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Jul 14

Farmers Mutual Aid Association of Van Wert County

I am still finding interesting items with some good information in places that I haven’t had the time to go through yet.

The other day I was unpacking some old books that belonged to my great-grandfather Louis J. Schumm and his son Cornelius, my grandfather. Most of these books were old and were written in German and I was sure to look inside the covers to see if anyone had handwritten anything.

Louis Schumm wrote his name and the date 1890 in one old German book. But better yet, when I opened the book about a half dozen postcards fell out. These were not picture postcards but they had a lot of printing on them. I almost didn’t take the time to look at them closely but I am sure glad I did.

They were all from the Farmers Mutual Aid Association of Van Wert County, of which my great-grandfather Louis J. Schumm was a member. This Van Wert association was incorporated and commenced business in 1879. [1]

1889 Farmers Mutual Aid Association of Van Wert County assessment for Louis J Schumm

Apparently the association sent out postcards to their members periodically, after a member had sustained a loss or damage to property. Members were then assessed a certain amount, probably enough to cover the loss.

Most of the claims were from Van Wert County but a few were from Mercer County. A couple cards mentioned Liberty Township but did not specify which county, since both Van Wert and Mercer Counties both have a Liberty Township in them.

Below is what the four oldest cards have printed on them. Perhaps you will recognize some of the names.

The oldest postcard was from Leslie, Ohio, postmarked September 1889, addressed to Mr. Louis J. Schumm, Willshire, Ohio:

Office of the Farmers Mutual Aid Association of Van Wert County, Ohio
Leslie, O, Sept 30, 1889
Mr. Louis J. Schumm
Your assessment for a loss of $400 sustained by Henry Nickel, of Liberty Township, Sept. 21st, is five cents on each hundred dollars of risk.
Said assessment is due Nov. 30, 1889. You will please pay promptly to Henry Germann, Jr, or your agent. Present this card to treasurer or agent when payment is made.
Policy No. 558; Amount of Policy $17.00; Amount Due 85 cents
Policy No. 785, Amount of Policy $6.25, Amount Due 31 cents
Total due $1.16
C.F. Germann, Secretary
Received Payment, in full, [signed] Fred Lillich

1889 Farmers Mutual Aid Association of Van Wert County assessment for Louis J Schumm

Postmarked Glenmore, Ohio, 21 September 1892:
The Office of the Farmers Mutual Aid Association of Van Wert County, Ohio
Glenmore, O, 3 Sep 1892
Mr. L.J. Schumm
Your assessment for a loss of $350, sustained by Clark Glenn, of Harrison Township, Aug. 30th, is three and one-fourth cents on each hundred dollars of risk.
Said assessment is due Nov. 1st, 1892. You will please pay promptly to Henry Germann Jr, Treasurer, or your agent. Present this card to treasurer or agent when payment is made.
Policy No. 1190; Amount of Policy $2873; Amount Due 94 cents
C.F. Germann, Secretary
Received Payment, [signed] H.G. Schumm

September 1892 Farmers Mutual Aid Association of Van Wert County assessment for Louis J Schumm

Postmarked Glenmore, O, 28 October 1892:
Office of the Farmers Mutual Aid Association of Van Wert County, Ohio
Glenmore, O, 5 October 1892
Mr. Louis J. Schumm
Your assessment for a loss of $900 sustained by Oliver Putman, of Black Creek Township, Mercer County, Ohio, Sept. 29, 1892, is eight cents on each hundred dollars of risk.
Said assessment is due Dec. 1st, 1892. You will please pay promptly to Henry Germann, Jr, Treasurer, or your agent. Present this card to treasurer or agent when payment is made.
Policy No. 1190; Amount of Policy $2873; Amount Due $2.30
C.F. Germann, Secretary
Received Payment, [signed] H.G. Schumm

October 1892 Farmers Mutual Aid Association of Van Wert County assessment for Louis J Schumm

Postmarked Frances, Ohio, August 1893
Office of the Farmers Mutual Aid Association of Van Wert County, Ohio
Frances, O, July 31, 1893
Mr. L.J. Schumm
You will please take notice that W.R. Owens of York Township, Van Wert County, Ohio, sustained a loss of $1022 on barn and contents, July 12, 1893.
Also that Jacob Germann, Jr, of Harrison Township, Van Wert County, Ohio, sustained a loss of $618.50 on barn and contents July 15th, 1893.
To cover said losses you are assesses 14 cents on each Hundred Dollars of risk.
The assessment is due September 19th, 1893. You will please pay promptly to the Treasurer or your Agent.
The Treasurer, H. Germann, Jr., will receive assessments in the County Treasurer’s Office on Saturdays, September 2nd, 9th, and 16th
Policy No. 1190; Amount of Policy $2873; Amount Due $4.02
C.F. Germann, Secretary
Received Payment, [signed] H.G. Schumm

July 1893 Farmers Mutual Aid Association of Van Wert County assessment for Louis J Schumm

The last two postcards have quite a few claims listed on each of them and they give more information about the losses. I will post them next week. Perhaps you will see a claim listed by one of your ancestors.

 

[1] Ohio Insurance Department of All Companies Transacting the Business of Fire, Marine, Casualty, Fidelity, Surety, Liability, and Credit Insurance Authorized To Do Business in Ohio, A.I. Vorys, Superintendent of Insurance, (Springfield Ohio Publishing Co, State Printers, 1906); Google Books.com.

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