I'll admit it. Oftentimes, as I've perused the old county atlas books, I've been somewhat envious of the beautiful engravings of family farms within their pages. I always thought it would be "neat" to have one of my families included but they just weren't there, at least not in the books I've looked at! Several years ago, my uncle gave me some of the pictures and other papers that he had gotten when his mother (my grandmother) died. There were pictures I had never seen before, at least not that I remember having seen before. Among them, the image below, which shows the residence of John Brubaker, my 3rd great grandfather.
Yellow and faded, securely attached to a piece of heavy cardboard, it just barely fit on the flatbed scanner. How and when did my grandmother come into possession of this picture? Well, that's a good question. In that box from my uncle, there were also some pictures of Thornton Brubaker and his family as well as several of the children of Samuel Brubaker. They were John's sons and half-brothers of my 2nd great-grandfather, William Brubaker. My guess would be that whomever gave her those pictures also gave her the picture of John's residence. Wherever she got them, I'm sure glad she kept them!
I've seen the "Combination Atlas Map of Huntington County, Indiana" published in 1879, but I don't recall seeing this image in it. Yesterday, I decided to see what other atlases had been published in the late 1880s. The first thing that came up on Google search was a hit on the David Rumsey Collection! Turns out, the image above was printed on page 125 (center of page, left side) of the "Illustrated Historical Atlas of the State of Indiana" which was published by Baskin, Forster & Co., Chicago, 1876. Engraved & Printed by Chas. Shober & Co. Props. of Chicago Lithographing Co.
What is great about it being in the David Rumsey Collection is that you can zoom in and enlarge the pages. The detail in the images on the Rumsey site is incredible. A map of Huntington County is on page 66 of the atlas. The "homepage" of the atlas shows that there are 187 images covering all 92 counties of the state.
Thanks to an unknown benefactor many years ago, my grandmother, and my uncle, I have a very nice piece of my family history. One of these days I'm going to make the trip to Huntington County (it's only about a 40 minute drive) and see if I can find his farm. I doubt that the house is still standing, but it's possible...