Thursday, August 25, 2016

"Our Store"

This view of Main Street comes from a postcard postmarked 1911. The sender has drawn an arrow pointing to "our store":

2016-8-25. Our Store a
(Click on images to enlarge)

The arrow points to a building with a sign reading "Drug Store," topped by a curved embellishment bearing a name that is not legible. That building once housed a drug store operated at various times under the names Mackey and Scheddell.

Having written "our store," the writer then turned the postcard over and clearly signed herself "Edna":

2016-8-25. Our Store b

So far as I have been able to determine, there was no Edna in the Scheddell family or the Mackey family.

However, there was an Edna in the Scheidt family, and Scheidt & Keilman's Bee Hive store was just slightly north of the drugstore.

On this image, blown up to 1200 dpi on the scanner, it's clear which building is marked, but on the original 3.5" x 5.5" postcard, it's not nearly so clear. I think it quite possible that Edna Scheidt marked the wrong building by mistake. That's my theory, and I'm sticking to it.

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Moving south from the drugstore, let's see what we have here:

2016-8-25. Our Store a marked

(1) A one-story wooden building, probably housing the Gazette office.*

(2) A two story building with a sign advertising Blatz beer, suggesting that it houses a saloon, which I think is operated by Fred Ahrens and Fred Schavey, Jr.*

(3) Newman's Hardware, operated by Paul Newman, who is more generally associated with his later location at Third and Center Streets. (This leads me to wonder if I wrongly categorized the interior shot of the hardware store; it could have been taken inside this Main Street location.)

(4) A saloon, "Hogan's Place," operated by Hugo Zobjeck, who seems to have been called "Hogan" as a nickname.

(5) The bakery operated by Severin Baumer** and, later, his son Fred Fred Baumer.

(6) Real estate and insurance office operated by Lewis E. Barnes.

(7) Real estate office operated by a retired Ainsworth farmer, Gilbert Bullock.

(8) A billiard-and-pool business operated by Calvin L. Fleming, where the cigars he sold may have been of his own making.

*I'm cheating by looking at another postcard that hasn't been posted to the blog yet, but more clearly shows the mid-block area circa 1909.
**He is recorded as "Siegfried" in the 1910 Census.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Henry Fasel, Jr. Quits Farming

"Henry Fasel, Jr., has decided to quit farming," said the Hobart News of September 14, 1922, "and is advertising a sale of his farm implements for next Saturday, Sept. 16."

He certainly was:

2016-8-23. Fasel public sale
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Hobart News 14 Sept. 1922.

I previously showed you where the Fasel farm was. The 1920 Census shows Henry Jr. and Henry Sr. both living and farming in that vicinity, Henry Jr. on rented land … which may have been rented from his father; I don't know.

In 1922 Henry Jr. was about 40 years old, married to the former Bertha Beier and the father of a large and growing family. Their eldest son was named Henry, too.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Jacob William Hazelgreen

2016-8-21. hazel024
(Click on image to enlarge)

He was born April 15, 1881 (WWI Draft Cards) to Haken and Christine Hazelgreen of Lake Station.

By the 1910 Census, he had moved to Washington State, and there he stayed, I gather, and there lie his earthly remains.

The photographer was A.O. Merrill of Hobart, Indiana, who, as we know, was in business from the autumn of 1899 to the autumn of 1902. The fact that William (he seemed to prefer his middle name) was around to be photographed in that era suggests he should have been counted in the local 1900 Census, but I cannot find him. The Lake Station/East Gary enumerator of 1900 seems to have been a bit overwhelmed by his task and has left us with some confusing records.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Business Buying and Selling

Some local businesses were changing ownership as the summer of 1922 drew toward its end.

The eldest of the Walter brothers sold his share of their garage.

2016-8-19. Walter Bros.
(Click on image to enlarge)
Hobart News 7 Sept. 1922.

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Although Margaret Baumer had declared that as Mrs. George Fleck she would remain involved with the family bakery, a couple of weeks after the wedding she sold her interest to her brother, Fred. To run the bakery store, Fred planned to hire Johanna Lundgren away from the Sauter market.*

Later in September, Harry Coons, Sr. became the owner of the Gem Theater again, buying it from Herman Kemp of Michigan City, who had bought it from A. Vaichis — who had bought it from Harry in 1917.**

*"Fred Baumer Buys Out Bakery and Bake Shop," Hobart News 14 Sept. 1922.
**"H.T. Coons Again Becomes Owner of Gem Theater," Hobart News 28 Sept. 1922.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The Chester House Again

2016-8-17. image009
(Click on image to enlarge)
Image courtesy of John Fleck.

This is the Chester house, as seen from the west, and I'm not kidding when I say I really appreciate getting such a good view of Ainsworth Road itself … which would have been called the Chester road when this photo was taken.

Exactly when that was, I do not know. The reference in the caption to the late 1800s may mean the era when Carrie Raschka lived there. The number of electric or telephone wires strung along the road suggests at least a couple decades' worth of twentieth century. The porch pillars have been remodeled from their original appearance (compare the two "then" photos in the series linked to above), and I believe that was done in the early 20th century.

I may try a then-and-now in the middle of next winter, but I'm not sure it's possible, even with the leaves off the trees — the former side yard, the site of some of those outbuildings, is just too thickly grown over.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Ainsworth School Teachers 1922

As the new school year began on September 5, 1922, the W.G. Haan school in Ainsworth was staffed by: "Primary, Miss Elsie Brennon; intermediate, Miss Frieda Stark; 7th and 8th grades, J.E. Drillette; high school, Miss Olive Wood."

Elsie's name shows up in the vital records as Brannon, so that is how I shall index it. She came from a farming family in Center Township.

The last time we met Frieda Stark, in June 1922, she was planning to attend the Indiana State Normal School at Terre Haute. She had graduated from Hobart High School in 1921.

2016-8-15. FriedaStark1921
(Click on image to enlarge)
From the Hobart High School Memories yearbook of 1921, via

J.E. Drillette was, I believe, Jacob Edward Drillette, about 49 years of age, who had been teaching in Lowell, Indiana, when he filled out his draft card in 1918. He was a Hoosier by birth, but not a local.

Olive Wood had been teaching since 1917 that I know of, and would continue teaching for many years.

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Evelyn Fredrick (who had taught at Ainsworth in the past) was now teaching in a Hobart school — "4A and 4B," which I take to mean the fourth grade.

1910 Census.
1920 Census.
♦ "Local and Personal." Hobart News 7 Sept. 1922.
♦ "Local Teaching Staff Complete for the Coming Year." Hobart News 7 Sept. 1922.
♦ "School Opens on Tuesday." Hobart Gazette 8 Sept. 1922.
WWI Draft Cards.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Ida Know and Ida n't Care

When I saw this postcard for sale, the front did not interest me …

2016-8-13. img201
(Click on images to enlarge)

… but the back — well, here we have a mystery:

2016-8-13. img200

A woman named Ida, who appears to have lived in Hobart, who had a niece named Olga Allen — who was she? Wouldn't it be fun to try to find out? is what I said to myself.

I said that because this was back in May, before the really hot, humid weather came, while the lawn and garden were still orderly, before the wasps built all those nests, before the poison ivy shot up among the wildflowers. Now I'm tired, I have a million things to do, I'm too old for this, and I just want to take a nap.

So I leave it up to the internet to solve the mystery.