Recently Dale and I headed over to his cousin’s place on the water in Steven’s Point. Lovely view by the way. Jane is big on her roots and remembered me mentioning that my great grandparents Victor H. and Gertrude John lived in White Lake for a few years and he was a cashier at the White Lake State Bank (the one Dale said never existed). So when we arrived for the party, she showed me the little table in her basement where she keeps her White Lake memorabilia, one of these items was a small Golden Jubilee pamphlet, containing a little history of White Lake.
Short but sweet bank history…
I did it again. I ordered more newspapers on microfilm because I am a glutton for punishment. But this time I ordered “The Parkersburg Daily Times,” a West Virginia paper from Wood County. I am now going to see if I can find any tidbits about the Shepards in the Wood County area. The first film I have requested covers the time period of the mid 1860s, so just after the war of the rebellion, also shortly after West Virginia actually became a state of it’s own. My fingers are crossed.
Well, I have actually finished scanning in all of Alan’s family letters. Tomorrow I plan on uploading them to flickr for everyone to read at their leisure. In fact I decided to make all the letters I have uploaded to flickr available to anyone who wants to read them. That will make it easier for anyone to access them, not that people are rushing to look at these historical documents anyway, but I have done my part and no one can complain.
A week or so ago, Dale and I headed up north to White Lake, Wisconsin for a memorial service for one of his Aunts. After the service we were talking to his cousin Jane and she reminded us that the Depot Museum was open. So we decided to stop in for a look-see, especially as we donate to the museum to help keep it open.
Now my particular interest in going was a recent find in my V. H. and Gertrude John research that they lived in White Lake for at least 4 years. While there Victor was a cashier at the White Lake State Bank which he helped to start, probably due to the opening of the While Lake Mill, part of the Yawkey Bissell lumber industry. The Johns most likely knew the Yawkeys and Bissells when they lived in Wabeno in the early 1900s.
Dale didn’t believe me when I told him about the bank. But of course I insisted that it was so. A fact which was confirmed when we went to the museum and in the last room near the exit, nicely framed on the wall, was the official government document allowing the White Lake State Bank to start operating, with the date of 1921, a date which corresponds with my research perfectly. It was a very fun and unexpected find.
I finally finished scanning all of Dick and Dad’s letters. I haven’t uploaded the latest and last batch to flickr yet, but it will be seen there soon.
The next part of the project are Alan’s letters. As he was a prolific and verbose writer, it will definitely take a while to get through this batch. However, I am looking very much forward to reading them. This will be a wonderful way to get to know the Uncle who died way too young.
Just in case there is some confusion about all these recent invites, here are a few bits of information for all my loyal followers.
This blog was started because the MyFamily site was requesting money to continue my account. I tried Geni.com, but really did not like the set-up, so I canceled that account. This blog will be much easier to deal with, with the added benefit that those who read it don’t have to feel all guilty that they aren’t contributing. Now you can keep up on the news of my cool new finds with no stress.
I have a flickr account ‘bumanns’, where you will find a large majority of the family pictures uploaded, along with personal letters.
The family tree is here (my own personal web site).
So hopefully folks will find this helpful and occasionally interesting.
I finally heard back from Dr. Shepherd, the gentleman who matches Grandfathers yDNA. He sent me a small packet of the research that had been done on his family, all of it by paid researchers. I sent him a couple of questions that he has done his best to answer, now I can start digging deeper into my own research on this line.
All we know right now, is that his ancestor John Shepherd was born in New Jersey about 1783ish. No parents are known and no idea where in New Jersey. We might just have to wait for a few years for more Shepards to have their DNA tested before we can continue the quest. At this time we still don’t know where in Europe the surname originated for this line. It could very well be English. Only time will tell.
Last month I ordered a few reels of microfilm for newspapers from the Wabeno and White Lake area of Wisconsin to try and find Victor and Gert or any of their boys in the local papers.
It took me 3 weeks to get through 1898-1910 and 1922-1925. One reel of which was completely out of focus and barely readable. But I found out lots of interesting little tidbits about the family dynamics.
In fact one great find I already mentioned on the old family site – Clarence’s first marriage.
Other things of interest include the fact that while Victor was station agent in Wabeno, Gert went home to Oconto and Gillett visiting family and friends at least twice a month. Johanna only came to visit once as did Gert parents, while F. W. came to visit quite often. Victor was musically inclined and very popular in town as the funny man. Linc came to visit several times after he moved out west to work on the railroad in Wyoming. Clarence is hardly mentioned at all in the paper.
So while my eyes recover from this batch of microfilm I am already looking forward to the next.
Well folks to make it easier to keep everyone interested informed about my research progress on the Shepard and John lines, I have decided to try blogging it. After all, everyone is doing it. So look for some updates heading this way soon.