Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Doing the Happy Dance. . .

You can't see me, but I've been doing the "happy dance" since about 3 p.m. this afternoon. I found the obituary for Eliza Jane Wise Hoffman. . . her parents are Peter and Christine Wise, and Eliza was one of 12 children, and she was born in Wayne County, Ohio. This confirms my presumptions about her parents, though it doesn't conclusively prove that they are also the parents of my 3rd great grandfather Jacob Wise, but Grandma's note gives it credence. Eliza's obituary also gives me the name of another sister, the only one living at the time of her death - Mrs. Ella Mohler in Kansas.

This morning I decided to go to the Roann Paw Paw Township Public Library in Wabash County. They don't open until 1 p.m. on Tuesday so I didn't leave until about 11:30. I stopped at the Roann Community Cemetery (formerly the I. O. O. F. Cemetery) a mile north of town to photograph the gravemarkers of Eliza Wise Hoffman and her family members buried there. Then to the library. The main reason for going was to get obituaries though they did have some other resources that I checked.

The library has the Roann Clarion newspaper on microfilm for the years 1902 through mid-1942 but the microfilm reader is just that, a reader. No printer. The lady that took me to their local history room said they get maybe 1 or 2 requests per year for copies of articles so they can't justify the cost of a microfilm printer. The light bulb on the reader needs replaced, it was difficult to read the film, but that's okay, I found four obituaries. Abstracted three of them and transcribed one.

The Wabash Library has newspapers on microfilm so it is possible that these obits and the others I want can be found there. But that will have to wait for another day. By the time I finished looking at the microfilm the fog had thickened and then it started to rain. Rather than go on to Wabash and then having to drive home in the dark and fog and rain, I went to the Gilead cemetery instead. It was only a couple miles northwest of Roann. That is where Peter Wise and his wife Christina are buried. It was only misting a bit when I got to Gilead but a few minutes later it let loose. Needless to say I got wet. But I also got my tombstone pictures!

The Roann Clarion, Wabash County, Indiana
Friday, November 5, 1920 page 1 column 2

Miss Eliza Jane Hoffman, widow of Anthony Wayne Hoffman, died Tuesday morning Nov. 2 at 10:30 at the home of her daughter Mrs. Effie Wertenberger 2 ½ miles northwest of Roann after a long illness from a complication of disease. Age: 78 years.

Eliza Jane Wise, daughter of Peter and Christine Wise, was born May 11, 1842 in Wayne Co. Ohio where she lived until 12 years old when she came with her parents and located in Miami Co. near Gilead living there until her marriage to A. N. [sic] Hoffman in 1860. Began house keeping in Gilead. Lived here until 1871 when they moved on a farm 1 ½ miles North West of Roann living there for a number of years when they moved to Roann. She has made her home with her daughter for a number of years. She was one of a family of 12 children, the youngest sister, Mrs. Ella Mohler living in Kansas is the only one living.

There were 5 children, 4 girls 1 boy, of these Mrs. Minnie Fheke [sic] near Ashland Ohio, Dayton of North Manchester and Effie Wertenberger remain to mourn her loss. She was a member of the Church of God. Funeral at the home Thursday 1:30 burial I. O. O. F.

6 comments:

  1. Becky, I can't let you do your genealogy happy dance all alone! Consider me as joining you, and congratulations! It's always great to find a helpful obituary!

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  2. Becky, congratulations on your finds! I wish I could have been out tromping around with you in cemeteries today instead of being cooped up in the office! It sounds like you had a very productive day!

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  3. Becky - I am groovin' and moovin' with ya!

    It is a shame that the library's family history resources aren't better utilized. Any chance that there is a project underway to digitize these obits?

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  4. Congratulations on your find Becky! I'm a bit surprised that you didn't photograph the microfilm image with your camera. I haven't printed a microfilm record in years. I just photograph them with my digital camera. Even if the image is poor because of a poor light bulb in the machine (at my local FCH there's no other kind!) you'd be surprised at how much you can improve the image with editing software like Picasa (free from Google). Take your camera along next time you go to the library. I think you'll be pleased with the results.

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  5. What a wonderful find! I am really happy for you, that is truly a supreme pleasure finding something like that.

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  6. Miriam - thanks for joining in on the happy dance, it's always more fun when there's more than one.

    Steve - It was cold and wet at the cemetery, but I didn't mind! It would have been nice to have some company though, you're welcome to come along anytime.

    Thomas - I don't imagine there are any plans to digitize the obits at the Roann Library. Especially if they only get one or two requests a year. The Wabash County Gen Society is pretty active with copying obits from the Wabash papers, maybe they will get to Roann some day.

    Jasia - I've not had much success with taking pictures of microfilm images, but I haven't tried it with the new camera. I'm sure I'll be going back that way in the next couple of months so I'll give it a try. I've still got those 100 obits to get at the Elkhart Library so I'm thinking I might try your way at that time.

    Lidian - Yes, it definitely was a supreme pleasure. It doesn't get much better than that!

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