Sunday, August 31, 2014
Aunt Peg's heritage quilt, stitched with the signature squares made by last year's attendees, added more beautiful tradition. A happy Mary Anne Lindblom was the lucky winner of the quilt raffle. Both sharing the family's past and making new history annually give this event special meaning. We always try hard not to miss saying our hellos to everyone. But it's also enjoyable to just sit in a lawn chair and watch the kids enjoying themselves on the playground.
Our 2014 Weber Kuhn Tribune (Volume 4) shared newsy updates along with history. I am grateful that Bob Weber's daughter, Janet, read the newsletter carefully and gave me a couple of corrections for my Family Spotlight on her father this year. I am posting a corrected version of the newsletter on our family history website. (See the link below.) I'm happy to send the newsletter by email or snail mail if there are any requests from those who are unable to attend the reunion. Send me a name and address or email address in the comments section below.
Lastly, I am posting a few photos from this year's reunion. This time I was less busy with my camera, but still managed to snap the flavor of the good times. I'm sure my sister, Marti, has some goodies to share also. I'll add hers later. Click on the album link below or go to the tab above marked Weber Kuhn Reunion.
Thanks for visiting Indiana Ties.
(Click Here to find the 2014 Weber Kuhn Tribune.)
Copyright © 2014 Nancy Niehaus Hurley
Tuesday, August 12, 2014
Actually, the struggle to attain the right to vote for women took nearly 100 years. Women such as Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony campaigned, wrote, gave speeches, were imprisoned and found whatever avenues they could to enlighten people and fight for women's suffrage. Isn't it amazing that this movement took so long to be successful, let alone that it was necessary. Who knows which of our ancestors supported in some way the groups and programs leading up to the success of 1920.
Well, thinking of these times and the issues, it didn't take me long to connect the time frame to one person in my family. In 1910 when suffragettes were organizing protests and lobbying congress, my grandmother, Otillia "Tillie" Kuhn, was 19 years old. She was 29 years old in 1920 when these activities succeeded in opening the voting booth to women. No, I have no knowledge of Tillie being involved in any women's suffrage activities. I can't know exactly what her feelings or her actions were. But if we stop to take a closer look at my grandmother's life from 1910 to 1920, at the crescendo of the fight for women's right to vote, it could be interesting to contemplate what may have run through her mind.
1910 - 1912:
Although some states and municipalities had taken action since the early 1800s to grant women the vote, in 1910 they were as yet denied that right on the federal level. Tillie Kuhn was 19 to 21 years old from 1910 to 1912, the time frame when we now take it for granted that young people begin exercising their voting rights. Tillie was fortunate enough in those early years to attend a year of business college. And by 19 was employed as a bookkeeper at a retail dry goods store. She lived with her family in the home where she was born on High Street in Indianapolis. In this year when Tillie was a young working girl the first suffrage parade was held in New York City, organized by the Women's Political Union. And by 1912 that parade grew to 20,000 suffrage supporters with a half-million onlookers. 1911 was also the year that the National Association Opposed to Woman Suffrage was founded, bringing more attention to the opposing views.
Tillie would surely have been aware of these activities by reading the local newspapers and discussing events with her family and co-workers at the dry goods store. She had three older sisters and one younger one, as well as her older brother, Charlie. In fact, Tillie's older sister, Lill, was employed as a saleslady at a dry goods store. I am going to venture to say that the Kuhn family was informed of these issues of the day. Perhaps Tillie and Lill walked to work together discussing their thoughts about suffrage events, or even how they might have voted. Here's a retro piece published by the Indianapolis Star that helps paint the landscape of the suffrage campaign in Tillie's locale:
The right to vote for women in Indiana was a long, hard-fought battle that began in 1851 when a man -- Robert Dale Owen (founder of the New Harmony utopian society) -- advocated for women¹s rights at the constitutional convention held in Indianapolis. His proposal went nowhere and it would be another 70 years before women in Indiana had the right to vote. Suffragettes such as Amanda Way, Zerelda Wallace, May Wright Sewall, Helen Gougar, Dr. Amelia Keller and Grace Julian Clarke led the push for suffrage. In 1911, the Woman¹s Franchise League of Indiana was formed and became a driving force for the right to vote. The women of Indiana held rallies, marches, participated in parades, and lobbied the government.1913 - 1915:
In June of 1913, four months after she turned 22, Tillie Kuhn married Harry Weber in Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Indianapolis. As far as we know she did not work outside the home after she married. Their son, Bob, was born in May of 1914. Establishing a marriage and her family probably became Tillie's main focus, if I could make a presumption. But the push for women's suffrage was continuing wholeheartedly. For instance, in 1913 Illinois became the first state to grant women presidential suffrage by legislative enactment. And in March of that year preceding President Woodrow Wilson's inauguration, 8,000 suffragists paraded in Washington, D. C. The explosiveness of the issue is evidenced by the abusive crowds that mobbed the marchers. Some say that a faction of those against women's right to vote were wealthy and influential women who were afraid they would lose power when all women were allowed to vote. The stature that they had attained through wealth was threatened. (Follow the money!)
Speaking of the power of money, in September 1914, a bequest from Mrs. Frank Leslie, publisher of Leslie's Weekly, put $1,000,000 at the disposal of Carrie Chapman Catt for "the furtherance of the cause of woman suffrage." As Tillie was maturing, becoming a wife and mother, the women's suffrage movement became more mature also. The leaders kept their campaigns strong, working state by state and dogging their representatives in Congress. However, who knows if a young mother in Indianapolis who wasn't active politically had many thoughts about these efforts. On the other hand, she must have read updates in the newspaper she received each morning on her front porch. Maybe she felt grateful for those who had the ways and means to be involved. Seems logical to me.
1916 - 1920:
In March of 1916 Tillie gave birth to her second child, Rosemary Ethel Weber, my mother. Things keep evolving for her; now she has a female descendant. Did the right-to-vote movement take on a new meaning? Did she have a keener interest in change? At 26 years old her views on how the decisions of the leaders of the country and her community impacted her life may have been developing.
The activity of the suffragists were still gaining strength as state after state secured legislative enactments and the National Woman's Party were arrested for picketing and sent to jail, creating martyrs for the cause. On December 2, 1916, suffragists flew over President Wilson's yacht and dropped suffrage amendment petitions. Again I'm wondering what Tillie Weber's opinion was of all of these events, especially of the women who went to jail for their commitments?
The persistence of the women and men behind this cause resulted in President Wilson giving his public support of the federal woman suffrage amendment in January of 1918. Then, on January 10, the House voted in favor of a suffrage amendment. In September of that year the President addressed the Senate personally, arguing for women's suffrage.
If these activities hadn't yet brought the impact home for Tillie, it became personal when in 1919 Indiana also secured presidential suffrage by legislative enactment. In the final stages of the fight, on June 4, 1919, the Senate passed the 19th Amendment with just two votes to spare, 56 to 25. The Constitutional Amendment contained the same wording drafted by Susan B. Anthony in 1878. The 19th Amendment was ratified by the required 36th state on August 18, 1920 and signed into law by the Secretary of State on August 26, 1920.
In these four years of tremendous advancement for women in the United States, Tillie Kuhn would have been raising her son and daughter. Also, she and Harry moved into what became their family home of approximately 50 years at 2160 Singleton Street in Indianapolis. Harry Weber was advancing in his career with Fletcher Trust Company. And by December of 1920 Tillie had delivered another baby girl, Virginia. There were a lot of demands on Tillie to occupy her waking moments. Just about any political event may have been squeezed out of her thought process most of the time. However, judging from my knowledge of the Weber family personalities I would imagine Harry and Tillie having discussions of these national and local events over dinner, or when they found a few moments time in the evening.
Of course, all of my speculation and imagining is just that. There are most likely no more details to learn. But I have a new perspective on this momentous time of progress for women in the United States by traveling through it with Tillie Kuhn Weber. Regardless of what her opinions were or if she realized the full impact of these events, she had an intimate involvement by being there.
Speaking of women in my life, I want to wish my sister, Linda, a happy birthday. As she always reminds me, she's the youngest! The relationship chart posted here traces her maternal line back to Tillie. And I'm also posting a photo of Lin holding a photo of our mom. I'm glad to have all of these ladies in my line. Hope the entire year's a good one for you, Lin!
Helen Holshauser's blog is Heart of a Southern Woman. Here's a link to that thought-provoking blog on Women's Suffrage.
You may be interested in reading these related posts:
Happy Anniversary to Harry and Tillie (Kuhn) Weber
Tillie Kuhn Weber - Ladies In My Line
Copyright 2014 © Nancy Niehaus Hurley
Saturday, August 9, 2014
The time is almost here for another reunion of the descendants of Harry Lawrence Weber and Tillie Kuhn Weber of Indianapolis. Just in case there are members of our family who did not yet hear about this year's Weber-Kuhn Family Reunion on August 23, I am posting the details below. I would be glad to find the answers to any question about the reunion. Leave me a comment in the section below this posting. It's so nice to have this day of visiting with everyone. I look forward to seeing you there!
Weber Kuhn Family Reunion
Saturday August 23, 2014
11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Sarah T. Bolton Park – Hilltop Shelter
1300 Churchman Avenue
Beech Grove, IN
Bring the whole family, your stories, and photos to share.
Plans are to share a pitch-in lunch, some laughs and catch up on each other's lives.
So make plans to be there. Bring something to contribute for lunch.
You’ll also want to bring beverages and lawn chairs.
There are picnic tables, shelter for some shade and playground equipment.
Special ingredient: “Raffle of the Family Memories Quilt”
Handmade by Peg Stull
Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Look at this catch! Summer fishing trips are special memories in this Niehaus family. I thank my cousin, Pat Cracraft, who shares these great photos from her family album. You can see her special touches in the mounting around the edges and her hand lettering in her scrapbook.
Don't you just love the seriousness of these guys. Knowing the usual boisterous attitudes in this group, surely they weren't subdued for long. From left to right: Kemo Hickman joined the family when he married Janie Stull, Dick Stull (Janie's brother) is a son of Al and Feenie (Niehaus) Stull and Abe is a son of Gerald and Amanda Niehaus. This super fishing day was during their families' summer vacation at Cross Lake, Minnesota in the 1940s.
There had to be a delicious fish fry that evening.
Thanks for visiting Indiana Ties. For a look at other family photos in this series click on the Wordless Wednesday link at the left.
Copyright © 2014 Nancy Niehaus Hurley
Tuesday, July 15, 2014
The brewery address led me to the Sanborn Insurance Map from 1889 posted below presenting the layout for the company. Take a look at the details, such as, the mash house, cold storage and cooper shop. You can see that the company name at this time is the Indianapolis Brewing Company, after a merger of three breweries. The brewery takes up a square block bounded by Alabama, McCarty, High and Wyoming Streets. This location focuses in on another feature of Charles's history. His home from the time he arrived in Indianapolis in 1875 until he died in 1916 was on High Street, two or three blocks north of the brewery. Convenience!
Charles's job assignment at the brewery may or may not have been consistent over the years. Some years he is listed in a city directory or census as a brewery man, then a brewery laborer, a brewer and yet another job listing is watchman at C. F. Schmidt. How many different jobs these descriptions actually represent is hard to tell. That's an answer I can only wonder about.
However, there are some interesting details available that might shed some light on his life during those brewery years. His brother-in-law, John Scherrer, who was 12 years older than Charles, was a "brewer" for many years at various breweries in the city. Perhaps John was an influence and mentor for Charles when he decided to move from Connersville to the big city and begin his career. Since Charles lived in the Scherrer household for a period of time when he first came to Indianapolis, there is a strong possibility that's how the story went.
In 1879 Charles married Mary Anna Risch and they moved into their own home -- also on High Street, as neighbors of the Scherrers. Looking a little further down the street we find another brewery worker and relative, Joseph Resch, Mary Anna's brother. For a period of time during the 1870s and early 1880s Charles, John and Joseph were brewery workers simultaneously. These family members maintained their neighborly relationship throughout their lives. Charles most likely received a good word at the Schmidt Brewery from either Joseph or John in order to get his job. Being eight to twelve years younger, I would say Charles Kuhn benefited considerably from the counsel of his brothers-in-law. Can't you see the three guys making the stroll down High Street from their homes to the brewery -- Or sitting on one of their front porches on High Street enjoying a lager after a tiring day. The beer business was definitely a factor in this family history!
Founded by Christian Frederick Schmidt and Charles Jaeger, the C.F. Schmidt brewery was located at the south end of Alabama Street (although some references say it was located at "Wyoming St. at High". Jaeger soon sold his interest to Schmidt, thinking Schmidt's management was not sound. They made about 1500 barrels per year.
"By the outbreak of the Civil War, Schmidt Brewery was producing a superior lager beer, and soon was supplying troops stationed in Indianapolis." - Nuvo, June 8, 2005.
The 1870 Indianapolis City Directory has an ad for C. F. Schmidt, Brewer of Lager Beer, Smith's Square, Indianapolis. The directory lists John Buhier, Louis Ehrmann, Ernest Ihrzohn, Henry Metzger, and Joseph Resoh as the brewers.
C.F. Schmidt died in 1872 and his widow, Caroline, operated the business with her brother, William Fieber until 1877 when her sons, John W and Edward Schmidt took it over. It was incorporated into the Indianapolis Brewing Company in 1887.
"Mr. Bosenberg is sole agent for the justly celebrated C. F. Smith's Lager Beer, manufactured at Indianapolis, Indiana. The qualities for which this beer is most distinguished are its healthfulness, purity, brilliancy of color, richness of flavor &c, the result of excellent water, intelligent care of its brewers conjoined to the use of apparatus possessing all the best modern improvements made in this country or elsewhere, and to the superior quality and quantity of the ingredients used. No claims are made for this beer that cannot be substantiated." - Rochester Sentinel, Feb 29, 1888. Yes, that said 1888. After the merger, each brewery continued their own brewing operations. The C. F. Schmidt plant at McCarty and High Streets closed on May 27, 1920 after 70 years of brewing.
(The www.indianabeer.com website has more interesting reading on the development, the individuals involved and more brewing business.)
Monday, July 7, 2014
But about that employment I mentioned….I was sorting through memorabilia recently while packing for our move to a larger home. You know how moving can unearth those treasures! Well, I came across a special photo of my grandfather that belonged to my dad. Dad constructed by hand a frame and displayed this photo prominently in his home. In the picture on the left John Niehaus is with two fellow C. B. Cones & Sons Manufacturing Company employees. He stands in the middle as they pose outside the factory in Lynchburg, Virginia. I'm posting the photo outside the frame so that it's more viewable here. But, I am preserving them together for posterity.
John Niehaus worked as a cutter for the C. B. Cones & Sons Manufacturing Company for 33 years. Most of that time was spent at the facility in Indianapolis. As close as I can determine those years with the company spanned 1910 to 1943, age 21 until he was 54 years old. The company in Indianapolis was established in 1879. They manufactured overalls, shirts and other clothing for laborers. As yet I am unable to find when they closed.
My father told me a story of how his father was asked by the C. B. Cones Co. to go to Lynchburg, Virginia, in the early 1930s to assist with an expansion of the company. This coincides with the history of the growth in the textile and clothes manufacturing industries in Lynchburg in the 1920s and 1930s. John reportedly told his employer that if he could move his entire family to Virginia he would go. So, John and Ruth and their six children moved to Lynchburg. In the photo of the men you can see their place of employment behind them. I believe this is the same building, although abandoned today, in the photo on the right. I found this photo on Flickr, posted by Kipp Teague, Retronaut on Flickr. I thank him for allowing me to post the C. B. Cones building here.
After some unknown period of time in Lynchburg, reports are that it was not a lengthy stay, John requested to return to Indianapolis. Two of his sons, Frank and Robert, stayed a while at their jobs with Cones in Virginia, earning money to help support the family in those difficult times of the early 1930s. John returned to his job in his hometown and was employed their until 1943 or 1944. I don't have a photo of the manufacturing facility in Indianapolis, but I was able to locate the ad for their products that you can see at the left. (This ad is from the website: www.vintageworkwear.com.) The C. B. Cones & Son Mfg. Co. was located on South Meridian Street, a few miles from John's home. The overalls, shirts, jackets and other workers' clothing produced at the factory remained popular for many years.
Do you have more details of John Niehaus's C. B. Cones story? Or other interesting facts on this Indianapolis company? I welcome your comments below. Thanks for visiting Indiana Ties.
Here are related posts you may want to read:
Joseph Niehaus Family in 1900
Descendants of John Niehaus
Copyright © 2014 Nancy Niehaus Hurley
Wednesday, July 2, 2014
These six fishermen are connected through the Weber family in Indianapolis. From left to right are: Dick Lieland, Bob Weber, Harry Weber, Charlie Kuhn, Ed Ditlinger and Dick Sauer. The photo was taken about 1935. Dick Lieland, Bob Weber and Dick Sauer are cousins. Harry Weber is the father of Bob Weber and uncle of the two other boys. Charlie Kuhn and Ed Ditlinger are brothers-in-law of Harry.
The location of their successful fishing trip is unknown. But since the Ditlinger family lived on a farm in North Vernon, Indiana, where the men went to hunt, there's a good possibility that may be where they snagged the catch for this day.
I'm again grateful to my uncle, Bob Weber, for preserving this family photo in his albums. There must be another relative along for this trip, maybe a Lieland or Sauer dad, since Bob is not behind the camera this time. They all look pleased and ready to have a fish fry!