Sunday, March 25, 2007

GSWC Workshop

The Genealogical Society of Whitley County (GSWC) held a Beginning Genealogy Workshop in conjunction with the Peabody Public Library on Saturday, March 17th. Attendance was limited to 20 people and the spaces quickly filled up. We were told there were enough people who wanted to attend that we should have another workshop - so, we will, on Sunday, May 20th. We are also planning a workshop for the kids who sign up for the 4-H Genealogy program, probably sometime in April.

My portion of the workshop covered "Internet Genealogy" and was only supposed to be 45 minutes. It ran a bit long, like an hour and 15 minutes total. Thank goodness there weren't any problems connecting to the internet! Randy Seaver mentioned that he'd had some connection problems with his presentation on blogging - I hadn't even considered that scenario. Guess I'd better make alternate plans, just in case.

As promised to the attendees, the Web Site Links have been posted at Kinexxions to make it easier for them to visit the sites listed on the handout (and so they don't have to try to type in the URLs for those sites). Have Fun!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Capt. Sarjeant, Veteran of Two Wars is Dead - 1906

I came across this interesting obituary the other day while looking for something else... published in the Columbia City Commercial Mail on July 13, 1906
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Captain James E. Sarjeant, of 1426 Wells street, Fort Wayne, who was widely known among people of the older generation; a veteran of both the Mexican and civil wars and a resident of Columbia City, for many years, died Friday night at 5:45 o’clock from a complication of stomach and kidney troubles and the infirmities of old age. Mr. Sarjeant was seventy-nine years old. He had been seriously ill since Tuesday of this week.

Few men have had a more eventful career than Captain James E. Sarjeant. He was born in Canterbury, Kent, (England), September 27, 1827, and was one of a family of sixteen children. With his parents, Mr. and Mrs. James Sarjeant, and a brother and sister he came to this country in the early ‘40’s. The family settled in Fort Wayne shortly after their arrival in America and Mr. Sarjeant began to learn the harness making trade. He developed into an expert workman, and later in life embarked in business for himself.

Mr. Sarjeant was a soldier in the Mexican war, enlisting in 1846 at New Albany in the First Indiana regiment. He served for one year and was actively engaged in the celebrated battles of Matamoras, Monterey and Buena Vista. At the end of his term of service he was honorably discharged and went back to the quiet life of the civilian.

Then in 1861 came the outbreaking of the war that threatened the existence of the union, and Mr. Sarjeant, along with thousands of other men in the north, swept with the passionate resolve that the union should not be destroyed, prepared to again enter military life. He enlisted from Whitley county, April 25, 1861, and was the second man to enlist for service in the great civil war from Whitley county. He enlisted in Company E 17th Ind., under Capt. Geo. W. Stough and was made 1st Lieut. at Indianapolis before the organization entered the service. The regiment did valiant service in the West Virginia campaign. Capt. Sarjeant resigned in 1862 and returned to Columbia City. The same year he organized Co. B 74th Ind., and was made captain of the company.

During the war he was in some of the principal battles where heavy losses of live were sustained by the union forces. At Chickamauga, Perrysville and Rolling Forks he did valiant service on the field. At the battle of Rolling Forks he was wounded in the knee by the fragment of a bursting shell.

Captain Sarjeant, who in later years was fond of telling his experiences and of the many narrow escapes which he and the men under him had in the war, often related how while in battle one day he noticed the simultaneous discharge of a number of shells in the direction of his company, and in a flash his mind dictated the command to lie down. His men in obedience flattened themselves on the earth, thus minimizing the danger that would otherwise have caused the deaths of many. As it was, only seven or eight of the number were killed.

In 1863 he was granted an honorable discharge on account of disability and came home to live the life of a private citizen, re-entering the harness business which he had forsaken at the opening of the war.

Since the close of the civil war Captain Sarjeant lived with his family in adjoining parts of the state, at Columbia City, Auburn, and for eight years in Wisconsin. For the past twenty years, however, Fort Wayne has been his home.

Capt. Sarjeant was married Sept, 28, 1848, to Miss Margaret Gill, who lived in Whitley county not far from Columbia City. From this union eleven children were born, only two of whom survive – Mrs. Henry Meyers, of Cincinnati, O., and Mrs. Mattie Rodwick, of Richmond, Ind. There is also a sister living – Mrs. Charlotte Swain, residing at 323 West De Wald street in Fort Wayne. There are twelve grandchildren, some living in Ohio, some in this state, some in Illinois and some in California.

Capt. Sarjeant was a member of the Union Veteran legion and of Sion S. Bass post No. 40, G. A. R. He was a man not only of a wide acquaintance but of a great many friends both among young and old. He was quiet and unassuming in manner and not given to making wide acquaintanceships.

Capt. Sarjeant entered the saddlery business in Columbia City in 1854 in a building owned by F. H. Foust the site of which is now occupied by the building in which S. O. Briggs conducts a plumbing business. He was an expert saddler and enjoyed a liberal patronage. He returned to Columbia City after the close of the war and resumed the saddlery business [part of sentence blacked out on microfilm] until 1882, when he removed his family to Fort Wayne. Some of Capt. Sarjeant’s children died in this city and are buried in the Masonic cemetery. Capt. Sarjeant married Margaret Gill, daughter of Abner Gill, who resided on the William Sisson farm east of this city, in 1848.

The time of the funeral has yet not been determined as it is not known when members of the family desiring to attend the services can be present. Interment will be in the Lindenwood cemetery.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Township Graduates - May 10, 1888

Columbia City Commercial - Thursday May 10, 1888

The grades on one-hundred and thirty-one manuscripts, handed in at the township examinations, show a total of thirty-one worthy of graduation. They are classified by townships as follows:
  • Cleveland – Cora Cocklin.
  • Richland – Letta Adams, Mary E. Clugston, Florence Essig, Theodore Essig, Nora Gutscher, William F. Helfrik, Effie Kirkpatrick, Effie Long, Allice Prugh, Frank Radcliff, Carl Souder and Fred E. Webster.
  • Columbia – Thomas Galvin and Ida Shoemaker.
  • Thorncreek – Ida Magley and Nellie Hart.
  • Jefferson – Herbert Ihrig, Horrace Kaufman and Orphia Dine.
  • Union – Harvey Harshbarger, Lola Garrison, Jennie Myers, Sarah Boyd and J. A. More.
  • Smith – Cozy Tulley and Lillie Waugh.
  • Churubusco – Minnie Brown, Anna Knopp, Charles Kipp and Ida Jackson.
These with the assistance of their teachers will be expected to arrange the time and place for holding exercises. Only those taking part in an exercise will be granted diplomas. Alex Knicely.

Co E 17th Indiana Held Reunion

Columbia City Post - Tuesday September 18, 1912

Company E. 17th Indiana Volunteer Infantry, veterans of the Civil War, reunited at the pleasant home of Isaac Shinneman in the northwest part of the city Saturday, and the soldiers who had fought in 210 battles and skirmishes during their term of four years and four months enlistment, recalled many incidents of the battlefield and reviewed events and circumstances which made the occasion one of special interest to the few remaining of the 176 who enlisted April 21, 1861.

Last year, when Major J. J. Weiler, of Los Angeles, Cal., was present, there were 18 veterans in attendance, but during the year seven of that eighteen have passed to the world beyond. They were D. R. Hemmick, John Hess, William Brubaker, Joe Hiler, of North Dakota, E. A. Mossman, of Lafayette, Ind., Hiram Lantz and Fred Smith, of North Manchester. It is thought that there are but about twenty of the original company left now.

Those of the company who were present Saturday were David Garber, aged 79; Isaac Shinneman, aged 70; Reuben Humbarger, aged 74; Otis Hertsel, aged 66; Joseph Waugh, aged 69; Lewis Hartman, aged 70; and James L. Johnson, aged 72. Co. E belonged to the best armed and equipped brigade in the service and was noted for its ability to tear up a country. They had ten pieces of artillery and were in the famous battles of Shilo, Chickamauga and from the latter place marched to Atlanta, which was one of the greatest marches of the war.

One of the principal features of the day was a fine dinner served at the Shinneman home which the soldiers greatly relished. Other guests who enjoyed Mrs. Shinneman’s hospitality were: Mrs. I. B. McDonald, Mrs. Otis Hertsel, Mrs. Joe Waugh, Miss Elsie Humbarger, Mrs. Justice Sherwood, Mrs. William Allen, of Coesse, Mrs. John Hess and daughter, Miss Lulu, and Mrs. John Shinneman, Jr. Mrs. Shinneman was assisted by her daughters, Misses Maude, Kate and May, and the other ladies present assisted in making the event a memorable one.

Company E. will meet again next year, and it is the intention to hold these reunions as long as there are members left to attend them. This company was composed of some of the best men Whitley county ever produced and since the close of the war, many of them resumed peaceful occupations and gave their best efforts to the upbuilding of the communities in which they have resided.

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Death of Mrs. Wright November 3, 1869

Whitley County Commercial ~ November 3, 1869

Died. - - In this place, on the 29th ult., a Mrs. Wright, who had but recently came to Columbia City. It is thought that trouble was the cause of her death. She leaves two little girls, one 3 and the other 5 years of age. The remains of the deceased were interred on Saturday, and news of her death sent to her relatives in the South part of the State.

I checked the various cemetery transcriptions that have been published for Wright and variations, but found no Mrs. Wright who died in 1869.