Mar 13

1910 Quadrennial Assessor’s Report of Blackcreek Township

I get pretty excited when I run across old documents and papers. This past week I acquired a little booklet that is 105 years old and that certainly fits the bill!

My mom recently came across some old papers my dad had saved. This little 8 page booklet, “Quadrennial Assessor’s Report of Blackcreek Twp. Mercer County, Ohio, 1910,” once belonged to my dad’s grandfather, Jacob Miller, who owned 80 acres in Blackcreek Township. The booklet was printed by Bote Print, Celina, Ohio.

Quadrennial Assessor's Report of Blackcreek Twp., Mercer County, Ohio, 1910.

Quadrennial Assessor’s Report of Blackcreek Twp., Mercer County, Ohio, 1910.

In 1910 J.L. Morrow, was the auditor and D.T. Ruffner, was the assessor. The Board of Equalization consisted of Fred Heiby, L.N. Kiser, Frank Dillhoff, L.L. Marsh, surveyor, and J.L. Morrow, clerk of the board. Today the Equalization Board “helps ensure uniformity and fairness in property taxation through its oversight of the appraisal work of local county auditors.” [1] It likely served the same purpose 100 years ago.

This was a quadrennial report—made every four years. Today reappraisals are conducted every six years and values are updated the third year following each sexennial reappraisal. [1] In 1910, taxes on this appraisement were not be collected before December 1911.

There are no towns in Blackcreek Township but Chatt is immediately to the southwest. Blackcreek Township is bordered by Van Wert County on the north, Indiana on the west, Liberty Township on the south, and Dublin Township on the east.

Approximately 350 different names are written in the quadrennial booklet. They are not listed in alphabetical order but instead are listed in order by section number. You can get idea of who lived near each other if you know how the sections are numbered. Section no. 1 is in the northeast corner of the township. Section numbering goes west for 6 sections, then down one row and back east, then down one row and back west. Back and forth. Six sections across and six sections down. The last section, no.36, is in the southeast corner. A section contains 640 acres.

You can see how the sections are numbered by looking at the map below. The section number is written in the center of each section.

Blackcreek Township, Mercer County, Ohio.

Blackcreek Township, Mercer County, Ohio.

The Charles [Charlie] and Labadie Reservations are listed at the end of the booklet, after Section 36, but they were in the northeast section of the township, in Sections 1 and 2.

The columns in the booklet:

  1. In whose name assessed
  2. Range
  3. Town
  4. Section
  5. No. of acres
  6. Total value of lands excluding buildings
  7. Deduct value of roads and ditches
  8. Total value of lands and buildings

My great-grandfather Jacob Miller is on page 6. He owned 80 acres of land in Section 30. His land value was $5040, $88 deducted for roads and ditches, and $6352 total value of lands and buildings.

Below are scans of the book’s pages.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor's Report, p.1.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor’s Report, p.1.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor's Report, p.2.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor’s Report, p.2.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor's Report, p.3.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor’s Report, p.3.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor's Report, p.4.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor’s Report, p.4.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor's Report, p.5.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor’s Report, p.5.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor's Report, p.6.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor’s Report, p.6.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor's Report, p.7.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor’s Report, p.7.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor's Report, p.8.

1910 Blackcreek Quadrennial Assessor’s Report, p.8.

This document can be helpful to locate individuals who owned land and most likely lived on that land in Blackcreek Township in 1910.

It is a  very nice little booklet and I am so glad the Millers saved nearly everything.

 

[1] Ohio Department of Taxation, Real Property Tax, http://www.tax.ohio.gov/real_property.aspx : assessed 11 March 2015.

Mar 10

Tombstone Tuesday–Maria Friedricke Roehm

Maria Friedricke Roehm, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Schumm, Van Wert County, Ohio. (2012 photo by Karen)

Maria Friedricke Roehm, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Schumm, Van Wert County, Ohio. (2012 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of Maria Friedricke Roehm, located in row 3 of Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Schumm, Van Wert County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

Hier Ruhet Maria F. [?]
Tochter von G.A. und G. Roehm
Gest. 19 Aug. 1901
Alter 2 [?] Y, 5 M, 28 D

Maria Friedricke Roehm was born 21 February 1899 in Van Wert County, the daughter of George A. and Gertrude (Heffner) Roehm. She was baptized 12 March 1899 at Zion Lutheran Schumm, with Amalie Schumm and Mrs. Marie Schumm as sponsors, according to church records.

Sponsor Marie (Heffner) Schumm was Maria Friedricke Roehm’s aunt, the sister of her mother Gerturde. Marie and William Schumm also attended church at Zion Schumm.

Maria Roehm’s birth was also recorded in the probate records of Van Wert County and her probate birth record agrees with the church record. [1]

According to Zion Schumm’s records Maria died 19 August 1901 of inflammation of the brain, at the age of 2 years, 5 months, and 28 days. She was buried on the 21st.

Maria Friedricke Roehm, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Schumm, Van Wert County, Ohio. (2012 photo by Karen)

Maria Friedricke Roehm, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Schumm, Van Wert County, Ohio. (2012 photo by Karen)

According to her Van Wert County probate death record Maria died of “spinal bifida.” Her death is recorded on the line after her sister Eleanore’s death record.

Of course two of the records would have to disagree with each other. According to her Van Wert County death record Maria died 8 August 1901, at the age of 2 years. [2] As I mentioned last week, I believe all four of the Roehm deaths were reported and recorded at the same time at Van Wert probate, sometime after 4 January 1902. Either they were reported or recorded inaccurately, maybe both. I believe she died 19 August, as the church record and tombstone indicate.

This tombstone is weathered, broken, and cracked, making it very difficult to read. It is the same shape and type tombstone as her father’s and her sister Eleanore’s. Maria’s inscription appears to follow the same format as her sister’s.

 

[1] “Ohio, County Births, 1841-2003,” index and images, FamilySearch (http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 23 February 2015), Marie F. Roehm, 21 February 1899; citing Van Wert County, Ohio Births, Vol. 3, p.462; from FHL microfilm 1015857.

[2] “Ohio, County Death Records, 1840-2001,” index and images, FamilySearch (http: familysearch.org : accessed 23 February 2015), Marie Roehm, 8 August 1901; citing Van Wert County, Ohio, Deaths, Vo. 2: 185, from FHL microfilm 1015858.

Mar 06

Mrs. Fisher’s First Grade, Willshire, 1958-59

Just a week ago I was hoping to find an old school photo. And today, here it is–the other Willshire first grade class photo.

I was looking for the classroom photo of Mrs. Fisher’s first grade, 1958-59, to see what the other half of our class looked like all those years ago.

Even after 57 years I still recognize all the faces. We really haven’t changed all that much.

Mrs. Mildred Fisher's first grade class, 1958-59, Willshire Public School.

Mrs. Mildred Fisher’s first grade class, 1958-59, Willshire Public School

A big thank you to a former classmate who kindly shared this photo with me.

We had two first grade classes that year and I was in Mrs. Clouse’s class. Both classes had these classroom photos taken but I don’t know if I ever saw this one of Mrs. Fisher’s class. We were joined as one class in the second grade and we had another classroom photo taken that year. I posted the other two photos in last week’s post.

Reading front to back, starting with row closest to the camera:
Row 1: Kenny Carmean, Debbie Carr, Sherry Hey, Terry Harmon
Row 2: Nelda Leistner, Sue Wolfe, Charles Putman, Brent Whitacre, Carla Hoblet
Row 3: Lynn Lough, Carol Andrews, Jim Stuckey, Helen Boring, Paula Clouse
Row 4: Joyce Roehm, Bill Bates, Linda Duff, Gary Hamrick
Mrs. Mildred Fisher is seated at the back of the room.

There are 17 students in this photo while there were 19 in the photo of Mrs. Clouse’s class.

Mrs. Fisher’s first grade class had four Chattanooga kids, just like Mrs. Clouse’s class: Debbie Carr, Nelda Leistner, Carla Hoblet, and Carol Andrews.

I mentioned Mildred Fisher in a Tombstone Tuesday post a few weeks ago, a post about her parents, Jacob A. and Emma E. (Heffner) Bauer. Her mother’s side of the family came from Chatt.

Mildred Bauer married John Fisher and after he passed away in 1973 she married Donald E. Whitmore. Mildred passed away in 2001. Her obituary mentioned that she taught in Chattanooga, Willshire, Rockford, and Celina schools.

Our class was the Parkway graduating class of 1970 and this year we will have our 45th class reunion. It is fun to look at these old photos and remember all the good times we had.

I wish they would have continued taking these class photos all through our school years, but I believe these are the only three taken of our class at Willshire. I wonder if any were taken at Rockford?

Mar 03

Tombstone Tuesday–Eleanore A.M. Roehm

Eleanore Roehm, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Schumm. (2012 photo by Karen)

Eleanore Roehm, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Schumm. (2012 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of Eleanore Anna Magdalena Roehm, located in row 8 of Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Schumm, Van Wert County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

Hier Ruhet Eleanore A. [?] M.
Tochter von G.A. und G. Roehm
Gest. Den 9 Oct. 1901
Alter 15 Y, 3 M, 26 D

Translation: Here rests Eleanore A. [?] M., Daughter of G.A. and G. Roehm, Died 9 October 1901, Age 15 years, 3 months, 26 days.

Eleanore Anna Magdalena Roehm was born 13 July 1886 in Willshire Township, Van Wert County, the daughter of George A. and Gertrude (Heffner) Roehm. She was baptized at home on 1 August 1886 with Mrs. Anna Schumm and Magdalena Roehm as sponsors. She was confirmed at Zion Lutheran Schumm on Palm Sunday, 8 April 1900.

Eleanore’s church death record indicates she died 9 October 1901 of typhoid and pneumonia at the age of 15 years, 2 months, and 26 days. She was buried on 11 October.

According to her tombstone inscription she was 15 years, 3 months, and 26 days old, making her date of birth 13 June 1886. Both her baptismal record and church death record state she was born on 13 July 1886. Using those two church records to calculate her age, she would have been 15 years, 2 months, and 26 days old—2 months, not 3 months. It appears her age as inscribed on her tombstone is incorrect.

Eleanore was the third person in this family to die in 1901. Her father died a little over four months earlier and her little sister died a little less than two months earlier.

Eleanore’s death is the third of four Roehm deaths recorded consecutively in Van Wert’s probate records. The four are Andrew [George’s father], George [Eleanore’s father], “Ella Nora” [today’s subject], and Maria [Eleanore’s sister]. This record gives Eleanore’s death date as 10 September 1901, which disagrees with her church death record and her tombstone. [1]

4 Roehm death entries, Van Wert County, Ohio, Deaths, Vol. 2:185.

4 Roehm death entries, Van Wert County, Ohio, Deaths, Vol. 2:185.

Again, I have to agree with the church records. The four Roehm probate death records are not in chronological order and were likely reported and entered at the same time, after Andrew Roehm’s death on 4 January 1902, months after the other three deaths. Andrew was the last of the four to die but his death was recorded first on the page. In addition, we do not know who reported the information to the probate court. I believe there was an error in reporting or recording some of the information concerning the Roehm deaths in this record.

Parent’s names were not entered in this probate death record because they were to be recorded only when an infant died without a name. This record indicates both sisters and their father were born in Willshire Township, that Andrew was born in Bavaria, and that all died in Willshire. [1]

 

[1] “Ohio, County Death Records, 1840-2001,” index and images, FamilySearch (http: familysearch.org : accessed 23 February 2015), Ella Nora Roehm, 10 September 1901; citing Van Wert County, Ohio, Deaths, Vol. 2: 185, from FHL microfilm 1015858.

Feb 27

My First and Second Grades at Willshire Public School

This is Willshire Public School, the school I attended my first eight years.

Willshire Public School 1917

Willshire Public School, Willshire, Van Wert County, Ohio.

Last week someone on Facebook posted an old photo of my second grade class. Mrs. Marcella Schroeder was our teacher during that 1959-60 school year. The photo, shown below, shows our whole class sitting at our desks in our classroom. Of course the photo brought back many memories.

Second grade class, 1959-1960, Willshire Public School, Mrs. Marcella Schroeder, teacher.

Second grade class, 1959-1960, Willshire Public School, Mrs. Marcella Schroeder, teacher.

I have another photo just like it, of our first grade class, taught by Mrs. Opal Clouse. That was the 1958-59 school year. These class photos are nice and I wish I had some more from the other grades. [The names of the students are at the end of this post.]

We did not have a kindergarten class at Willshire. Instead we were put right in to the first grade. There were two first grades at Willshire at that time and Mrs. Fisher taught the other class. There was only one second grade so both first grades were combined for our second year.

First grade, 1958-59, Willshire Public School, Mrs. Opal Clouse, teacher.

First grade, 1958-59, Willshire Public School, Mrs. Opal Clouse, teacher.

As you can see, there are 19 pupils in my first grade photo and 39 in the second grade photo. Poor Mrs. Schroeder. That was a very large class for one teacher!

Our first grade classroom was across the hall from the second grade room. It wasn’t really a hall, but rather a big open area. The oiled wood floors creaked when you walked over them and large wooden staircases lead to the upper floor where the third and fourth grade classrooms were located. The stair steps bowed in the middle from the many years of student traffic.

Our first grade classroom was toward the front of the building, on the northwest side. There was a narrow cloakroom [aka coatroom] adjacent to our classroom, where we stored our coats, galoshes, and other winter gear. The girls wore dresses to school back then and in the winter we wore slacks under them to keep our legs warm. The slacks were often made of corduroy and we usually did not wear them when we were in class. I see that Sue Wolfe was wearing her plaid slacks in our second grade photo.

The photos reminded me that we tied our tennis shoes together and hung them from our desks. Nobody wore tennis shoes to school back then but we had to wear them on the gymnasium floor at gym time. We usually wore saddle shoes to school.

We had to crawl under our desk when we had a tornado drill. That was a tight squeeze.

We must have been doing our reading in Mrs. Clouse’s class because we all had our books open to the very same page. There are a number of toys in the photos, but I don’t remember playing with toys at school.

I did well in school but Mrs. Clouse gave me an S- in Attitude a couple times because she thought I talked too much. Imagine that! Me talking too much! Actually she should have known better than to put me in the back of the class, right across from Susie Brandt. Susie and I went to church together and we always had a lot to talk about. It was really hard to keep from talking.

Most of the kids in my first grade class were from Willshire or the area nearby, but a few of us were from the Chatt area. I notice that Mrs. Clouse put the Chatt kids together in the back of the room–Dave Stephenson, Cheryl Gilliland, and Donna Behm are back there with me. The other Chatt kids were in Mrs. Fisher’s class. There are eight Chatt-area students in the second grade photo: Carol Andrews, Nelda Leistner, Carla Hoblet, Cheryl Gilliland, Dave Stephenson, Debbie Carr, Donna Behm, and me. And of course Mrs. Schroeder lived right in downtown Chatt.

These are the only two classroom photos I have and I wish I had more. Maybe they only took them these two years. Someone probably has one from Mrs. Fisher’s first grade, 1958-59.

The old school building at Willshire was torn down in 2006. It would be interesting to walk through it again.

Names of the students in the photos:

First Grade, Willshire School, 1958-59, Mrs. Opal Clouse, teacher:
Row 1: Jim Huffine, Doug Carr, Dayle Hileman
Row 2: Chuck Myers, John Ridenour, Tamara Dellinger, Lana Lautzenheiser, Donna Behm
Row 3: Kenny Baylog, Chuck Painter, Darla Ross, Dave Stephenson, Cheryl Gilliland, Susie Brandt
Row 4: Joyce Webb, Nancy Stetler, Ray Gamble, Colette Geisler, Karen Miller
At the back: Mrs. Opal Clouse

Second Grade, 1959-60, Mrs. Marcella Schroeder, teacher:
Row 1: Karen Miller, Dave Stephenson, Darla Ross, Debbie Carr, Linda Duff, Donna Behm
Row 2: Sue Wolfe, Nancy Stetler, Bill Bates, Cheryl Gilliland, Chuck Painter, Joyce Webb, Gary Hamrick, Joyce Roehm
Row 3: Tamara Dellinger, Kenny Carmean, Sherry Hey, Doug Carr, Paula Clouse, Jim Huffine, Ray Gamble, Lana Lautzenheiser, Kenny Baylog
Row 4: Carol Andrews, Lynn Lough, Nelda Leistner, Chuck Myers, John Ridenour, Dayle Hileman, Jim Stuckey, Helen Boring
At the back of the room: Carla Hoblet, Mrs. Schroeder, Terry Harmon, Colette Geisler
To the left: Gary Moser, Charles Putman, Brent Whitacre, Susie Brandt, Steve Sipe

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