Oct 05

1919–Bluffton Shuts Out Celina, 138-0

I appreciate it when Karen’s Chatt readers write me with interesting information and stories about people and events in our area of west central Ohio and neighboring Indiana. I want to thank Lynne for sending me the following newspaper transcription, which she transcribed from a framed 1935 Bluffton, Indiana, newspaper, The News-Banner. I find it to be a very interesting article about a 1919 basketball game that Bruno Betzel played in, playing for Celina’s Phi Delta Kappa team, a game where Celina was shutout 138-0. A world’s record basketball shutout, at least at one time.

I do not have a copy of this news article but I found a couple smaller pieces about the game on Newspapers.com  and I have put them at the end of this post.

I have written about Chattanooga, Ohio, native Albert “Bruno” Betzel, before. He was born in Chatt in 1894 and his family moved to Celina by 1910. As an adult he was a major league baseball player and manager. He and his wife May lived in Celina and he died in 1965.

Bruno, Betzel, The Morning Call, Allentown, PA, 16 Dec 1936, p.26; Newspapers.com.

I read somewhere that Bruno played basketball in the winter to keep in shape. And that is likely why he was playing for the Celina basketball team in 1919. The article was written in 1935 and recounts the 1919 game:

Bluffton Phi Delta Claim World’s Shutout Net Mark

Old Newspaper File Found to Verify Story About 138 to 0 Count Handed Celina Basketball Team Here in 1919–Bluffton 138; Celina, Ohio, 0.
That was the final score of a basketball game played in this city on the evening of Thursday, January 30, 1919, according to the files of the Evening Banner at the public library at this city [Bluffton, IN], and according to reports from the sports statisticians throughout the country regarding other shutout scores of record, the score turned in here still stands as the world’s record.

Verification of the score made in that game in 1919 came about through efforts of Mayor Franklin Buckner, who formerly played on the old Phi Delta Kappa team. He had heard members of the team speak of the game with Celina, O., but not until publication started of other scores reported to be world’s records, did he begin to consider it a matter of civic duty to investigate.

His desire to see Bluffton obtain credit in the matter led to his starting a search through the old newspaper files. He found that the Bluffton-Celina game was played on the night of Thursday, January 30, 1919, and was reported in the Evening Banner on January 31, 1919. The newspaper story is as follows:

A Freak Game
A freak game that will go down in basketball history of Bluffton along with one or two others of its kind was played Thursday evening between the Phi Delta Kappa team of this city and the Phi Deltas of Celina, Ohio. The score was 138 to 0 in Bluffton’s favor.

There was only one foul in the whole game.

Knowing that A. Betzel, forward on the Celina team was a shortstop on the St. Louis National baseball team and figuring that he was somewhat of an Everett Scott in athletics, Bluffton prepared for a hard game. The visiting team didn’t arrive here until late and then they put up a poor appearance with their baseball, football, and army uniforms.

Kyle got into the game for a few minutes after having been out two weeks on account of an injured arm. He caged five field goals. The summary:

Celina–A. Betzel and Hindus, forwards; W. Betzell, center; Garlach and Miller, guards.

Bluffton–Cummins, Bolton, and Kyle, forwards; Humbert, center; Moomaw, Shoemaker and Prough, guards.

Field goals–Cummins, 31; Bolton, 20; Humbert, 6; Moomaw, 2; Shoemaker, 2; Prough, 3; and Kyle, 5.

Reference Explained
Everett Scott is referred to in the story for the reason he resided in Bluffton at the time he was playing shortstop for the Boston and New York American League teams and during winter months played basketball with the team here to keep in condition. He now operates bowling alleys in Fort Wayne.

Robert Cummins, who scored the record of 31 field goals, formerly played on the Freshman team at Indiana university. He is now a cashier in the Old-First National bank here.

Edwin Bolton operates a variety store Sturgis Mich., and Cletus Kyle, the other forward, is manager of an oil company in this city.

Ralph Humbert, the Bluffton center, played with the Huntington high school team before playing with the Bluffton squad. He now resides in Fort Wayne.

Earl E. (Red) Moomaw, guard, was at one time captain of the Indiana university football team. He resides in Indianapolis, where he works as a manager for an insurance company.

Ernest Shoemaker, who starred in track at Purdue, and who was another guard on the Bluffton team, also resides in Indianapolis. He is in the offices of the Indiana Service Corporation.

Victor Prough, the other player seeing duty in the game, now lives in Buffalo N.Y. He starred at one time on Bluffton high school teams.

While the record game was played over 16 years ago, all of the players who could be located here remembered it well and were able to describe it. They agreed that at the start of the game their plays started clicking and they piled up such a lead the Celina players quit trying to stop them. They reported that times in the last half of the contest some of the Celina players leaned against the gymnasium wall to rest.

While the newspaper story does not mention where the game was played, the members of the Bluffton team residing here report that it was staged at the old Cherry Street gymnasium. This is in a way verified by the newspaper files, which show that other games played by the Phi Delta Kappas that year were held there.

Remember Uniforms
All of the Bluffton players interviewed remembered vividly the uniforms worn by the Celina players. They verified the newspaper report that they wore an assortment of baseball, football, and army uniforms.

Cletus Kyle informed friends last week that he could remember playing in the game for the reason had an injured arm that had kept him out of two previous games. His recollection about his arm was stated prior to the time the newspaper article was located to verify it.

In addition to establishing an authentic world’s record for shutout scores, it is believed that the 31 field goals scored by Cummins must have come close to setting an individual scoring record.

Byrl J. Masterson, Bluffton clothier, was manager of the Bluffton team. It was largely due to his remembrance of the approximate time it was held that the story was verified. He thought the game was played in February, however, instead of in January.

Wow! That was a game Celina probably wanted to forget. I wonder if that shutout still stands as a world’s record.

There was a photo with the above article, which unfortunately I do not have:

PHOTO CAPTION: BLUFFTON PHI DELTA TEAM CLAIMED RECORD-This is the Bluffton Phi Delta Kappa basketball team that beat Celina, Ohio 138-0 on Jan 30, 1919. Back in 1935, the News-Banner assembled accounts of the game and other records elsewhere, with the claim then, as reprinted below, of a world record. Left to right are Ralph Humbert, Robert Cummins, Earl Moomaw, Victor Prough, Ernest Shoemaker, Edwin Bolton, Cletus Kyle. Team Manager was Byrl Masterson. Mrs. Marie Kyle supplied the photo above and clipping below.

However, I found a photo of the Phi Delta Kappa team, dated March 1919. This could very well be the same team photo, as the same players are lined up in the same order: [1]

Phi Delta Kappa basketball team, Bluffton, IN, 1919.

I found a very short piece about the game on Newspapers.com:

Celina Defeated
(Special to the news)
BLUFFTON, Ind., 31 Jan—Bluffton Phi Delta Kappas defeated Celina in basketball here Thursday evening 138 to 0. There was only one foul in the whole game. [2]

Celina Defeated by Phi Delta Kappa, 1919.

Here is another longer about the game, written in 1935:

Score Of 138-0 Hung Up In Bluffton Cage Game Played in 1919
Bluffton, In., Feb. 12—Local sports writers have discovered in old newspaper files an account of a basketball game played here on January 30, 1919, in which the old Bluffton Phi Delta Kappa team, an independent outfit, defeated the Phi Delta Kappa team from Celina, O., by a score of 138 to 0.

The game is believed to be a record for basketball.

The game was played at the old Cherry street gym. Robert Cummings, a star of the early days at Bluffton High School, later a forward at I.U., and at present employed in the Old First National Bank, scored thirty-one field goals, believed to be another record. Edwin Bolton, now operating a store at Sturgis, Mich., another forward on the team, scored twenty field goals.

Earl (Red) Moomaw, later and I.U. football star, was a guard on the Bluffton team. The other guard was Ernest Shoemaker, now employed in the offices of the Indiana Service Corporation at Indianapolis. Ralph Humbert, of Huntington, was the center for Bluffton. [3]

Celina defeated by Phi Delta Kappa, 138-0, in 1919.

I searched for the Phi Delta Kappa basketball team on Newspapers.com and there are quite a few newspapers articles about the Bluffton team, who were the state champions in 1919. One article indicates that they had a game with the Oswego, N.Y. team, [4] so they played teams from much farther away.

Thank you so much, Lynne, for taking the time to let me know about this interesting story.

 

[1] “Bluffton Phi Delta Kappas, Who Clash with Kokomo Chamber of Commerce Five for State Championship at Concordia Gym To-Night,” The Fort Wayne Sentinel, Fort Wayne, IN, 20 Mar 1919, p.10; Newspapers.com.

[2] “Celina Defeated,” The Fort Wayne Sentinel, Fort Wayne, IN, 31 Jan 1919, p.13; Newspapers.com.

[3] “Score Of 138-0 Hung Up In Bluffton Cage Game Played in 1919,” The Star Press, Muncie, IN, 13 Feb 1935, p.10; Newspapers.com.

 [4] “Will Play Oswego,” The Fort Wayne Sentinel, Fort Wayne, IN, 12 Feb 1919, p.4; Newspapers.com.

Oct 02

Tombstone Tuesday–John Kreiselmeyer

John Kreiselmeyer, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Schumm, Van Wert County, Ohio. (2012 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of John Kreiselmeyer, located in row 5 of Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Schumm, Van Wert County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

John
Kreiselmeyer
Died
20 Jul 1887
Aged
32 y. 8 m. 21 d.

Johann “John” Kreiselmeyer was born 29 November 1854 in Willshire Township, Van Wert County, Ohio, the son of Christoph and Susanna (Schwab) Kreiselmeyer. According to the records of Zion Lutheran Church, Schumm, he was baptized at home on 3 December 1854 with Johann Brenner and his wife Elisabetha serving as sponsors.

John Kreiselmeyer, living with his family in Willshire Township in 1860: Christoph, 38; Susanna, 28; Mary, 11; David, 9; John, 6; Hannah,1. This enumeration indicates all were born in Ohio. [1]  

In 1870 John Kreiselmeyer still lived on the family farm in Willshire Township with his parents and siblings. Their household in 1870: Christoph, 48; Susanna, 39; John, 15; Hannah, 11; Fredrick, 7; Anna, 4; and William, 11 months. This enumeration indicates that the father was born in Bavaria and the other family members were born in Ohio. [2]

John Kreiselmeyer married his neighbor Emma Seaman sometime between 1870 and 1880, but I could not find a record of their marriage. The Kreiselmeyers and Seamans lived near each other for years and both families attended Zion Schumm, so I assumed John and Emma would have married at Zion Schumm. But their marriage is not in their records. [I am using the most common spelling here, Seaman, although it is spelled as Seemann in Zion Schumm’s records.]

In 1880 John and Emma [Seaman] Kreiselmeyer lived in Willshire Township with her parents John and Anna Maria Seaman. The John and Emma Kreiselmeyer household in 1880: John [Seaman], 65; Anna Maria [Seaman], 61, John [Kreiselmeyer], 28; Emma [Kreiselmeyer], 21; and Fredric Rattach, 21. They were farmers and Rattach was their farm laborer. Emma’s parents were born in Wuerttemberg and John and Emma were born in Ohio. [3]

The church records indicate that John Kreiselmeyer died of typhoid fever at 3:30 in the afternoon of 20 July 1887. He was 32 years, 8 months, and 20 days old and was buried on the 22nd. His funeral text was John 8:51.

Van Wert County Death Records indicate that John died of bilious fever, a term used for a fever that was accompanied by nausea or vomiting and strong diarrhea. His probate death record indicates he was born in Willshire Township, where he also died, and that he was married. This record shows he was 32 years, 8 months, and 21 days old, one day older that the church record indicates. [4]

It appears John that John and Emma did not have any children. John’s widow Emma died 4 April 1896 and is buried in row 7 of Zion Schumm’s cemetery.

John Kreiselmeyer, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Schumm, Van Wert County, Ohio. (2012 photo by Karen)

 

 

[1] 1860 U.S. Census, Willshire Twp, Van Wert Co, Oh, p.150 [penned], dwelling 1072, family 1066, Christopher Railselmeyers [Kreiselmeyer]; Ancestry.com (https://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=7667&path= : viewed 17 Sep 2018).

[2] 1870 U.S. Census, Willshire, Van Wert, Ohio, p.436A [stamped], dwelling 95, family 96, Christ Kreisshenier; Ancestry.com ( https://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?htx=List&dbid=7163&offerid=0%3a7858%3a0 : viewed 1 Oct 2018).

[3] 1880 U.S. Census, Willshire, Van Wert, Ohio, ED 154, p.449A [stamped], family 113, John Kreiselmyer; Ancestry.com (https://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?htx=List&dbid=6742&offerid=0%3a7858%3a0 : viewed 1 Oct 2018).

[4] “Ohio, County Death Records, 1840-2001,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:S3HY-672G-MH?i=312&cc=2128172 : viewed 1 Oct 2018), John Kreiselmeyer, 20 Jul 1887; Willshire Twp., Van Wert County Deaths, p.282, no. 153; FHL microfilm 1015858.

 

Sep 28

Dear Mom & All–WWII Letters from Herb (part 27)

Today, more transcriptions of the letters my dad, Herbert Miller, wrote home while serving his country during WWII. Today’s letters begin in January 1946. The war was over and my dad was serving in the Occupation Force in Germany, serving until he had enough time and points to be honorably discharged from the U.S. Army. He had been stationed at an Army post office in Weinheim, Germany, but wrote these letters from Heidelberg, where he apparently had been transferred. [1]

These letters were written to my dad’s sister Em, her husband Norval “Jack,” and their little son Ron. There is not a lot in these letters, but still a few bits of interesting information here and there.

US Army, 84th Division, 333rd Company, Infantry. WWII, Battle of the Bulge.

Jan 8 [1946]

Dear Em, Jack, and All,

It’s about a quarter after nine and am going to get my laundry together tonight and then go to bed. It’s pretty early but I’m sort of sleepy and anyway there weren’t any good shows on tonight. Have you received the large box of perfume I sent you, or I should say 2 bottles in one box?

 How’s the little fellow coming along? I sure would like to see him. Maybe it won’t be too long. At least I hope not. It shouldn’t be too long. I have 38 points. The discharge no. is 50 points. I have 18 months of service now, 13 overseas and 5 of that combat time.

I’ve got one row of ribbons now and might have two by the time I get discharged–E.T.O., Good Conduct, Purple Heart, Occupation Ribbons, Victory Ribbon, maybe the America Theatre Ribbon, and the Combat Infantry Badge.

 Things are about the same here as usual. Not much going on. Must close.

 Love,
Herbie

My dad displayed some of his WWII ribbons and patches in a shadow box, shown below. He had additional campaign ribbons that were not displayed here.

Some of Herb’s WWII ribbons and patches.

19 Jan 1946
Heidelberg, Germany

Dear Em, Jack & Ronnie,

I guess it’s time for me to write you a few lines. Things are so dead around here and there just isn’t anything to write about.

I’ve been trying to get Special Service to set up a roller rink and the answer I got was “Sure, we’ve got 300 pair on hand, but what do you want us to do—work?

I’ve almost got me a movie camera, so if I do get it I’ll wire home for film and take a movie of “Heineland.”

I wrote mom a letter tonight and forgot to tell her, so you tell her. By the way the radio says I’ll be eligible for discharge June 30, maybe a little before, maybe a little after.

What’s cookin’ around on the farm this time of year? A lot of work. I’ve got the Hillbilly program on the radio that comes on every Saturday evening. Lulu Belle and Scotty are singing now. It isn’t very late, about the time we usually got into Celina.

How’s Ronnie coming along? I sure would like to see him and also Ruth’s family. I haven’t seen Roger since he was in the crib and always crying.

I really had a good meal Friday night. A couple of the Red Cross girls from the 84th Division (the girls are still in Weinheim) came in the post office. I knew them and we got to talking and they invited me and another guy out to supper. A couple pretty nice girls.

Can’t think of much more to write so I’d better close.

Love,
Herbie

Herbert M. Miller, WWII.

26 Jan 1946
Heidelberg, Germany

Dear Em, Jack & Ronnie,

It’s Saturday evening and about time I answer a few letters. There isn’t much doing tonight, went to take a shower and then a show. Saw, by golly I can’t think of the name of the snow now.

I work at the C.P. most of the time and the Wacs live there and have their mess hall there. (place to eat)

We finally worked a deal where we could eat dinner there and then later supper, so I’m getting two good meals a day. The closest to home cooked meals I ever ate in the Army.

I’m going to get some pictures taken pretty soon. I’ll send some home if they are any good.

How is Ronnie coming along? Good, I hope. I’ll bet he is really getting big. He’ll probably be able to walk by the time I get home and out of the Army. See what they did by not having compulsory military training.

Must close.

Love,
Herbie

Herb on furlough, at Zion Chatt with Fred Betzel and Donald Hoblet, November 1944.

11 Feb 1946
Heidelberg, Germany

Dear Em, Jack & Family,

How is the family getting along? I received the photo Helen sent. He sure is a cut little thing.

Do you think he’ll be walking by the time I get home Golly, I hope it isn’t that long until I get home.

There is another guy going home Tuesday. Out of 12 men in the outfit (172 A.P.V.) one has already gone home, three left for furlough to Switzerland yesterday and one going Tuesday. That leaves only 7 men and there will be two more leave before long. It looks like the outfit is really breaking up. The Col. Sent a Jeep to Mosberg (25 Base Post Office) to pick up 5 pouches of first-class mail that just came in. Everyone in the 72 got five or six letters. I’ve received two letters (I think) since New Year’s. Maybe a couple more.

I’ve been trying to get a letter through to Don Hoblet ever since I’ve been in E.T.O. but every one has come back to me. I wrote three the other night and sent one to his folks, one to the hospital, etc. He surely should get one.

I imagine everyone is getting ready for the spring plowing. I sure wish I could be home to help. But is looks like I won’t get home until mid-summer.

How is Chatt? Has it changed much in any way? Do they still have “Hank’s Place” and “Sarah’s?” I’ll bet I’ll hardly know my way around Mercer County when I get home.

It sort of looks like Dorothy isn’t interested in me anymore. The last letter I received from [her] was 29 October and one from the latter part of November and that was the first she wrote me for about two months.

I’m on C.Q. tonight and it’s still early tonight so I’ll have to get a couple more letters off today.

Youins haven’t heard any from Dorothy have you?

I’ve been overseas 14 months today and have got about 5 more months to wait.

Guess I’d better close for now. Am feeling fine and hope you are all the same.

Love,
Herbie

My uncle has told me that Dorothy dumped by dad when he stationed was overseas. What a terrible thing for her to do, but things worked out for the best. They way they should have. Otherwise I would not be here today!

I am nearly finished with the transcriptions of my dad’s WWII letters and will finish posting them in the near future.

 

[1] My dad, Herbert Miller, trained as a replacement troop during the fall of 1944, arrived in Europe in December of that same year, and was assigned to Company L, 333rd Regiment, 84th Infantry Division. The 84th was known as the Railsplitters. He fought in the Battle of the Bulge in Belgium and later in parts of Luxembourg, Germany, and France.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sep 25

Tombstone Tuesday–Some Tombstones from St. Augustine Cemetery

This past Sunday was an absolutely perfect autumn day. The temperature was in the mid-70s and there was not a cloud in the sky. It was the perfect time to walk through a cemetery.

I lead a walk through Minster’s St. Augustine Cemetery Sunday afternoon, hosted by Minster’s Historical Society. I was not acquainted with St. Augustine Cemetery, but after several visits there and a little bit of research I was able to tell about a few Minster notables buried there and point out interesting artwork on some grave markers. I learned there is a lot of history in this beautiful cemetery.

St. Augustine Cemetery is a large cemetery. Situated on 27 acres, the first land for the cemetery was purchased in 1838. Find a Grave shows that there are over 4500 interred there.

My focus Sunday was in the old section and most of the inscriptions in this section are in German. A couple of the attendees could speak fluent German and it was fun to hear them talk.

Here are a few tombstone photos from the old section of St. Augustine Cemetery.

Monument, dedicated in 1891, located in the center of St. Augustine Cemetery. (2017 photo by Karen)

Steinemann Chapel was erected in 1855 by John Henry Steinemann (1808-1877), in thanksgiving for his wife Catherine Gertrude Meyer’s (1808-1872) recovery from a serious illness. It is constructed of brick from the Steinemann brickyard.

Steinemann Chapel. (2018 photo by Karen)

John Henry and wife Catherine Gertrude (Meyer) Steinemann are buried near the Steinemann Chapel, under the tree.

Tombstones of John Henry Steinemann (1808-1877) and wife Catherine Gertrude (Meyer) (1808-1872). (2018 photo by Karen)

The section was reserved for sisters and brothers of the Society of the Precious Blood. A few orphans are also buried here.

Section reserved for sisters and brothers of the Society of the Precious Blood. (2018 photo by Karen)

Metal angel monument for Henry Beckman (1905-1909).

Henry Beckman (1905-1909). (2018 photo by Karen)

A devastating cholera epidemic struck Minster in 1849. Some of the victims were buried in individual unmarked graves but over 300 were buried in an unmarked mass grave consisting of several trenches. This monument was erected in 1937, dedicated to the memory of all the cholera victims. Inscription: In Pious Memory of All Our Cholera Victims, over 300, Especially in the Year 1849. The tombstones in the background are those of the Irish Catholic immigrant cholera victims.

Monument erected in 1937, in memory of over 300 cholera victims in 1849. (2018 photo by Karen)

Irish Catholic immigrants, hired by canal contractors to excavate the stretch of the Miami-Erie Canal from Piqua to Deep Cut, were buried in the northwest section of the cemetery between 1838-1842. The damp conditions in which they worked exposed them to many diseases, including typhus, cholera, and malaria. There used to be many more of their sandstone markers in this section but only a few remain today. Most are inscribed with the county in Ireland from where they came.

Sandstone marker of Irish canal worker William Carroll, a native of the Parish of Donemagin, Baroney, Kells Co. Kilkenny Ireland. (2018 photo by Karen)

Another view of the old section of St. Augustine Cemetery.

Old section of St. Augustine Cemetery. (2018 photo by Karen)

Cross and clasped hands. (2018 photo by Karen)

Inscribed by engraver J. Ley, Minster. (2018 photo by Karen)

 

Sandstone marker of M.M. Wehrmann, born Scheper (1786-1848). (2018 photo by Karen)

 

R.I.P. (2018 Photo by Karen)

Joint Depweg children’s marker with lambs and crosses, likely siblings. (2018 photo by Karen)

We found two wooden tombstones! Wooden tombstones are very unusual and are seldom seen because they usually did not survive. Unfortunately we could not see an inscription on either and do not know how old they are, but they looked very old.

Wooden tombstone, St. Augustine Cemetery. (2018 photo by Karen)

Wooden tombstone, St. Augustine Cemetery. (2018 photo by Karen)

This monument is in honor of Franz Joseph Stallo (1793-1833), the German immigrant who founded Minster. A school teacher and printer/book binder, he came to America in 1831 and first lived in Cincinnati. He and a few others formed a stock company in 1832, purchased 1200 acres in what was then Mercer and Shelby Counties, and, with several other German families, founded the town of Minster. The town was first known as Stallowtown.

Franz Joseph Stallo, founder of Minster (1793-1833). (2018 photo by Karen)

Thanks to the Minister Historical Society for inviting me to speak and a thank you to the nice group of people that attended the cemetery walk and talk this past Sunday. It was a fun afternoon.

Sep 21

Book about 1872 Murder Near Chatt

Most everyone who grew up in the Chatt area has heard about the murder of 13-year-old Mary Secaur in June 1872 and of the lynching of the two men who were jailed for her murder, Absalom Kimmel and Alexander McLeod.

Mary Arabelle Secaur was murdered on her way home from church one Sunday, murdered east of Chatt on Tama Road, nearly across the road from where the Farmer’s Picnic is held. Kimmel and McLeod were accused of murdering Mary and were being held in the Mercer County jail when a mob overcame the sheriff, took the prisoners from the jail, and hung two them.

I have read a little about this incident but have never really delved into it.

This past Monday Joe and I attended the program at the Shane’s Crossing Historical Society, to hear the speaker David Kimmel, an English professor at Heidelberg University in Tiffin, Ohio, who is also a descendant of one of the Secaur murder suspects. He spoke about the book he recently wrote and published, Outrage in Ohio: A Rural Murder, Lynching, and Mystery, which was released just a few weeks ago.

Outrage in Ohio, by David Kimmel, 2018.

A good number of people from the Chatt and Rockford area were also there Monday night to hear Kimmel, some of them Secaur descendants, some of them Kimmel descendants.

David Kimmel, author of Outrage in Ohio. (2018)

Monday evening Kimmel told about the families involved, discussed the murder and the lynching, and told why and how he used some of his own narrative in the book. Afterward, several members of the audience shared their thoughts and theories about the event. It was good program and Kimmel is an interesting speaker.

I purchased a copy of Kimmel’s book Monday evening and started reading it right away. It looks to be very interesting and informative.

Outrage in Ohio is an extensively-researched account of this murder and the events afterward. It appears that he has performed a “reasonably exhaustive search,” as we call it in genealogy research. He has searched through numerous sources in many places, talked to relatives and other individuals, and visited the area several times. There is a long list of end-notes at the back of the book that show his sources of information.

He has tried to learn and tell about the people living near the Secaurs and Kimmels as well. Something we call the FAN Club Principle in genealogy—researching someone’s Friends, Associates, and Neighbors. You can learn a lot by researching these other people.

David Kimmel puts all this information together in his book, with a bit of historical fiction writing, giving you an idea of what the people may have been doing and thinking and feeling at the time.

This may be the only recently-compiled account of this incident. The facts and details are all in one book.

I know that Kimmel was looking for anything related to this incident and the people involved. A couple years ago he contacted me and asked to look through the 1842 Liberty Township Estray Book. He was looking for any information about the families involved and their neighbors. He told me about the book he was writing and I had been looking forward to its publication and reading it ever since.

Out of curiosity I looked up their death records and see that Mercer County Probate Deaths record the deaths of Mary A. Secaur, Absolem Kimmel, and Alex McLeod all on the same page, one after another: [1]

Columns: Number/Name/Date of Death/Married, Single, Widowed/Age/Place of Death/Place of BirthColumns: Occupation/Father/Mother/White, Colored/Cause of Death/Residence/By Whom Reported

After 146 years, parts and details of the story will likely always remain a mystery. Although there are several theories about what really happened and who was guilty, there are just some things we will never really know for sure. And I think this mystery is one of them.

Karen with author David Kimmel (2018) (David is just a little taller than me!)

 

[1] “Ohio, County Death Records, 1840-2001,” database with images, FamilySearch
(https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:3QSQ-G9ZR-K811?i=64&cc=2128172 : viewed 20 Sep 2018), Mary A. Secaur, 23 Jun 1872; Liberty Township, Mercer Co., Vol. 1:42; FHL microfilm 914954.

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