Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday--Harold Hess Tate

     Harold Hess Tate, son of Charles Christian Henry Tate and Ida Mae Hess, was born in Spencerville, Allen County, Ohio on December 12, 1899. He is my husband's maternal granduncle.

     The Tate family moved to Tiffin, Seneca County, Ohio around 1915. At age 17 he was a glass cutter for the Tiffin Glass Company.  Harold remained single and made his home with his mother.

     Harold died, at age thirty-nine, on December 03, 1939 in Toledo, Lucas County, Ohio.  He was a patient at the Toledo State Hospital.  He is buried along with his family in Greenlawn Cemetery, Tiffin, Seneca County, Ohio. Harold is listed as a painter on his death certificate.  He was an interior and exterior house painter.  He also dabbled in the creative arts and a remaining piece of his artwork is below.

Beautiful lady painted in 1929 on a piece of a brown paper bag

Updated February 2021
© 2010, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Family Search Record Search--Ohio Death Certificates


Can no longer seem to see the actual Ohio Death Certificate at the Family Search Website. What's up with that!!!


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day Dad

July 1, 1920-September 6, 2007

George VanGilder Hughes on Find A Grave

© 2010, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Friday, June 18, 2010

Pennsylvania Grass Roots Genealogy Cause

As a genealogist who would LOVE to have the death certificates of Pennsylvania FREE and on line I received this in my e-mail this week:

Here is the link to the website about the grassroots effort to have Pennsylvania make its older state death certificates much more accessible and also available online similar to what they have already done in other states: People for Better Pennsylvania Historical Records Access. We hope you will join in on this effort and if you would pass this information onto anyone you know who is into Pennsylvania genealogy and history including out of state residents. Every letter, phone call or email helps and you can write more than once.

This effort will only succeed with your help. Otherwise we could be stuck with the same old archaic and restricted system in Pennsylvania forever. It will not happen by itself. There are millions and millions of people who are into genealogy but unless we speak up we are allowing those who don't care about genealogy decide what records we may or may not have access to.

By the way there are now fifteen states that have scanned images of their older state death certificates available online: Arizona, Delaware, Georgia, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, Texas, Vermont, Utah and West Virginia. Six other states have extracted data available online: Washington, Alabama, Louisiana, New Mexico, Idaho and Florida. Arizona, Delaware, Vermont, Washington and West Virginia now have scanned images of their older state birth records online. The links to the various states (except Delaware and Vermont) can be found on the Death Certificates for Other States, Etc section of our website.

Our apology if you have already received this email. We would appreciate it if you would let us know the state or country you are from when you email us. It helps us when we reply to your email.

Thank you for your help.

Tim Gruber &
Roger Schuler

A GREAT reason to Geneablog--A "Cool Beans" Moment

Yesterday I received an e-mail from a reader of Flipside who had seen my blog about Woodlawn, Pennsylvania. It was posted as a Festival of Postcards for the second edition a year ago. The blog featured two postcards of the street where my great grandparents lived in Woodlawn, a company town for Jones & Laughlin Steel Company. They moved to Woodlawn when it was a new town around 1915.

Here is the e-mail

Hi Linda,
I saw those cool postcards of Woodlawn that you posted on Flipside. My family is from Aliquippa - my great-grandparents moved there in 1922 and lived on a hill overlooking the mill. Sadly, their house is now gone - burned down in fire.

I left a message at Flipside, but in case you don't see it, I found a book online called
Woodlawn on the Ohio.

Check out page 19

Upon inspection, the booklet appears to be information to entice workers to move to Woodlawn. My great grandfather was a steel worker at the J & L plant down river on the south side of Pittsburgh. Perhaps the allure of this new factory and what is advertised to be new and modern housing persuaded them to move to Woodlawn.

Thank you Shellie for sending this new information along to me.

© 2010, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Monday, June 14, 2010

Souvenir Spoon of Helen M. Reif

This morning I decided to begin cleaning and putting away some of the "treasures" I found while cleaning out my mother-in-laws condo. This eventually lead me to take a few photos of the various items and while trying to find some room in my cupboards, I happened upon this spoon.

It belongs to me. I purchased it from an ebay seller back in 2001. Actually, I was in the ebay market for anything Tiffin, Ohio and when I saw this souvenir spoon, I decided to get it as a Christmas gift for my mother-in-law who has lived here entire life (save currently) in Tiffin.

She never got the gift. I decided to keep it along with several other's that I found out on ebay. My reason: I went to college in Tiffin, married a fellow from Tiffin and lived there for several years following my wedding day. The spoon collection remained in my kitchen, forgotten....until today.

Close up of the bowl of the spoon which is beautifully engraved with the word "Tiffin".

Back of the spoon with the makers mark, Helen Reif's initials engraved in the back of the handle and the underside of the bowl of the spoon--which IS a golden color.

Robert Wallace and Sons
Sterling Silver

Back when I purchased the spoon, I wrote the sellers to see if they had any knowledge of the name of "H. R."--the initials on the back of the spoon. I was thrilled to find that they did know who the spoon originally belonged to.

After reading their e-mail, I filed it away with the spoon. Today, I decided to do a little detective work to see if I could find out any information on Helen and to find out how close the spoon selleres story was to the actual life of Helen Reif. I hopped on ancestry and was able to find a relation who had information on the entire Reif family. The seller's information was partially correct.

Helen M. Reif
Born: August 7, 1894 in California
Died: August 13, 1975 in California

Parents: John F. Reif and Caroline Ella Grammes
Sibling: Frederick William Reif


Kovel, Ralph and Terry. Kovels' American Silver Marks: 1650 to the Present, Crown Publishers, New York, New York, 1989, page 368.

Lohse-Marzi Families from Ohio,,
Helen M. Reif

© 2010, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Treasure Chest Thursday--Smith Candy Box

As I mentioned several weeks back, we are in the process of cleaning out my mother-in-law's (Helena's) condo. Numerous family treasures have been uncovered and thankfully, many are marked with names and even dates. Helena is truly a genealogists dream.

This is a beautiful box of candy. Back in the day, Helena modge podged EVERYTHING. This is one of her "art" pieces. Although the box has been preserved, the writing on the bottom, which is the genealogy portion of the story, was least not 100%. I had to turn it from side to side in various lights to fully complete the story.

Inside the candy box is a little package of bittersweet.

Bittersweet picked
by my father
Grover Smith
and given to
Mother (Mildred Tate Smith) in fall of
1919 1st year of
their marriage--
also empty candy box
given the same year.

Relation to my husband: Maternal Grandparents
Family in the story:

Grover Cleveland Smith
Born: March 19, 1885 in Tiffin, Seneca County, Ohio
Died: March 5, 1931 in Tiffin, Seneca County, Ohio

Mildred Claudine Tate Smith
Born: February 19, 1895, Spencerville, Allen County, Ohio
Died: February 9, 1964, Tiffin, Seneca County, Ohio

Married on June 5, 1919 in Tiffin, Seneca County, Ohio

© 2010, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

GYR July 2010--Scavenger Hunt

The latest carnival over at The Association of Graveyard Rabbits is a scavenger hunt. Bloggers were asked to find fifteen items found in cemeteries. Thank you to Julie Cahill Tarr over at Chicagoland Cemeteries who submitted this idea.

Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cemetery,
McCandless Township,
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Allegheny County Memorial Park,
Allison Park, Pennsylvania

Fraternal Symbol
Allegheny County Memorial Park,
Allison Park, Pennsylvania

Greenlawn Cemetery,
Tiffin, Ohio

Hiland Presbyterian Church Cemetery,
Ross Township,
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

East Oak Grove,
Morgantown, West Virginia

Greenlawn Cemetery,
Tiffin, Ohio

Greenlawn Cemetery,
Tiffin, Ohio

Greenlawn Cemetery,
Tiffin, Ohio

Allegheny County Memorial Park,
Allison Park, Pennsylvania

Rumbarger Cemetery,
DuBois, Pennsylvania

Four legged animal
Hampton Cemetery,
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Hampton Cemetery,
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Military gravestone
Hampton Cemetery,
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Houston Family,
Greenlawn Cemetery,
South Charleston, Ohio

© 2010, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Americana--Vintage Roadside Motels

I have made the trip for decades traveling along Route 20 from the Cleveland area to Route 18 and south to Tiffin, Ohio. Last week, while driving along Route 20 through Lorain County, Ohio I was intrigued with several long ago abandoned roadside motels. Now obsolete and from from a previous era, they stood in front of houses where the owners once lived and opened their little motel cabins to weary travelers.

I found it fascinating that folks still owned the houses and the rental cabins (motels) out front simply stood there, near the road, in such a dilapidated condition. The buildings that once were a welcome rest stop are no longer in use. The obvious question--why have the current owners not razed the buildings? Are they currently used for some purpose other than giving nightly rest to weary travelers?

Two Vintage Roadside Motels
Route 20
Oberlin, Ohio
(west of the intersection of the Oberlin-Wellington Road)



While researching the advent of these Mom and Pop motels, I found that most were built during the depression as a means to add income to the family bank account. Previously, many car travelers were camping outside their automobiles at night. Providing a bed inside a room was assuredly a step forward. As more and more Americans afforded cars and began to spend time traveling, the Mom and Pop operations began to close as travelers demanded more services of their motels.

I remember making the summer traveling vacations as a kid in the 1950's; however, we never stayed in a roadside motel. It was the Holiday Inn for the Hughes family ;-)

Oddly, as I drove past the two relics of the past on Route 20, my mind wandered back to that 1960 film, Psycho and the infamous Bates Motel--a perfect example of the Mom and Pop operation, although Norman was NOT the perfect host! I wonder if this Alfred Hitchock thriller was the final nail in the coffin of a once thriving cottage industry?

I think I have found yet another blog adventure....vintage roadside motels.

Stay Tuned!

© 2010, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Wordless Wednesday--Spiderwort


© 2010, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Treasure Chest Thursday--Hiser Autograph Books

Featured this week are two autograph books that I found inside the World War II suitcase that once belonged to Clarence Harold Hiser, my husband's father. The blue autograph book was Clarence's and the opened one belonged to his wife, Helena Mae Smith. The dates in the books begin in 1934 and end in 1938--roughly from ages 13 to 17.

The book that is of most interest to me is Clarence's. Although there are not many signatures, the ones that are written on various pages belong to his relations. The signed pages will make a nice addition to individual blogs about two generations of his ancestors.

Time to charge up my scanner.

© 2010, copyright Linda Hughes Hiser

Wednesday, June 2, 2010