A Shower for a New Bride

MRS. HERBERT M’GROGAN HONORED PARTY GUEST

Misses Emma C. Fraine, Jennie L. Fraine and Addie Thompson were hostesses at a miscellaneous shower given Saturday afternoon in the Dayton Community house in honor of Mrs. Herbert McGrogan, a recent bride, who was formerly Miss Ceal Pillion.

The program consisted of a heart relay contest, participated in by all the guests. Mrs. Hans Vogel accompanied by her daughter, Miss Virginia, gave three vocal solos, “To You,” by Speaks, “A Brown Bird Singing,” by Barrie, and “Smilin’ Through,” by Penn. Miss Zelda Garrow interpreted two readings entitled “Like Calls to Like,” by Edgar A. Guest and “Before and After.” Miss Ida Chamberlain, accompanied by Mrs. Arnold Wilson, rendered two vocal solos, “And [sic] Old Fashioned Town,” by Squires, “Try Smilin’” by Penn. Nicholas Parr, accompanied at the piano by Miss Katherine Pitts, favored the guests with two vocal solos addressed especially to the bride, “I Love You Truly,” by Carrie Jacobs Bond and “Just A-Wearyin’ For You,” by the same composer.

After the program the honored guest, seated at a table over which was suspended a parasol of pink petals under a white bell, received the many beautiful and varied gifts presented to her by the other guests.

The guests were then seated at a long table arranged in the form of a large T. The color plan was pink and white with yellow chrysanthemums in many crystal bud bases [sic] and in a large crystal vase and also, tall pink and white tapers were used. The three main center pieces consisted of a bride and groom in a Cinderella coach drawn by a large white swan. The individual favors were “Ships of Love on a Sea of Matrimony,” and the place cards were cupids bearing two hearts united as one. Various baskets of flowers and large white bells were arranged throughout the room. Dainty refreshments in pink and white were served.

Among the 60 guests present were people from Ottawa, Marseilles, Wedron, Wallace, Waltham, Rutland, Dayton and vicinity.1


  1. Ottawa Republican-Times, October 23, 1933, p. 2, col. 1

Joseph E. Skinner

Joseph Ellsworth Skinner

In the 1840 census, Dayton is not identified by name, but is not hard to locate. At the bottom of the last page of the La Salle County section, John Green’s name appears third from the end. The names surrounding his are mostly familiar names that appear frequently in the village’s history. But the name immediately above John Green’s is Joseph E. Skinner, who does not appear in the later history of the village. A newspaper search found this:

The [Streator, Illinois] Times, 19 Jan 1894, p2

This explains why he appears next to John Green in the 1840 census, but where did he go later? Upon investigation, it appears he spent only that one year of 1840 working in Greens Mill.

Here is another case of someone with a Dayton connection who went on to greater things in the larger world. The short notice above hinted at later adventures which were written up in one of the county histories. That information has been added to the biography page, which you can read here.

Charles Hayward – Dayton Landowner

Charles Hayward was born April 8, 1808 and grew up in Lebanon, Connecticut. He moved to Cleveland, Ohio, in 1818, and in 1835 or 36 he moved to La Salle County, one of its oldest settlers. He bought farmland, some of which was in Dayton township (highlighted above). In addition to farmland he also owned lots in Ottawa, Peru, Marseilles, and La Salle.

He served as School Commissioner of the county. He also built the Fox River House in Ottawa, which he kept for a few years being also interested in merchandising. His business affairs met with well deserved success. In 1847, Charles sold his business interests in Ottawa and moved to the Dayton farm. He had carried on farming the whole time they lived in Ottawa. By the time of his death, July 20, 1849, he was a wealthy landowner, his land being valued at more than $17,000.

His wife was Miss Julia Ann Mason, who was born in Cortland County, New York, on July 22, 1819, the daughter of Oliver and Sarah (Thayer) Mason. Charles and Julia were married in Ottawa on October 8, 1838. They had three children:

Estelle J, born December 11, 1839 on the farm in Dayton township, died October 1,1918 in Ottawa. She never married. When she died her estate was valued at $113,000, with $94,000 in real estate.

George, born April 18, 1843, died March 1, 1906 in Ottawa. He married Nettie Strickland on June 17, 1875. They had 3 children: Edith, married George Gleim; Mabel; De Alton

Emma/Emily Julia, born Nov. 5, 1846, died August 4,1920, married David Lafayette Grove [d 1897] on October 21, 1880. They had two children: Louise; Chester

After Charles’ death, Julia married Henry J. Reed on December 18, 1851. They had one son, Charles.

The interesting thing about all this for me is that some of Charles Hayward’s land, the land later owned by Emma Grove, is right next to our family farm, the original John Green property, which my sister and I still own. Also, David Grove is my 1st cousin 3 times removed.

Which just goes to prove my contention that everyone connected with early Dayton is related to everyone else.

An Effective Toothache Cure

Zada Dunavan Lyons was the granddaughter of Joseph Albert and Nancy (Green) Dunavan. In 1931 her cousin David Dunavan called on her and took notes on their conversation. He sent his handwritten notes to Mabel Greene Myers, who was collecting Green family information. When I inherited Mabel’s files from her daughter, Helen, I found the notes, which included the following story –

While grandfather J. A. D. was gone to Calif. in the gold rush the folks at home did not hear from [him] and thought he had been killed. They had heard his party had started home through Mexico and that they had been killed there.

The night he got home grandma (Nancy) had a headache as a result of a toothache cure she had applied. She had run a hot darning or knitting needle into the cavity of her tooth to stop the pain. When he got home she entirely forgot the tooth and headache and they sat up about all night talking and visiting.

 

Early Adventurers

historical marker

John Green was following in his father’s footsteps when he brought a group of 24 settlers from Licking County, Ohio to be the first residents of Dayton and Rutland townships. John’s father, Benjamin, and his family were the first settlers in Licking County. Benjamin and his wife, Catharine, are both buried in the Beard-Green Cemetery in the Dawes Arboretum at Newark, Ohio, along with many other family members. Benjamin Green is one of the six Revolutionary War veterans mentioned on the marker.

tombstone of Benjamin Green

tombstone of Benjamin Green

tombstone of Catharine Green

The Last Will and Testament of Mary Daniels

 

In the name of God, Amen,
I Mary Daniels of Rutland in the County of La Salle & State of Illinois, being of sound mind & mindful of my mortality, do, on this nineteenth day of September in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred & fifty three, hereby make & declare this my last will & testament in manner & form, to wit:

First –
It is my desire that my funeral expenses & just debts, be fully paid.

Second –
After the payment of such funeral expenses & debts, I give & devise & bequeath unto my son, Aaron Daniels, all the live stock, horses, cattle, sheep, hogs, &c, by me now owned, & also, all the household furniture & other articles of personal property not herein disposed of or enumerated in this will to have and to hold, by him, the said Aaron Daniels, his heirs & assigns forever, —, I also give & bequeath to the said Aaron Daniels his heirs & assigns, all money or monies now in my possession, or now due & owing to me, by any & all persons, And also, all my share in the crops now growed, or such as shall hereafter grow, upon the land, now occupied by me, the said Mary Daniels.

Third –
I give & bequeath to my nephew Elmer E. Daniels, all the packing casks & barrels by me now owned. Als, one bedstead. & also bed & beding necessarily belonging therto & als one Clock.

Fourth –
I give & bequeath to my daughter Juda Stadden, one comforter, two table cloths, & one sheet.

Fifth –
I give & bequeath to my daughter Elizabeth Kleiber, one comforter, two table cloths, & one sheet.

And, lastly,
I hereby constitute & appoint Aaron Daniels Executor of this my last will & testament, & hereby declaring, ratifying & confirming this & no other to be my last will & testament.

In witness whereof I the said Mary Daniels have hereunto set my hand & seal, the day & year first above mentioned.

Signed, sealed, published, & declared by the said Mary Daniels, as for her last will & testament, in presence of us, who in her presence, & in the presence of each other & at her request, have subscribed our names, thereto.

Washington Bushnell
E. S. Hallowell


Last will and testament image by Nick Youngson CC BY-SA 3.0 Pix4free

An Unexplained Explosion

SHACK NEAR DAYTON IS DESTROYED
Charge of Dynamite Resulted in Injury to Two

Two men were injured, and the lives of two others endangered when the three room shack of William Hibbard located along the banks of the old feeder and just outside of Dayton, was dynamited by an unknown assailant early Tuesday morning. The injured, William Hibbard and Albert Charlery are now confined to the Hibbard home and are being attended by an Ottawa physician. Neither of the other two men, Frank Davis and Arthur Gosney, were badly injured and they did not need medical attention.

The matter has not been reported to the authorities, but it was learned that Hibbard and his three friends who are employed at the James Funk coal beds near Dayton had entered the house, a little three room shack, located on the trestle road from Dayton and the north bank of the feeder late in the evening. According to their own story, it is said they became engaged in a card game and did not hear or see anyone about the place.

Shortly after midnight there came a deafening crash that could be heard for some distance from the house. Every one of the quartet was knocked from his chair and onto the floor, Hibbard being rendered unconscious while his three companions were dazed.

So great was the force of the explosion that every bit of glass in the house was shattered. The stove was blown clear across the room, pictures were knocked from the wall and all of the furniture damaged as well as the exterior of the house.

The alleged charge of dynamite from all appearances was dropped along the side of the house where Albert Charlery was sitting. When the explosion came he was hurled clear across the room.

While the explosion occurred between midnight Sunday and 1 o’clock Monday authorities have not received any notification of the mysterious occurrence. Residents of Dayton are unable to throw any light on the affair and all they can tell is of the mute evidence of the happenings of the night and the roar of the explosion.

The Hibbard shack was built by Hibbard after his other house had been destroyed by fire and was used as a kind of hang-out by men working in the coal beds and clay pits near Dayton. Why anyone would attempt to blow up the house and murder or injure the occupants is a question that the residents of Dayton are asking one another.

from the Streator Times, 22 November 1923

[It’s frustrating that there is never a follow-up to stories like these. Who blew up William Hibbard’s shack? and why?]

The One Left Behind

photo of Brunk, Ida Bell - tombstone

The Dayton cemetery is full of family groups. Among the graves are more than seventy members of the Green family, eleven Hippards, nine Hites and seven Makinsons. There are only a few instances of a burial that appears to be a solitary one. Perhaps the youngest of these is little Ida Bell Brunk, who died in 1868, at the age of five years, four months and ten days. There are no other Brunk monuments in the Dayton cemetery

Ida’s father, Noah Brunk, was born December 14, 1828 in Rockingham County, Virginia. He moved to La Salle county, Illinois, in 1855, where, on September 24, 1857, he married Amanda Elizabeth Parr, daughter of Thomas J. and Sarah Ann (Pitzer) Parr. 

In 1860 Noah and Amanda had a one-year old son, Thomas. Also in their household was Jesse Parr, Amanda’s 21 year old brother, who helped Noah with the farm work.

Between 1860 and 1870, little Ida was born in 1863 and died in 1869, so that in 1870 the household still consisted of Noah, Amanda, and Thomas, now age 11. They were living in Dayton township, where Noah was a Director of the Fox River Horse Collar Manufacturing Company, in partnership with J. A. Dunavan. He also served several terms as road commissioner and township treasurer. 

In 1880, the household had expanded to include an eight year old daughter, Cora, and Amanda’s parents.

In 1899, Cora married William D. Hedrick and they moved to Kansas. Thomas had graduated from Cornell University and was a professor at Texas A. & M. None of Ida’s family remained in the area, as Noah and Amanda went to Austell, Georgia for a few years, before moving to Kansas to be near Cora.

It is very possible that Ida is not the only member of her family buried in the Dayton cemetery. Her parents lost three children who died in infancy in the 1860s, when the Brunks were living in Dayton township. The probability is high that they, too, were buried in Dayton, but there are no stones and no other evidence has been found to verify this.

The following epitaph appeared on Ida’s tombstone. It is no longer readable, but luckily it was copied in 1967, when the stone was less worn:
          Dearest Ida, thou hast left us.
          Here thy loss we deeply feel.
          But ’tis God that hath bereft us.
          He can all our sorrow heal.
If other Brunk children were buried here too, surely this sentiment also applies to them.

Was Mysteriously Shot

WAS MYSTERIOUSLY SHOT

August Morrel, of Dayton, Lying at the Hospital – Revolver Bullet Near His Heart

Was Returning Home from Ottawa When Accident Occurred – May Have Stumbled While Carrying it in His Pocket – May Recover

August Morrel, whose home is in Dayton, was mysteriously wounded while returning home from Ottawa at an early hour this morning. That it was an accident is very probable from the location and direction of the wound. The bullet, evidently discharged from the man’s own revolver, which he claims was in his pocket, entered the left breast and passed through the right chamber of the heart, and finally lodged under the left shoulder blade. This occurred on the railroad about a half mile south of Dayton, from which point the man succeeded in crawling home, when Dr. Herzog, of this city, was notified and went to the assistance of the wounded man.

Morrel was then brought to the Ryburn hospital, where he is in a fair condition but the final results are not known.1


  1. Ottawa Daily Republican-Times, November 20, 1905, p. 8, col. 3

Charles Fraine Funeral

 

Charles Fraine Funeral

            Funeral services were held Saturday morning with a requiem mass for Charles Fraine, aged 83, who died at his home here Thursday, following a short illness. The mass was sung by Rev. Barrett, assistant pastor of the St. Columbus [sic] Catholic church. The pall bearers were James MacGrogan, James Kelly, Rush Green, Wm. Buckley, Sr., Edward Zellers, and James Collison.

            The deceased is survived by three daughters, Misses Emma and Jennie Fraine and Mrs. Addie Thompson of Dayton, one son Jules Fraine and three grandchildren, Roy, Kenneth and Lola of Ottawa.

            Mr. Fraine was preceded in death by his wife. He was a member of the Catholic order of Foresters and interment was made in St. Columba cemetery.

            Those from a distance who attended were: Mr. and Mrs. Ray Doran, Mr. and Mrs. George Graves of Aurora, Mr. Ed. Raspillar and Mrs. Josephine Mansfield, Plano, Mrs. Mamie Fraine and son Elmer, Miss Edna Parrisot, Mrs. John Florent, Joe Colbe, John Colbe and C. Aldrich, all of Somonauk; Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Raspillar and Mrs. G. Marco of Shridan Junction, Chas. Claude, Sr., and Chas. Claude, Jr., and two daughters of Serena, Ill.1

 


  1. Ottawa Republican-Times, November 13, 1928, p. 10, cols 6-8

A far-traveled Dayton girl

 

Emma May Rhoads

[When I go trawling the Internet for mention of Dayton people, I sometimes find rather tenuous connections. In this case, she was born in Dayton township, but the family moved to Ottawa almost immediately. However, her story was so interesting I am claiming her as a Dayton person.] 

Emma May Rhoads was born in Dayton township on September 19, 1874, the daughter of Thomas Rhoads and Kathrine Bardouner. The family moved to Ottawa shortly thereafter, where Emma went to school, graduating from Ottawa Township High School in 1893.

She attended the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana, working on the Daily Illini, the student newspaper, and graduating in 1899. She was a member of Kappa Kappa Gamma, the Aletheni Literary Society, and was president of the Y.W.C.A. in 1898/99. It was here that she became acquainted with her future husband, Edward Nickoley.

After graduating from the U of I in 1898, Edward departed for missionary work in Beirut, Syria, at the Syrian Protestant College, later the American University of Beirut. Emma taught in New York for several years after she graduated, and on August 12, 1903, they were married in Champaign, Illinois. She returned with him to Beirut, Syria, where he was a teacher in the Commerce department. For several years she was the general secretary of the Y.W.C.A. for Syria and Palestine.

Kathrine, Emma, and Edward Nickoley

In 1914 Edward had a furlough year and Emma and their daughter, Kathrine, returned to spend the time in Urbana while he was occupied elsewhere. Emma enrolled in the University of Illinois, in the graduate school of literature, making a special study of Journalism.

The situation in Europe was becoming increasingly dangerous, and in August, Edward landed at New York in the last ship to leave Hamburg, Germany. The ship was chased by French cruisers, but escaped capture and landed safely in New York. Edward joined his wife and daughter in Urbana and enrolled at the University. In June 1915, both received master’s degrees: Edward in economics and Emma in English.

They had planned to return to Beirut in September, 1915, but owing to the war conditions existing in the East, they were unable to. They stayed in Urbana and registered in the Graduate School again, pending the bettering of war conditions and the assurance of reasonable safety on the seas in the return trip to the college at Beirut.

By January, it appeared possible to make the attempt to return to Syria. They left New York on January 24 on the Greek liner Vasilef Constantinos. French, English and German ambassadors gave every assurance that the passage of the neutral liner would be safe. They planned to remain in Athens for a week for the purpose of visiting the ruins and the other points of interest about the city. From Athens , they would go on the U. S. man-of-war Des Moines to Beirut in Syria.

They had plenty of time to sightsee, as they were still in Athens in April, awaiting special passports from the French to allow them to pass the blockade into Syria. By fall they still had not been able to get to their destination. In October, Emma and Kathrine returned to Urbana, where she gave the following interview:

We left for Athens last January, where we expected to go on board the U. S. gunboat Des Moines for Beirut, but the Turkish government absolutely forbade our landing at any ports on the Mediterranean. So we spent the next nine months in Greece in the hopes of finding some means by which we might get into Beirut. Finally, my husband was ordered to make the trip overland, which he is now attempting to do. Although it is only a two days trip by water, the journey overland involves going through France, Switzerland, Austria, Constantinople and lastly a long trip across country to Beirut, which will take at least three weeks. According to newspaper accounts, however, it will be impossible to get into Austria at all, in which case he will return home at once. I do not think that my daughter and I will be able to return to Syria until the war is over.

Edward did succeed in his overland trip, but Emma was correct that it would be some time before she and Kathrine could return. She again enrolled in the university, studying library science. It was not until February 1919 that Emma and Kathrine sailed from New York for Beirut, with a unit of missionaries and relief workers. They arrived in April, after being held at Port Said several weeks awaiting the arrival of a coastwise steamer.

At this time, Edward was dean of the School of Commerce and professor of economics at the American University at Beirut. From 1920 to 1923 he served as acting president, in the absence of the president. Emma did relief work in Beirut and assisted in reorganizing the University library, and daughter Kathrine taught in the home economics department.  In 1923 Edward had another sabbatical leave and they returned to Illinois, to study library science (Emma) and economics (Edward). They planned that after his retirement they would return to Urbana to live.

Sadly, this was not to happen, as Edward died in 1937 in Beirut. Emma, who was then dean of women at the university, and her daughter, who taught at the school,  returned to Urbana and were much in demand as speakers, telling of their experiences in Syria. As reported in the Belvidere, Illinois, Daily Republican, Emma gave a lecture to schoolchildren in Belvidere in which she told of archeologists she met while in Syria:

History students of Belvidere high school heard interesting anecdotes about archeology from Mrs. Edward Nickoley, former resident of Beirut, Syria, who gave a classroom lecture at 2 p.m yesterday in the high school.

Mrs. Nickoley explained the work of noted archeologists who she had met in Syria during her 34-year-residence at the Beirut college where her husband was professor. She described the work of James Henry Breasted of Rockford, who is considered one of the most outstanding men in his field.

Other archeologists included in Mrs. Nickoley’s talk included Lord and Lady Petrie, famous British scientists; Gertrude Bell, T. E. Lawrence, who is the author of “The Seven Pillars of Wisdom,” and Leonard Wooley.

Mrs. Nickoley knew these scientists personally. Lady Petrie gave her a priceless vase that is 2,000 years old. Mrs. Nickoley displayed the vase and other archeological specimens.

Sometime between 1958 and 1966, Emma moved from Urbana to Minnesota. She died in Rochester, Minnesota, in January, 1972, at the age of 97.

David Green

David Green (1819-1880)

 

David Green was ten years old when he came to Illinois in 1829 with his family. His father, John Green, had organized a party of settlers to move from Ohio to Illinois. David and his older brother, Jesse, were doing men’s work from the very start. Jesse later described some of their efforts in the initial building of a dam to drive the mill:

Whilst the men were getting out the timber for the mill and dam, which had to be built to intersect a small island, brother David and myself took the contract of scraping out the race or waterway for a distance of about a half mile (he being ten, and I twelve years old). We each had a pair of oxen and an old fashioned scraper. I sometimes had to help him load and dump his scraper and vice versa. We had the race completed by the time the mills were ready to draw their gates.

The winter of 1838-9 David and Jesse went back to Ohio, intending to go to school but their uncle Isaac Green persuaded them to take a room in his house where the school teacher boarded. They both claimed that the boys would make better progress than by attending school, as the teacher would give them his entire attention when not in school. This one term of school in Ohio and one other back home under Reuben Miller was the extent of their formal education.

David and brother Jesse, under the name of J. & D. Green, ran the first woolen mill, built in 1840. It was a building 32 by 60 feet, three stories high.  It at first contained but one set of machinery consisting of three separate carding machines, a jack of 126 spindles, and four power looms, and two broad, and one narrow hand loom. Later, when the large stone mill was built, they took into partnership their brother-in-law, Oliver W. Trumbo. In 1844, David took over the additional position of manager of the Green grist mill from his father.

On Christmas Eve 1847 David married Mary Stadden, the daughter of William and Judah (Daniels) Stadden. William and his family arrived in the Dayton area in 1830. He built a flour mill at Dayton and became a prominent figure in La Salle County, serving as sheriff for two terms and elected twice to the State Senate.

When William Stadden died in November, 1848, David was named the executor of his will. The estate had many uncollected receipts and outstanding debts, which required many court appearances to resolve. It was at this time that word of the discovery of gold in California arrived and brother Jesse resolved to go West himself, with a party of Dayton men.

I’ve always felt sorry for David being left at home while his brothers went off to California, but someone had to stay home and manage the farm and the mills. Since David was deeply involved in settling his father-in-law’s estate, he also dealt with the necessary changes at home. The farm was rented to the Hite family, who moved into the Green house. Barbara Green and the younger children, Rachel, Rebecca, and Isaac, moved to the hotel, where they were joined by daughter Katherine Dunavan, whose husband, George, was one of the gold-seekers.

David was therefore left in charge of the woolen mill, the grist mill, and the store, as well as the “Golden Widows”. As the only man of the family his responsibilities were large. His sisters, Nancy and Katherine, were also golden widows.

In 1852 David was proud to advertise that the mills had just undergone thorough repairs and were now so arranged that six run of burrs could be turned on custom work or merchant either, which made the “Old Pioneer” one of the best custom mills in the state; as the four run of merchant burrs, bolts, &c., could be used for custom work whenever required.   

By the 1870s, David had taken one of his sons in business with him. The Ottawa Free Trader reported:
The mill at Dayton, rebuilt a few years ago and lately put in thorough repair is well known as one of the best in Northern Illinois. It has always been popular and famous for the excellence of its work, and with its present management, in the hands of D. Green & Son, it will more than sustain its old reputation.

In 1879 David repaired the old shop south of the flouring mill in order to use it to manufacture drain tile. A tile machine with brick attachment was ordered and installed and the firm of D. Green & Son announced that they would be making brick in short order. The clay around Dayton was of an excellent quality and made good substantial brick and tile.

By then, David had retired from active participation in the day to day business of D. Green & Sons. He may have suffered from depression, as the 1880 census listed him as “melancholy”. That census was taken in June and on September 2, David died.

Joel F. Warner – fisherman

large mouth bass

Joel Foster “Faut” Warner was a noted Dayton fisherman and his prowess received notice in the Ottawa newspaper.

May 8, 1886, p. 8, col. 3
Dayton, May 6th. – Fishing is fine here this season, and the game fish are being caught in large quantities. Our old fisherman, F. A. Warner, a short time ago caught one hundred and forty-one bass in one day, and Mr. Lewis Makinson caught seventy-five. Yesterday was a big day and scores of the finny tribe were removed from their watery homes.

May 12, 1888, p. 8, col. 2
J. F. Warner, our fisherman, caught fifty fine bass last Tuesday morning.

He is called Peg in this next item because, in 1877, he lost his left leg. He tried to get on a moving railway train, slipped and had a car wheel run over it. It had to be amputated 4 inches below the knee. He must have had a peg fitted to the stump.

8 Aug 1902, p12, col 4
                          STOLE HIS BOAT AND FISH
          “Peg” Warner of Dayton Comes To Town With a Sorrowful Tale
“Peg” Warner, an old-time fisherman at Dayton, is in the city today and with Chief of Police Westcott is making a search for his boat, fishing tackle and about fifty pounds of catfish stolen from him last night. During the summer months Peg devotes his whole time to fishing, and is kind to campers and people who visit Dayton. The boat which was stolen is a new one, especially designed and built by Peg for his own conveniences in the river. It contained a life box and also a chamber for minnows, and anybody that visited Dayton was always welcome to the use of the boat. He also had some fine reels and fishing tackle, but all were taken. It is hoped that the thief will be captured and if he is, Peg will make him suffer.

Unfortunately, there is no follow up article. I can only hope that Peg was able to get his boat back.

Mr. and Mrs. C. B. Hess

Charles Benton Hess was born November 13, 1839, in Forrestville, Virginia, the son of Henry H. Hess and Mahala Hammond. He came to La Salle county in 1854. He took up farming as a career but later decided to complete his education. He attended and graduated from Lombard University at Galesburg and later studied law in Chicago, but never asked admission to the bar. After finishing his studies he returned to La Salle County and again took up farming.

In 1877 he owned 220 acres of land, valued at $11,000; and 4 houses and lots in Dayton, valued at $3,000. Later he gave up the agricultural field to enter Green’s Woolen Mills at Dayton. Later he came to Ottawa and entered the real estate business, with offices over the post office, and from there branched out into the clay and tile industry. He served as a Justice of the Peace and as town clerk of Dayton.

In 1880, with his brother-in-law H. B. Williams, they erected a plant, known as the Standard Brick Company’s works, at Brickton, about one mile east of Ottawa, along the north bank of the canal, and commenced the manufacture of brick. This appears to have been the first clay manufacturing concern of Ottawa. In 1882, finding traveling to Dayton every day after the close of business tiresome, he removed his residence to Ottawa.

Clara Isabella “Callie” Green was the daughter of Jesse Green and Isabella Trumbo. She was born in Dayton December 12, 1849, while her father was away at the gold fields of California. She married C. B. Hess May 12, 1869. in Dayton.

They had 5 children:
Edwin Jesse was born in Dayton, June 28, 1871. He married Edith Powell of Coffeeville, Kansas, in Coffeeville in January of 1905.

Gertrude Noel was born in 1874 and died the following year.

Glenn Raymond was born in 1876 in Dayton. At the age of five he slipped from the rocks just above the Fox river bridge in Ottawa and drowned.

Edith May was born in October 1880 in Dayton. She married Albert E. Gilman, assistant superintendent of the King & Hamilton Co., factory in Jan 1905.

Harry Charles was born after the move to Ottawa, on August 16, 1883. He married Dell M. Terry at the bride’s home in Harding in October 1910.

C. B. died September 23, 1918, in Ottawa and Callie died July 25, 1930, also in Ottawa.

Marriage of Charles Brown and Minnie Furr

Charles Brown and Minnie Furr on their wedding day
Marriage application

On December 29th, 1890, Charles Brown and Minnie Furr, both of Dayton township, applied for a marriage license. Charles was 24 years old, a butcher, born in Freedom township, son of George R. Brown and Isabella W. Hosford. It was his first marriage.

Minnie was 20 years old, born in Seneca, daughter of Squire Furr and Mary Bruner. It was her first marriage, also.

Marriage Affidavit

Charles Brown filled out the affadavit swearing that they were of age, unmarried, and could legally make a marriage contract.

Marriage License

Patrick Finlen, the county clerk of La Salle County from 1882-1894, filled out the license on the 29th of December, granting permission for the marriage to be celebrated.

N. O. Freeman, minister of the First Methodist Church of Ottawa, performed the ceremony in Dayton on December 31st.

Marriage Certificate

John Samuel Hippard

 

John S. Hippard, who is buried in the Dayton Cemetery, died August 25, 1905, in Dayton Township. He was 29, unmarried and left no will, so his estate went to his siblings. The proof of heirship in the probate papers1 attests to the following relationships:

John Samuel Hippard’s parents, Stephen William and Frances Rebecca Hippard, had 5 children: Charles William, John Samuel, Mary Elizabeth, Jacob Henry, and Frances May.
    Mary Elizabeth died about 1891. She was about 13 years old and unmarried.
    Jacob Henry is unmarried and living with his parents in Dayton township .
    Frances May (Fannie) is married to Newton Conner, living in Wedron in Dayton Township.
    Charles William lives in Dayton township and is the administrator of the estate.

John Samuel, Jacob Henry, and Frances (Conner) Ackerman are all buried in the Dayton Cemetery. See the index on this site.

At his death, John owned no land, and no tangible personal property. His only asset was a health insurance policy which provided that in case of ill health he would be paid $35/month. He had been sick for a little over seven months and was entitled to $223. However, the policy had a clause that in the case of tuberculosis they would pay only one fifth of the amount. John did suffer from tuberculosis, so was not entitled to the full amount The estate negotiated with the insurance company and the claim was settled for $100.

The cost of administration of the estate was $37 and other claims (doctor and funeral costs) came to $125. Thus there was a balance due the administrator of $62 and no funds to pay it, so Charles Hippard petitioned the court to accept the report and declare the estate settled.


  1. John Samuel Hippard probate file, 1905, box 464, file 12, La Salle County Genealogy Guild, 115 W. Glover, Ottawa, IL 61350

The Heirs of Alcinda Hite

When Alcinda Hite died in 1924, she had outlived 7 of her brothers and sisters. She never married and therefore her deceased siblings’ children were among her heirs. In order to prove Alcinda’s will, testimony was given to identify all the heirs. The following is true as of Feb. 2, 1926

Children of David Hite and Elizabeth Stickley:

Alex (died in infancy)

Isaac (died in Infancy)

Kittie Ann (died in infancy)

Benjamin married Emma Dunavan (both died before Alcinda)
2 children:
William, widower, 117 S. Monroe St., Streator
Dora, married Gillispie, Reinbeck, Iowa

James married Martha Jones (both died before Alcinda)
10 children:
baby boy (died in infancy
Martha E., married O. H. Thompson, 6 Gridley Place, Ottawa
Alcinda, married John McGrath, 432 E. Main St., Ottawa
Elsie, married John Whisler, Hutchinson, Minnesota
Elnora, married Thomas Collins, Wedron
Minerva, married William D. Whisler, Hinckley
Fidelia, married William Rabe, Belmond, Iowa
Rae, married William Osborn, McVeytown, Pennsylvania
Edward, married Gertrude Elwood, Mildred, Kansas
Elmer, married Lucy Trimble, Bayard, Kansas

David, widower, O’Neill, Nebraska

Albert (died before Alcinda)
3 children:
Calvin, married Etta Belrose (died before Alcinda)
—-1 child, Albert C., age 15-16, lives with uncle, William Temple
Vina Maude, married William Temple, Serena, Illinois
James Edward, married Jeans _____, Dayton Township““`

Fidelia (died before Alcinda), married Benjamin Babcock
6 children:
Albert, married, Schuyler, Nebraska
Jennie, married ___ Smith, Council Bliffs, Iowa
Elizabeth, married ___ Schwartz, Councill Bluffs, Iowa
Maude, married ___ Clatterbuck, Council Bluffs, Iowa
Cora, married ___ Hill, 202 Ninth Ave, Council Bluffs, Iowa
Olive, married ___ Messner, Council Bluffs, Iowa

Alcinda (the deceased)

My Dear Isabella,

On April 2, 1850, Jesse Green, hard at work in the gold mines of California, wrote home to his wife, Isabella:

            It is one year today since I parted with you and my friends, at home, and although a distance of near two thousand miles intervene, I presume our hearts are probably beating in unison together at this moment in anticipation of meeting again before the same period rolls around again, the past year has no doubt been one of long to be remembered, not only by you and I, but thousands of others, and by many it is remembered no more. I speak more particularly of those at home who were taken off by cholera, and many too, on the same route with us last season are denied the pleasure of meeting their wives, their parents and friends at home. — Fortunately for us two only of our company are denied that pleasure yet. Levi Zeluff and Daniel Stadden are the two.

            Your care and anxiety, I am aware had been great both for them dear little Babes and for us but try and not borrow trouble. make yourself as content as possible and at all times when sorrow would come, endeavor to banish it by the bright rays of hope, and in anticipation of happier days to come. 1

  1. extract from original in possession of Candace Wilmot

135 Years Ago Today – Death of Barbara Green

Barbara Grove Green

Barbara Grove Green

            Died May 5th, 1886, at the age of ninety three years, five and a half months. She had been confined to bed for about two months, and gradually and gladly passed away like an infant going to sleep. It was her desire to cast off this earthly tabernacle and be present with her Lord.

She retained her faculties to the last, with the exception of her sight, of which she had been deprived for the past seven or eight years. She was never heard to murmur or complain of her misfortune, but on the contrary seemed cheerful and happy.

She was born in Shenandoah county, Virginia, November 15th, 1792. At the age of thirteen she, with her parents, removed to Licking county, Ohio, being in the year 1805, and lived there until the fall of 1829, when she and her companion, John Green and family, removed to this county. A few incidents of their journey will show the hardships and privations of those early pioneer days. We quote her own words from statements made by her to one of her grand daughters, who has recorded them:

“We started from Licking county, Ohio, on the first of November, 1829, for the state of Illinois. There were 24 in the company. Father had gone to Illinois the September before we started and bought land. He and three other men rode on horseback around by Cleveland and along the lakes. When they reached Chicago, where there were only two families besides the garrison, father bought some provisions and in paying for them pulled out quite a roll of bills. That night his brother, Wm. Green, dreamed there were robbers coming and woke the others up, but they refused to start out in the night just for a dream, and he went to sleep again only to dream the same thing again, and when he had dreamed it three times he told them they could stay there if they wanted to, he was going to leave; so they all started and soon after they saw three men following for the purpose of stealing they [sic] money.

“When we reached the ‘Wilderness,’ in Indiana, a man who lived on the edge of the woods told us it was impossible to go on, as the mud was so deep, unless we could travel on the wagons already stuck in the mud; but if we were foolish enough to try it, we must leave ‘those two smart little boys’ (Jesse and David), for we would surely freeze to death. But we did go on and the men cut a new road through the woods for sixty miles, about ten miles a day.

“Then, when we got to Cicero river, we had to take the wagons over with bed cords. One wagon, loaded with mill irons and blacksmith tools, was so heavy it tipped over, and we lost a good many things.

“Then the next place we came to was Sugar creek, and it was so high we had to pull the wagons over with ropes again and cut trees for us to walk on. Then there was a swamp next to the creek that the men had to carry the women over on their backs. Between Iroquois and Nettle creek there were five days the horses had nothing to eat, as the prairie was burnt, and they became so weak they got stuck in a ravine and could hardly pull the empty carriage out.

“One evening we had only bread and tea for supper, but that night father came back with corn and beef that he had obtained at Holderman’s Grove, and we were the happiest people you ever saw. We spent the next night at the Grove and the next day home, at what is known as William Dunavan’s farm.”

She lived in the town of Rutland something over a year when she removed to Dayton, being at this place at the time of the Black Hawk war in 1832. Of this war she says: “On the 16th of May, 1832, the girls and I were at the spring, near where the feeder bridge now stands, when Eliza came down on horseback and told us that the Indians were coming, and we would have to go to Ottawa immediately. Then we went to a place a couple of miles below Ottawa and stayed there all night, and the third day returned home again. This was Sunday, and the next day the men made a stockade around the house out of plank. After it was finished they tried it to see if a bullet would go through it, and as it did, they hung feather beds all around. There were about sixty people here at the time, and we were so crowded that they had to sleep on tables, under the beds and all over the house.”

Mr. Green had intended to remain in his improvised fort during the war, but at about twelve o’clock at night, hearing of the massacre on Indian creek, and fearing there might be too many Indians, all those in the fort went to Ottawa. “When we got to Ottawa, there was no fort there, only a log cabin on the south side of the river, but they soon built a fort on top of the hill. We went to the fort, but there was so much confusion there that we had the log house moved up on the hill and lived in it. The next day a company of soldiers from the southern part of the state passed through Ottawa on the way up the river.”

Grandma Green bore all the hardships and privations incident to the settlement of two new countries and lived to see the development of this vast prairie country far, very far beyond her anticipations. When she came here she supposed that in time she might see the country settled around the skirts of timber, but never in her early days did she anticipate seeing the prairies settled up.

from the Ottawa Free Trader, May 22, 1886, p. 5, col. 2

Was He Accident Prone?

Charles Benton Hess

Ottawa Free Trader, 13 Jun 1891, p5, col 1

CONCUSSION OF THE BRAIN
C. B. Hess Sustains Some Serious Injuries At Dayton

            Mr. C. B. Hess met with a very serious accident at his works in Dayton Tuesday afternoon. The bricks that are made on the top floor of the building are lowered to the drying room through a chute. Mr. Hess was standing close to the chute, talking to one of the workmen, and a brick fell from the chute and struck him on top of the head. The brick weighed seven pounds and fell a distance of twelve feet and fell with such force that it produced concussion of the brain. Mr. Hess was brought to his home in this city in an unconscious condition, and Dr. Dyer was summoned.

            He examined Mr. Hess’s injuries and found that he was not only suffering from concussion of the brain in serious form, but also neuralgia, which was greatly aggravated by the concussion of the brain. He was very restless and suffered intense pain last night, but today he rested very comfortably and is considered out of danger by his physician.

Ottawa Free Trader, 14 Apr 1905, p7, col 1

C. B. HESS INJURED
Falls Through Skylight to Floor of Porch

            C. B. Hess met with an accident yesterday that at the best must be a severe one to a man of his years. He was upon the porch engaged in fixing some windows. He stepped backwards accidentally upon a skylight. Through this he crashed and fell to the floor of the porch, eighteen feet below.

            He was cut on the back of the head and his back injured. It is also feared that there may be internal injuries. The latter fact is not yet definitely known. His many friends will hope to hear of his speedy and complete recovery from the effects of the fall.

He lived many years after this with no further report of accident. Although his death was not accidental, it was unexpected and therefore newsworthy.

September 23, 1918, p. 1, col. 5

SUDDEN ILLNESS IS FATAL TO C. B. HESS, PIONEER RESIDENT
Taken Suddenly Ill While Working in Field, Mr. Hess Passed Away Few Hours Later – Buried Tuesday

            Followed by an illness of only a few hours duration death Sunday morning claimed Charles Benton Hess, one of Ottawa’s oldest and best known residents. The end came at 4 o’clock at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Albert E. Gilman, 526 Congress street, to where Mr. Hess was removed after having been taken ill while at his farm north of the city.

            The deceased spent the greater part of Saturday helping on the farm. Late in the afternoon he was suddenly taken ill, the symptoms either indicating paralysis or hardening of the arteries. A hurried call to members of his family brought help on the scene and Mr. Hess was rushed to Ottawa. His condition showed rapid decline, and, because of the deceased’s advanced years, it was known the end was not far away.