September 5, 2016

Change of Pastors, St. Paul Lutheran Church, Hanover Settlement

My Elling great-great grandfather, Friedrich Elling, was one of the original members of the church at the Hanover Settlement in Napoleon Township, Henry County, Ohio.

Recently, while rolling through the newspaper microfilm, I found this article telling some of the history of when Rev. Louis Dammann left as pastor.  It's a little bit of church history, mixed with the story of Dammann's life, as well.

Defiance Democrat, December 14, 1916 -


At a meeting of the congregation of St. Paul's Lutheran church in the Hanover settlement, Wednesday morning, it was decided to accept the resignation of their longtime pastor, Rev. L. Dammann, and by a unanimous vote to extend a call to Rev. George Haas, pastor of Emanuel's Lutheran church in Napoleon.  Rev. Haas will no doubt accept the call, but will also remain with his Napoleon charge.

Rev. Dammann decided to tender his resignation to his congregation because of his advanced age.  He came to Napoleon from Monroe, Mich., some 35 years ago when called here by the Hanover church and upon his arrival founded the Emanuel's church and for many years acted as pastor for both churches.  About fifteen years ago, he resigned as pastor of Emanuel's to devote his entire attention to St. Paul's.  Rev.Wuebben filled the vacancy at that time.  During Rev. Dammann's pastorate, he has gained the love of his congregation who deeply regret the fact that he feels the necessity of retiring from active duty.

Rev. Dammann was born in a province of Hanover, Germany, started his studies prepartory to entering the ministry at Hermannsberg, Hanover, Germany.  Before he had completed his work and in his 30th year, came to America where he finished the study of theology and accepted a pastorate at Montray, Ohio.  During the next ten years, he served congregations at Liverpool and Amherst, Ohio, and at Monroe, Mich., and it was when he was at the last named city that he received the call form the Hanover church which he accepted and came to Napoleon, where he has since resided.   Napoleon Signal."

St. Paul Lutheran Church, Napoleon Township, Henry County, Ohio


Great-Grandfather, Fritz (Friedrich/Fred) Elling's Farm, 1880

An often overlooked resource for information on rural America are the agricultural censuses which enumerate all the crops, livestock, and production of each farm.  In 1880, the agricultural census of Freedom Township, Henry County, Ohio, gave us a picture of my great-parents' (Fred and Mary Rohrs Elling) farm as it was on June 5, 1880, although some of the questions refer back to 1879, as well.

(Not all of the children in the photograph were born by 1880 and the house shown is the one Fritz and Mary had later in Fulton County, but Fritz and Mary are front and center in the photo.)

Fred's land was in Section 29 of Freedom Township on the north side.  In the 1875 atlas, his neighbors were Lewis Bockleman, Christ Binger, H. Van Deyton and Mary and James Raddy.

In 1880, Fred owned 30 acres of land, tilled, and 10 acres of woodland in Freedom Township, with a value of $1600.  He valued his farm implements at $100 and his livestock at $300.  He had hired some farm help in 1879 for 26 weeks and paid total wages of $36.
For 1879, he figured the estimated value of all his farm production (sold or consumed) was $300.

The report on his livestock was based on what he had on June 1, 1879:
2 horses
4 milch cows and 3 other cattle
1 calf dropped and 1 sold living
3 sheep
2 sold living, 1 slaughtered and 1 died of disease
21 swine
30 poultry
Production from these animals included 400 pounds of butter made on the farm, 3 wool fleeces of 18 pounds, and 125 eggs.

The final tally on his crops for 1879 included:
16 acres of Indian corn with production of 400 bushels
2 acres of oats with production of 100 bushels
12 acres of wheat with production of 200 bushels
1/8 acre of sorghum for 9 gallons of molasses
1/4 acre of potatoes for 40 bushels and
2 acres of apples

I think the evidence shows that Fred and Mary were subsistence farmers, feeding their family from the farm, like so many others of the time period.  I would imagine a large garden was part of this scenario, too.  Hardworking, children of immigrants, scraping by and celebrating their freedom in Freedom Township!

Never Assume... John Spangler

Awhile back I wrote a post about Ludwig Spangler from Germany, but recently I came across a newspaper article about another Spangler, this one from Switzerland.  John Spangler lived in Defiance County, rather than Henry County, Ludwig's home.  
John Spangler
Photos from Public Tree on, John Spangler, Jr., 1836-1921

Defiance Democrat, September 24, 1891

"Meeting John Spangler, candidate for Infirmary Director, one day last week, upon inquiry we learned that he was born April 4th, 1836, at Maryishausen, Switzerland, county of Shaffanhausen.  In 1845, with his parents, he came to America, locating in Franklin township, Fulton county, Ohio, where he resided for ten years.  He then came to Defiance county and purchased the Isaac Braucher farm in Noble township, now owned by Henry Roehrs, and continued farming until 1864 when he went across the plains to California with a drove of horses.  He stayed in California two years and returned to Defiance, where, in partnership with Messrs. Greenler and Swartz, he engaged for one year in the flour, meat, and feed business in the building on the corner now occupied by the First National bank.  He then sold out his interest and purchased the Florida flouring mills which he conducted for nine years, then bought the Weidenhamer farm, in North Richland, where he has since resided.

From '45 to '64, he was engaged the entire time in farming and since '76 has devoted his time to that business as his large, well-tilled farm in North Richland shows abundant evidence.  Everywhere he is known as a straightforward man of sterling integrity and excellent business qualifications and will make one of the most thorough and painstaking officials which could have been selected.  This fact is conceded not only by Democrats generally, but also by many Republicans, who will give him their support."

Never assume, first, that the only good information on a subject is to be found in the obituary.  This particular piece offers much information for the researcher to pursue.  Secondly, never assume that since one Spangler was from Germany, they all must be.  These are obviously two very different families.

John Spangler & Isabelle Tuttle Spangler - headstone

Roland Edward Glanz - My Dear Uncle

        Roland Edward Glanz
June 12, 1922 - November 6, 2013

Roland (Ron) Edward Glanz, husband, dad, grandpa, great-grandpa, brother, uncle and great-uncle, carpenter, golfer, World War II veteran and POW, died on Wednesday, November 6, at 11:50 p.m.
He was at home with his family around him. We are not ready for him to be gone, but we are grateful for the time he was with us all.

Roland was born on June 12, 1922, to the late Leo and Gertrude (Kuhlman) Glanz, in rural Columbus Grove, Ohio.  He was baptized and confirmed at St. Peter and Paul Catholic Church, Ottawa, Ohio.  He also attended grade school
at St. Peter and Paul.

Roland graduated from McClure High School in 1941.  He entered the U.S. Army during World War II on February 12, 1943.  He served with the 409th Company infantry - 103rd Division in France and Germany.  He was captured by the Germans on December 2, 1944, at Selestat, France, and was a Prisoner of War in Germany, Stalag 4B, until he was liberated on April 4, 1945, by General Patton's Third Army.  Roland received an Honorable Discharge from the U.S. Army in December 1945.

On February 1, 1948, Roland married Eleonore Elling at St. Augustine Catholic Church, Napoleon, Ohio.  She survives.

For a number of years, Roland was a foreman at General Mills in Toledo, Ohio.  In 1964, he established Glanz Homes, Inc.  Roland and his men built many homes in Ohio, Michigan, and Hawaii, where the family lived for 9 years.  He was a "taskmaster" when it came to his construction work, no shoddy workmanship.  However, he never asked him men to do something he himself would not do.

After retiring in 1988, Roland enjoyed woodworking, building furniture for his children and grandchildren.

In recent years, Roland and Eleonore enjoyed traveling and spending winters in Florida.

Surviving are sons and daughters, Gary (Diane), Redmond, WA; Ava (Chuck) Stanford, Scottsdale, AZ; Kevin, Napoleon, OH; Maria (Kenny) Judd, Vashon Island, WA; Julia, Graton, CA; Alan, East Lansing, MI.  Son Keith died in 1998 at age 43.  Also surviving are Erica (Erik) Kachmarsky; Thomas Glanz; Kristen (Alex) Starkovich; Julie (Scott) Sanders; William DeGroot; and Finn Judd.  Great-grandchildren are Michael Rance, Avery and Grace Kachmarsky, and Brody Sanders.  Also surviving is sister, June (Bob) Billmaier, Findlay, OH. Roland was preceded in death by his parents and brother, Marvin.

Roland was a life member of the Napoleon American Legion, and a member of St. Augustine Catholic Church, Napoleon, Ohio.  At St. Augustine, he was married and buried, and he enjoyed a long, rich journey in between.

His celebration of life mass will be on Veterans' Day, Monday, November 11, at 10:30 a.m. at St. Augustine Catholic Church,officiated by Father Dan Borgelt.
 (Burial- St. Augustine Cemetery, Napoleon, OH)
Uncle Ron at his 90th birthday celebration in 2012
 Rest In Peace

Amelia Spoering - A Strong Woman for Her Day

Last summer, I wrote a post about a newspaper clipping I found in the Van Wert Daily Bulletin dated December 16, 1920.  It involved Anna Spoering and a lawsuit against a runaway suitor, only the paper had the name was AMELIA Spoering, as I found out this week at the courthouse.  Amelia was my grandmother, Ida Spoering's, younger sister.

The newspaper article read as follows:
 "A breach of promise suit for $8,000 was filed in Common Pleas Court at Napoleon by Anna Spoering against Theodore Drewes.  The plaintiff asserts that Drewes promised to marry her in the last week of September, that she was willing and ready to enter into a marriage contract with him, that the wedding day had been decided upon and all necessary preparations made by the plaintiff."

 I requested the court papers from the Henry County Common Pleas court and was excited to look at them this week.

The journal entry stated that on or about May 25, 1920, Theodore Drewes promised to marry Amelia and they set the date for the last week in September, 1920.
So Amelia planned the wedding, but when the time came near, Theodore "wantonly neglected, failed and refused to marry the plaintiff."


Unfortunately, Theodore, being a persuasive fellow, seduced and "carnally knew the said plaintiff and got her with his child."  Amelia wanted $8000 in damages and signed her petition to the court on December 9, 1920.

So a summons was issued for Theodore in Henry County and Sheriff J. H. Spencer, after a diligent search, determined that Theodore had left the county and he could not ascertain his location.  So, the lawman "left the summons in a conspicuous place" at Theodore's home on December 20.  It was noted that Theodore left the county specifically to avoid the summons, so an affidavit was filed to place an attachment on his property, 60 acres of land worth $18,000 in Section 34 of Monroe Township.

That, I'm sure, did not make Theodore happy and the prospect that a notice telling of this case would be in the paper was also not acceptable to him, so he had his attorney, Mr. Donovan, file a motion to quash the publication of the notices.  Obviously, the judge was not inclined to do that since the defendant had skipped town, so the notices were placed in the paper for six consecutive weeks.  To have this situation made public must have been embarrassing for Amelia, too, but she needed some support for her unborn child and so she had the notices put in the Northwest-News. (Formal child support laws did not go into effect in the U.S. until 1950.)
On March 19, 1921, the case was heard in the court of Common Pleas.  A jury trial was waived, so a judge decided the outcome of the case.  At this point, the defendant's whereabouts was still not known, so only the plaintiff, Amelia, appeared at the trial.
The judge's decision :
"It is therefore considered by the court that the plaintiff, Amelia Spoering, recover from the defendant, Theodore Drewes, the said sum of $2500 and her costs herein expended."  That would have been $29.56 of court costs.

So she did not get all she asked for, but she did get something and, in 1921, she had a son to whom she gave the Spoering surname.

September 2, 2016

O, Tannenbaum, O Tannenbaum

'Tis the season! I don't know what exactly triggered this memory, but I know some of my more "advanced in age" cousins will remember the Elling family Christmases at the American Legion in Napoleon. The image of Aunt Kate (and others who were able) singing "O Tannebaum" is so clear. In my child's mind, I always felt guilty for not singing along, but I could never get past the first four words!

I am amazed now at all the Christmas gifts Aunt Kate bought for everyone. I know somewhere deep in a box somewhere lies a white handkerchief with a tatted turquoise border and elsewhere is a nylon, lavender apron trimmed in lace, too delicate to really wear for cooking. I was never exactly sure of its purpose, hence I don't think it's ever been worn. Another year all the girls received little coin purses. I know my mom received a quilt from her one year. How did Aunt Kate accomplish this?

I can't talk about this family gathering without mentioning the card playing among the men with the German interspersed with English remarks, the circle of women who cooked and baked the best food ever...especially the German coffee cake, and the children who took awhile to warm up to each other, but then by the end of the evening, the running and sliding would begin.

I just really have fond memories of those days with our extended family.

(Originally published December 3, 2008)

Because I'm a Bookworm

Some of you may remember the time when Grandpa Elling would stay with some of his children and families for a month or so and then move on to the next. It was after Aunt Kate had died and his house was sold. One summer he stayed with our family for awhile when I was home from college and working a second shift job at a factory in Napoleon. I would get up late and eat lunch with him almost daily.

One morning I came into the living room after getting up and he said to me something like, "Since you're the bookworm, I've got something for you." Beside his chair was a small box of books. Inside was a book on World War I that I still have and a couple of McGuffey's school books. Both school books had belonged to Grandma Elling and had her signature inside.

In the photo above, one can see that she practiced writing her name over and over in the spelling book. The second book was McGuffey's Second Reader and this flyleaf also sports the names of Paul Elling, Malinta, Ohio and Louise Elling, Napoleon, Ohio. Ida Anna Katharine Spoering Elling was born on 5 February 1890, so these books were probably used before 1900. I wonder if a little girl who spoke German almost exclusively at home found these books challenging.

As a very young adult, I probably didn't appreciate these books as much as I should have, but now I surely do.

Albert Elling, the Single Man, 1912

In looking through my box of photos, I came across this postcard addressed to Mrs. Fred Elling, R 25, Delta, Ohio, dated November 6, 1912 and postmarked in Deshler. The back says, "Albert Elling on right" and that's it. I'm not sure who the other fellow is - maybe someone can help me identify him.

Grandpa Albert was born 28 Jan 1888, so in this photo he would be 24 and still a single guy. He didn't marry until 13 Mar 1913. He's looking mighty handsome in his suit and tie and classy hat. I sure see some resemblance to a few folks I know in the family, do you?
P. S. To enlarge the photo for better viewing, click on the picture.

This post appeared on November 8, 2011, on my former blog, Elling Family News.)

Albert and Ida Elling - Napoleon, 1944

I found this photo of my grandparents, Albert and Ida Elling, among my treasures this morning. At one time they lived at 403 East Main in Napoleon and I believe this photo was taken in the backyard at that house. Are those telephone or electric poles beside them? I remember very little about the house except for the little rooms and the coal (?) stove in the living room. 

The last time we were in Napoleon, Jim and I took a ride in that area, trying to locate it off of Rt. 424/ Riverview Ave. Without a GPS or a Mapquest map, we were unsuccessful because I just couldn't quite get the location. Now, with a map in front of me, I see that we were very, very close.

This photo - one of the few my mother dated - is marked 1944. Uncle Alfred and Uncle Ron were probably overseas at that point and World War II was in full swing. Maybe there was a Victory garden in the backyard on East Main and I seem to remember grape vines or is that my imagination? Aunt Alma wrote in her book that this home had belonged to Henry and Amelia Schlegel (Grandma's sister and husband) and when they moved to Traverse City, Michigan, our grandparents purchased the house. I'm hoping that you will email me any memories you have of this home.

(This post was originally on the blog, Elling Family News, now deleted.)

Going Home - York Township School

York Township Elementary School, Fulton County, Ohio
In the "olden days", we had no kindergarten, but children started first grade at five and this is where I showed up on that very first day of school.  I lived on the Fulton County side of the county line with Henry County, and so, instead of going to Liberty Center in Henry County, I went to York in Fulton County. As I remember it, first grade was quite academic, with play time reserved for recess only.  Alice and Jerry and Jip, the dog, were our fare, instead of the Dick and Jane readers.
In those days, York had grades 1 - 8 and I attended all eight years there.  I do remember most of my teachers - Mrs. Allomong, Miss Rashley, Mrs. Peabody, Mrs. Schmidlin, Mrs. Shelt, Mr. Krugh, Mr. Green and Mr. Hennings.  It was a tight knit, little family there, out in the country among the fields.  Definitely, there something to be said for the little, community schools and the security and feeling of belonging that they offer to children.  It's too bad that most have given way to consolidation.  I'm not sure we have that right.

Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island - Part 1

We were fortunate to have time to take a longer trip this year, so we headed to the Atlantic Maritime Provinces with a bus tour for thirteen days.  It was a wonderful trip, and 4000 miles later, we were still gushing on how much we enjoyed it.
I won't bore you with a lot of trip photos, but maybe just a few!

 By Day 3, we were in New Brunswick where
we had a very enjoyable trip on a lobster boat with a captain who told us everything we ever wanted to know about a lobster.  After instructions on how to properly eat a lobster, it was time for a lobster lunch on board.  Wow...messy!
This girl had grilled chicken.  Sorry.
I just can't eat anything with eyes staring back at me.  And its innards were still in there. 
And, well...not for me.  
The lobster was served cold, Acadian style.  Most agreed they would prefer it hot.

Another highlight was a stop at Cavendish, the home of Anne of Green Gables on Prince Edward Island. I had read the book years and years ago, but we watched the movie on the bus before arriving, and that was a nice refresher of the story.
What a perfectly beautiful, serene place to live.

Did you realize that Alexander Graham Bell was a Canadian?
I didn't.  We visited the Bell Museum, but his home was only visible from a boat.  It's a 37 bedroom mansion located on an island across from the museum and it's still used by the descendants of Bell.  Quite a little country home, hey?

We spent a day on Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia, following the 186 mile Cabot Trail.  Here you can see the road we travelled and the views of ocean or on the other side, the St. Lawrence.
Pink sandy beaches, rugged and rocky terrain, small Gaelic villages, thickly forested, and what seems like a removal from civilization, although I know folks live there. 

Halifax, Nova Scotia gave us a number of interesting stops.  The first was the old fort known as the Citadel.  This fellow was NOT going to smile.  One can see the Scotch influence in his dress.  The fort looks out on the harbor and once protected the citizens from any invaders.

The glorious Victorian gardens in Halifax were stunning.  Photos aren't enough.  All curves and circles - nothing in a straight line or square - it was very pleasing 
 to the eye.

One of our last stops was a cemetery in Halifax where many unknown and known survivors of the Titanic were buried.  The folks from Halifax were the first to come to the rescue when the Titanic went down.  Rows and rows of unknown persons are then flanked by some stones like this one.

To be continued...

(This post originally appeared on my other, now deleted, blog on August 27, 2014.)

Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island - Part Two

Part Two-

From Halifax, we traveled on to two stops I really looked forward to on the trip.
The first was Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia - one of the most scenic and well-known, little fishing villages.  
Yes, the water was this blue.
The ocean breezes were cool, but the sun was bright as if it wanted to show off all the charms that Peggy's had to offer.  

Although some of the homes have shops in them or have been turned into shops, the main industry is still fishing and lobstering.  The village is basically on rock, so one doesn't see a tree or much of a yard.

I saw one of these in Halifax and here was another in Peggy's Cove, and a few of our hotels had pay phones in the lobby.
I haven't seen one in the U.S. for a very long time.  

 As some of you know, our Spoering ancestors came from the Lunenburg area in Germany, so I was especially excited to see this Nova Scotian village named Lunenburg, founded by the Germans and Swiss.  
They came as farmers, but became seamen, as farming was not an option in this terrain.
So many lost their lives at sea that eventually a law was made that a father and all his sons could not be together on a ship so that if one went down, a man would be left to provide for the family.

The cheerful, colorful, historic homes are beautiful and reflect some of the traditions of the people.

 When our guide asked us why one window in this home was bigger than all the others, none of us knew.  She told us it was where the coffin would come in and out because tradition held that it would bring bad luck to take a coffin in and out through the door.

We crossed the Bay of Fundy, known for its especially high tides, from Nova Scotia to New Brunswick.  The ferry ride across is about three hours, with plenty of time for seal and whale watching.  
Of course, we saw many more sites and learned more about the Acadians and the Mik'macq First Nations who still populate the area.  But, to end, let me give you a sample of the cuisine...ahhhhhh...

(This post originally appeared on my other, now deleted, blog on August 30, 2014.)

Nashville Weekend - October, 2014

It was a quick three day journey to Nashville and back last weekend, with a great stay at the Opryland Hotel and a show at the Grand Old Opry.  We followed our recent trend of taking bus trips, easing the stress of driving and allowing both of us to enjoy the scenery along the way.  This year, however, the leaves have been slow to turn and so we didn't see the fall color we had anticipated.

Opryland Hotel Lobby
The Opryland Hotel complex covered 172 acres, so exploring would take more than the few hours we had each evening.  But, we covered all the territory we could!
Lovely glass sculpture and stained glass dome in the Opryland Hotel in Nashville

The Cascades area had restaurants and shops and a large walking area with every sort of tropical foliage.
 Our trip to the Grand Old Opry included a backstage tour which was very interesting.  We saw all the dressing rooms and waiting areas for performers, and also made it onto the stage, including a step onto the revered 6 foot circle saved from the old Ryman Theater downtown.  It was the Opry's 89th birthday celebration!
The Women of Country dressing room
 Trace Adkins was the headlining performer, but we also heard some of the Opry old-timers such as Lil' Jimmy Dickens who was in wonderful voice for 93 years old, and some newcomers such as Clare Bowen from the TV show, "Nashville."
Photo op outside the Grand Old Opry

Trace Adkins.  Getting a photo of his face was impossible!
We especially enjoyed our time with our travel know who you are!

(This post originally appeared on my past blog, A Face to the Sun, on October 15, 2014.)

Malinta - Grelton Mixed Chorus, 1939 - 1940

The people I can identify are:
Front row, from left: #2 Marie Warner Fuhrhop, #5 Donna Ordway Elling, #6 Marcella Gunter Rice
Row 3, from left: #5 Alta Mae Gunter Ritz
Row 4, from left, #9 David Rice

Maybe you know someone else?  If so, leave a comment!

Bringing Back the Memories - Great Grandpa Lem Ordway

Henry Lemuel Ordway - "Lem" - in the kitchen of his house in Malinta, Ohio
This photo brings back so many childhood memories of times spent with my great- grandparents.  This photo shows a corner of his kitchen and the old wood stove on which all the cooking was done and the baking, too - winter or summer.  A pail of kindling sits on the floor to the left of the stove, ready to keep the fire going.  On the left side of Grandpa, on the floor, it looks like the ash pan, as of course, the stove had to be cleaned out quite regularly. 

The ancient cabinet always held the Hi-Ho crackers that he would dole out a couple at a time to the grandchildren. On the wall to the left hung the matchstick holder, the matches handy to light the stove fire.  And tucked behind the holder, is a Farmer's Almanac, the bible of every farmer in those days.

My guess is that Grandma Bess (Lizzie, Elizabeth) made those curtains and probably the curtains in the cabinet, too.  On the stand beside the window sits the stool with the porcelain bucket filled with water pumped from the outside well.  A stainless steel dipper is in it, used by all for a cool drink.  I'm sure the pail is covered so that no unwanted debris, ashes or critters would enter the water.  The house never did have indoor plumbing.  The outhouse was a fair walk down a path behind the house.

Then there is grandpa with his cigar, looking mighty fine and content within his kingdom.  His blue eyes twinkling and the hint of a smile.  He wears the wool sweater which probably has a few small holes caused by the falling ashes of the cigar.

One of my favorite photos...thanks for sharing cousin Jim. 

(This post originally appeared on my former blog, A Face to the Sun, on May 11, 2015.)

Cape Cod and Martha's Vineyard - June 2015

It was just time for another getaway - this time a bus trip the very eastern U.S., Cape Cod.  The day we arrived at our digs, the Riviera Beach Resort, it was just plain cold.  The sea breeze was nippy and the beach didn't look all that inviting, not with a water temp in the 50's.  But then this is the shoulder season on the Cape and chilly weather was not unexpected.

The first day was spent in the Provincetown area, and the anticipated whale watch cruise was on the agenda.  The wind and rain and waves gave me pause, so I enjoyed shopping, checking out the library housed in a very big historic church, people watching and enjoying a masalada from the Portuguese Bakery while Jim set off into the Atlantic in search of whales.

He was greatly rewarded with sightings of over 20 humpback and pilot whales.  The sea was rough, but it didn't bother him.  Getting a good photo was difficult, but here is one.

 The next morning we headed for Hyannis. (No, you can't get close to the Kennedy Compound.)  We stopped at the JFK Memorial and then traveled historic Route 6A to Sandwich where we ate lunch at the Daniel Webster Inn and walked through the town.  

A walk through the Great Salt Marsh was a highlight. The plank trail led to a beach and then water.

The blue boxes in the marsh were there to attract the pesky Greenhead flies who lay their eggs in the salt marsh and are a real pest on the Cape.  First of all, they are persistent and they their cousins, the horsefly and deerfly...and they have large, iridescent green eyes.  The height of their season is July and August and sometimes beaches post warnings about them.  They are resistant to insecticides, so these boxes are placed with a pheromone that attracts the flies and traps them, hopefully before leaving their eggs.

A highlight for me was visiting the Plymouth Pilgrim sites - not the rock which is mythical anyway - but, despite huffing and puffing, the trek up 94 steps to the old Pilgrim burying ground was well worth it.  It was permeated with a sense of history and was almost ghost like on the top of the hill (also the site of their first fort prior to the cemetery). 

It was also pretty exciting to see this sign on one of the houses on the way up the hill.  A reference to one of my direct Doty ancestors!

To be continued...

(This post originally appeared on my former blog, A Face to the Sun, on June 25, 2015.)

On to Martha's Vineyard - June, 2015

(This post originally appeared on my other blog in June, 2015)
The last day of the trip before heading home was a visit to Martha's Vineyard.
We were up early and in line for the high speed ferry that would take us there.

 It took us a little longer because the waters were a bit rough, but the normal run to Oak Bluffs, Martha's Vineyard is 55 minutes. 
 Oak Bluffs is known for its colorful cottages and its Tabernacle in which Methodist services were held.  This was a large African American summer retreat in the early days and was made up of tents before the cottages were built.

 The large tabernacle had excellent acoustics, and while there, one man played beautifully on his violin.

One of the many colorful cottages, this was called the Valentine House. Usually the cottages have names and are passed down through the families.

We had a bus tour on a pretty colorful, old bus which once was a troop bus at Fort Campbell.  Our entertaining driver took us around the island and finally to Edgartown for lunch and shopping.

Naturally, I found a book store and fell in love with this decor!

Shopping at The Black Dog store
Our guide is an ice cream lover, so we never have a trip without finding the best ice cream in town.  On this trip, it was at SUNDAE SCHOOL.  Highly recommend.

 And too soon, it was time to head home with a lunch stop at Mystic Seaport, CT, and then the long ride home.  Exhausted, yet exhilarated, and ready for another trip.