Saturday, October 31, 2009

SNGF--Halloween in the 1950's

Randy Seaver over at Genea-Musings has challenged us this Saturday to remember a favorite Halloween. I can't remember a specific one, but rather, my memories are of all the Halloween trick or treats I had when the family lived on Washington Drive, in the north hills area of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It was my elementary school years.

My brother, Ken, and I were just reminiscing about them today as we were driving around in Amish country, Ohio. One of our stops was Loudonville, Ohio to watch this village's annual Halloween celebration for their children. In years past, the kids would trick or treat walking up and down the town main street during the afternoon and the various merchants would have treats for them. A safe Halloween celebration.

Today we found that the celebration now consists of a band concert and then a costume judging with various age groups represented. All the participants received a prize bag filled with goodies. The younger age groups were so adorable in their little costumes and their shy looks when they walked up to receive their prize. This is small town Ohio at its BEST.

Driving back home, Ken and I began to trade Halloween stories from Washington Drive. Those Flipside readers who grew up in the 50's probably all had similar experiences. Trick or treating until late at night.....filling up several bags full of goodies--the regular sized candy bars not these minis that the kids get nowadays.....neighbors who had hot chocolate and donuts to serve to the kids (we were actually invited into their home).....homemade popcorn balls and candy apples that we weren't afraid to eat.....making and using a handmade contraption that whirred against a glass window and made an awful sound (created from a wooden thread spool that was knotched on the edges with toothpicks or wooden matches on either end that were connected by a rubberband).......cloth masks attached by elastic bands that became pretty grimy after one wearing......and finally, my Mom going through the bags of candy and picking out all the Hershey chocolate bars after we had gone to bed.

It was a good time to be a kid at Halloween.

Photo: Linda in a Japanese outfit that was purchsed for her by her Dad while he was serving in the Korean War. I still have it.



Thursday, October 29, 2009

Treasure Chest Thursday--Helena Hiser's Apple Pizza Recipe

Apple lovers unite! This is one easy, delicious apple recipe--just right for the fall harvest and cooler weather. I have been making apple pizza since the early 1970's when my husband's mother first served it for dessert one October evening.

1 pizza pan
enough pie crust to cover the pizza pan and up the sides

any variety of cooking apple--6 TO 8 (you be the judge as to how many you like)
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
3/4 cup flour
1/2 cup softened butter or margarine (butter's better)

1. Prepare the pie crust and press it into the pizza pan.

2. You can use as many cooking apples as you wish, depending on how many you want to pile on your pizza. They only need to be washed, cored and cut into slices--no need to peel them. Lay them in rows in the pan and pile on some additional if you wish.

3. Combine 1/2 cup sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg and sprinkle over the top of the apples.

4. Combine 3/ cup flour, 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 cup softened butter. Crumble over the top of the apples and sugar mixture.


Bake for 23 minutes in a 450 degree oven.

Want to add some cheddar cheese--it is a wonderful addition to the pizza. Remove the finished apple pizza, sprinkle some shredded cheddar on top and put it back in the oven until the cheese it melted.


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Tombstone Tuesday--My Aunt and Uncle, John Aiden Hughes and Barbara Ann McGoey Hughes

Since I blogged about my Uncle John yesterday, I decided to follow it up with his resting place. My aunt and uncle are buried in Oakland Hills Memorial Gardens, Novi, Oakland County, Michigan.

John Aiden Hughes
Son of George Henry Hughes and Sarah Margaret VanGilder
Born February 7, 1929 in Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania
Died October 30, 1990 in West Bloomfield, Oakland County, Michigan

and my aunt

Barbara Ann McGoey Hughes
Daughter of Francis Regis McGoey and Augusta Mitchell
Born August 18, 1930 in Clearfield, Clearfield County, Pennsylvania
Died June 4, 1980 in Royal Oak, Oakland County, Michigan

Monday, October 26, 2009

Carnival of Genealogy, 82nd Edition—Musical Instruments

The topic for the next edition of the Carnival of Genealogy will be: Musical Instruments! Do you play a musical instrument or did one of your family members? What instrument did you or they play? If no one in the family played an instrument, tell what is your favorite instrument or band and what is your least favorite one. Thanks to Janet Iles, over at Janet the Researcher, for sponsoring this fascinating blog topic.

Hands down, my Uncle Johnnie, is the featured family member for this COG blog. John Aiden Hughes, son of George Henry Hughes and Sarah Margaret VanGilder, was my paternal uncle. Born on February 7, 1929 in Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, he was the middle child in the Hughes family.

I have been told that John was always a musician. I found a photo of him in what looks to be a high school or perhaps college band in an old photo album.

And here’s one in another unknown band. Perhaps one was a local or town band.

And then there is this one taken of the 321 Army Band during his service following high school with the United States Army Special Services at Fort Meade and Fort Leavenworth between 1947 to 1948.

He graduated from The University of Michigan with a degree in Music in 1952. Possibly taken during his college years or maybe practicing at home.

Uncle John was eighteen when I was born, so my memories of him begin around 1952—my early elementary school years. I will admit that as a youngster, I had one big crush on my handsome uncle! During this time, it was not unusual for this author to spend weekend overnights with my Hughes grandparents in their apartment at 168 Lincoln Avenue in Bellevue, Pennsylvania. Most family gatherings were also held there—always a warm and fun filled time.

During these years, from 1952-1954, John was in and out. As a kid, I didn’t always know what he was “out there” doing, I was just happy to see him come in the door….I could count on that big smile, a hardy laugh and usually some uproariously funny antic.

The apocryphal family story regarding Uncle John and his music was that when he was young, he played sax with a “big band” and went on tour. Music was his passion. The end to his “playing days” came when his father told him that he had to get a “real” job. I’m sure my uncle was not in his usual good-humored frame of mind when that dictum was handed down!

I have never been able to get a decent handle on the actual years all of this took place in my uncle’s life. My guess is that he:

-Graduated from high school in 1947
-Did the stint in the U.S. Army Band to have money for college between 1947-1948
-Graduated from the University of Michigan in 1952
-Married my Aunt Barb in 1954

I believe that his “Big Band” era was after college and before the marriage, which is why I remember him coming and going from my grandparents apartment at various times of the year. I imagine that his marriage was the stimulus for his father’s comment about “getting a real job.” My uncle was accepted into the medical program at Wayne State University, Michigan and practiced neurology in Farmington Hills, Michigan.

Once I was hooked by the genealogy bug, it was of the utmost importance to nail down my Hughes family story. When talking to my Mom, Dad and Aunt Faith, the “big band” story would keep popping up. No one seemed to know any of the details, the name of the band, when he toured, etc.—only that it took place and Pop Pop put a stop to it. Unfortunately, I was not able to just ask my uncle as he was no longer alive having died in 1990 and, his first wife, my Aunt Barb in 1980.

For many years the answer was hiding behind one of those illusive genealogy brick walls. I think it was back around 2002 or 03 that I received a package in the mail one Saturday from my California cousin, Beth. In the large envelope were old photo albums. I immediately recognized one of them as being one of three that my Grandmother Hughes made for each of her children back in the mid 1960’s. What a treasure my cousin had just sent and shared with me. Not only were there some photos of ancestors, but there on one page was this photo……

Hallelujah! A photo of my Uncle John with the big band. A genealogy happy dance moment to be certain!

A google search of the band’s name,
Don Glasser Orchestra, brought me good research information along with the names of the band leader and the singer, Lois Costello, who happened to be married to Don Glasser. After some noodling around the net I was able to find an address and sent them an inquiry about the band and my uncle. A very gracious Lois Costello sent me an almost immediate response which has become another valued piece of our family story.

Was my uncles musical dream deferred or more accurately, destroyed…..probably. Unfortunately since my Dad and his brother were not close, the two families lost contact for decades (a situation, I am happy to report, that this generation has corrected). I have no idea if Uncle John continued to play music while his children were growing or grown. [Cousins if you are reading me out here..... :-) ] Sadly, I have no childhood remembrance of ever hearing him play or even pratice.

Both Uncle John and his wife, Aunt Barb, were gifted musicians and their musical talent was passed on to all their children and has continued with their grandchildren. If my uncle and aunt were still alive, I know they would be gratified to see the love of music and the arts continuing through their blood line.

Was my Uncle Johnnie a member of a big betcha! He was a saxophone player in an orchestra that was billed as "Music smooth as glass" ......"featuring the band's sweet and smooth sax section."

Whatever would I do without
Today this was quite a find!
Don Glasser performs at West View Park, West View, Pennsylvania in 1945. I wonder if a teenage John Hughes might have gone to this concert? Or better yet, did his parents, my Grams and Pop Pop, enjoy dancing to the music of Don Glasser at the West View Danceland?

More on Don Glasser and His Orchestra:
Don Glasser on Findagrave.
Don Glasser and His Orchestra

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Treasure Chest Thursday--Hughes Ceramic Heart

This is a precious little keepsake that was made for me by my paternal grandmother, Sarah VanGilder Hughes. If memory serves me, it was a sweet sixteen present. I have written on other blogs of my Grams love of ceramics and the numerous gifts she made for family and friends during the mid to late 1950's and into the early 1960's.

The pink ceramic heart must have been made before their retirement and move to St. Petersburg, Florida. I would have been 16 in 1963 and they were already living in St. Pete by then. As I remember, Grams made her ceramics while still living in Bellevue, Pennsylvania.

The greenware was cleaned, painted and fired by Grams and the printing was done by my paternal grandfather, George Henry Hughes aka Pop Pop. I guess he was "permitted" by Grams to do the printwork as he was employed as a draftsman in his day job ;-)

Truth be told, I did use this heirloom as an ashtray when I as in college. Then following my smoking years it was packed away (with the cigarette stains still visable) in a box, moved from house to house, then placed in the basement....long forgotten.

Probably my penchant for genealogy and all things relative prompted me to pull the pink heart out of its hiding place, give it a good scrubbing and place it in the living room china cupboard--the heirloom place of honor in my house.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Up and Running--Well sort of.....

The Linda Hughes Hiser Family Genealogy Home Page is open for business in its new home at Yahoo. Frankly, I had not updated much of my genealogy home page since about 2006 and over the past three years I have accumulated new information on many of my lines. Change was overdue.

There is still much work to be done. I plan to rewrite many of the bios, have to rescan and upload all of the photos and many of the documents, write the newly added information and continue to make certain all the links are functional.

The good news is that the work of moving over 10 years of my research from one place to another is DONE! Now the fine tuning begins.

Wordless Wednesday

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Treasure Chest Thursday--Quincy LaRue Hiser calipers

These two strange looking tools once belonged to my husband's great great grandfather, Quincy LaRue Hiser. My understanding is that they are calipers. I have no idea what they are used for! I guess I have to google ;-)

Back in 1991, when Ted's father, Clarence Harold Hiser, died, and his mother was making an attempt to begin removing his belongings from the house, she asked my husband to go through his Dad's tools and take what he wanted. Ted meticulously sifted through the hundreds of items down on Clarence's workbench, chose what he wanted and brought them home in a sizeable cardboard box.

Down into the basement they went and sat for well over a decade.

A couple of years back, in a grand attempt to "clean" up the basement and in particular the laundry room which is also part of the workbench area......I found the box of old tools. Thinking "garage sale items" I brought the box upstairs to have a better look. Among the old and rusted pieces and parts were these calipers. When Ted came home from work, I asked him what in the world they were. As I turned them about in my hands, I noticed some small letters stamped near the hinges. Lo and behold...they were initials....QLH.....Quincy LaRue Hiser.

None of the items in the box made it into a gargage sale and these two calipers are now in a place of honor--on display in the antique china cabinet in the living room.

Short Bio for Quincy LaRue Hiser

Born: 17 Aug 1869

Place: Stony Ridge, Wood County, Ohio

Died: 24 Dec 1924

Place: Pond Creek, Grant County, Oklahoma

Parents: Henry Hiser and Calista Elizabeth Calkins

Married first: Florence Mabel Brown

Date: 03 Aug 1890

Place: Wood County, Ohio

Child: Leona Florence Hiser

Married second: Isabelle Smith

Date: 21 Jun 1894

Place: Bradner, Wood County, Ohio


Wanda E. Hiser

Orison Henry Hiser--Ted's great grandfather

Harry LaRue Hiser

Leo Westly Hiser

Maurice Darlington Hiser

Quincy LaRue Hiser, Jr.

Mildred Deleta Hiser

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Wordless Wednesday--Japanese Lanterns

Festival of Postcards—4 legged quadrapeds

This is a photo postcard of my paternal great great grandmother, Ferdinande Weiss Olesen. Known as Ann by her contemporaries and as Granny Olesen by younger generations, she is shown with the Olesen family companion. This proud canine’s name has been lost to history, but was the subject of a Smile for the Camera blog done on Flipside back in the spring.

Ferdinande was the daughter of Frederick Heindrich Adolph Weiss and Ferdinande Lehman. She was born in Hamburg, Germany on 14 Nov 1855. The Weiss family immigrated to West Hartlepool, England between 1859 and 1861.

Ann was married to Christian Invart Olesen, a ships chandler and a boarder in the Weiss household, on August 3, 1874 at Christ Church in West Hartlepool, England.

I believe that this photo was taken outside their home on Bolton Street in West Hartlepool, England.

Submitted to A Festival of Postcards for the October 2009 4th Edition--4 legged quadrapeds.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Tombstone Tuesday--Peter Eisenhour

Resting in the Eisenhour Cemetery, Pemberville, Wood County, Ohio is Peter Eisenhour or Peter Eisenhaur my husbands, paternal gggg grandfather.
In Memory
Peter Eisenhour
who died Sept
12th 1841
aged 69 yrs
A husband and a

Monday, October 12, 2009

SNGF on Monday

Randy Seaver over at Genea-Musings, has posted his Saturday Night Genealogy Fun challenge, it is: Tell us about one (or more) "Satisfying Genealogy Moments" from your family history and genealogy research. What was it, and how did it make you feel? You can make a Top Ten list if you want to!This challenge is based on a post by Leland Meitzler, "Top Ten List of the Most Satisfying Genealogy Events".

For Flipside, there was no time over the weekend to participate in SNGF, but I had to put in my ten cents worth….this is a very intriguing meme. Some I have already written about on Flipside. Some I need to get organized and put finger to keyboard in the future.

1. At the top of the list—the visit several summers ago to the
Old Harner Homestead in Sabraton, West Virginia (outside of Morgantown) and actually getting inside. As I walked about the house I could just picture my paternal ggg parents, Phillip William and Sarah Fear Harner and my young gg grandmother, Sarah Harner Pool, conducting their daily routines and celebrating family events. It still brings goose bumps to my arms just thinking about it.

2. Visiting the small village of Houston, Scotland, outside Glasgow and seeing the remains of a tower from the original
Houston castle. Old genealogical documentation from my paternal side lists Robert Houston of Delaware as a descendant of the Houston’s of Houston, Scotland.

3. Meeting and learning about my Hughes family when we visited
Hartlepool, England in the summer of 2003. This was an unbelievable experience for my brothers and I and was made possible through the efforts of an internet friend, Heather, who lives about 15 miles away from Hartlepool. With her help, she filled in most of my UK family brick walls.

4. Attending my first VanGilder reunion at the Winfield Community Cabin, Marion County, West Virginia. This was a tremendous opportunity to meet and greet cousins and share genealogy information. My entire family attended two years in a row.

5. Discovering that the Civil War soldier in the old family tin type was my maternal great grandfather, Charles Stark. When I received a copy of his Civil War pension file I was shocked to learn that in 1890 he was declared a lunatic and incarcerated into an asylum. This prompted my husband to declare, “Why that must be where the term--Stark raving mad originated!” lol

6. The day my cousin, Karen, sent me a copy of the
George Ethelbert VanGilder autograph book. He is my paternal great grandfather and the autograph book is from the mid 1880’s. There are signatures of all of his siblings, his mother and aunt. Once, when I visited Karen years back, I actually held this piece of my family history.

7. Receiving the oldest piece of my family history—a
civil war letter which was written for my paternal great great grandfather, Sampson Frum Pool, by a fellow soldier. I had first heard of this letter back in the mid 1990’s. My Aunt Faith told me that she had sent it to one of my Michigan cousins to use in conjunction with a school project back in, perhaps, the 1970’s. My Pool/Poole genealogy networking family was most anxious to see this letter. Unfortunately, the letter was not to be found among my cousin’s attics and basements until one moved to a new house. The letter was mailed and the day it arrived, I opened the mailbox to see the large manila envelope was NOT sealed. With trembling hands I lifted the envelope out of the mailbox praying that the letter was still inside—it was!

8. The Columbiana County cemetery trip taken on Christmas Eve 1993. My two brothers, Mother, and my family piled into the family car and took off to visit our maternal Frederick/Cannon/Orr roots in Columbiana County, Ohio. I have often told readers of Flipside of my family’s indulging me with these far flung genealogy expeditions. Through the swirling snow we drove from cemetery to cemetery. Even now, when we gather for our Christmas holiday, there is much laughter remembering that trip and the humorous events at each stop.

9. Finding and the subsequent visit to the
Old Frum Cemetery on the Kingwood Pike outside Morgantown, West Virginia. Yet another of my “far flung” genealogy trips with my family in the car. The Pool/Frum genealogists were in a “need to know” frame of mind when it came to the final resting place of this branch of our family tree. The day of “the find” took us to various front porches in Morgantown—finding new family relations and soliciting their help until we finally found the old family burial plot. This was my “Dorothy finding the Emerald City” experience. lol

10. Going out to the Ellis Island website and finding my paternal great grandparents, John George Hughes and Elizabeth Olesen Hughes, and grandfather’s, George Henry Hughes, immigration ship manifest from 1906.


No, I haven't traced my roots back to Chris. I do have his day off work.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Genealogy Happy Dance--My Stark Family

It's been a couple of months since I was doing the happy dance. Well, let me amend that....the genealogy happy dance. I was doing the summer vacation happy dance during June, July and August.

Last week I received an e-mail from someone who wanted me to have a look at their ancestry site. While I was out noodling around I somehow landed on my cousin Kent's pages. Kent is related through my maternal Grandfather Stark's family.

Charles Edward Stark and his mother, Wilhelmine Schwartz Stark

My fingers were flying over the keys when I saw our great grandmother, Wilhelmine Catherine Schwarz Stark's, profile page. Kent had scanned and uploaded 22 NEW old photos of the Stark family that I had never seen before. Some included my grandfather, Charles Edward Stark, her oldest son.

Kent was kind enough to send me full resolution jpg's of some of the photos for me to enlarge and explore further. Now the challenge will be identification. Are these all Stark family members or might some be from Wilhelmine's Alsace-Lorraine roots or perhaps some neighborhood family friends.

My grandfather, Charles Edward Stark is on the right

Talk about excited!!!!

Treasure Chest Thursday--Orison Henry Hiser Pocket Watch

Today's treasure is the pocket watch that once belonged to my husbands paternal grandfather, Orison Henry Hiser. The watch came into our possession in the early 1980's when Ted's parents came for a visit. I showed them two pocket watches that were part of my family heritage. Ted's father, who enjoyed tinkering around with wood, took my watches with the promise of returning them in a handcrafted wooden shadowbox.

When Christmas rolled around that year, I was pleased to open one box to find another inside. There was a lovely wooden shadowbox with three pocket watches and their chains gracefully hanging inside. Clarence had thoughtfully added the watch that once belonged to his father to the display.

The pocket watch box graced my dining room wall for years. When we moved to our current house over twenty years ago, the shadowbox broke in the move. The watches found a new home and are on display inside one of my bent glass china cabinets in the living room.

There was a time in the past ten years that I was looking more closely at the watches--probably trying to get additional information about them for my genealogy research--ie any initials or names....anything hidden inside......etc.

When I opened the Hiser pocket watch I found a treasure inside a treasure. Tucked inside was a small, circular cut old photograph of Ted's grandparents, Orison Henry Hiser and Eva Matilda Farschman Hiser. From their youthful faces I would ballpark it as circa 1920 or earlier.

I was taught a valuable lesson--if possible, take items apart.....carefully explore them for any hidden treasure or information.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Geocities to Yahoo Migration--Final

I had to think about this, do some trial and many errors, but I FINALLY got it!!! Actually, it's not rocket science ;-)

Once I paid my toll and got a site on Yahoo, I downloaded their Site Builder program. Back in the day, I spent countless hours building my geocities home page and I like the graphics and background I used, so naturally I wanted to replicate it on my new site.

To do this one only has to open Site Builder and click on "add a blank page". Then give the blank page a name and save it. I went out to my geocities file manager page and printed it out, so I was able to rename the new pages with the same old names. Site Builder allows you to add numerous blank pages. Once they are all named, simply click on publish and the computer uploads all the new pages into your new Yahoo file manager. From what I could figure out, the only way to be able to "edit" a page once it is in the file manager is to create it in Site Builder first.

Transferring is easy, but time consuming. I opened both file managers--copied the geocities page by page to the corresponding new pages on Yahoo. Downloaded all the graphics, backgrounds, etc. and now I am almost ready to rock and roll. There are still some links that don't work and I do want to add some new pages and rescan most of the photos....but there you have it! Almost done and ready to advertise.

Now.....what was I complaining about for the past two weeks....LOL
BTW--for those of you that have your home page out on geocities, the site is slated to close on October 26.

Wordless Wednesday--ROOTS

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Tombstone Tuesday--William Lanham Pool

     William Lanham Pool is my paternal great great great grandfather. Sarah is his second wife and not my blood relation. 

     William was the son of Rev. Asby Pool and Vilender Lanham. He was born in Monongalia County, (West) Virginia in June 1817 and died in Monongalia County, West Virginia on October 07, 1911.

     He followed in the steps of his father becoming a minister; however, with the Methodist Protestant Church.  His first wife, was my great great great grandmother Ann Louise Frum Pool

     William served in the Civil War as a Corporal with Company I, 14th West Virginia Infantry.
     He and Sarah are buried in Mt. Pleasant Cemetery, Monongalia County, West Virginia.

I WOULD LOVE TO HEAR FROM YOU. All comments are welcome; however, if they are inappropriate, they will not be published.    PLEASE post your e-mail in the comment section if you would like to network about a particular surname or topic. I will capture it for my use only and not include it when I publish your comment.
© 2009, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Sunday, October 4, 2009

SNGF--My Dad's Homecoming from Korea

This Saturday's challenge from Randy Seaver over at Gena-Musings is to write about a childhood memory. I have many. Some are probably triggered more from old family photos than from actual memory, however, my Dad's homecoming from Korea is definately part of my childhood memory bank.

In 1949, my Dad, George VanGilder Hughes, signed up as a Captain in the Medical Corps of the National Guard for the additional income. He had already served with the U.S. Army in local hospitals as his payback for medical school tuition. In 1950-51 he was setting up his medical practice in the North Hills of Pittsburgh. In the fall of 1951 he received a letter from the U.S. Army stating that he was to report to the U.S. Army Medical Hosptial at Camp Carson, Colorado. Family life and his new practice suddenly were put on hold.

After my Mother's birthday on December 4, 1951, she and I traveled by train to Camp Carson to live on the Army post with my Dad and to await the arrival of my brother, Ken. We lived on post until sometime in May of 1952 and returned to our house in Pittsburgh. Dad followed a few weeks later and stayed at home for a couple of months before he was shipped to Korea.

He served as the head of an aid station on the front line for several months. He took and passed his medical boards and was immediately moved to the 121 Evacuation Hospital in Seoul, Korea as the Chief of Medical SVC. His actual time in Korea was not that long....less than one year...but for me, at age five, it seemed like an eternity.

We would wait anxiously for a letter from Dad. I always knew when they came as the envelopes had red, white and blue around the outside. Dad would always have a little drawing at the end of each letter for Ken and I. The three of us would sit together on the living room couch and Mom would read the words to us.

Dad's discharge and homecoming was cause for great celebration. Our friend and neighbor, Dr. Joseph Arthur, made a large sign which stretched across the front yard. My maternal grandmother made me a new dress and the family drove out to the airport to greet Dad upon his arrival.

Dad never spoke of Korea. There are many photos, Army documentation and only one of his letters that remain. When I interviewed him for the Veterans History Project, he had only sketchy memories of his service.

Memories faded for Dad....but his time away and his homecoming have not for me. Thanks Randy for presenting this challenge. It was good to reminisce.