December 5, 1956 Herman Shepard to his parents

Worthington Ohio
Dec. 5, 1956

Dear Dick & Dad:-

Just a line to let you know we are OK and everything’s as usual. The weatherman has been very kind to us for the past few days but according to today’s forecast we are in for some colder weather & “stuff” I’ve been watching your Tampa reports and they look good to me, I’m surely glad you folk are down there to enjoy it.

Ruth and Charlie were here last Sunday and told us all about their trip and the house they bought. We were anxious to talk with them to find out all about what you folks have been doing, where and what kind of a house you rented, “you know the details.” You were lucky to get a nice place so quick-especially one large enough to hold your furniture. Also to be close to stores etc. I’ll bet you’ll be

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spoiled when you change your own house unless you would be lucky again to get close to shopping facilities.

You may have to give up that convenience in order to get the location, house and price you want to pay. Let’s hope your luck holds out. Ruth & Charlie really must have gotten sand in their shoes to have bought a place already. As he won’t be able to retire for so long. We wish them luck and hope they will be able to keep it rented until they need it for themselves.

I’m ashamed to admit it, but we haven’t been up to see Lydia yet. I hope she is getting along O.K. Seems like there just isn’t enough time to go around. Ralph Kring and I went up to 22 W. Park last Sunday and got the table & top carrier so that I would say

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was the final act as far as 22 W. Park is concerned.

Have you folks been looking around any yet? Ruth O’Farrel said you were going to start soon. Sure wish we were looking for one down there. The orange blossoms smell a lot closer now than they did a week ago. The main reason is Rodenfels cut my commission $20.00 a month effective starting next month. It surely made me mad when there isn’t any reason for it. I could go on and gripe for twenty pages but it won’t do any good. We are top dealer in service volume in the Norwood zone plus the fact new cars are about $200 higher than last year and I haven’t heard of any other company cutting wages.

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I was thinking maybe I could get a raise and look what I got. (Hardy Har Har)

I am enclosing the receipt for your check to Rodenfels so I hope everything is O.K. By the way how does the radio work? Are you able to pick up WLW? I imagine Dad listens to Peter Grant if you are able to get WLW.*

I’m just about out of news so till next time, I’ll close for now.
Love H.O. & ruth.

P.S. We have the birch wood in the fire place & basket and it’s so pretty we don’t want to burn it.

P.S.S. Ruth & I enjoyed Dads letter, why don’t you take turns writing now that you’re started that way. Good idea, yes.

* Peter Grant had many fans who listened to Cincinnati Radio WLW and later, watched him on TV on WLWT. Peter was a staple on WLW for years! He was also a regular on the Ruth Lyons show, and loved by viewers of all ages.

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September 17, 1956 Letter Herman Shepard to parents

Worthington Ohio
Sept 17, 1956

Dear Dick & Dad:-

Just a line to let you know we are O.K. Elsie and Ralph were in last Monday night to bring us the “Black Diamond Cheese” which she presented to us as a gift “God bless her soul” They brought Charlie and his family along so we could meet them. I’ll bet that guy was a ‘circus’ from some of the things they told us. I would liked to seen him dragging that “pike” out on the shore over on Tunal Lake. They must have had a wonderful time. Elisie said she didn’t even want to come home, and they couldn’t keep from telling us how nice you and Dad were to them.

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Their pictures turned out very good. If they had been in color they would have mine beat a mile.

The fishing at Lake Erie has not been so good the past couple of Sundays. Those darn perch are getting more stubborn all the time, they wont bit on just any old minnow, it has to be a “shinner” if you please and they are hard to get. Week ago Sunday we had a couple here from Worthington with us and the lake was too rough to go out on so we fished in the harbor and caught a few little perch and blue gill. Last Sunday the lake was OK but the fish wouldn’t bit so what are you agona due

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Have you had any news from Simon in regards to his taking one of the lots? In case you come home before I get to write again bring all the necessary information and papers with you for me to start the process of getting the one next to you.

Are you folks going to Florida this winter? Lots of people are asking and I’m telling them “yes” We are trying to get Elsie & Ralph to go along and drive with us if we got to make the trip. It wouldnt cost as much as flying although I rather fly its so much fun that way [he wouldn’t say that now!!] and a wonderful time soner.
over

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Well that about winds me up for tonight so will close for now.
Love from Ruth & Herman

P.S. I still haven’t sold the cottage.

August 21, 1956 Herman Shepard To Parents

Worthington Ohio
August 21 1956

Dear Dick & Dad:-

Just a line to let you know we are O.K. and getting back into the grind of things. Mary Ann and Bill are with us now and I expect they will be for a couple of weeks yet. We were on a neighborhood picnic to night and got to meet a lot of our neighbors for the first time. Of course I had to tell them all about our wonderful vacation. Ruth said look at the full moon tonite and we wondered if you were looking at it to comming up between the Island and the Cove. It is so cool here we turned the furnace on last night and it is down to 52º again tonight 11PM.

Cliff Burch came back to work yesterday and again today, seems to be doing O.K. says he feels

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like it was worth all the trouble soon as the soreness is over.

We went up to the cottage last week end and found everything OK except the grass was about to take over, the lake was rough etc. so we just took it easy, cut & trimmed the grass, cleaned the cottage etc. and just visited in general. Too bad about Frank but we were more of less expecting the worst.

Run[?] & Elizabeth were up there so we got all the information. Elizabeth is still pretty much upset. She wants to sell his boat etc. and I expect she will be selling the cottage too.

She gave me his hip boots which I use so much in taking care of the boat etc.

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We haven’t been out to see Elsie & Ralph yet but expect to get in touch with them soon. I forgot to mention in my other letter but we see each gained 3 lbs. I though it would be at least 10 for me.

The peaches are just coming on the market at the lake and we got 2 peck for eating & pie baking purposes. Well that about all.

You’ve had it. Love
Ruth &H.O.

August 15, 1956 Letter Herman To Parents

August 15, 56
Worthington Ohio
11:30AM PLEASE NOTE

Dear Dad, Dick & Gang:-

Well don’t think we’re crazy, but that Station Wagon just flew after we left the Straits, so we just turned it loose and it came on home just like an old horse. We planned on staying in Flint, as you remember, but after eating our supper in Flint, I decided to give up the wheat cakes and drive a while longer as it was only about 7:20PM. The farther we

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drove the easier it looked to come on home. We were home in 17 hrs and 50 minutes after leaving Jacks.

The fish and butter keep just fine, & we appreciated getting the butter from Jack as that saved us some time. We ate our dinner at Christopher’s in Indian River at about 1:30PM, arrive in Flint at 6:35PM. We got our cheese at Pinche’s and some melons just out of Bay City. From Toledo on in, we kept the trucks

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company, as there were very few cars on the road. I belive it will be easy to drive up there with out an overnite stop after the bridge is completed. I didn’t get a bit speepy and I feel fine this AM. I believe the car makes the difference as it rides and drives so easy. I’m just taking the day today living up the last few hours of my vacation. It sure was different here this morning from your cabin, dogs barking, kids screaming etc. back to the old grind.

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We surely enjoyed our vacation. It’s a durn shame we have to be spoiled by being up there away from it all. That “stinken” Dick Sheridian called me up this morning and reminded me that my time was just about up and that I had “had it” also that the shop was still at the same address and the hours were still the same.

My pen just went on the “blink” so I’ll finish with a pencil. Ruth called Doch and Burch is getting along OK.

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She is not feeling to good. She and Charlie Hogue was about the same as of last week.

That about winds up the news so I’ll close for this time, hope this finds you all enjoying all the benefits of Canada, etc.

Love to all Ruth & H. O.

P.S. Ruth was able to get 6 loaves of bread at the Thessalon Bakery.

July 21, 1856 Herman Shepard to Parents

July 21-1956

Dear Dick & Dad:-

I just arrived home from work 2:10pm and found your card “the hot mama” Ruth went up to the harbor this morning with Ralph, Lucile and the kids and I’m going up this afternoon after I eat a bite and do a little yard work. Seems like there is not enough hours in a day for me to get all my work done. I sold our 51 Chevrolet and hope to have a new one I’m trying to get a station wagon as I’ve always wanted one.

They’re pretty hard to get, everyone would get in is sold to

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someone else. Of course by me getting the discount I just have to wait. I sold the 51 about a week ago and have been driving a company car since then.

We haven’t been up to Westerville yet, hope to make it this week. What have you guys been doing to pass the time? Hope you don’t catch all the fish. Fishing hasn’t been any good at Lake Erie so far this year. We covered about 75 miles of water last Sunday and didn’t catch anything only a few little perch–

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down at Marblehead. We were on the North Bass reef, Gull Reef, and Kelly Reef all we got was a lot of boat riding and sun.

Everything is about as usual here nothing new or exciting, nobody had any babies etc. We have had a lot of rain and the weather has been on the cool side about 60° at night and 75° – 80° in the daytime, hope you’re having nice weather.

Ralph had good luck fishing where they go close to Parry Sound lots of bass and pickerel

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Well I finished my snack and have run out of news so guess I better get to work or get to the Harbor tonight.

Give our regards to the Becker’s and ask Ruth if there’s anything she would like for us to get for her if so write and let us know.

It won’t be long ’til August 2 so until then lots of love

Herm

January 6, 1956 Herman Shepard to Parents

Worthington Ohio
Jan 16th 1956
Temp. 25º and snowing

Dear Dick and Dad:-

Well here tis Sunday night, we just got home from out Gahanna way, we came home early tonight as the roads are a little on the slippery side. It started snowing this morning after we came home from church and has been snowing ever since, about 3 inches up to now.

Ma Kring is getting along very nicely and should be back to normal in about two more weeks. Dad Bring says he knows she is better because she has begun to fire orders and is getting more bossy all the time. They have moved the bed room down stairs for good, as the Doctor said she could not go up and down the stairs anymore.

They intend to make a half bath

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off the south side of their kitchen, which will work out nicely as they have more space down stairs than they need.

We also stopped in to see Unk & Elsie about our trip down to Florida and as of this time it looks as though they are going along. We wanted to fly down, but if they go along, we will drive. I will take a few extra days off to make up for the lost time driving. Barring any unforeseen circumstances and weather conditions we still plan on leaving here Jan 24th and hope to make it in 2 days. Ralph has some friends he would like to see, one at Pompano Beach a garage man and another at Homestead, so maybe we can all make the trip together.

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We can make our plans after we get down there as anything could happen between now and then. I would like to spend another day at Cypress Gardens and hope the sun is shining. I would also like to go to St. Augustine to get some pictures at Marineland. Maybe we could plan a route and our time so we could make both of those places on the same trip. Ralph has been reading a lot of Florida items and says he is ready to buy a lot if it is to his liking.

Ruth said to tell you we have 3 grape fruit, 4 tangerines and 9 oranges left. The fruit was really good (Time out) Jan 8 11:30pm

I suppose you wonder what happened to Jan 7. Well that is a

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different story which Ruth will have to explain when we see you. In the mean time all the tangerines are gone, 1 grapefruit left which I will eat in the morning and 3 oranges.

Don’t bother to send any more fruit as it would probably arrive about the time we leave here.

You can add about 5 more inches of snow to the 3 we had Sunday night. Believe it or not the neighbors are coasting down Wilson Hill Drive tonight. You don’t have to be crazy to live here but it helps, especially me. HardyHarHar

Your old gas box is working just fine (refrigerator)

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Bill Dennis left for a tour of Florida last Sunday morning. I hope they started early enough to miss the snow. I’m certainly glad he is making the trip maybe he will understand why I’m so crazy about the state. He is due back to work Monday the 21st which will leave us get away on the 24th “I hope”.

How are you getting along in the new house? We are anxious to see it. From the picture it appears that you have a good site lot and some nice trees. Which is the front of the house?– over

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I better bring this to a close, with Ruths letter I’ll have to sent it in another envelope. I’ll write again to keep you posted on our time of departure etc. Love H. O.

p.s. Lydia is doing very nicely and has got the Florida Fever Bad
p.s.s. I got the new boat fever.
ps.s.s. I got the Florida fever, I’ll need a new boat there more than here.



May 13, 1952 Herman (& Ruth) to parents

Columbus Ohio
May 13, 1952

Dick & Dad:-

How did you find everything up in the North country? Has the lake frozen over again? It has been cold and damp ever since you left. We didn’t go to Harbor View last week end as the weather was to bad. We went to church and while in Westerville stopped in at 22 W. Park and found everything O.K. also stole a quart of milk we found in the refrigerator. I finaly finished painting the basement floor so that it is one of my projects completed. Just like Ruth says I start to many different projects before I finish one. I think I’ll try finishing up a few before I start any new ones for a change.

I am having the cover for your boat repaired and reshaped so it will fit the boat also I’m having a hood made at the rear end of it so the motor will be covered as well as the boat all in one cover. Bessie the woman that makes our seat covers at the shop is doing the job.

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We received your cards and was glad to hear about the motor. I tried different plugs in the motor but that didn’t help any Im glad you still have the extra oil in that case, and hope we never need it. How is everyone the Beckers & Forders tell them we said Hello.

I am trying to arrange a week of my vacation for the week end of July 4th and the following week which would give me about 10 days. We thought that would be about the time you folks would be going back up, you could start a few days ahead of us and take the boat with you then we could start after work on July 3 and drive straight through. The only catch I can think of right now is that I might get into a jam at the Straite waiting to cross. As soon as I get the details worked out and decide on that date I’ll get in touch with Edw. Ralph Kring has his vacation the first 2 weeks of July so maybe we can work out something with him. I’ll need some one to help drive if we go straight through. That’s about all the news for now so till I hear from you. So long.

With Love Ruth & Herm

Great Aunt Ruth…

3260817401_9df2959b53_bI don’t remember seeing much of my great Aunt and Uncle Ruth and Herman Shepard when I was growing up. But I do remember some of the stories my mother would tell about Herman and his barn storming days, and how Grandma Dick use to like telling Ruth all about Herman’s old girlfriends. (Dick was kind of mean that way.)

Herman and Ruth never had any children of their own, and since I know lots about where Herman came from and his growing up years, but little about Ruth, other than she didn’t want Herman flying anymore when they were married, I thought I would improve that lack. (I have to say, she must have been a saint to put up with her mother-in-law Dick.)

Ruth Mae Kring was born the 1st of March in 1908, the daughter of Lowell Athelston Kring and Tressa Belle Hults, in Ohio. She grew up with two brothers and one sister: Ralph M., Vaughn A., and Esther. The family lived in Mifflin, Franklin County, Ohio where in 1930 her father was working as a welder for the Oxiste Company, and her mother raised the kids, as was typical of the times. Ruth, by 1930, was working as a sales clerk in a local department store.

Ruth and Herman were married in 1934 in Franklin, Ohio.

Ruth’s father Lowell’s parents, Andrew Kring and Mary Alma Kramer, were of German descent.

The Krings
Andrew’s parents were Conrad Kring and Catherine Siedner (nothing is known about Catherine’s family).

Conrad was an Evangelical Church minister, and apparently made up his mind, at 12 years of age, that a life of ministry was calling to him. This ministry led the family to move around from Pennsylvania to Ohio to Kansas, and finally back to Ohio where they made their final stop. Andrew grew up with 11 siblings.

Conrad’s parents were George and Magdalena Fry Kring, of Bedford County, Pennsylvania.

George Kring was the FIRST generation Kring born in the United States. He made a living as a shoemaker, a farmer and a minister (George would use his barn on the Sabbath to minister to the people living close to their farm). When he was young George spent much of his time making boots, harnesses, and shoes for George Washington’s army, and helping his father work on the farm. George hated working indoors, he wanted to be outside enjoying nature’s bounty.

George had a great urge to join the fight during the revolution as a drummer, his father discouraged his dreams, no doubt preferring his son home safe with the family. So home George stayed. George’s second wife was Magdalena Fye, of whom their son Conrad was born.

Magdalena Fye was born in Saxony, Germany. Her parents (whose names we do not know) came to American when she was a young child. The political strife going on in their homeland at the time was great incentive to move somewhere else and make a better life for themselves and their children.

The original Kring emigrant was Johan Jost Kring. He came to America with his brother. They were from Haigler, which is now in Western Germany.  As teenagers, they left Germany to avoid service in the Thirty Years War and went to the Netherlands for several years before immigrating to Philadelphia on the ship Two Brothers. They arrived in America on July 21, 1751. They settled in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. John was also a cobbler.

The Hults
I can not find much on Ruth’s mother’s side of the family, the Hults they are more elusive. It looks like Ruth’s great grandfather Henry Wells was born in England and came to America in 1850, when he was 15. He traveled on the ship Amazon with his mother, Sarah, and 6 siblings. Sarah was not with her husband (dead?), and never married after emigrating. She supported the family as a seamstress.

The Hults themselves appear to come from Illinois before moving to Ohio, where James W. Hults, Ruth’s grandfather was born. I do know that her maternal grandparents were James W. Hults and Cora Belle Wells. And a death record for James indicates that his parents were Milton Hults and Margaret Dempsey. (Dempsey is probably Irish.) One online tree indicates that the Hults line descends from the immigrant Benjamin Holsaert of the Netherlands born about 1675. There are no sources with this statement.

So, an admittedly cursory search into Ruth’s ancestral background. But it was a fun frolic up a different family tree.

We have lots of letters from Ruth and Herman that will be showing up in future posts, and I am looking forward to them giving more insight into Ruth and Herman’s lives.

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Ruth and Herman Shepard