Saturday, April 29, 2017

Grand Trunk, What a Big Spout You Have!

I'd heard of steam engines stopping to take on water, of course, but I must admit I never thought about the mechanism by which they did so until I saw this photo for sale.

2017-4-29. Grand Trunk waterspout
(Click on image to enlarge)

Looking at other pictures and film clips on-line, I gather that the photo above is a bit unusual in that the spout doesn't just drop down from the water tower, as in this clip. The water tower or reservoir here, while out of the camera's range, must be connected to the spout by underground pipes. I found one clip where the spout is separate from the water tower.

This photo was not taken at Ainsworth, which never had a water tower as far as I know. I believe Lottaville had one, since Lottaville had a pump man, Charles Popp, who might have been in charge of such apparatus as this — or, more likely, the simpler arrangement of a spout attached directly to the water tower. But I'm not suggesting that this photo was taken at Lottaville!

By the way, I'd always thought that the term "jerkwater town" came from this business of drawing water at some minor place along the line … but now I'm finding that I was mistaken, and also that the term has a murky origin.

Nonetheless, in a figurative sense, Ainsworth was a jerkwater village.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Ross Township Trustee's Report for 1922

Too many familiar names to index them all here, but I will add this to my list of Ross Township Trustee's reports and someday, someday, I will get around to creating an index.

2017-4-26. Ross Twp Trustee Report, 1922
(Click on image to enlarge)
Hobart Gazette 12 Jan. 1923.

Looking at the Dog Fund Disbursements, I learned that Gust Lindborg kept rabbits … which I'm guessing were destined for sale, or for the Lindborg family's dinner table. On other farms a lot of geese were killed — on the Harms farm, the William Foreman farm, and the farm of Albert Weiler.

But where (I ask myself) was the farm of Albert Weiler? — and I realize I don't know. I shall have to spend some time in the near future trying to find out.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

A Good Old-Fashioned Barn Lowering

At some point, Lester Harms decided that the barn on his farm was too tall and needed lowering.

2017-4-23. lh029
(Click on image to enlarge)
Image courtesy of Eldon Harms.

I can't say I understand why he wanted to do this, but it was his barn, wasn't it?

The photo is undated, but its being in color suggests ... well, generally, I think ordinary people used black-and-white film until about 1970 or so.

Now I have to look at all the pictures I have of his barn and try to figure out if they are pre- or post-lowering.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

She That Was Sophie Mankey

Thus far I haven't learned much about Julius Triebess and his family, but thanks to this little item from January 1923, I have learned that Sophie Triebess' maiden name was Mankey.

2017-4-20. Sophie Mankey Triebess
(Click on image to enlarge)
Hobart Gazette 12 Jan. 1923.

With that information, I can be pretty sure Julius and Sophie were married in Chicago on June 11, 1901 (Cook County, Illinois, Marriages Index). According her Indiana Death Certificate, her parents were William and Dorothea* (Brockmiller) Mankey … but they are proving elusive in the census records.

Her brother, William Mankey, farmed the east side of Randolph Street south of the Grand Trunk tracks.

Reported at the bottom of that column, Dr. L.M. Friedrich had minor car crash somewhere south of the intersection of Randolph Street and E. 73rd Avenue, where the Ed Niksch place lay.

Over in the left-hand column is a (partial, maybe) listing of who was in the local dairy business in January 1923.


*In death certificates of other relatives, her name is given as Dorothy or Doris.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Hobart Then and Now: Eighth and Garfield

Ca. 1909-1917, and 2017

2017-4-17. 8th Street Hobart a
(Click on images to enlarge)
2017-4-17. 8th and Garfield 2017

We are on Eighth Street, looking east toward Garfield Street.

The house on the far side of Garfield is the newest one in the photo, built in 1909 according to the county records. The house just east of it was built in 1900. The barely-visible house beyond (on the east side of Linda Street) was built in 1874; notice the windmill sticking up behind that house. The one in the foreground was built in 1907.

The house that now stands immediately north of the 1909 house was built in 1917. It hadn't been built yet when the first picture was taken — that is why we can date that picture between 1909 and 1917. Since the ground around the 1909 house looks as if it had had at least a summer's growth after the building process, I'm inclined to think the photo dates to 1910 or later, but that's speculation.

Nothing on the verso helps us date the card.

2017-4-17. 8th Street Hobart b

I think the house with the windmill is shown on the 1874 Plat Map as belonging to William Franck (more commonly spelled Frank).

2017-4-17. Frank 1874

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Happy Easter!

2017-4-16. Sun behind Daffodil
(Click on image to enlarge)

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Gone But Not Forgotten

Back in September 1916, Kenneth Humes had lost a finger to farm machinery on a Blachly farm. More than six years later, his suit for damages was finally being heard.

2017-4-12. Amputation litigation
(Click on image to enlarge)
Hobart News 11 Jan. 1923.

After several hours' deliberation, the jury would award Kenneth $100 and his costs ("Local and Personal," Hobart News 18 Jan. 1923).

Elsewhere on the page above we find Herman Harms, Jr., aka "Bud" — about four years old — sick with pneumonia at his maternal grandparents' house. His own parents, having been ill so recently, might have found it difficult to care for him.

Among the deaths reported in the right-hand column was that of the infant son of John and Goldie Ensign who had probably been named for his Uncle Walter. According to his death certificate, little Walter was buried in Crown Hill Cemetery, but it seems that his grave is unmarked.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

John and Sophia Harms

In honor of John Harms' becoming Hobart Township Assessor, here's a nice portrait of him and his wife, Sophia (née Schavey).

2017-4-9. lh013
(Click on image to enlarge)
Image courtesy of Eldon Harms.

The photo is undated, but from general appearances I'm guessing mid- to late 1930s.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Lafayette Then and Now: The Wabash River

Circa 1917, and 2017.

Layffatte, 3a
(Click on images to enlarge)
Image above courtesy of the Hobart Historical Society.


As Heraclitus said, you cannot photograph the same river twice. Especially when a century goes by between photographs.

As you may remember, the first picture was taken by our anonymous friend, "Myself," whose album of photos now belongs to the Hobart Historical Society.

"Myself" noted that he took his picture "from the 'Trail' near [Lafayette]." I have no clue where that might be.

Me, I took my picture from the Main Street pedestrian bridge between Lafayette and West Lafayette. Because I had to kill some time while the nice people at the Purdue University Small Animal Hospital were tapping my dog's joints.

One hundred years ago today, the U.S. entered World War I.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Of Toilets Condemned and Toilets Installed

During 1922, Hobart had seen a splendid year's growth in its toilets.

2017-4-4. The toilet news
(Click on image to enlarge)
Hobart News 4 Jan. 1923.

In unrelated news, Leona Niksch's 15th birthday party was probably taking place in the house on her parents' farm along the Lincoln Highway.

♦    ♦    ♦

Elsewhere in the same issue of the News, we find John Harms taking office as Hobart Township Assessor. I believe his account book is at the museum and maybe one of these years we will get around to photographing it.

2017-4-4. John Harms - Hobart Twp. trustee
(Click on image to enlarge)
Hobart News 4 Jan. 1923.

Also, another plane falling out of the sky, somewhere southeast of where the new roundabout is. The Peddicord farm straddled the Hobart-Ross Township line in that area. I think the "Wm. Sonntag home" was no longer occupied by Wm. Sonntag, but was somewhere near the intersection of S.R. 51 and 61st Avenue.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

So-o-o-o Big!

Today would have been Eldon Harms' 93rd birthday.

This photo shows him at the age of two.

2017-4-1. 1f
(Click on images to enlarge)
Images courtesy of Eldon Harms.

His siblings had taught him to hold out his arms like that and say, "So-o-o-o big!" — a trick they probably learned from Edna Ferber's novel, which had been published the year Eldon was born.

Another photo, stored in a different album but taken the same day, I think, shows little Eldon doing his So Big trick again.

2017-4-1. redalbum012

No one else in the photo is identified.