Gleaning the Past.........Part 7
Burr Oak Township
St Joseph County, Michigan

Contributed to the Michigan USGenWeb Project

Transcribed and proof-read by Josephine Reed Garzelloni
2 Oct 1997

Bits and Pieces of history and her people
Collected and compiled by
Josephine Reed Garzelloni
Contributed to the St Joseph County Michigan USGenWeb for the free use of all.
Not to be sold or published without permission.

This work is done in honor of my Mother,
Maxine Virginia Reed
29 February 1916 ~ 7 February 1989
She did the very best she knew to do
in the face of overwhelming adversity
"Soar on the wings of angels my Sweet Mother"

Use the 'find' procedure, usually under 'Edit', on your web browser to search for your surname/s

Sturgis Journal
Pleasant Occasion
     Another delightful dinner party was given November 6, by Mrs J.J. Packard at her pleasant home on South Nottawa street in honor of Mrs Henry Church's 74th birthday. Sixteen old friends were present. At 12:30 p.m. a splendid dinner was served and at the close of the feast a large birthday cake appeared, crowned with sixteen lighted candles. Each guest was expected to blow one candle out and make a wish swuitable to the occasion. Some very remarkable wishes were made while mirth and happiness reigned and the hours flew all too fast. At the close of the evening Mrs Hamilton read a poem about friends entitled "Old Friends are Best".

papers of Geneva Smith

Sturgis Journal

     On the 25th day of November a surprise party was given on Wesley W. Zimmerman, at the home of his parents, northeast of Nottawa, it being his 21st birthday. A short program was arranged for the evening as follows:
     Music by Logan Gilkerson on the graphophone. Instrumental selection by the Misses Eva and Cora Carper.
     Music and song by the Misses Rena and Hacel Parham. Miss Bertha Hambright recited a poem.
After refreshments were served, a beautiful rocking chair, as a gift from his many friends, was presented him with a few well chose words from Samuel Kelly. Also a sum of gold from his father and a beautiful box of chocolate bon bons from Wolf Brother's Bank. The remainder of the evening was spent very pleasantly, and the guests departed at a very late hour wishing Wesley the return of many happy birthdays.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

A.J. Moore was very pleasantly surprised Saturday by a number of his friends, who gathered at the Moore home to remind him that his 75th birthday had arrived. A delightful six course dinner was served and a general good time enjoyed by all.

Note: the date is written in pen and I think it migh be 20 February and the year is 1909
papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn
1 June 1909

Mrs Mary Allen and Mrs Roswell Wilcox celebrated their 71st birthday Tuesday with Mrs Althea Himebaugh. Other ladies were present and a pleasant time was the result, with many wishes for a renewal of the happy occasion.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn
October 25, 1909
Celebrated 88th Birthday

Today is the 88th anniversary of Hiram Lockwood's birth and a quiet family dinner was held there today to observe the event. The guests were his brother from Coldwater, and Mr and Miss Bryant from Findley. Mr Lockwood's life has been an active one until within the past few years, but now he has to take life easy. May he live to see many more birthdays is The Acorn's wish.
papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn
8 September 1909

Mr and Mrs George Sheffield were guest of Mr and Mrs Burt Moulton at the White Star Fruit Farm yesterday, the occasion being Mr Sheffield's 78th birthday.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn
April 1, 1909

Pays Glowing Tribute to Burr Oak Man
Saturday's Jackson Citizen-Press paid the following splendid tribute
to Dr John C Rollman of this place:
     Burr Oak is the home of one of Michigan's oldest practicing physicians ~ Dr John C Rollmann. Dr Rollmann has bee in active practice there for nearly forty years. He went through the was of 1861 ~ 1865, and is now nearly 73 years old, but does not look more tha 60, and walks like the average man of 50. In all that section there is no man who has performed more acts of kindness than Dr Rollman. One of the doctor's pet schemes is the levying of a tax upon automobile owners, the money so raised to be used in building good roads. In spite of his life of hard work in his profession, he he hale and hearty, and bid fair to be so for many more years.

~Jackson Citizen Press.
papers of Geneva Smith


Burr Oak Acorn
May 11, 1909

Miss Mildred Woodman entertained eight of her little friends Tuesday afternoon, the occasion being her fifth birthday. Dainty refreshments were served and a good time had by all.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn
November 25, 1909

Last Thursday being the seventy-first birthday of Mrs L.A. Cross, her many friends planned to give her a post-card shower which was a success in every way, she having received eighty-two cards and four letters.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn
January 18, 1910

Michael Whitmer celebrated his 96th birthday Tuesday. His many friends remember him with a post card shower. In spite of his advanced age, he is still active and in good health.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

There was a happy family reunion at the home of Mr and Mrs A.M. Graham, last Sunday, the special occaion being the birthday anniversary of Mrs Graham, which , of course, necessitated one of those just right dinners wich she knows so well how to prepare and serve. Those of the gatherine were Mr and Mrs C.A. Tobey of Findley; Mr and Mrs E.A. Townsend; Mr and Mrs N.I. Tobey and Dr and Mrs Mercer and daughter Marion Jane of Sturgis.
I think the date may be April 12, 1910....written in ink and difficult to read, the year is correct.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn
28 June 1910

Saturday afternoon from two until five o'clock Miss Ruth Stanton entertained a jolly crowd of young friends to the number of about twenty in honor of her twelfth birthday. A unique menu had been arranged in which much merriment was derived in the guessing of the good things that would be served. Various games were enjoyed and Miss Ruth was the recipient of many pretty gifts from her friends.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn
7 April 1910

There was something of a hold-up over at Ira Plant's, Thursday night. Ira was the victim. The parties executing the scheme so successfully were heavily armed with the very best implements of warfare ~ basketsful of good things to  eat. Ira discovered that his 62nd birthday caused all the commotion, and immediately surrendered. Then followed games and dancing, and singing by Cyrus Bowdish that was very pleasing. Well, 'twas a real O.K. time, is the verdict of the neighbors and Ira.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn
A happy Occasion

A very pleasant event took place at the home of Mr and Mrs Selby, south of town, on Tuesday of last week, April 12, 1910, when several of their relatives and friends gathered to remind Mrs Selby of her birthday. They brought with them a goodly amount of good things to eat, as well as presents, and when the mail arrived it brought a shower of post cards and letters that beat all records in that locality. There were just 127 cards and every one a beauty, and Mrs Selby is very thankful to the thoughtful donors. Never will either Mr or Mrs Selby forget the happy day.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

Charles Tisdell of Sturgis has been on a visit to Burr Oak and Bronson relatives within the last week. This week he goes to Michigan City, where his wife is caring for a new grandbaby, and where he will remain until his wife returns, four weeks hence.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn
Note: date is written in pen...perhaps it reads 1 October and the year is definitely 1910

Dr Arthur J Kiser of Colorado Springs, Colorado, arrived here Monday, and a day or two later left for Lansing by way of Colon. He reports his family well, which includes the little daughter that came to their home a few weeks ago.

papers of Geneva Smith

Newspaper unknown

Senator J.C. Burrows
     Born, North East, Pennsylvania January 5, 1837. Taught school and read law at 17. Settled at Richland, Kalamazoo county, 1859.
     Captain in Seventeenth Michigan, 1862-64, being in the battles of South Mountain, Fredericksburg, Antietam, and many others.
     1866 - 68 Prosecuting Attorney Kalamazoo county.
     1872, first elected to congress, serving nine terms in the lower house.
     1895, first elected senator.
     A patriotic soldier, an ardent Republican, an able statesman, a hard party worker, he has grown gray serving his country and his party.

Note: there is a photograph in the newspaper.
papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn
19 July 1910 in ink

Ernest Beall celebrated his 50th birthday, Sunday, and received 40 post cards. He wishes to thank his friends for their kind remembrances. We all wish Mr Beall many more happy birthdays.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

Mr and Mrs Allen Lampman spent Sunday with Ernest Beall, helping him celebrate his 50th birthday.

Note: this was an article on the society page separate from the article above.
papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

Three ~Cornered Birthday Party
     It was a very happy and pleasant gathering at Cole Himebaugh's residence on Fifth street, a week ago last Wednesday evening, to celebrate the birthday of three of the brothers, Cole, Roy and Ray, which falls on the 29th of June.
     The law was beautifully decorated with Japanese lanterns, and tables decked with flowers and candles. A very delightful supper was served and a birthday cake cut by each of the brothers to  serve with the excellent "Terp" fruit ices and cream.
     Unknown to the others, Cole had previously arranged a surprise by having present Mrs Osceola Pooler, widely known as Michigan's Star Dramatic Reader, who entertained the assembly with some of her happiest selections.
     During the evening music and singing by various members of the family, interspersed the visiting hour, and made the evening most delightful.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

There was a surprise at the A.J. Moore residence Monday evening, the occasion being A.J.'s 77th birthday anniversary. The affair had been well planned and the "victim" made an unconditional surrender when his sons Charles of this place, Fred and Don of Sturgis and their wives, together with a few neighbors, "took possession." The evening was spent right merrilly. Of course a goodly number of refreshments were on the program. Here's hoping Mr Moore's wonderful vigor and activity may remain with him for many years.

date in ink; 30 January 1911
papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

Mrs Lloyd Shade gave a birthday dinner, Saturday, in honor of her husband and grandson, Lloyd Lemons, the former being seventy years of age and the latter five. The guess were Mrs Elizabeth Corry, Mr and Mrs Edd Arney and children, Mrs Erdine Godfrey and daughter, Muriel, and Mrs Lemons, of Three Rivers, S.J. Bower and family, Henry Wagner and daughter, Wilson Hafer, and Mrs Laura Smith and daughter.

date in ink: 11 February 1911
papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn
1915, no other date, written in pen

Saturday Thomas Shipp and wife (Dell Frasier) come down from their White Pigeon home, he remaining until Monday noon while she will be here with her parents during the week. Mr Shipp is in the employ of the paper mill in that place and tells us that business is very satisfactory, so much so that a large addition to the mills is to be made ere long. The fact that he has been active in paper making for the past thirty years would indicate that he is sure no amateur at the business.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

Michael Whitmer, who will be 97 years old on the 18th of January 1911, was an over Christmas visitor at the home of his son in Sturgis.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

William Selby was 80 years old Sunday, February 25, 1911, and his many friends remembered him with a shower of beautiful and appropiate post cards for all of which he is very thankful. May this excellent pioneer citizen be with us for many more years, is the wish of us all.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

Mrs Adaline C Plant, one of our best citizens, reached the age of 85 last Saturday. She was duly remembered, her son Ira and family of Findley, and son Frank of Three Rivers, visiting her, while the mails brought post cards to the number of at leas 85. May she be with us for many years.

date written in ink is 4 March 1911
papers of Geneva Smith

Beverly, Massachusetts ~ September 15, 1911

 This afternoon President Taft starts on his 13,000 mile swing around the circle. Today is Mr Taft's fifty-fourth birthday. It is also the second anniversary.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

Lucius Beal passed his 80th birthday Monday, January 16th, 1911, and his grandson, E.S. Beal, attained nine years of age Tuesday, January 17th. Mr Beal is confined to the house, being unable to move about on account of his recent accident. He was remembered by his many friends with a post card shower.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

Tuesday afternoon Mrs Helen Camp was given a surprise of the real kind by the ladies of the Presbyterian church and neighbors to the number of 35. The oft-quoted "well filled basket" was there, and a time long to be remembered for its real enjoyment, resulted. And on departing the ladies left with Mrs Camp a set of dishes and best wishes for many equally happy birthdays.

dated 20 June 1911 in ink
papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn
Last Saturday afternoon, July 22nd, 1911 about forty of the friends of Miss Mae Lockwood assembled at her home, the occasion being her birthday. A very pleasant afternoon was passed by all present. A bountiful supper was served to all. Mrs Shepard of Cleveland, Mrs Rockwell of Ludington, and Mrs Green, were among those present, and their presence greatly added to the pleasure of the afternoon. Just before supper was served all assembled on the lawn and Mr Kind photographed the  group. Verily, the occasion is one long to be remembered.

papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

A pleasant birthday surprise occurred at home of Mr and Mrs W.G. Fogel last Sunday, it being Mrs F's, 24th anniversary. The guests were Mr and Mrs E.W. Thompson and son Perry, Mr and Mrs Jesse Thompson and daughter Velma, of Quincy; Mrs William Snyder, daughter Viola and Mrs Lonnie Snyder of Litchfield, and Mr and Mrs Phil Nelligan of First street, at which the place the party visited during the evening. Many tokens were left in honor of Mrs Fogel's birthday.

dated 17 September 1911 in ink.
papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

  Last Sunday was the 82nd birthday anniversary of Amos Hopkins, and at the home, east of Burr Oak, himself and wife were made glad by the home-coming of their children, grand-children and great-grandchildren. A day long to be remembered was the result - and a happy climax was the excellent picture of the entire company taken by Photographer King.

dated 13 August 1911 in ink.
papers of Geneva Smith

Burr Oak Acorn

Last Monday Mrs James Watson was seventy-one years old and her relatives and friends remembered her with  147 cards and numerous tokens of love and esteem. A dinner was served to her children and friends after which an auto ride was indulged in, for all of which she wishes to return her sincere thanks.

dated in ink, 16 October 1911
papers of Geneva Smith


Sends us This One From Down in Old York State
Rockville Center, New York
July 5, 1911
  Dear Lester: ~ I am fooling away my 73rd year young birthday at the home of my son on Long Island, and memory takes me back to 1867, when I hired a corner in the store of Forman & Son in Burr Oak and started a jewelry store there.
  Later when we came to figure up we found that Alex A. Forman was married at Jackson, Michigan, September 10, 1866, and the next morning I was married at about 4 1/2 a.m. in Quincy, Michigan. We four were at Niagara Falls, under the water in oiled suits, about the same time, but didn't know it, being strangers in the care of guides who played us for suckers and won out. The rock under which we felt the spray and heard the road of waters above us, got ashamed and broke off afterwards.
  Well, the loving friendship started in your village brought a wedding of J. George Forman to Ethel, and Leon N to Sadie Forman, so you see we were doubly joined in the most loving ties. My dear wife and George have pass on ahead, but their sweet memory continues with us. Their lives were full of tenderness and joyful work for others, and charity for all. Alexander and wife live next to Leon's and across the street is the home of Frank Forman Fales. Bert lives in Woodmere, 'five miles away.' The big three, two Formans and Leon, each weigh over two hundred pounds and are in real estate and insurance business at 189 Montague street, Brooklyn.
  Ethel has four children and lives at Oberlin, Ohio. The two eldest are here for their vacation. Leon has a girl and boy, Bert has a girl. Fales has a boy and girl ~ ant the subscriber gets a joyous welcome among them all.
  Many of my Burr Oak chums have sent me birthday letters and cards, and my fist aches to give them a hearty shake.
  D.D. Case lives in Brooklyn. He will soon be 75 and is not in good health. Many will remember happy Dud and wish him and his family who are married and doing well all kinds of good luck. His daughter, Mrs Lilly Barnum, is expected from Toledo, Ohio soon.
  George B Case is successful in keeping a lot of fine decorators at work and is apt to mention the harness marker of B.O. and big, red apples in the same breath. See?  It would do Lew good to hear him talk and laugh about old  times.
  Violette Case Edwards is one of my dear friends, and her daughter Ruth bid fair to make her father and mother proud of her record.
  Theo B Case and family enjoy Brooklyn prosperity.
  The last week was a terror in heat for city people, but I stuck where the ocean breeze hit me daily and nightly and suffered very little during the heated term, while a couple hundred lives ended in New York City and thousands were prostrated.
  I congratulate James Todd over his excellent career of 73 years and also rejoice with his wife because their children have done so well.
  The death of N.I. Tobey hurt me ~ he was my friend. Others have taken the pathway to rest lately in St Joe county who help to make life pleasanter for me.
  A few weeks ago Mr and Mrs Forman and I had a happy auto ride with Mr and Mrs Fales to Far Rockaway, where the Hillsdale College Society met and talked, and ate a picnic dinner near Old Ocean. It was pleasant to meet the happy poet Will Carleton who was one of the organizers of the society which has about 70 members and meets annually. W.C. is the King Bee for fun.
  Doubtless you want me to "ring off" so I shut up with a hearty "God Bless you all."

Yours truly, Norm G Cooper
papers of Geneva Smith

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