Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Two More Views of the Nickel Plate Bridge

A few years ago I posted a circa-1906 view of the Nickel Plate Railroad bridge over the Deep River. I have on hand a couple of similar views, dating just three or four years later.

This one is postmarked 1909.

2018-12-26. Nickel Plate bridge 1909 a
(Click on images to enlarge)

The photographer stood south of the bridge on the east bank of the river and pointed his camera toward town. Through the supports of the railroad bridge you can see the Third Street bridge, a small structure in comparison. That big smokestack is one of the brickyards, and to the left of it a lot of smaller chimneys bristle up. Between the smokestack and the tree in the foreground is the old mill, and among the branches of that tree is the steeple of Trinity Lutheran Church at Main and Second Streets.

Here's the verso. I know nothing about the sender or recipient.

2018-12-26. Nickel Plate bridge 1909 b

The photo from the card postmarked 1910 shows the Nickel Plate bridge from the opposite side.

2018-12-26. Nickel Plate bridge 1910 a

I suppose the photographer stood on the Third Street bridge, or near it. Those houses in the background are on Water Street, I believe. If you look through the bridge supports toward the right of the picture, you can see that somebody has a nice big boat-house right on the river's edge.

We have already met the sender of this postcard — Eathel Westbay Gradle.

2018-12-26. Nickel Plate bridge 1910 b

Monday, December 24, 2018

Merry Christmas!

Here's Santa Claus in 1962:

2018-12-24. mauve 029
(Click on image to enlarge)
Image courtesy of Eldon Harms.

OK, actually, that's Minnie Rossow Harms, impersonating Santa to bring presents to her grandchildren.

I believe the profile at the extreme left belongs to Eldon Harms. The woman at the back with a child in her arms is Norma (Chase), Eldon's wife. The others I can't identify.

Saturday, December 22, 2018

In-Law Troubles

Here's some juicy gossip reprinted from the Valparaiso Vidette about people with Deep River ties.

2018-12-22. Hill, News, 6-28-1923
(Click on image to enlarge)
Hobart News, June 28, 1923.

Douglas Maxwell was one of the children of William and Roxanna Maxwell and thus, I believe, was "Uncle Douglas" to Gladys Maxwell Rose. He grew up in Ross Township (1870 Census, 1880 Census). His wife, Florence (aka Flora), was born a Sturtevant. They married in 1904, but it was his second marriage (Indiana Marriage Collection), and Olive was a child of his first. It doesn't appear that Douglas and Florence had any children together.

Olive Maxwell had married Charles R. Hill in 1921. (His parents, William and Lillian, were farming in Winfield Township in the 1920 Census.) They had only the one child, Violet. In the 1930 Census, Olive described herself as divorced; she and Violet were living with Douglas and Florence in Valparaiso.

I don't know how Charles spent the rest of his life, but (if I've found the right death certificate) he died in the Veterans' Home in West Lafayette, Indiana.

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Two Sides of the Same Girl

The first shot is a contemplative portrait in profile. For the second shot, she turned toward the camera with a playful grin.

2018-12-16. sb030
(Click on image to enlarge)
Image courtesy of Eldon Harms.

Unfortunately, we have no idea who she was — the original had no identifying notes, and Eldon didn't recognize her. Since the photo was one of many saved in an old stationery box by Minnie Rossow Harms, this girl surely has some connection to those families, either as a relative or a friend.

You can't see much of her clothing that might help date the photo. Those giant hair bows were popular in the early part of the 20th century, about up to the First World War, I think.

Saturday, December 8, 2018

His Vintage Ford

Louis Wojahn won a prize in June of 1923 for his vintage Ford — dating to 1910!

2018-12-8. Wojahn, Gazette, 6-29-1923
(Click on image to enlarge)
Hobart Gazette, June 29, 1923.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Sweet Sixteen?

This is Clara Rossow at 16 years of age, according to the hand-written caption. Does she look sweet? — I think she looks determined.

2018-12-3. Clara Rossow at 16
(Click on image to enlarge)
Image courtesy of the Hobart Historical Society and Tom Rainford.

Assuming the caption is correct, this photo probably dates to circa 1906. I say probably because sources vary as to her birthdate, but the majority place it in 1890 or 1891.

She was one of the children of Augusta (Stolp) Rossow. The earliest census in which I can find her, the 1910 Census, gives her birthplace as Indiana. In subsequent censuses she claims to have been born at sea, on the Atlantic Ocean. It's a good story, but I don't think it's true.

That 1910 census shows her living with her siblings on Lake Street in Hobart. (As Minnie Rossow Harms tells us in As It Was Told to Me, the Rossow kids found that they got along better with their stepfather, William Carey, if they didn't live in his house, so they got their own.) Clara was working as a telephone operator. Sometime between 1910 and 1920 she married Thomas Davies, according to the family — I can't find an official record of the marriage on-line, but the 1920 Census records the two of them as married. It seems there were no children. When Clara died in 1976, the background information on her death certificate came from a niece who did not know Clara's parents' names.

By the way, we have seen that painted backdrop a couple of times already.