Friday, October 21, 2016

A Few Words About the Walkers

After reposting my piece on the 20th Century Callin Clan, I wanted to take some time to share what I've learned about the parents and siblings of Amanda Walker Callin since that piece was originally written. Strictly speaking, this extended Walker family isn't part of the Callin Family History, but they have presented several tough puzzles and brick walls over the years, and I wanted to document what I know for sure.

William Walker was born on 24 July 1833 in Ithaca, Tompkins county, New York. He died on 27 December 1915 in Perrysburg, Wood county, Ohio. He was known in Webster township as "Yankee Walker," according to one obituary. He farmed and had raised his family in Scotch Ridge, and was buried in the Webster Township Cemetery there. Here is a detailed obituary I found in the Perrysburg Journal:
Found on

He married Lydia Bowen in Fairfield, Huron county, Ohio, on 13 May 1856 (note the erasure of her identity from the obituary), and we find their young family in the 1860 U.S. Federal Census living in Webster township, Wood county, Ohio - the post office listed is Scotch Ridge.

There are three people listed who ought to give us important clues to identifying the parents of both William and Lydia:

Household members:
Name Age
William Walker 32
Lydia A Walker 28
Lydia A Walker 3
Martina Walker 2
William Walker 1
Adelade Bowin 14
Elizabeth Walker 60
Jesse Walker 21

This 1860 record has a few details wrong - this is the only record I've found that puts William's birthday around 1828 instead of 1833 - but it is definitely our William Walker. The 3-year-old "Lydia A" is our Amanda (referred to as "Mrs. Mandy Collin of Elyria" in his obituary), and Martina and William (age 1) match her two eldest siblings. While the 1860 Census does not identify relationships the way more recent Censuses do, Elizabeth Walker (60) is most likely William's mother, and Jesse Walker (21) could be a brother or nephew.

Looking at the 1840 Census for Ithaca, there is a Richard Walker listed who had two sons between the ages of 5 and 9; they could well be William and Jesse There are also three other Walker men listed in Tompkins county, all living in Lansing: Edward, James, and William. Each of them have sons who could plausibly be our William Walker. The 1850 Census does not seem to have any records that would tie the 1860 Walker family to anyone in the 1840, and I have not found anything that indicates when Elizabeth Walker might have died.

Jesse Walker, though, left a lot of records behind. He enlisted in the Union Army on 1 July 1863, in Webster, Wood county, Ohio. According to his Veteran's Headstone application, he reached the rank of Sergeant. After the war, he married Anna Samantha Fox (1844–1918), and they established a farm in Swan Creek, Fulton county, Ohio. They raised five sons and three daughters, and in the early 1900s, they relocated to Michigan. Annie and Jesse each died in Coldwater, Branch county, Michigan. Jesse died on 25 March 1925 and was buried in Oak Grove Cemetery. His death record (which puts his birthday on 13 March 1838) does not name his mother, and only gives his father's surname.

Lydia A. Bowen (1828-1879) leaves almost as many questions as her husband. A lovely Ancestry user uploaded a scan of their 1856 marriage certificate, which confirms the date and location - Huron county, Ohio - and based on that, I think we can safely identify her in the Bowen family listed in Fairfield, Huron county, on the 1850 Census:

Household members:
Name Age
William Bowen 67
Mary Bowen 62
John Bowen 25
Lidia Bowen 23
Edward Bowen 18
Edwin Ball 26

Clearly, Lydia would have aged more than 5 years between 1850 and 1860, but that just tells us that the 1860 record has misstated her age, the way it misstated William Walker's age.

I have high confidence that the William (67) and Mary (62) Bowen listed here in 1850 are Lydia's parents, and her brothers are John (25) and Edward (18). I am slightly less confident that the same family is listed in Fairfield in the 1840 Census (the enumerator's handwriting could say "Brown"), but there are about six children listed in that record whose ages would accommodate John, Lidia, and Edward.

There is a Mary Bowen buried in the "Old" Cemetery in North Fairfield. The marker (pictured to the right) gives her date of death as August 2, 1863, and her age: 80y 6m 13d. The 1850 record approximates her birth in 1788 in New Jersey.

There are at least two men named William Bowen who have records in Ancestry's Wills & Probate database, but they died in Stark and Jackson counties, respectively, and neither will mentions people who match our Bowen family. Mary is listed in the 1860 Census, living with their son, Edward, and his wife and daughter in Fairfield, but William is not; I would expect to find a record of his death in the 1850s, but so far, no luck.

But, we still have the mystery of who Adelade Bowin might be. She is listed in the Walker household in 1860; she would seem not to be Lydia's sister - otherwise, she ought to have appeared in the 1850 record as a girl between the ages of 4 and 6. Unfortunately, none of the records for Adelaide or Adeline Bowen (or similar spellings) turn up any clues that match what we already know about the Bowen family.

The children of William and Lydia Bowen Walker

     I. Amanda Lydia Walker (1857–1933) married John Henry Callin, and you can learn more about their family in the previous post. I'll be posting about their descendants over the following weeks, too.

     II. Martina D. Walker (1858–1922) married Frank Springstead (1860–1935) on 14 May 1894; they divorced in 1910. They had two sons and a daughter. Martina lived in Quincy, Branch county, Michigan, but she died while in Missouri; she was probably there in February to prepare for the May wedding of her youngest son, Russell.

     III. William Riley Walker (1859–1925) married Amy Ann Grim (1868–1912) in 1888. They raised two sons and two daughters. After Amy's death in 1912, William went to live with his eldest daughter, Goldie, in Sherwood, Michigan, where he died in October 1925.

     IV. John Bowen Walker (1861–1937) married Amanda Warner (1860–1932) in 1884. They had four daughters, and were lifelong residents of Wood county.

     V. Mary Annette "Nettie" Walker (1862–??) married William J Dennis (1853–1928) in Monroe, Michigan, on 14 June 1881. They had four daughters and three sons over the next 15 years, mostly while living in Wood county. The family settled in Jackson, Paulding county, Ohio, around 1896, and remained there at least through 1910. In 1920, they were living in Detroit, Michigan. That is where William died in 1928.

     VI. James Perry Walker (1864–1954) married Anna Bell Keiser (1866–1932) in 1887, and they raised three sons and three daughters in Madison, Sandusky county, Ohio. Perry died in 1954, in Denver, Colorado; but he was buried back in Gibsonburg, Ohio, with Annabell.

     VII. Henry Franklin Walker (1867–1939) married Lottie Belle Younkin (1878–1937) in 1896, and they raised a daughter and a son in Bowling Green. They retired to Toledo, where they were living in 1930.

     VIII. Jane Alice (Algany) Walker (1868–1943) married William F Budd (1867–1922) in 1888, and they had 14 children over the following 24 years. In most of the records, she is referred to as "Jane," but "Algany" or "Algania" appear in the 1880 and 1910 Census records, respectively. Her 1943 Michigan death record gives her full name as "Jane Alice."

     IX. Emma E. Walker (1869–1947) married Oscar Fremont Kelly (1864–1946) in 1888, and they had seven children. Some time between 1915 and 1920, when she was approaching her 50th birthday, Emma was committed to the Toledo State Hospital, where she spent the remainder of her life.

After Lydia's death in 1879, William remarried in 1885. His second wife was Louisa Klinger (1843–1918), the widow of a Civil War veteran named Samuel T. Defrehn (1844–1876). Louisa had a daughter named Kittie (Catherine S.) Defrehn (1874-1925) would married Charles E. Muir in 1893. Louisa and William Walker also had a son.

     X. Herold Eugene Walker (1890–1966) married Nellie E Dennis (1893–1974) around 1917. (She does not seem to be related to William J Dennis, the husband of Herold's half-sister, Mary Annette Walker.) Herold and Nellie had three sons together, but at some point, Herold left the family in Toledo, and moved to Barnstable, Massachusetts. He was an artist, by occupation, and he settled in Provincetown by 1930, which is where he died in 1966.

 - -- --- -- - 

Thanks for sticking with me on this one! I hope it helps clear up some of your mysteries - and if you happen to be a Walker or Bowen researcher with more information, let me know!

Also, my DNA profile is on, if you're researching that way. I'm still pretty lost when it comes to navigating alleles and sequences, but I've got the paper trail!

Friday, October 14, 2016

The 20th Century Callin Clan

Amanda Walker, about 1873
(Since John Henry Callin is the next family member on our list, I'm reposting this earlier piece on his family. Enjoy!)

This is the story of one generation of one family; just a little more than one life span. It was a century that bridged centuries, saw three major wars, and took my family from the old frontier to a new one. It was one generation that multiplied two ancestors into many cousins... but enough poetry - let's get started!

My great-great grandmother Amanda Lydia Walker was born in 1857 on Scotch Ridge in Wood county, Ohio. Her father was born in New York around 1828, and there is some speculation that his parents were Scottish immigrants who arrived after the Revolution. In 1874, when she was 17 years old, she married 33-year-old schoolteacher and Civil War veteran John Henry Callin.

John was the oldest son of William Callin and Elizabeth Berlin (who we read about in November's "Silk or Satin" post). William was a prosperous farmer known in the county for his physical strength and his industriousness, but not for his education. John, however, was a good student who was accepted into the Western Reserve Normal School in Milan, Ohio, when he was 18.  Three years later, in 1861, he began teaching his first classes in Wood county, Ohio.

Of course, that April saw the start of hostilities between the states. If it is true that William's farm was a stop on the Underground Railroad, that may have contributed to the enthusiasm his sons showed for enlisting in the fight. John dismissed his students in the middle of their term, and enlisted in the 21st Battery of the Ohio Light Artillery. He acquitted himself well as a soldier, and was later credited with leading Detachment B during its deployment in West Virginia. He brought home notebooks full of poetry he wrote on the battlefield, including an account of his unit's part in halting Morgan's Raid. After his discharge at the close of the war, John attended a course at Hillsdale College in Michigan, and then returned to Wood county, where he taught school for 22 years.

John married a Lucy Patterson in October 1865, according to his pension records - it isn't clear whether she is any relation to the Captain Patterson who commanded John's unit during the war, or what happened to cut that relationship short. Needless to say, there isn't any mention of this first marriage in the biographical sketches of John in the Wood county history. At any rate, they do not seem to have had any children, and John was free to marry Amanda nine years after his wedding to Lucy.

John & Amanda Callin's family - c. 1892
John and Amanda's eldest son, Byron Herbert, was born in November of 1874 - the year they were married. The following year they had a daughter, Leota, who died in infancy. After a few years, they had another son - my great-grandfather, John Quincy, who was born in 1879. Then, starting in 1885, when John would have been 6 and Byron would have been almost 11, the rest of the children came along in quick succession - Emma, their only sister (1885), Prentice (1887), Welles (1889), and Ray (1890).

The family photo to the right shows the whole family from around 1892. Standing up in the back are Byron and John Q. Amanda is seated on the left with Prentice and Welles to her right and left; John H. is holding Ray and Emma is standing to the right.

B. H. Callin, May 1895
Byron was a precocious young man, and he seems to have decided to follow in his father's footsteps as an educator early on. By one account, he was given a teaching certificate by the county board of examiners at age 16. In 1894-5, he taught at the school in New Rochester, Ohio; then attended Berea College in Berea, Kentucky for a term; and he attended the 1895-6 winter term at Findlay College in Findlay, Ohio. On July 18, 1896, he married Fannie E., daughter of John and Eliza Muir of Scotch Ridge, Ohio.

John Q. Callin (right)
Bowling Green HS football
John Q. also grew up to become an educator, though he didn't make as many headlines as his older brother. John played the left halfback position on the Bowling Green High School football team, and broke his ankle during a play against the Perrysburg team - which made the local papers. (BGHS beat Perrysburg 35-0!) He graduated in May 1900, and was listed in the commencement program  as delivering an Oration, Unnoticed Heroes.

(Given that theme, he probably would have appreciated the idea of Mighty Acorns!)

At the Turn of the Century, the Callin family was coming of age. The family portrait below was likely taken in 1902, around the time John H. moved the family to Fostoria. Standing from left to right in back are Ray (12), John Q. (21), Emma (15), Welles (13), and Prentice (14). Seated in front are Byron (26, and living in Dayton by this point), John H., and Amanda.

I estimate that John H. retired from teaching around 1889 - at 49 years of age. He seems to have gone back to farming, and he became more active in the Grand Army of the Republic. Even though his pension records indicate that he was never commissioned by the Union, he was known in his community as "Colonel Callin", which was possibly his rank in the GAR. His mother, Elizabeth, was living in his home in Bowling Green when she died in 1903.

John & Amanda Callin's family - c. 1902
John Q. married Bertha Cramer in 1906, and their daughter, Yvonne, was born in May of 1907. They had two sons: John Norman, in 1912, and Robert (my grandpa Bob), in 1920. They stayed in Fostoria that whole time, presumably supported by John's teaching.

Byron’s marriage to Fannie Muir didn't last long. Records of their divorce have proven to be elusive, but in 1906 he surfaced in Baker, Montana where he married Ruby Cole. Their daughter Opal was the first of John H. and Amanda's grandchildren, and she was born in April 1907, in Minnesota.

During their courtship, Byron and Ruby were riding in a buggy, going on a hunting trip, when the horse became spooked and in the subsequent furor, the gun that he had in the front of the buggy discharged and struck him in the right side of his jaw. He carried a terrible scar on his face for the rest of his life - and in the portrait below, you will note that he keeps his right side turned away from the camera. According to Truman Matcham, a son of Emma Callin, the family was always suspicious of the story and felt there was more to it than Byron would admit.

Welles Monroe Callin was born on April 19, 1889 in Bowling Green, Ohio. He grew up there until 1902, when the family moved to Fostoria. Welles attended Fostoria High School where he was the captain of the Ohio State Championship football team in 1907.

Emma Beatrice, born July 8, 1885, married a man 41 years older than herself in 1907. George D. Matcham was widowed when his first wife, Marion Worcester, died the year before. They had been married since 1871, and had opened a 20-room cottage at Linwood, a resort town on Lake Erie, just a few years before. George and his first wife never had children, but in November 1908 he and Emma presented John and Amanda with their first grandson, George Jr. Since John H. is also said to have owned property at Linwood, it seems likely that his new son-in-law may have helped him get started in the business of building resort cottages.

Welles Monroe Callin, c. 1908
After his high school graduation on November 10, 1908, Welles married Lucy Patterson, daughter of a local Fostoria city councilman, George B. Stone. They eloped to Windsor, Ontario, Canada and moved to Detroit. Welles’ brother Prentice was living there also, and they may have moved in with him. This marriage didn't work out and they were divorced shortly thereafter; they had no children.

Welles and Prentice then seem to have left for Edmunds County, South Dakota where their brother Byron was living.  He held a number of degrees, including at least one in theology, and had been a traveling preacher for a time in South Dakota, as well as teaching school at nearly every level.
Prentice George Callin
Hattie Own

Byron and Ruby had a second daughter, Elda Geraldine, while living in South Dakota, then Byron moved the family to Plevna, Montana. Welles seems to have followed them, but Prentice returned to Ohio where he homesteaded a piece of property and married Hattie Owen in 1910.

It was around this time that Byron began calling himself “Herbert”, his middle name. Welles evidently thought this was quite elegant and is listed in the 1910 census as “Monroe Callin”, though nobody ever seemed to call him that. In Baker, Montana, he met Marion Elizabeth Silvernale, the daughter of Baker's blacksmith, Charles Silvernale. They eloped sometime in 1911. It was quite a scandal, and there was even an article in the local paper with the headline, “Where is Marion Silvernale?”

Her family was not exactly smitten with the idea of their little girl seeing a divorced man, but the couple settled in Whitefish, Montana where Welles went to work for The Great Northern Railroad. They had three boys, Cameron Welles (1912), Charles Silvernale (1913), and John Kenneth (1920).

In 1913, John Henry died at the age of 72. Ray was attending college at Gambier, Ohio (probably Kenyon College), and Amanda moved to Vermillion to live near the Matchams. In 1920 she and Ray were living in the home of a widow named Anna Sherod, where Amanda worked as a housekeeper. Welles was still in Montana with his young family, but it seems the rest of the boys gravitated to Middlefield in Otsego county, New York.

John and Prentice Callin
Byron and family were in Middlefield in 1915. Prentice was there, as well, with Hattie and their two boys, Owen (1911) and David (1914); both boys were born in Ohio, so they must have moved not long after David was born - and by 1917 they seemed to be back in Ohio. Byron and Ruby stayed in New York state through at least 1923 or 4, and had the last three of their children there: Perda Jane (1916), Elsie Permilia (1920), and John Elijah (1923).

After Congress passed the declaration that entered the U.S. into World War I in April 1917, 2.8 million men were drafted into the Army. John and Prentice seem to have enlisted (or at least registered for the draft), though it isn't clear whether they were in the U.S. Army or an Ohio unit. They were a bit older than the average recruit - Prentice was 30 and John was 38. It doesn't appear that they got far from home before hostilities ended in November 1918, which was surely welcome news to the rest of the family.

The good news was not to last. On September 21, 1921, one year and one day after the birth of his youngest boy, John K., Welles was on a short run from Troy to Libby, Montana. He was standing on the platform between the locomotive and the tender when a heavy coal rake, that was sticking out beyond the side of the locomotive, struck a trestle and knocked him off of the train and into the riverbed. He landed on his head and died instantly. He was 32 years old. He is buried in the Missoula Cemetery in Missoula, Montana.
Ray Callin, with
Mary Delcamp

John Q. and Bertha moved to Schenevus, New York (not far from Middlefield) around 1921, when Bobby was about six months old. John taught there for a few years before moving back to Ohio. In February 1923, George Matcham died of pneumonia, leaving Emma with five children - the youngest being three years old: George Jr. (1908), John Edward (1912), Marjorie (1915), Truman (1916), and Ruth Ellen (1920). Emma remarried five years later to Gus Heimsath, and the aging Amanda moved into their home in Oberlin. That same year, 1928, Ray married Mary Delcamp.

Byron Herbert "Prof"
Callin, 1923
Sometime after the birth of John Elijah, Byron and Ruby had moved back to South Dakota from New York. Truman Matcham later recalled that the family felt that the reason Prof moved so often may have been because he was “asked” to leave. He recalls that when he was young and the family was talking about Prof, the kids were told to go out and play. It seems that Prof had quite a liking for the ladies. Some time around 1930, Prof told Ruby that he was going to look for work. He never returned. She divorced him and raised the family alone.

At some point after this, Byron married again. Records about this union are sketchy. They had one child, Flora Ida, but this marriage also ended in divorce. He remarried and another daughter was born, Ella Margaret.

On November 30, 1933, in Alford, Florida Byron Callin was shot to death. There are several stories about what actually happened. One is that he had been repeatedly trespassing on his neighbor’s property. Another was that it was a land dispute with his in laws. His death certificate states “Gunshot inflicted homicidally”. His occupation is listed as “Farmer.” Flora made numerous attempts to look at the records of the incident, but the County of Jackson, Florida refused to allow her access. No arrests were made. The whole incident simply went away. He is buried in an unmarked grave in Alford.

Mercifully, Amanda did not live to see Prof's ignominious end. She died in February 1933 at Oberlin, and after that, the Callin family began to move out of Ohio more permanently.

John Q. and Bertha had moved back to Fostoria from New York by 1930, but they soon decided to move down to Florida, once again following Prof's lead. John tried his hand at building resort cottages around the growing town of Orlando, and they lived out their days in Winter Park. By then, Ray and Mary had moved to Florida, also, with their son, Glenn, who was born in 1936. Prentice stayed in Ohio until the mid-1950s before moving to San Diego with Hattie.

It was barely 100 years from when Amanda, a daughter of Ohio's pioneering settlers, was born in 1857 until the 1950s saw the dispersal of her children and grandchildren to the East and West Coasts - and John Q.'s death in 1956. They were teachers, preachers, soldiers, builders, and adventurers who saw America come through some of its most celebrated episodes; and their lives were bracketed by the end of the Civil War at one end, and the rise of the Civil Rights movement at the other.

And that's just one family.

Friday, October 7, 2016

The Sly Family in California

After just a few weeks, we have reached the last of the Sly family (and the end of my bad puns on their distinguished name). Today we'll look at the two youngest children of William and Harriet (Callin) Sly:

Eugene T. Sly was born on October 31, 1866, in Ohio. His father, William, was 40 and his mother, Harriet, was 28. He married Anna Barbara Gano (1871-1895) on December 25, 1888, in Ohio. Anna was born on November 20, 1871, in Wood County, Ohio, when her father, Charles M Gano (1831–1910), was 40 and her mother, Julia E Weigel (1842–1925), was 29.

Eugene and Anna had two children before Anna died on October 13, 1895, in Wood County, Ohio, at the tender age of 23. She was buried in Rudolph, Wood county, Ohio.

Eugene then married Lillian Mae Swindler (1878-1947) in 1897, when Lillian was 19. They had three children together in Bowling Green, where they lived until at least 1920. In the 1930s, the Sly family moved to Los Angeles. It is not clear whether all of these families moved at the same time or for the same reasons, but many of them end up on the west coast.

Lillie died in 1947, but I have not found a burial record for her. Eugene died on December 20, 1951, in Los Angeles, California, at the age of 85, and was buried in Inglewood, California.

     I. Julia H Sly (1889–1983) the daughter of Eugene and Anna Gano Sly grew up to marry Russell K Garnes (1889–1946) on 15 June 1909 in Plain City, Ohio. After living in Bowling Green, where their daughters were born, and then in Toledo for a time, this family was in Alameda county, California, by 1930.

       A. Della Leannah Garnes (1910–1988) married Floyd Hazen Gelvin (1912–1981) 31 March 1934. Floyd clerked for the railroad office, and later worked as an underwriter. Leannah raised their son. The family moved to Covina (later West Covina) about 1947.

     1. William Barton Gelvin (1937–1972) was married for only one year before his death at age 35. His wife remarried a few years later, and is still living.

       B. Martha Launita Garnes (1912–2005) married John James Hamilton (1911–1993) around 1939; they had one son, still living, and the family lived in Los Angeles, California. Records have been hard to find, but it would seem the couple did not stay together, as Launita remarried in 1976. Her second husband may still be living, as well. They lived in Pismo Beach in the 1980s, and when Launita died, she was living in Lake Havasu, Arizona.

     II. Clarence Jefferson "Jack" Sly (1893–1987) was the son of Eugene and Anna Gano Sly. He served with the Army Engineers in World War I and was a commander of two Seabee battalions in World War II, retiring with the rank of commander. For 35 years he maintained a consulting and structural engineering business in San Francisco. He was a past president of the San Francisco Architectural Club and former chairman of the San Francisco Building Industry Conference Board.

Jack married Dora Mae Morris (1896–1978) in California after the First World War, and they were together for nearly 60 years. They were survived by their two sons, 10 grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren.

       A. Clarence Jefferson Sly II (1920–2002) married when he was in his 60s, and his wife is still living. I believe he was an architect in the Bay Area, living in Oakland and San Francisco until his retirement. He settled in Baldwin City, Kansas, where he died at 82.

       B. William Thomas Sly Sr (1922–1999) who married Charlotte J Dudek (1922–1999) before enlisting in the U.S. Army and serving from 1943 through 1945. After the war, he was a civil engineer working in the San Francisco bay area, and living in Berkeley. They had three sons and two daughters, all but one of whom are still living.

     1. Clarence Jefferson "Jeff" Sly III (1954-1992) was the middle child of William and Charlotte, and was named after his uncle, Clarence II. He died at only 38 years of age. He was a resident of Riverside, California.

     III. Doris D. Sly (1898–1977) was the elder daughter of Eugene and Lillie Swindler Sly. She grew up in Bowling Green, and married George Earl Irwin (1899–1980) in Toledo on 21 September 1921. They had two daughters and a son in Wood county, Ohio; then they moved their family to Los Angeles in 1930, where Earl worked as a truck driver until he established himself as a real estate broker.

       A. Marjorie Helen Irwin (1922–2012) married Raymond Nathaniel Urick (1922–2007) in Yuma, Arizona, on 1941, while he was stationed at Camp Callan in La Jolla, California. The couple had two children: a daughter, still living, and a son.

     2. Daniel Raymond Urick (1942–1994) was born in Riverside, and died in Los Angeles. I have California Birth Index and Death Index records for him, but nothing else.

The SS Statendam - from
The World Ship Society
       B. Madelyn Marie Irwin (1924–2006) married Johan "Joe" Jansen (1912–1998) in 1942, and they were together for 56 years. Joe was born in Holland, and immigrated to America in 1930 aboard the SS Statendam. He was naturalized after living in Los Angeles for a number of years. He enlisted in the U.S. Army on 10 December 1942, and served through 1945.

Coincidentally, Madelyn and Joe died on each other's birthdays - Joe on 28 January 1998, and Madelyn on 26 August 2006. They are survived by a son, a daughter, four grandchildren, and two great grandchildren. Two of their sons have died.

     1. Jerrold Johan "Jerry" Jansen (1946–2013)
     2. Thomas William Jansen (1949–2005) both brothers lived in Stanislaus county, California, for most of their adult lives. Their obituaries ran in the Modesto Bee, which locks its obituaries up behind a paywall; so if anyone has them to share or barter, please let me know!

       C. Donald Earl Irwin (1926–2003) served in the U.S. Navy during World War II, enlisting from 1943 through 1946. He died in Norwood, Missouri, and was buried in the Missouri Veterans Cemetery in Springfield.

     IV. Leona Minnie Sly (1899–1930) was the younger daughter of Eugene and Lillie Swindler Sly. She married Raymond Earl Balyeat (1897–1961) before 1920 (other researchers say on 16 November 1918), and they lived in Toledo, where they had a son. By 1924, the family had moved to Long Beach, California, where Raymond's father died.

In April of 1930, Leona was listed in the Census as a patient at the Dore Sanitarium in Monrovia, California. She died in July that year, probably from tuberculosis. Raymond remarried Joanna Wilma Woods (1908–1987) sometime during the 1930s. (She apparently went by "Wilma," at least in the city directories.)

       A. Ray Earle Balyeat Junior (1920–1984) was in Toledo in 1937 and 1938, attending the Macomber Vocational High School. In 1940, he was back in Los Angeles, living with his grandmother, Lillian Sly. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1942 and served through 1946.

     V. Alvah Eugene Sly (1906–1978) was the son of Eugene and Lillie Swindler Sly. He married Mabel I Harris (1902–2001) in the first half of the 1930s. They lived in the home of Mabel's parents in 1940, but later lived in Laguna Hills, where Alvah died in 1978. I have not found any evidence that they had any children.

Harriet May Sly (1877–1949) was the youngest of William and Harriet (Callin) Sly's five children. She married Arthur C Solverson (1891–1941), and they lived in Dayton, Ohio, near her brother William James Sly and his wife, Sadie. Hattie Mae worked as a clerk in a dry goods store, and Arthur listed his occupation simply as "inspector," which could mean any number of things. I do not see any evidence that the couple had any children.

 - -- --- -- - 

Once again, we have reached the end of one line, and my branch is up next! If any of you new Sly cousins would like to suggest any corrections or additions, I'd be happy to hear from you. Please drop a note in the comments below, email my callintad Gmail address, or drop by the Callin Family History group on Facebook. It is for family only, so please don't be upset if I ask how you're related.

Happy Hunting!

Friday, September 30, 2016

A Sly, Young Girl

Last week, we looked at the descendants of William James Sly, the eldest son of William and Harriet (Callin) Sly. This week, we will look at the family of their eldest daughter, Alice. Between William James and Alice, there was second son: Elmer A. Sly (1862-1890). We don't know a great deal about Elmer, other than the fact that he died at age 28.

Alice E Sly (1864-1896) also died young - but I'm getting ahead of myself. Here is her record from the Callin Family History:

Record of Alice Sly Young, who was the eldest daughter of Harriet Callin Sly, who was the only daughter of William Callin, who was the 3rd son of John Callin, who was the 2nd son of James 1st.
Born in 1864, died in 1896
Married to Cyrus Young in 1883.
To this union six children were born:
Alva, born Apr. 17, 1884.
Mertie, born May 22, 1886, married in 1905 to Frank Sloan.
Bertie, born May 22, 1886.
Cloyd, born Mar. 18, 1889.
Clara, born Aug. 10, 1891.
Emery, born Apr. 1, 1893, 2nd marriage to Julia Banks, 1889.

Cyrus M. Young (1859–1940) was the son of Michael Young (1801-1869) and Katherine Berlean (1820-1900). Katherine (or Catherine) may have been the younger sister of Elizabeth Berlin - Harriet Callin's mother. (We talked a bit about the trouble I've had proving that Elizabeth was part of this Berlin/Barlean/Berlean family in the post Great Great Great Grandpa William Callin.) If Elizabeth and Katherine were sisters, that would make Katherine both Alice's mother-in-law and her great aunt.

After they were married, Alice and Cyrus had six children in the next ten years. I do not know what caused Alice's early death at the age of 32; but when she died, the oldest of her children was 12-year-old Alva. Cyrus married Julia Banks (1858-1949) in 1899 (not 1889, as the CFH says), and she was the only mother the younger children really knew. The couple lived in Bowling Green for many years, and Cyrus operated a dairy until 4 years before his death at the age of 80.

     I. Alva Arthur Young (1884–1978) married twice, but did not leave any biological children behind, as far as I can tell. His first wife was Edith E Beam (1884–1957), and they married in 1910. They lived with the Beam family at first, in Woodville, Sandusky county, Ohio; later on, by 1920, they had moved to Toledo. They were no longer together by 1930, and some time in the early 1930s, Alva married Theresa D Meiring (1893–1963). He adopted her son, George, and when Alva died in 1978, he died at George's home in Toledo.

     A. George L Young (1919–1996) was adopted some time between 1930 and 1934. His biological father was Bernard Andrew Kemm (1885–1927), the son of German immigrants who had worked as a brass finisher in Detroit, Michigan, until his death from tuberculosis. George became a locomotive driver, and died in Toledo at the age of 77.

     II. Burton "Bertie" Bryan Young (1886–1935) was one of a set of fraternal twins. He lived at home with his father and step-mother, and hired out as a farm laborer. He never married, and died at only 49 years of age.

     III. Myrtle M "Mertie" Young (1886–1969) was the other twin. There is some evidence in the Census that she married Frank Sloan (b. 1883), as the CFH says, and they lived in Fort Smith, Arkansas, in 1910. There is a gap in the records, though, and I don't know what happened to Frank. Mertie married Benjamin Albert Worden (1872–1948) on 23 December 1923 in Sebastian county, Arkansas. They lived in Fort Smith at least until B.A's death in 1948, and after that, it would appear that Mertie moved back to Bowling Green. She died in 1969, and was buried in the Oak Grove Cemetery.

     IV. Clyde L Young (1889–1976) was a veteran of the First World War, serving in the U.S. Army from September 1917 through April 1919. He was promoted to sergeant in October 1918, and he saw action in the Ypres-Lys and Meuse-Argonne offensives.

After the war, Clyde worked as a carpenter, or hired out as a laborer; he lived at home until he was in his 40s. In 1941 he married Susie A Gonyer (1900–1964), the widow of Myron Chamberlain (1892–1925). They lived in Bowling Green, where Clyde farmed, until her death in 1964. He survived another 12 years.

     V. Clara A Young (1891–1969) married Alfred Louis Joseph (1883–1981) on 8 December 1909. Alfred was a farmer, and they raised ten children on their farm in Center township, Wood county, Ohio. Clara died 27 July 1969; Alfred died on Christmas day, 1981, at 98 years of age. Of their children, one daughter is still living.

     A. Deyo L Joseph (1909–1985) was born on the 4th of July 1909, and grew up to be a farmer, like his father. He married Mary Elizabeth Browne (1912–2000); they are buried together in the Oak Grove Cemetery in Bowling Green. Deyo was known as "Toot" among his family; Mary was a telephone operator at Bowling Green State University for many years.

     B. Donald H Joseph (1911–1996) married Esther M Greive (1916–2013) on 5 February 1941 in the Hope Lutheran Church. They lived in the Bowling Green area for many years; they are buried in the Fish Cemetery in Pemberville, Wood county. They left behind two sons and two granddaughters.

     C. Ada P Joseph (1914–2011) married her first husband, George Norman Place (1913–1950) in September 1934. He was a farmer, and they raised two daughters on their farm until George died in 1950. Ada married her second husband, Lester Vernon Wilt (1900–1998) on 28 November 1952. Ada worked as a secretary for Mahoning Express. She left behind six grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.

     1. Beverly Jeane (Place) Bingham (1937–2004) lived on a farm until she was 13 years old, when her father died. She earned a bachelor's degree in nursing, but after she married and had two children, she stayed home to raise them. Beverly's husband, son, and daughter are all still living

     2. Patricia Ann (Place) Hillegas (1939–2015) was survived by her husband of 53 years, two daughters, two sons, 10 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren.

     D. George A Joseph (1916–1997) married Phyllis Maxine Kosch (1925–1979) on 26 August 1946 in Maumee, Lucas county, Ohio. According to the family, George and his brother, Deyo, had suffered from polio as children. George's right arm was affected, which kept him from serving in the War. It also kept him from farming, and motivated him to go to college. He graduated from Bowling Green State University, and worked as a chemist in the oil industry.

George and Phyllis had two sons and two daughters, all still living. Five years after Phyllis died in 1979, George married Ila Mae (Stearns) Foster (1917–2004) in 1984.

     E. Lloyd Wilson Joseph (1918–1993) was enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1944, and he married Grace Marian Ohr (1917–2005) on Valentine's Day 1945 in Bowling Green. He was known as "Red," for his red hair. Lloyd worked in construction until he suffered an accident on the job.

Grace graduated first in her class at Washington High School in 1935, and she attended business college in Toledo. She worked at the J.C. Penney store in Bowling Green for 24 years. Lloyd and Grace have three sons and a daughter, all living. There are also a number of grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

     F. Victor Andrew Joseph (1921–2002) was a veteran of the U.S. Navy in World War II, serving from 1943 to 1945. He married his first wife, , about 1941. They had a son and a daughter who are still living. The couple divorced, though, and Victor married Donna M Webb (1930–2012) on 11 May 1950 in Bowling Green. They had three sons, two of whom are still living. Altogether, Victor left behind 13 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.

     1. Kenneth L Joseph (1952–2009) was the eldest son of Victor and Donna. He graduated Bowling Green High School in 1970 and attended BGSU and Stautzenberger College where he earned his Associates' Degree. He worked for Great Scot Food Stores and the former Dutch Pantry. He was survived by his wife, son, two daughters, and two grandchildren.

     G. Betty R Joseph (1923–2014) married Clifford Milton Asmus (1920–2011) on 8 March 1947. Clifford was a US Air Force aviator in World War II. After graduating from flying school, he instructed other cadets for one year at advanced flight school, Spence Field, Moultrie, Georgia. He served in Panama and was assigned to the 32nd Fighter Squadron flying P-38's. He was decorated with the American Theater Service and Victory Medals. At the end of World War II, he was honorably discharged as a First Lieutenant. After the war, he was a full-time farmer, owning & farming land in Middleton and Perrysburg Townships.

Betty and Clifford left behind a son and two daughters, along with 5 grandchildren and 4 great-grandchildren.

     H. Donna F "Frankie" Joseph (1925–2011) married Howard K Nichelson (1920–1969) on 2 March 1946 at Hope Lutheran Church. Howard had enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1942 as a mechanic; he had his own plumbing business after he came home from the war. They had two daughters, both still living, two grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.

     J. Ronald Delbert Joseph (1929–2004) was a life long farmer and a Korean War Army veteran. He was best known in the family as "Ike," and he he always had his smoking pipe in his pocket. He was survived by his wife, and one son. An infant son, Timothy Jay Joseph, died at birth on 5 May 1961.

     VI. Emory William Young (1893–1974) married Florence L Goodman (1896–1929) around 1913. They had one baby girl who died in infancy, named Geneva M Young (1913–1914), and two others who survived to adulthood. I do not know how Florence died in 1929. The girls were 14 and 10 years old, and Emory raised them. He was a farm laborer in the Bowling Green area until after the Second World War, when he and his second wife, Vollie, settled in Fostoria.

     A. Alice Isabelle Young (1915–2006) married Clement Melvin Carnicom Sr. (1908–1952) in Decatur, Indiana, on 17 December 1932. They had a son they named Clement Melvin Carnicom Jr. in 1933 who died in infancy, but they had two other sons who survived, one of whom is still living. (I think the couple also adopted a third son, still living, but I may be misinterpreting the information I've found about him. Hopefully I'll hear from the family, and they can set me straight!)

Some time after Clement's death in 1952, Alice remarried to Allen Ramsey McKean (1916–2002), who had served in the U.S. Army from 1941 through 1945. They were buried together in Fort Custer National Cemetery in Augusta, Michigan.

     1. Franklin Wendell Carnicom (1934–2001) graduated from Bowling Green High School, and enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps, serving from 1954 to 1957.  With the marines his sole duty was to guard nuclear weapons locations. He worked for many years as a draftsman for Haughton Elevator in Toledo, Ohio. He retired in 1996 and was a driver for US Cargo and Department of Corrections. He left behind a wife, a son, a daughter, and two grand-daughters.

     B. Winifred Maxine Young (1918–1999) was married to a Mr. Wickard in about 1943, but I have not been able to learn more than that about him. She married Roy Wesley Sherman (1915–1999) around 1956, and they were together until they died in 1999, just a few months apart. Roy was a World War II veteran who served in the Coast Guard from 1943 to 1951.

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There you have it! It happens I was contacted on Ancestry by a great-granddaughter of Clara Joseph, so I do hope that the word will spread among interested cousins about this blog. (Note: I made a few minor additions based on comments from the family - hope you enjoyed!)

If you're new to the blog, please do take some time to explore. We are in the middle of a large project, and I will need your help spotting and fixing mistakes. I apologize for any errors, and I feel very bad about them. (I apologize for my terrible puns, too - but clearly I don't feel that bad about them!)

As always, you can reach me on Gmail (I am "callintad"), through the comments below, or through the Facebook group.

Friday, September 23, 2016

William James Sly

William James Sly (1859–1931) was the eldest son of William and Harriet (Callin) Sly of Bowling Green, Ohio. Here is his record from the Callin Family History:

Record of William Sly, who was the eldest son of Harriet Callin Sly, who was the eldest daugther of William Callin, who was the 3rd son of John Callin, who was the 2nd son of James 1st.
Born in 1859.
Married Jan. 13, 1881, to Ada Avery.
To this union six children were born:
  • Wm. Zardie, born Sept. 20, 1882.
  • Sanford, born Jan. 25, 1884.
  • Fern, born Oct. 13, 1889.
  • Homer, born Dec. 20, 1885.
  • Helen, born Aug. 23, 1892.
  • Fay, born Feb. 22, 1905.

William was born 15 October 1859, when his parents were living in Erie county, Ohio. They relocated to Plain township, Wood county, sometime in the following year or two, and William married Ada Avery (1860–1926) there on 13 January 1881. She was a daughter of Gilbert Zardius Avery (1816–1906) and Eliza Jane Meeker (1824–1906).

The couple started out well enough, having three sons in the first four years of their marriage. 1888 was a dark year, though - they lost their two smallest children, an infant named Blanch (4 months) in July, and Homer (age 3) in December. Without records to say for sure, I would guess that they were most likely lost to an outbreak, possibly of typhoid, which was common enough in those days.

I mentioned in last week's post that William's father singled him out in his will, leaving $50 to him while dividing the profits from the Sly family's oil royalties among William's siblings. This is wild speculation on my part, but I suspect that William and Ada may have had trouble recovering after the deaths of two of their children in quick succession. The will may have been the senior Sly's way of expressing disapproval; but he also added a codicil to his will, dated May 1894, which gave William a full share of the inheritance (while giving William youngest sister the $50).

Whatever family drama may have been going on, William and Ada had another daughter just one year after their loss: Fern was born in 1889. Helen was born a few years later in 1892. William worked as a fireman on locomotives for the Cincinnati, Hamilton and Dayton Railroad (C.H. & D.), which was succeeded by the famous B. & O. Railroad. His run was between Tontogany and North Baltimore for sometime and later he ran on the main line.

Sadly, Helen died in 1900 at age 8, and while they had one more daughter, Fay, in 1905, William soon left the family behind. In 1910, William was living in Indianapolis and working as a carpenter in a car shop. He married Sadie E (1873–1953) and moved back to Ohio, living out his days with his new wife in Dayton where he worked as a foremen in a tire shop, dying in 1931.

Ada lived with Sanford, who was then 25, and little Fay; she then took in lodgers and worked as a janitor in the telephone office to support herself. Over the years, she also took in and raised six other children, named in her obituary. She died in 1926 after suffering from heart trouble for two years.

     I. William Zardie Sly (1882–1954) took his middle name from his maternal grandfather, Gilbert Zardius Avery; most of the references I have found refer to him as "Zardy," or by his initials "W.Z." which probably served to distinguish him from the generations of William Slys related to each other and living in Wood county, Ohio.

Zardy married Jessie Stockstill (1882–1966) in 1903, according to the CFH (which called her "Jessie Stockwell"), but they soon divorced. By 1910, Jessie had taken custody of their daughter, and was living back with her grandfather in Henry, Wood county. She moved to Toledo, probably in 1914, where she raised her daughter and supported herself as a dress maker and as the manager of a rooming house.

Zardy, who only appeared in the 1900 Census and was mentioned (as "W.Z.") on his daughter's birth and marriage records, seems to vanish from the public records altogether after his divorce. When his mother died in 1926, her obituary implied that he was living in Bowling Green; when his father died in 1931, it placed Zardy in Chicago, Illinois. Newspaper items from 1906 and 1907 indicate that a brakeman for the railroad, a W.Z. Sly, lived in Garrett, De Kalb county, Indiana during those years, before moving on to Detroit and then Denver, to work as a conductor.

It may be that "W.Z. Sly" changed his name when he moved to Chicago, but further investigation is needed to say for sure.

     A. Lulu Venora Sly (1903–1981) would have been about nine years old when she and her mother moved to Toledo, Ohio, where Lulu grew up. She attended the Morrison Waite High School, graduating in 1921. She lived on Summit Avenue with her mother until she married Lacey Edward Houts (1901–1973) on 17 July 1924.

Venora and Lacey had a son, who is still living, but they divorced in the 1930s, and Lacey moved to Louisville, Kentucky. Venora worked in a beauty shop and presumably stayed in Toledo until she eventually retired to Florida. In 1961, she married Wyndham Robertson Mayo Jr (1904–1963). She survived him by nearly 20 years.

     II. Sanford Lloyd Sly 1884–1962) Lucy Alice Long (1888–1980) in 1913. In the early 1930s, Sanford and Lucy moved to Arizona, where they settled in the little desert town of Buckeye.

     A. Alice I Sweet (1910–1938) was Lucy's daughter from her first marriage; Sanford adopted Alice, and raised her along with her step-siblings. Alice was married to Cleveland Charles Bierman (1886–1951) when she died in Tucson, Arizona, at only 27 years of age.

     B. Helen Frances Sly (1914–1990) married James Osborne Lashuay (1909–1944), a truck driver for Wood county, who was killed in an accident in 1944. They had one daughter, who is still living.

In 1946 Helen married Jacob Paul Businger (1918–1994), who had just served in the Second World War from 10 March 1942 to 5 December 1945. Helen and Jacob were together for more than forty years, and were buried in the New Weston Cemetery, in Weston, Wood county, Ohio. They left behind two daughters and a son, still living, but tragically lost one son when he was 6 years old.

Found on

     i. Robert Henry Businger (1956–1962) was riding double on a bicycle with his friend Charles, when they were struck head on by a car coming the opposite way down the road. Charles was 9, and died before they arrived at the hospital; Bobby was 6, and died two hours later.

     C. Marie Ardinel Sly (1915–1998) married Clarence Eugene Baker (1910–1987) in 1934, and they lived in Bowling Green and Weston in Wood county, Ohio. They are survived by four sons and two daughters.

     D. William Harvey "Bill" Sly (1923–2005) was around 10 years old when his parents moved to Arizona. He married his high school sweetheart, Lettie Bertha Zellner (1925–2005) in 1946, and they lived in Phoenix. They had two sons, still living, but later divorced. Lettie remarried to the late Ted R. Pierce, and after his death, she moved back to Phoenix.

     III. Homer J. Sly (1885–1888)
     IV. Blanch Sly (1888) - as mentioned above, Homer and Blanch died a few months apart in 1888.

     V. Fern Sly (1889–1965) married Cassius Caleb "Cash" Elder (1888–1966) in Toledo, Ohio, in 1907. Cash ran a farm and a livestock business, and the couple was together for 10 years before they had their first child.

     A. Eldon Edison Elder (1917–2006) worked with his father in C.C. Elder and Son livestock hauling, driving trucks; he also farmed for many years. He was a member of the Wood County Genealogy Society and its First Families of Wood County, through his Avery and Meeker ancestors.

Eldon married Clarice M. Simon (1917-2003) on July 28, 1938 in Plain City, Ohio, and they raised their family in Ohio. In 1974, they were living in Mission, Hidalgo county, Texas; and they later settled in Mesa, Arizona. Clarice died on 6 June 2003 in Mesa. They left behind one daughter, a granddaughter, and five great-grandchildren.

On 1 May 2004 Eldon married Ellen Decker Tharp in Mesa; she died February 6, 2006. Eldon followed on the 23rd of July. He was buried with Clarice in Weaver Cemetery in Bairdstown, Wood County, Ohio.

     B. Margaret Marzelle Elder (1919) died in infancy of unknown causes.

     VI. Helen Sly (1892–1900) died at only 8 years of age.

     VII. Fay Sly (1905–1980) graduated Bowling Green High School in 1922. She married a man named Young after her mother's death in 1926, but they were divorced by 1930, and Fay was listed as "divorced" and living in the household of her sister, Fern Elder.

Fay married Coy Benard Baumgardner (1895–1985), also of Wood county, and they moved out to San Diego, California, where they were listed in the 1940 Census. Coy was a wholesale coal salesman, and at some point he retired, and the couple moved to Florida. Fay died there in 1980, and Coy in 1985, and they were buried together in the Weaver Cemetery.

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That about covers this clan of the Sly family. I'm sure there are lots of cousins out there who may know a bit more about some of these folks, and as always, I look forward to hearing from you with feedback!

You can feel free to comment below, email callintad at Gmail, or click through to the Facebook group.

Friday, September 16, 2016

On the Sly

William Sly came from England to the United States in the 1850s. He was naturalized in 1866 at Bowling Green, Wood county, Ohio. According to the Callin Family History, he married Harriet Callin (1838-1907) in 1859.

We don't know for sure who William's parents were or where in England he came from; there are a couple of candidates in the UK Census records. Other researchers have noted an 1841 England Census which documents a Sly family in a Wiltshire parish called Horningsham: father James (b. 1786), mother Susanna (b. 1796), son William (b. 1826) and his two brothers, James (b. 1829) and Thomas (b. 1832). All of them list Ireland as their place of birth, except for the father, James; William is listed as a shepherd, and James as a pensioner. There is a death record for James in April 1849, which may have prompted a 23-year-old William to seek his fortune in the New World.

William's birthplace in all of his more recent, American records is "England," and not "Ireland," but that isn't enough to rule out this Census record, in my opinion, since the family did live in England, and probably considered themselves as being distinct from the other Irish immigrants arriving in the United States during the 1840s and 1850s.

There was also a James Sly of about the right age to be William's brother from that UK Census record. This James lived in Wood county, dying in 1893. The men would have certainly been aware of each other, living in the same place for decades, but neither of them mentioned the other in their wills, we don't have any newspaper notices from the time, and nothing else solidly connects them to that 1841 record. It could be that they weren't related, or they might have had a falling out, or James might possibly be a more distant cousin. It's hard to rule out any possibilities or draw any definite conclusions in the absence of records linking them. And since even William reportedly wasn't sure of his own birth date when he died in Wood county, Ohio, in 1894, we don't even have that name/birthday combination to narrow down our searches.

Hattie grew up on the Callin family farm in Richland county, which her father had purchased after her grandfather died in 1835. She was probably too little to remember most of the relatives who had lived there; her great-uncle Alex would have taken his family to Iowa when Hattie was still a baby. She would have been about six when her father, William, made his journey to Iowa to bring back her aunt Margret and cousins William and Warren. She might have known her great grandmother, Elizabeth (Simon) Callin, before Elizabeth moved to Auburn, Indiana, to live with the Ferguson branch of the family.

When she was about eleven, her father bought and cleared the new farm in Peru township, Huron county. They would have still been living there when she married William Sly; according to the 1860 Census, she and William lived in Oxford, Erie county, Ohio after they were married. By 1862, however, they had moved to Plain township, Wood county, where her father had purchased and cleared another 160 acre farm.

The petroleum industry in Ohio began in 1859, with an oil well drilled in Trumbull county; but major oil and gas reserves were also discovered in Wood county in the 1880s. According to my grandfather, the Callin farm in Wood county had been sold before William Callin's death in 1881, and it was family legend that "we could have been millionaires" had the oil not been discovered after that. But the Sly family evidently benefited from the oil boom of the 1880s and 1890s.

According to William Sly's will:

"I desire first that all my just debts be paid out of my property, and after the payment of my said debts, I give and bequeath to my beloved wife Harriet E. Sly, the rents and profits of all my real estate, exclusive of the income thereof derived from Royalty from petroleum oil or gas, to have and to enjoy the same for and during the remainder of her natural life time, or as long as she remains my widow, including in the above all the lands and tenements which I may own at my death, both farm and town property."

I don't like to project too much of my own ideas about what people thought and felt based on a few old papers, but the William Sly will has a few comments that hint at the relationships between his children. First, he named his son in law, Cyrus Young, as his executor, and while he divided the shares of his wealth between his three youngest surviving children equally, he only gave his oldest son, William, $50. Later, he added a codicil which essentially swapped William's share for his youngest sister's - leaving the $50 to Hattie May, and giving William a full third of the rest of the estate.

We may discover some clues to explain some of this in coming weeks. For now, it seems enough to say that William Sly's widow lived comfortably in her home in Bowling Green with her daughter until her death in 1907.

Until next week, I'll leave you with Hattie's record in the CFH:

Record of Harriet Callin Sly, only daughter of William Callin, who was the 3rd son of John Callin, who was the 2nd son of James 1st.

Born in 1838 in Ashland, O., died in 1907, in Bowling Green.
Married in 1859 to Wm. Sly who died in 1894.
To this union were born five children:
William in 1859.
Elmer in 1861, died in 1893.
Alice, born in 1864, died in 1896.
Eugene, born in 1866.
May, born in 1881.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Great Great Great Grandpa William Callin

At last, we have arrived at my 3rd great-grandfather:

William H. Callin (1813-1881)

His father was John Callin, whose story was told in The Brothers Callin of Ohio. His mother was Elizabeth Simon, about whom we asked Who Was Great Grandma Callin?

We talked about his older brother in Uncle George and the Underground Railroad; and since this time last year, we've looked at all of his older siblings and their descendants. We even talked about his youngest sister already in The Distance of Close Connections. You may remember even further back, when we talked about his eldest son and grandchildren in 20th Century Callin Clan.

Here is his record from the Callin Family History - as written by his fourth son, George Callin:

Record of William Callin, 3rd son of John Callin, who was 2nd son of James 1st.
Born May 10, 1813, died Nov. 9, 1881, at Bowling Green, O.
Married to Elizabeth Barlene 1837 who died Nov. 14, 1903, at Bowling Green, O., aged 86 years.
To this union were born seven children:
  • Harriett, born 1838, died 1907.
  • John, born 1840, lives in Fostoria, Ohio.
  • James M., born Feb 26, 1844, died 1903 in Canada.
  • George, born July 4, 1846, lives at Bowling Green, O.
  • Hugh, born May 16, 1848, died 1880 at Portage, Ohio.
  • Zimri, born Dec. 10, 1850, died Aug., 1907, at Bowling Green, O.
  • Milton, born 1852, died at 5 months old.
William Callin was 3 years old when his father moved from Penn. To Ashland, Ohio. He grew to manhood on the old farm. Married and lived there till 1849 when he moved to Huron Co., Ohio; bought and cleared up a new farm. In 1861 he bought and moved his family on to a farm in Wood Co., near Bowling Green.
He was a perfect specimen of physical manhood, six feet tall, weight 200 pounds; all bone and muscle. Few men equaled him in strength. He followed clearing timber land and was badly crippled with rheumatism in old age.

The J.H. Beers company published their Commemorative Historical and Biographical Record of Wood County, Ohio in 1897. These hagiographic histories were very popular in the late 19th century, and George may have even contributed some of the information in this biographical sketch of his brother, John, which included these paragraphs about William:

His father, William H. Callin, was born at Callinsburg, Clarion Co., Penn., September 10, 1813, and was the fourth son in a family of nine children. He was an industrious, hardy, persevering man, possessing great physical strength, but had only a limited knowledge of books. He had a mind of keen perception and sound judgment, and was well fitted for pioneer life. In 1831 he accompanied his parents to Ashland county, Ohio, where his father entered a tract of land from the government, becoming one of the first settlers of that locality. William Callin aided in clearing and improving this property, and finally, on the death of the father, in paying it out of the land office and receiving title (the land having been entered on what was termed the ninety-nine-year lease). In 1835, he married Elizabeth, daughter of John Barlin, of Ashland, and of their union were born eight children, the eldest and youngest dying in infancy. The surviving members of the family are Harriet, widow of William , of Bowling Green; John H.; James M., and George W., both of Bowling Green; Hugh H. and Zimri L., of Pioneer, Ohio.

In 1849 William Callin removed from Ashland county to Peru, Huron Co., Ohio, locating on a farm of eighty acres which he sold in 1860, preparatory to his removal to Wood county. Here he settled on 160 acres of land in Plain township, and, on his retirement from farming, took up his residence in Bowling Green. He was an exemplary man, of high Christian character, and a consistent and faithful member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He supported the first Republican presidential candidate, John C. Fremont, and was ever afterward a stanch advocate of the party. His death occurred in Bowling Green, December 11, 1881. His widow still makes her home there, and is now in her seventy-ninth year.

While these old books of pioneer history have a reputation for being wrong or incomplete, the records I have been able to locate largely back up the later details of the Beers sketch; and the details between the Beers and CFH accounts mostly match, too. The only real doubt I have is about the claim that William was born in Callensburg, Pennsylvania.

Callensburg was not surveyed until 1826, and wasn't incorporated until 1851. William's father and uncle (The Brothers Callin) were both settled in Milton township, Richland county, Ohio, with John appearing in both the 1820 and 1830 Census records there; so William couldn't have been born in that town. That said, the founder of Callensburg, Hugh Callen, did purchase the 300 acres that would later become the town in 1812, so there is an outside chance that our Callin family was living there at the time William was born. That's hard to prove without records, though.

Another quibble with the Beers and the CFH is that Ashland wasn't formed until 1846, and both histories refer to people settling there before that date. I'm not a professional historian, but I'm pretty sure it's bad form to refer to a place by its current name, and not indicate that it used to be called something else.

Because of these bad habits, I'm more willing to think that wherever he was actually born (whether on the property that later became Callensburg, or somewhere near that), William's parents probably told him that's where he was from, and that is what got passed down into the written record.

William married Elizabeth Berlin (1817–1903) about 1836. I actually have a citation record from an ancient CD ROM, the Family Tree Maker's Family Archives: Marriage Index; Selected Counties of Ohio, 1789-1850 CD 400, which puts their wedding on 29 September 1836 in Richland county. When you take into account the Richland/Ashland confusion of the older historians, that fits with their versions of events. (Someday, I need to track down the original record.)

Elizabeth's family has been tough for me to hunt down. Let's start with the facts from the Beers sketch: Elizabeth, daughter of John Barlin, of Ashland.

There is a John Barlean listed in the 1840 Census as living in Richland county (Mifflin township), and in the 1870 Census in Ashland county (Vermillion). (Remember, parts of Richland became part of Ashland in the 1840s.) The 1870 lists 83-year-old John in a household with 79-year-old Mary A Barlean, and the family of 50-year-old Catherine Young. Some further digging turned up another biographical sketch that fits with the family described here; this one for Catherine's son, Samuel Young.

The maternal grandparents of our subject were John and Mary Ann Berlean, who were likewise born in the Keystone state and died in Ashland county. Mathias Young was a soldier of the Revolutionary War, while John Berlean served his country in the war of 1812 and was at Baltimore during the hostilities there. The Berlean homestead, upon which the mother of our subject was born, was situated in Pennsylvania on the Maryland state line.
The birth of Michael Young [Samuel's father] occurred in Union county, Pennsylvania, after which he removed to Center county and later to Huntingdon county in the same state. From that point he accompanied his parents on their removal to Mifflin township about 1829 and Katherine Berlean arrived about a year later.
(from History of Ashland County, Ohio, by A. J. Baughman, 1909)

There are a lot of clues there. The timing seems to add up for the Berlean family to arrive in Mifflin (though they weren't there in 1830); but other facts don't add up. And the 1840 record only counts three people - a male and female between 50 and 59 years of age (presumably John and his wife), and a female between 15 and 19 (presumably Katherine). No Elizabeth, though she would have already been married to William Callin by 1840.

John Berlin turns up in the War of 1812 Pension Application Files Index, 1812-1815 and from that record we learn that he served from 21 April 1813 to 22 November 1814, in both Captain William Craig's and Captain Jonathan May's companies in the Pennsylvania Militia. The record also shows that he married his second wife (the widow claiming his pension) in 1830 in Columbiana county, Ohio. (Happily, his first wife, Anna Coy, is also named.) It also lists residence dates for Van Wert county, Ohio (1851-1856) and Canton, Stark county (1871); he died in Stark county in 1874.

There is still no direct link to Elizabeth, but there are two men (one John Barlin, one John Barline) in Columbiana county, Ohio, in 1830. The former had four daughters under 20 and lived in Beaver township (which became part of Mahoning county in 1846); the latter had one son and one daughter, both under 5, and lived in Green township.

None of this adds up to concrete proof, but the facts do seem to fit together. I wouldn't be comfortable posting this next section without the preceding five paragraphs as a disclaimer, but I think this is what happened:

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John Berlin (1787-1874) was born in Pennsylvania, and served from 1813-1814 in the PA Militia during the War of 1812. He married Anna Coy in 1815 or 1816, and entered a tract of bounty land in Beaver township, Columbiana county, Ohio, probably just after 1820.

Elizabeth Berlin (1817–1903) would have been the eldest daughter; her sister, Catherine (mother of Samuel Young in the sketch above) was born about 1820. The couple had four daughters; the two youngest were under 5 when Anna died, likely around 1827. In 1830, John married Catharine Landis (1807-1882), and moved the family to Mifflin township, Richland county.

Elizabeth married William Callin in 1836, and they set up house on the Callin family farm in Milton township. William had purchased the deed after his father died in 1835, and many of the Callin family members who had grown up there had moved further west. In 1845, William took his wagon 500 miles west to Iowa to retrieve his recently widowed sister, Margret, and her two small sons, and return them to Ohio.

William moved to Peru township, Huron county, in 1849 and the family lived there for a decade before relocating in 1860 to Wood county, where he cleared a 160 acre farm in Plain township. When the Civil War broke out, William and Elizabeth sent their three oldest sons, and proudly received all three back. William retired from farming and he and Elizabeth moved into Bowling Green, where he died in 1881. She moved into the home of her son, George, where she made an impression on her granddaughter, Rosemary. Elizabeth survived William by more than twenty years, and she died 19 November 1903 in Bowling Green.

Rosemary recorded her memories of Elizabeth in the post Silk or Satin.

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As we head forward and start exploring the Sly family next week, I'm keenly aware that there are more cousins watching who are directly related to the individuals I'll be writing about. I will continue to try to tell the best/most complete/most accurate stories I can, but I need you all to keep me honest!

If you spot a mistake, or catch me taking a shortcut, call me on it!

And if you want to offer a guest post for your family, let me know before we get there, so I can schedule you in.

As always... comment below, email callintad at Gmail, or click through to the Facebook group.