DCGS Website

VISIT THE WEBSITE OF THE DEFIANCE COUNTY GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY
http://defiancecountygenealogy.org/

Friday, August 31, 2018

"Number, Please?"

For many years, Lloyd V. Tuttle contributed historic photos and information to the Defiance Crescent-News for his column, "A Backward Glance."  This March 5, 1964, article discussed the development of the early telephone companies in Defiance.


According to Tuttle, "AFTER MARCH 15 your telephone number will be so long you will have to have a good memory when you start dialing.  As an example, the number of Holiday Inn will be 782-7015.  But back in 1900, you could pick up the receiver and a sweet voice would inquire, 'Number, please?'  You would maybe say 'Jones Livery Barn' and in a moment you were able to order a horse and buggy to take your best girl a ride that evening.  The service was so fast that traveling salesmen complained about it being too speedy.  They were not used to such speed.

THE PICTURE that was brought in by Mrs. Dan Kent, 819 Washington Ave., is that of the home-owned telephone company exchange in 1900.  The girl to the left of the ornate base burner stove is Bertha Davis.  The girl at the side of the stove, sitting at the table is Leah Dupont.  None of the rest have been identified as they picture was taken 64 years ago.  The exchange was located in second floor rooms that are now a part of the Huenefeld Furniture Store.

Notice the telephone switchboard, the baseburner hard coal stove and the scuttle of anthracite coal.

At one time Defiance had two telephone systems, the home-owned company and the Central Union (Bell).

Jack Phillips was manager of the home-owned telephone company and so well liked that when the company sold to outsiders and a new manager sent here, a petition bearing hundreds of signatures was presented the new company, asking that Mr. Phillips be retained."

Fred Fauth's Slotted Wheels

For many years, Lloyd V. Tuttle contributed historic photos and information to the Defiance Crescent-News for his column: "A Backward Glance."  This article ran on May 27, 1965 with information on Fred Fauth's invention.


"NECESSITY is the mother of invention.  Back in 1929, automobiles often needed pull-out chains, but there was no way to attach them to the disc wheels.  So Fred Fauth, rt. 8, Defiance, cut slots in his 1927 Chevrolet wheels.  Shortly afterward, slotted wheels became standard equipment."

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Farmer Eighth Grade Graduating Class of 1926


Front Row, left to right:
Elinor Norrick, Leone Rogers, Al Bayes, Mabel Mayer, Irene Cook

Back Row, left to right:
Wilda Smith, Fay Elser, Omar Smith, Dorothy Manon, Carl Hilbert, Kenneth McCullough, Ruth Kittredge



Friday, August 24, 2018

Canal Boats on the Old Miami Erie Canal

In April, 1964, Lloyd Tuttle, author of the "Backward Glances" column in the Crescent-News, focused on the canal boats and their part in the growth of Defiance.  We have few remnants of the canals left to actually view, and these photos are far from stellar, having come from old newspapers, but it is an attempt to keep them in our mind's eye.


"NOT MANY people living in Defiance today can remember what a canal boat looked like.
The above picture, which was submitted by Lon Harley...is one of a standard canal boat.  It tied up at the dock of the H. B. Tenzer Lumber Co., Perry St.

Most of the boats were painted white and had green shutters.  The boat was pulled by two mules, one in front of the other with a low towline.  A mule driver walked along with the head animal.  Another man steered the boat from the rear.
One of our presidents, Garfield, was a tow-boy in his youth.

The Miami and Erie Canal meant much to Defiance; in fact, it was the making of the town.  It ran from Toledo to Cincinnati.  At Junction, a few miles south of Defiance, the Wabash and Erie Canal branched off to pass through Logansport and other Indiana towns, on to Evansville, Ind. and finally the Ohio River."


Lloyd Tuttle continued:
"HERE is a canal boat just below what was known as the lower lock at the point where the old Miami and Erie Canal entered the Maumee River.  Just on the other side of the boat is a raft of logs.  When the timber business was at its height, there were rafts half way across the river.

In the background is the 'mule' bridge where the mules that pulled the boats crossed the Maumee here as the boats used the river from Defiance to the Independence Dam where there was a lock.  This lock and a short section of the canal have been restored to show the present generation just what the canal looked like.

It took six locks to get the boats through Defiance.  Going south, they had to be lifted and going north had to be dropped to different water levels.  There was a lock between the Maumee River and First St., another between Second and Third Sts., another between Third and Fourth Sts.  The next lock was at the Erie Mills, just south of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad.  Then at the south city limits came the paper mills and Schooley locks.  It is said there was intense rivalry as to who would get through a lock first and many fights ensued.

The cargo occupied most of the space in a boat.  The captain and crew lived in a small cabin with a galley and bunk room."

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Edwin Wendall or Edward Wendell - Bishop Post, G.A.R.



Poor Edwin (Edward) Wendel (Wendall, Wendle, Wandall, Wendelle). So many spellings. He just didn't want to be found.

He was a member of the Bishop Post, G.A.R. and, according to his obituary, was born in New York and moved to Defiance about 1864.
But a view of all the possible censuses came up short.  
He never married, hence no wife to trace back. 

No trace of him on any military sites for the Civil War.  Yet, he appeared on the photo of the G.A.R. and his obituary noted the veterans attended his funeral.



Just as it might be time to give up the search, a grave registration appeared for Edward D. Wendell, born 1839, New York, and died March 16, 1909, in Defiance. His residence was on Perry Street.  He was buried in Riverside Cemetery on March 18 in Lot 17.  The registration revealed that he was in the Indiana Light Artillery and on his tombstone was "Wilder's Battery."  These clues led to his pension record and more information on his Army service.  Mr. Wendall was found!



Wilder's Battery was formed by Captain John Wilder in May 1862, as a light artillery unit.  The federal government rejected the unit at first, but eventually combined it with the 17th Indiana Infantry.  The people of Decatur, Indiana donated two wrought iron 6 inch guns to the battery.  The unit was reorganized several times, but always remained Wilder's Battery in honor of the original leader.  

In January, 1864, 103 of its soldiers reenlisted and went on furlough home.  Edward Wendall was recruited when the unit was home.  They left Indianapolis on March 18, 1864, to go to Tennessee.  They failed to receive their equipment in time to participate in the Atlanta campaign, so they were kept in Knoxville on reserve.  Wendall was mustered out in Indianapolis on July 19, 1865.

His obituary was found in the Defiance Democrat, March 19, 1909.  






  A tombstone from the federal government was placed at his grave site.


Riverside Cemetery


(This is part of a series on Civil War veterans of Defiance County who were part of the G.A.R., Bishop Post, that headquartered in the city.  Formed in 1879, the post was named after a local man, Captain William Bishop, Company D, 100th Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Army who died as a result of wounds received in battle.  The veterans' photos are part of a composite photo of members that has survived.  If you have other information or corrections to add to the soldiers' stories, please add to the comments!)

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Sherry School - 1905 or 1906

For many years, Lloyd V. Tuttle contributed historic photos and information to the Defiance Crescent-News for his column: "A Backward Glance."  This article ran on Thursday, April 22, 1965. Although the students' faces are not really visible, it is a good photo of the school and the student names might be helpful.


"ONE OF the little one-room school houses that used to dot the landscape of Defiance county was the Sherry School, south of Defiance on the canal road.  The building still stands but is used for purposes other than a schoolhouse.

ROLLIE Phillips was the teacher when this picture was taken about 1905 or 1906.  He now lives in Colorado.  

Pupils in the picture are: 
Frank Hellum, Pearl Hellum, May Wolf, Clara Powers, Minnie Nichols, Mabel Pace, Olive Shuler, Iva Pace, Hattie Hammersmith, Jesse Pace, Hazel Hammersmith, Myrtle Shafer, Anna Shafer, Mary Nichols, Alva Shaffer, Lester Shaffer, Minnie Powers and Mary Nichols.

The picture was brought in by Mrs. Iva Herder, 911 S. Jackson Ave."

Saturday, August 11, 2018

The Womanless Wedding, 1957




Photo not from the Farmer show
Image result for womanless wedding
Photo not from the Farmer show
 The show was sponsored by the Farmer School and one could get a ticket for .25 or if a child, just .15.

Saturday, August 4, 2018

James C. Randolph - G.A.R., Bishop Post


David and Caroline Randolph welcomed their second son on January 19, 1844, in Mahoning County, Ohio.  They named him James Clark Randolph, but he was often referred to as "Clark."  David was a shoemaker with only $20 worth of real estate, according to the 1850 census, and a wife and six children to support, along with a few other relatives.  

In 1860, the family was just about in the same shape.  The two oldest children had left the house by this time, leaving Clark as the oldest at 16, working as a farm laborer.  However, two other children had been added.  Emma and Charles joined Mary Jane, John Clayton and Russel at home.



James Clark Randolph enlisted at the age of 19, on October 3, 1863, as a private in Company E, Ohio 12th Cavalry, for a three year term.  In November, 1863, the group headed to Virginia, then Kentucky and Alabama. The regiment moved back to Virginia that winter where they had their first taste of a lengthy battle in the winter of 1864. The three day battle at Marion, West Virginia, occurred on the December 17-19, 1864.  In 1865, they moved to North Carolina and then to their last battle on April 25, 1865 at Asheville, South Carolina.  Clark mustered out with his company on November 14, 1865 at Nashville.

As a side note, James' brother, John Clayton enlisted into the same company and regiment a year later, on October 4, 1864, for a one year term when he was 18. He was mustered out at the expiration of his term on October 12, 1865, at Nashville, about a month before his brother.


Remembrance Lavina Budd became the wife of James Clark Randolph in Paulding County, Ohio, on October 14, 1868.  The couple could not be located in the 1870 census, but by 1880, they were settled in Auglaize township, Paulding County, Ohio.  James C. worked as a farmer and teamster at the age of 35.  Remembrance had four children to care for - Oscar D., 10; James Clyde, 9; Maud R., 7; and Nellie Blanche, 1.  Franklin Budd, 23, Remembrance's cousin, also lived there and helped James with the teams.

In 1890, James reported in on the Veterans Census, giving very little information.  One wonders if his wife perhaps did the reporting for him.  It was learned that he had no disabilities due to the war.   

The James C. Randolph family remained in Auglaize Township, Paulding County, through the 1900 and 1910 census. In 1900, he was called "Clarke Randolph" by the enumerator.  All of the children had left home by 1900, except for the youngest, Anna C. (Annie), who was 18 and worked as a dressmaker.  The family had a day laborer/ servant also living with them named Elmer Doster, 23.  

In January 1905, Remembrance passed away, leaving James alone on their farm. In 1910, his son, James Clyde, his wife, Mary, and one child, Annie, lived right beside his father. But, eventually, both men left the farm and moved into Defiance where they settled at 903 Jefferson Street.  That was where James Clark was found in the 1920 census at the age of 75.

James Clark Randolph, a man who came from very humble beginnings and who served his country in war, became a successful farmer in Paulding County.  He died on October 12, 1924, at about the age of 80, and was buried in Riverside Cemetery in Defiance.

The Historical Atlas of Paulding County gave this account of his life : 

"J. C. RANDOLPH, farmer and contractor, is a native of Mahoning county, Ohio, born Jan. 19, 1844, the son of Davis and Caroline (Russell) Randolph, natives of Pennsylvania. Mr. Randolph was reared in Austin town and was educated in the common schools. He began life for himself at the early age of thirteen, and so continued until, in the fall of 1863, he enlisted in Company E, Twelfth, Ohio cavalry, for the term three years. He was assigned to the army of the Cumberland and saw active service in Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama and North and South Carolina. He was captured at Cynthiana, Ky., by Gen. Morgan, and held for five days, when he was paroled at Claysville. On being discharged at the close of the war, Mr. Randolph returned home and later went to Oil City. In 1866 he came to Paulding county and located at Junction and then at Oakwood, where he operated the Russell farm. October 30, 1868, he married Miss Remembrance Budd, born in Columbus, Ohio, but a resident of Paulding. Mr. Randolph located on the Budd farm, and in 1877 settled upon his present property. He is son of the self made men of the county and by hard work has achieved success and prosperity. He handled ship timber for a time but lately has turned his attention to contracting. Politically he is a republican though not a seeker for office.  Mr. Randolph is the father of Oscar, Clide, Maud, Blanche and Anna Randolph."
His obituary appeared in the Defiance Crescent News on October 13, 1924 on page 1.



(This is part of a series on Civil War veterans of Defiance County who were part of the G.A.R., Bishop Post, that headquartered in the city.  Formed in 1879, the post was named after a local man, Captain William Bishop, Company D, 100th Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Army who died as a result of wounds received in battle.  The veterans' photos are part of a composite photo of members that has survived.  If you have other information or corrections to add to the soldiers' stories, please add to the comments!)