful look at your Seewald ancestry in Amarillo, Texas.



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© 2012, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Aunt Pat

PATRICIA MADDEN HUGHES
2002
Last night a cherished family member passed from this life to the next following a courageous battle with cancer.  Aunt Pat was like a comet passing through my Hughes family's lives scattering love, light and energy to everyone she met. 
1985 Aunt Pat with Uncle Ed and Edna Hughes
She was my Uncle John's second wife and I first had the pleasure of meeting her when she accompanied him to Cousin Karen's wedding in Pittsburgh in 1985.  Have you ever met someone for the first time and instinctively knew you would want to get to know them better--spend more time with them???  That was my first reaction to Aunt Pat.  She was full of energy and charisma.  A pinch on the cheek for Garrett, a big kiss for Aric and for Ted....well, she exclaimed, "Who is that FUNNY MAN!!!"  "Funny Man" became Ted's nickname for the next twenty seven years.  That first meeting she captivated us with her wit and sincerity. 
Uncle John and Aunt Pat
Fran and Lee's wedding 1986
Through the years, I was always anxious to know if Aunt Pat would be attending whatever family gathering was on the docket.  She had a joie de vivre.  Now, don't get me wrong.  Aunt Pat had her ups and downs and fought a few demons during her lifetime, but always seemed to do it with grace and style. 

Aunt Pat and Uncle John at Grams'
90th birthday--1988
She was a multifaceted woman.....not just fun and games, but also a good counselor.  Aunt Pat was able to put her thumb right on a problem and gave thoughtful, expert advice.

Aunt Pat enjoying a piece of cake at Megan's
high school graduation party 2002
I had two occasions to really spend some quality time with my aunt.  The first was following Megan's high school graduation party.  We all gathered at Cousin Phyllis' home and Aunt Pat and I sat for hours looking through my Hughes picture book.  I marveled at the stories she shared.....thoughts of my Uncle John regarding his parents and great grandmother.....items that he had, up to that point, only shared with Pat. 

Aunt Pat teaching me a few tricks
of her selling skills--2002
Second, when the family gathered to plan and have the Fun With Judy event.  Aunt Pat arrived with her usual excitement; her arms full of bags of food.  She proceeded to literally throw together a delicious chili out of canned products.  Was it called Seven Can Chili????  Next she sat down with me and we gathered up and priced all the items that we were selling in a garage sale during the Fun With Judy day.  I felt like I was sitting at the feet of a master.  I was so into auctions and garage sales that year and Aunt Pat was a seller for house sales--she REALLY knew her stuff.  To say that I was in awe would be an understatement.

Hughes Family gathers for Katie's high school grad party
2006
The last time I saw my aunt was at Katie's graduation party in 2006.  It was so wonderful to feel her kiss on my cheek and warm embrace. 

Rest in Peace my dear Aunt Pat.  I know you have been warmly welcomed up in heaven and are spreading your effervescent personality to all you meet.

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© 2012, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Stories in Stone--Drechsler Building in Oak Park, Illinois


Sandwiched in between various much newer or newly refurbished buildings on Lake Street in Oak Park, Illinois is the Drechsler Building built in 1898. I was able to find some information regarding the building on two other websites along with brief biographies the occupants when it was constructed.  Although the number currently is 1112 Lake Street, it was 1116 Lake Street back in the 1920's and may have even been 135 Lake in 1910.  Numbers changed as additional buildings were added along the main business street of Oak Park. 


Oak Park resident, Frank Lloyd Wright, definately did not draw up the blueprint for this structure ;-).  Information found on the net on page 23 at, ARCHITECTURAL SURVEY Downtown Oak Park and The Avenue Business District Oak Park, Historic Preservation Commission, Conducted in 1975, Updated 1981 and 2005, lists the architect as E.E. Roberts and the style as Queen Anne.  Charles Drechsler is listed as the first owner.

"The building is 4 stories and is 23’ x 142’. The walls and foundation dates to a 1933 remodel. There was a building restoration in 1970 by Fred Burghardt. Minor alterations to the storefront occurred in 1975. There is a copper bay at the third floor level. Metal cornice and brackets with imposing brick parapet and coping. Bedford limestone trim. Exterior restoration underway in 2005."  

Charles Frederick Drechsler, son of William Henry Drechsler and Anna Heitmann, was born on April 9, 1872 in Leyden Township, Cook County, Illinois. Leyden Township comprises an area northwest of Oak Park.  I have also seen Charles' mother listed as Wilhelmina Hectmann; however the maiden name could be a transcription error.


Charles married Sophia P. Sievert on July 10, 1895 in St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church, Harlem, Cook County, Illinois.  At this time, Harlem was located in what is today called Forest Park.  Charles was already a resident of Oak Park at the time of his marriage.  Sophia, also known as Sophy, was born in 1875, the daughter of John and Carolyn Sievert, pioneer settlers of the area now known as River Forest, Illinois. 

Charles was already self employed as an undertaker and embalmer working in Oak Park.  The Drechsler's had two sons who are enumerated on the 1900 Illinois Census, Ralph, born October 1896 and Irwin, born January 1900.  Both boys must have died between 1900 and 1910.  A third son, Earl August Martin Drechsler was born on November 12, 1905, probably in Oak Park, Cook County, Illinois. 

I was able to find a brief biography of both Charles and Sophy on line at A Partial History of Forest Home and German Waldheim Cemeteries;

"Sophy Drechsler was the daughter of John and Carolyn Sievert, one of the first families to settle in what is now River Forest. As she was growing up, the area was so sparsely settled that she was the only one in her graduating class at Harlem School. In 1895 she married Charles Drechsler, a young man determined to succeed in business.

At an early age, Drechsler had left his family's farm in Leyden Township and trained with J. W. Senne, an early undertaker in Forest Park and Oak Park. When he was only twenty-two years old, Drechsler bought out Senne and continued to operate the under taking and ambulance services. In addition, he managed a wide range of business ventures that included repairing and upholstering furniture, renting fireproof storage space, moving furniture, and eventually, selling Franklin automobiles.

In 1898, Drechsler commissioned the noted architect E. E. Roberts to design a four-story brick building, which still stands in Oak Park at 1116 Lake Street, just west of Marion Street. The building housed and advertised all his various business ventures, as shown in the drawing here After his death, Sophy Drechsler kept the funeral home operating and served as its bookkeeper until her son Earl completed school. She remained active in the family business until her own death."


The Charles Drechsler Family lived above the business at 1116 Lake Street for several decades.  By 1910, Charles' younger brother, William Henry Drechsler, had joined the embalming business.  I noticed that Charles F. Drechsler was the undertaker for both of his parents. 

Find A Grave photograph
Scott Lewis
Charles Frederick Drechsler died on February 15  1925 at the age of fifty-two.  Sophy died in 1953.  Both are buried in Forest Home Cemetery, Forest Park, Illinois.

William H. Drechsler continued the business until Charles and Sophy's son, Earl A. Drechsler, graduated from University of Michigan and then he took over the business.

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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

LEAP YEAR CHUCKLE


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