Oct 07

Tombstone Tuesday–Dorothy Mae Linn

Linn, Dorothy Mae, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2011 photo by Karen)

Linn, Dorothy Mae, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2011 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of Dorothy Mae Linn, located in row 8 of Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

At Rest
Dorothy M. Linn

Dorothy Mae Linn was born 18 August 1927 to Edward H. and Margaret (Laderman) Linn. She was baptized at Zion on 17 September 1927, with Eda Linn and Arvida Bollenbacher as her sponsors.

Dorothy Mae Linn died 7 January 1929, at the age of 1 year, 4 months, and 2 days. She was buried on the 10th and was survived by her parents.

According to the church records her cause of death was spasms brought on by the flu.

Oct 03

Marathon Madness

Neither the Millers nor the Bennetts are known for their long (or short) distance running ability. Even though a few of my cousins have run marathons and other races, most of us are just not built for running.

That is why we are so proud of our son Jeff. who ran and completed his fifth marathon last weekend. His latest 26.2 mile run was at the first ever Grand Lake Marathon, right here in Celina, and was the first marathon he has run in five years.

Jeff never ran in high school. Instead, he was an offensive lineman on Celina’s football team. He took up running when he was in college and his goal from the beginning was to run the Boston Marathon. But first he had to qualify for the Boston Marathon. He qualified in 2008 and accomplished his Boston Marathon goal in 2009.

Jeff with Boston Marathon medal, 2009.

Jeff with Boston Marathon medal, 2009.

We have been to each marathon Jeff has run, there to support him and cheer him on. And we sure enjoyed that trip to Boston!

Below is a rundown of Jeff’s marathons along with some of my recollections:

October 2007, Nationwide Better Health Columbus Marathon. TIME: 3:49.
This was Jeff’s first marathon. We started out very early that morning and dropped Jeff off as close as we could to the start of the race. We drove off and found a parking lot to park Jeff’s VW Jetta.

Joe and I have been driving for more years than we like to admit and we have driven many types of cars, but try as we might, we could not get his keys out of the ignition. We looked for a release button. Joe tried moving the shifter. I looked through the owner’s manual. But the keys would not come out. I even called VW support on my cell phone. Support was not helpful at all and I had the feeling they thought we were trying to steal the car. We didn’t want to miss the marathon but we could not leave the car in the lot with the keys in the ignition. Finally, after jiggling and shaking the steering wheel, the keys came out. (We later learned from Jeff that the steering column sometimes locks up and won’t release the keys. He couldn’t have warned us about that before??)

Jeff finished the race just fine but was chilling afterward, possibly from dehydration. On the way home he insisted we turn the car heat up as high as it would go, with the fan going full blast. It was so hot in that car! He was chilling in the back while were sweating up front.

He needed to run the race in 3:10 or less to qualify for the Boston Marathon. Unfortunately he did not qualify in 2007, but there was next year.

2007 Columbus Marathon

2007 Columbus Marathon

October 2008, Nationwide Better Health Columbus Marathon. TIME: 3:08.
This time Jeff did qualify for Boston, needing a time of 3:10 or less to qualify. It was a very good run for him.

Jeff says that it helps immensely when people are there to cheer the runners on. At Columbus there are people cheering, bands playing, and other entertainment all along the race course. The whole event is very festive. We got to see Jeff run by several times by planning our route and cutting across streets and alleys.

2008 Columbus Marathon. Jeff qualifies for the Boston Marathon!

2008 Columbus Marathon. Jeff qualifies for the Boston Marathon!

April 2009, Boston Marathon, TIME: 3:33.
He made it! Jeff had qualified and was going to run in the Boston Marathon. We went sight-seeing for a day and a half and had the best time. Some of Jeff’s friends even traveled to Boston to take Jeff to a Red Sox game for his birthday and to cheer him on during his run. We all loved Boston! (The cemeteries were my favorite.)

On race day Jeff had to get up in the middle of the night to take the subway and train to the Boston Commons, where he got on a bus that took him to Hopkinton, where the race started. He said it was a rough course but he was encouraged by all the people cheering along the way. Afterward, runners were allowed to ride the train and subway for free and many people stopped to congratulate him and give him a pat on the back. The people of Boston were great.

Jeff finishes the Boston Marathon in 2009.

Jeff finishes the Boston Marathon in 2009.

September 2009, Air Force Marathon, Wright Patterson, Dayton; TIME: 3:30.
We should have left the hotel earlier that morning. When we turned onto the Air Force Base there was a long line of traffic. S L O W moving, stop and go traffic. There were car taillights ahead of us as far as the eye could see. And Jeff needed to get to the starting line ASAP. We got as close as we could to the parking area but time was running out. Jeff dashed out of the car and had to run a long, long way just to get to the start line. Nothing like a little sprint before the marathon even starts.

That day turned out to be hot. (I have learned that runners prefer to run in cool temps.) Parts of the course ran through restricted areas of the base and spectators were not allowed to cheer the runners on in those areas. Jeff recalls that it was lonesome and monotonous in those areas.

2009 Air Force Marathon.

2009 Air Force Marathon.

27 September 2014, Inaugural Grand Lake Marathon, Celina. TIME: 3:59.
Jeff enjoyed running in his home county and running by the lake. It started out cool but warmed up quite a bit by late morning. He appreciated the cheering people and the signs along the way and noticed there are a lot of corn fields in Mercer and Auglaize Counties.

2014 Grand Lake Marathon

2014 Grand Lake Marathon

I also want to congratulate Jeff’s wife Erin, who ran the Grand Lake 10K last Saturday, pushing Chloe in a stroller. They finished in 1:10. Way to go Erin and Chloe! This was Chloe’s first run since she was born, but Chloe was in a race before she was even born, when Erin and Jeff ran the Relay Around Columbus in June 2013.

Erin and Chloe finishing 10K, Grand Lake Marathon, 2014.

Erin and Chloe finishing 10K, Grand Lake Marathon, 2014.

Congrats to Jeff and Erin! We are proud of you both. Jeff said this may be his last marathon. We’ll just have to wait and see.

And kudos to all runners everywhere. Your long hours of training, your determination, endurance, and pain have been rewarded with your individual victories.




Sep 30

Tombstone Tuesday–Edward H. & Margaret E. (Laderman) Linn

Edward H & Margaret E Linn, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2011 photo by Karen)

Edward H & Margaret E Linn, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Mercer County, Ohio. (2011 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of Edward H. and Margaret E. (Laderman) Linn, located in row 5 of Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

Margaret E.
Apr 10, 1907-Oct. 1, 1997
Edward H.
Jan 30, 1899-May 14, 1972

Margaretha Elisabeth Laderman was born 10 April 1907 in Geneva, Indiana, the second child born to William and Mary (Schott) Laderman. She was baptized at Zion Chatt on 12 May 1907, with Michael and Margaretha Schott as her sponsors. [1]

When Margaret was only 11 years old her mother died and she was raised by her aunt and uncle, Maggie and Otto Bollenbacher. Maggie (Laderman) Bollenbacher was her mother’s sister.

Edward H. Linn was born 30 January 1899 in Chattanooga, Liberty Township, Mercer County, the son of Henry and Margaret (Deitsch) Linn. [2]

According to Zion’s records, Edward Linn, of Celina, age 26, married Margaret Laderman, of Adams County, Indiana, age 18, on 3 October 1925. Witnesses to the marriage were Henry and Clara Klopfleisch.

Edward and Margaret Linn had the following children:
Dorothy Mae (1927-1929)
Mary Evelyn (1930- ) married Eugene Dieringer
Virginia Ruth (1932- ) married Ronald Brewer
Martha Jane (1934- ) married James Fisher

Margaret Linn
Margaret E. Linn, 90, of Celina, died Wednesday, Oct. 1, 1997, at Shane Hill Nursing Home, Rockford.
She was born April 10, 1907, in Geneva, Ind., to William and Mary (Schott) Laderman. On October 3, 1925, she married Edward Linn, who died May 14, 1972.

Survivors are three daughters and their husbands, Mary Evelyn and Gene Dieringer and Virginia and Ron Brewer, all of Celina, and Martha and Jim Fisher, Rockford; a sister, Josephine Chapman, Fort Wayne, Ind.; 12 grandchildren and 24 great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by a daughter, a brother, two sisters, and Otto and Maggie Bollenbacher, with whom she lived from age 10 following her mother’s death.

She was employed at Mersman Brothers Furniture Factory, a cook at Celina High School cafeteria, a clerk at Benny’s Bakery and clerk at Goldstein’s Department Store, all of Celina. She was a member of St. John Lutheran Church, Celina, and its Hope Circle, and Mercer County Council on Aging.

Funeral services were held Sunday, Oct. 5, at the church with Rev. Douglas Meyer officiating. Burial was in Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga. [3]

Edward and Margaret are buried next to Mary C. (Schott) Laderman, Margaret’s mother.


[1] Zion Chatt’s records indicate Margaret was born in 1906, but all other records indicate she was born in 1907. I believe the 1906 date was written by the minister in error.
[2] “Ohio, County Births, 1841-2003,” index and images, FamilySearch (www.familysearch.org : accessed 28 September 2014), Edward H. Linn, 30 January 1899; citing Liberty Tp., Mercer Co., Ohio; FHL microfilm 2367097.
[3]The Photo Star, Willshire, Ohio, 22 October 1997, p.3.

Sep 26

The Schumm Sawmill

The little village of Schumm once had a thriving sawmill that cut and processed some of the largest trees in Ohio at the time, and possibly ever. From the early 1920s through the 1950s they shipped their high-quality lumber all over the country. They specialized in hardwood and long timber.

They weren’t kidding when they said long timber.

The sawmill at Schumm was located east of Schumm Road, on a little “street” that was parallel to and south of the railroad track. The Nickel Plate Railroad used to run through and stop at Schumm years ago.


Schumm Sawmill, c1924.

Schumm Sawmill, c1924.


The sawmill was owned by W.P. Robinson, Decatur, and Fred Smith, Van Wert, and was named after Robinson.

Below is a photo of the largest bur oak tree ever sawed in Ohio. At least in 1934. Written on the door of the truck: W.P. Robinson Co., Manufacturers, Hardwood Lumber & Long Timber, Schumm, Ohio, Van Wert Co.

W.P. Robinson Co. with largest bur oak sawed in Ohio, 1934.

W.P. Robinson Co. with largest bur oak sawed in Ohio, 1934.

A History of a Bur Oak Tree
A feature of outstanding interest at the recent Van Wert County Fair at Van Wert, Ohio, was a large bur oak tree butt displayed on a GMC log truck and trailer by W.P. Robinson Co., manufacturers of hardwood lumber and long timbers at Schumm, Ohio, on Nickel Plate RR. This tree, along with other smaller oak in the same woods, were bought and cut down by this company and the T.W. Hinkle of Rockford, Ohio, has 2 circular cuts from the stump and writes the following interesting history:

Eighteen years before Columbus discovered America and 46 years before the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, a bur oak seedling started to grow in the uncharted primeval forest now defined as Logan County, Ohio, on the old Garwood Farm, 12 miles northeast of Bellefontaine, Ohio, and now owned by T.F. Selck. In 1474 this little tree started from an acorn and for 460 years it grew, its history being plainly told by the rings in the stump of this venerable forest monarch, which was felled on 16 August 1934. This tree was seven feet in diameter at the ground, its branches towering aloft 160 feet, and at a height of 65 feet, 2 large branches were put out, having a spread of 85 feet. These branches were 36 feet long and from them spread 14 large limbs. Around this oak were 100 ridges of bark, some 3 and 4 inches thick and 13 spur roots. A check of the rings showed that the tree made the largest growth in 1600 and 1754 and apparently was struck by lightning in 1904. The body of this tree was cut into 4 logs that scaled 7,000 feet of lumber and 3,500 feet in the tops, with a total weight of over 63 tons.

This firm operates a heavy and up-to–date sawmill at Schumm, Van Wert County, Ohio, specializing in Indiana and Ohio white oak lumber and long timbers for a high class trade in many parts of the United States. [1]

Below is another photo of a bur oak tree that was cut and hauled by lumbermen from Schumm. This tree was felled in Auglaize County in 1930.

Bur Oak from Auglaize County, Ohio, 1930.

Bur Oak from Auglaize County, Ohio, 1930.

Carl Weinman, son of Schumm postmaster George Weinman, worked at the Schumm sawmill. He is the third from the left, standing in the photo below.

W.P. Robinson Co. truck, Schumm, Ohio. Carl Weinman 3rd from left. Photo courtesy of Tom Reichard.

W.P. Robinson Co. truck, Schumm, Ohio. Carl Weinman 3rd from left. Photo courtesy of Tom Reichard, Carl’s grandson.

Carl Weinman by lumber. Photo courtesy of Tom Reichard, Carl's grandson.

Carl Weinman by lumber. Photo courtesy of Tom Reichard.

Robinson and Smith probably employed quite a few other local men. In addition to Carl Weinman, my mom recalls that Roy Painter worked there in the 1940s.

Saw-Mill at Schumm Dissolves Partnership
The firm of W.P. Robinson Co. of Schumm, a partnership of W.P Robinson of Decatur, Ind., and Fred A. Smith of Van Wert, announces a dissolution of partnership after 30 years together.

Mr. Smith has purchased Mr. Robinson’s half interest of the saw-mill and lumber business and will continue under the name “Fred A. Smith Lumber Co.” Being sole owner, Mr. Smith solicits your continued patronage and hopes to carry on the business, serving his many customers and friends in the same manner as in the past.

The mill caters to a large farm retail trade in Van Wert and adjoining Indiana and Ohio counties within 40 miles and buy timber and truck logs within a 150-mile radius and ship to many points.

J.E. Anderson will continue as office manager and accountant and Ben. H. Handwerk as mill and woods foreman, sawyer and millwright.

Fred A. Smith lived many years at Schumm. The past 42 years he and his family have resided at 729 Elsen Ave. in Van Wert. He is a member of the Ohio Forestry Ass’n, Indiana Hardwood Lumbermen’s Ass’n and National Hardwood Lumber Ass’n and has a wide acquaintance.

Mr. Robinson has operated saw-mills at Decatur and Van Buren, Ind., and has been buying timber and in the lumber business the past 55 years. He is one of the best authorities on timber quality and values along with manufacturing of hardwood lumber and long oak timbers in Indiana and Ohio. [2]

It is interesting to note that the Schumms were known for their woodworking and carpentry skills, so it is no surprise that a sawmill with such capabilities, and with such a good reputation, once operated in the Schumm area.


[1] American Lumberman, 9 October 1934.

[2] The Willshire Herald, Willshire, Ohio, 15 January 1953, p.1.



Sep 23

Tombstone Tuesday–Florence E. Laderman

Florence E. Laderman, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. (2011 photo by Karen)

Florence E. Laderman, Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. (2011 photo by Karen)

This is the tombstone of Florence Estella Laderman, located in row 8 of Zion Lutheran Cemetery, Chattanooga, Mercer County, Ohio. The marker is inscribed:

Florence E.

Florence Estella Laderman was born 19 March 1909 to William and Maria (Schott) Laderman. She was baptized at Zion Chatt on 11 April 1909, with Lora and Maggie Schott as her sponsors.

Florence died 13 August 1910, at the age of 1 year, 5 months, and 24 days. She was buried on the 15th. According to the church records survivors included W. and M. Laderman.

From previous research I know Florence was also survived by a brother and sister, Paul Edward and Margaret Elizabeth. Another sister, Josephine Wilma, was born about three weeks after Florence’s death.

Florence’s cause of death was “summer complaint.” That was a term used for a severe GI infection, mainly diarrhea, that usually occurred in infants and children in the summertime, and was sometimes caused by spoiled milk.

Florence’s date of birth, shown in her church baptismal record as 19 March 1909, disagrees with her calculated date of birth, calculated from her age at death in her church burial record. Her birth date would be 20 February 1909, if calculated from her age given at her time of death.

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