Author Archives: Gail Brodhead-Kae

About Gail Brodhead-Kae

Someone who enjoys history, genealogy, antiques, and general sleuthing. Have traveled the world but always seem to come back to my roots.

Tintype of Angus children: Need help with IDs

I have this very old, Civil War-era tintype of some of the Angus children and could really use help with the identifications.

Please correct me if I am wrong, but I think I have three of them identified: my great-grandmother Wealthy Ann Angus (b. 1850) and her younger sisters Cecelia Bensley Angus (b. 1855) and Lavinia Pratt Angus (b. 1859).  I’m at a loss, however, when it comes to the rest.

There was one other daughter, the oldest of the four—Mary Martha Winans Angus (b. 1846). Is that her in the rear on the left? I know Walter (b. 1861) is not pictured since he was younger than Lavinia, and she appears to be the youngest one here. Likewise, I have seen a photo of Isaac, the oldest child (b. 1840), and one of James W. Angus, Jr., the second oldest (b. 1841), and they are not here either. I have a newspaper photo of Job Winans Angus Jr. (b. 1856; married 1883) as an old man, and don’t see enough of a resemblance with this young man. Same for brother Charles Dujah Angus (b. 1852; married circa 1880), whose photo I have seen on Ancestry.

I am wondering if the young man seated is not George Welsh Angus (b. 1849) and behind him his bride (or bride-to-be) Sophie C. Willey? They were married on May 15, 1870, when he was 21, and she was 22. The way Wealthy and Lavinia are seated towards him, he appears to be the focal point.

And, who is the girl in the middle?

PLEASE feel free to weigh in either in the comments below or via email (for the address, please refer to the “About” page)! Thank you.

Categories: Elizabeth, Union Co., Angus, New Jersey | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Who’s in that old tennis court photo

It dawned on me today, just after I posted the tennis court photo, that I may have an idea of who the lady and little girl are. I suspect that this is Cecelia Russum (Woodruff) Van Horn (b. 1878) and her little girl Abigail. Abigail was born in 1904, and here she looks to be about 6 (?), so if that’s them, this must be about 1910.

The Van Horn Children: Abigail Van Horn, Frances Van Horn, and Robert Osborn Van Horn

Is this Abigail with her mom Cecelia (Woodruff) Van Horn?

Cecelia (Woodruff) Van Horn (b. 1878)

Elizabeth, NJ, tennis court – photo was among those belonging to Jennie B. (Woodruff) Coleman

Categories: Elizabeth, Union Co., New Jersey, Van Horn, Woodruff | Tags: , | 2 Comments

112-year-old Brodhead family guest book — Post VI

Mr. & Mrs. Frank M. Brodhead Guest Book, 1908

Flora May Woodruff Baker, circa 1910

The next page from the guestbook! On August 18, 1908, Flora M. Baker and son, residing at Cranbury & Conant Street, visited for lunch. This was my grandmother’s older sister Flora May Woodruff (1877-1962) and her infant son Norment Woodruff Baker (1908-1979). Flora was married to Claiborne Barksdale Baker (b. 1870). He passed away in 1916, and she eventually was remarried to a gentleman named John Jacob Ulrich (b. 1884) and moved to California.

Evelyn Angus visited on September 4. I believe this was Evelyn L. Angus (1894-1981), the daughter of Charles Dujah Angus (1852-1938) and Harriet Hartnett (1858-1951). Charles was child #7 of James W. and Wealthy (Jaques) Angus. If this is the correct Evelyn, she was also the one who tended to my grandmother Fannie Woodruff Brodhead, in the weeks leading up to her death from pneumonia in 1965. Evelyn was one of my grandmother’s many 1st cousins.

Image credit: Michelle Causton. Original group photo cropped to show: Circled (left to right): Laura L. Brodhead, Calvin E. Brodhead, Gertrude M. Brodhead, and William McNulty Brodhead (on the occasion of the Golden Wedding Anniversary of Garret and Annie Brodhead (parents of Calvin, Laura, and siblings)).

September 8th saw the arrival of another Woodruff cousin—Lucetta Crane Woodruff (1867-1956), one of the never-married daughters of Ogden Woodruff and Phebe Asenath Bonnell, who had 12 children in all.

The next guests, on September 20, were on my grandfather’s side of the family—first cousin Calvin Easton Brodhead (1878-1945) with wife Gertrude Brodhead (1881-1961) and baby son William McNulty Brodhead (1906-1976). Eventually this family, which grew to have many more children, moved to Ohio.

The Central New Jersey Home News, New Brunswick, NJ, March 22, 1945

The last name on the page is Laura Leisenring Brodhead (1878-1949), Calvin’s twin sister, who resided in Perth Amboy. I don’t believe she ever married, but feel free to correct me on that. Shown here is a cropped image of the September 21, 1922, Brodhead family gathering on the occasion of Calvin and Laura’s parents’ 50th wedding anniversary. I have circled and noted who’s who.

Laura remarked in the guest book: “Tennis is great”. Perhaps she and my grandparents played a game of tennis earlier that day?  Sounds like it! I published a tennis-related photo once before (below). Perhaps, this was the court they played on. The time period looks about right.

Have a good and safe Sunday everyone. And, remember, “this too shall pass,” and we will be the stronger for it.

Elizabeth, NJ, tennis court

Categories: Baker, Brodhead, Heirlooms, Memorabilia, Woodruff | Tags: , | Leave a comment

112-year-old Brodhead family guest book — Post V

Untitled (Cracked watermelon) By Charles Ethan Porter – ca. 1890; Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

Another page from the guest book my grandparents started using right after they were married. And here we see my grandmother’s parents came to pay the newlyweds a visit: William Earl Woodruff (1848-1928) and Wealthy Ann Woodruff (1850-1927). The date was August 9, 1908. They resided at their farm on Conant Street and commented “Our first time to dinner to help eat watermelon.”

Wm Earl Woodruff & Wealthy Ann Angus

The following day, three visitors arrived: Mary Earl Woodruff of 854 Salem Road — “My first call”; Carrie E. Woodruff of 902 Salem Road — “Spent a pleasant evening”; and Mr. and Mrs. George Maxwell Earl of 637 Jefferson Avenue, Elizabeth — “Here for dinner.”

Mary Earl Woodruff (1880-1957) and Carrie Elizabeth Woodruff (1875-1967) were daughters of Ogden Woodruff and Phoebe Bonnell. Neither of the sisters ever married. They were my grandmother’s aunts even though the age difference between them and my grandmother was only 2 and 7 years, respectively.

Bertha Winans Woodruff (1888 – 1973)

Mr. George Maxwell Earl (1882-1978) was born in Elizabeth and baptized at the First Presbyterian Church there. He and my grandfather may have gone to school together or, perhaps, met through the church. George’s wife was Edith Willis (1881-1978; b. Pennsylvania). The couple appeared in a different blog post I did about my grandparents’ wedding and the list of gifts they received.

I do not know who Jessie A. Pierson was, but below her name in pencil is “Sister Bertha”—the same Bertha who visited previously.

Some August guests

Categories: Brodhead, Earl, Elizabeth, Union Co., Memorabilia, New Jersey, Woodruff | Tags: , , | 2 Comments

1918’s influenza in the news: “Coughs and sneezes spread diseases”

Advice shared with newspaper readers 100+ years ago. (For info on that pandemic, see Spanish Flu on History.com; newspaper article courtesy of FultonHistory.com.)

Categories: Health Matters | 4 Comments

A Florida Friday: The wonder of orchids in bloom

It’s the time of year here in South Florida when all of our orchids are in bloom or are on the verge of blooming. I thought I’d share some photos of some of the flowers that have appeared so far on our lanai. It’s always a time of wonder here. Perhaps these images will brighten your day, too!

Categories: Florida, Nature, Orchids | Tags: | 6 Comments

1869 Elizabeth, NJ, map showing JW Angus Estate now on eBay

An 1869 map is now on auction on eBay, or you can buy it now for $65. (Click here.) It shows the streets that eventually appeared on land owned by my second-great-grandfather James Winans Angus, who died in his fifties and left his wife Wealthy Ann with many mouths to feed. I recently posted a map that is in my family. This map on eBay is more extensive. I just took screenshots of the photos the seller has provided. If you look carefully in the upper left corner, you will see all the parcels still held by Wealthy. This is seven years after her husband’s death.

Just wanted to pass this tip along in case any Angus descendants out there would be interested. Have a good and safe day!

 

Categories: Angus, Elizabeth, Union Co., New Jersey | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Memories of a Madame de Ryther recipe lead to a fun eBay discovery

John George Brown (American, 1831-1913) Claiming the Shot – After the Hunt in the Adirondacks

A long time ago, I did a post about 19th-century food writer Madame Jules de Ryther‘s recommendations on how to prepare “roast saddle of venison” from deer killed during hunting expeditions in New York’s Adirondack Mountains. Perhaps you remember that post.

Well, I was scrolling through some antique postcards on eBay last week, and one in particular caught my eye–it was of two men in a canoe arriving at the side of a lake with at least a couple of dead deer in their vessel. The title was: “Adirondack Mountains. Bringing in the spoils.”

That Madame de Ryther post came to mind, so I paused to take a closer look at the scene. On the front right side was a small note written by the sender, someone named Ripley Watson: “Am up at Lake George, having a fine time. Remember me to your brothers, please. Ripley Watson.”

Adirondack Mountains. Bringing in the spoils

Then I turned the postcard over and was absolutely shocked to discover that the recipient was someone I knew from my family history research and had actually met over a half century ago when visiting my late grandmother in Plainfield, NJ. I was only a few years old at the time and don’t remember the visit, but I do have a photo to prove that I was there!

How amazing! I am still pinching myself. Life is full of strange little surprises. I felt compelled to buy the postcard, and it arrived the day before yesterday from Pennsylvania.

Postcard addressed to Miss Cecelia Russum, postmarked 10 July 1906

Miss Cecelia Bell Russum (1090 East Jersey Street, Elizabeth, NJ) was the postcard recipient, and she would have been 18 at the time. Some of you may know who Cecelia was. For those who do not: she was the only daughter of Cecelia Bensley Angus (1855-1933) and Thomas Bayley Russum (cir. 1850-1938) of Elizabeth, New Jersey, who also had four sons (Thomas; Charles, who died before Cecelia was born; Frank; and William).

Cecelia Bensley Angus was a daughter of James Angus & Wealthy Ann Jaques and one of my great-grandmother Wealthy Angus Woodruff’s younger sisters.

These two Angus sisters were five years apart, but each gave birth to a daughter in 1888: Cecelia Bell Russum was born in June, and Wealthy’s daughter Bertha Woodruff in October. They all appear in the below group photo taken, I believe, in 1892 on the occasion of the funeral gathering for Wealthy Ann (Jaques) Angus. (Note: I have posted this group photo before. I think I have the Russum kids shown incorrectly apart from William and Cecelia, but plan to fix that label soon.)

William and Wealthy Woodruff with extended family, Elizabeth, NJ, circa 1893 (Photo from my family’s personal archives)

I took a quick look to see who Ripley Watson may have been. Cecelia’s brothers all went to Rutgers College (classes of 1895, 1902, and 1910), and I found a Ripley Watson who was in the class of 1908. A few tidbits I found about him indicated that he was gifted academically and played varsity football (6′ tall, 186 pounds). Published almost a decade after his graduation, The Catalogue of the Officers and Alumni of Rutgers College… 1766 to 1916, published by Rutgers, gives the following information about Ripley: Born at Jersey City, NJ, Mch. 15, 1886. Lawyer. L.L.B. (N.K. Law School,1910). A.M. (Rutgers, 1911).

So here was Ripley in July of 1906 sending Cecelia a postcard from the Adirondacks. Perhaps, he had romantic intentions? If he did, nothing came of it. Cecelia remained single, living at home with her parents, into her early forties, when she met and married the much older Reverend George Rutger Brauer (b. 1871) in 1931. Unfortunately the marriage was short lived as George died in 1935 of a cerebral hemorrhage. His Find a Grave memorial has some photos of him as well as a long obituary that appeared in the New York Times. Click here if you are interested in seeing that memorial page (and here if you want to see the page for his first wife Eugenia Lathrop Brauer, who died in 1929).

Back to Cecelia. She died in Los Angeles in 1981 at the age of 93, outliving her cousin Bertha by almost a decade. Remarkably, we have the photo showing the two as young children and another showing them some seven decades later, sitting on the front porch at my grandmother’s house—with me and my sister the young children this time around. The ladies had remained good friends. I don’t know what happened to Cecelia after this or why she moved to California. But, how amazing is it that 114 years after that postcard was sent to Cecelia, it’s ended up here with me!

Circa 1964: Bertha Woodruff (left) and Cecelia Russum Brauer (right) with two little mischief-makers in between

Cecelia Bell Russum and her cousin Bertha Winans Woodruff back in their mischief-making days

Categories: Adirondacks, Angus, Elizabeth, Union Co., New Jersey, New York, Russum, Woodruff | Tags: , , | 4 Comments

112-year-old Brodhead family guest book — Post IV

Richard H. Brodhead, Sr.

Yet another two pages from my grandparents’ guestbook. We are still in July 1908, and here we find a some Brodheads visiting from Greenville, Pennsylvania, a small town located in the northwestern part of that state.

Jennie & Richard Brodhead at his brother’s Golden Wedding Anniversary gathering on September 17, 1922 (Photo Credit: Michelle Causton)

This is my grandfather’s aunt by marriage, Jennie Vanderveer Smock Brodhead (1861-1938), and her son Richard Henry Brodhead Jr. (1900-1966), on July 21, and her two daughters Mary Ophelia Brodhead (b. 1892) and Estelle Smock Brodhead (b. 1890) on July 31. The family resided at 118 Clinton Street in Greenville. (A third daughter Jean Blakslee Brodhead was born in 1893 but only survived 24 days.)

Richard H. Brodhead Sr. was my great-grandfather Andrew Douglas Brodhead’s youngest brother (he had 6 of them and 3 sisters—the children of AJ Brodhead and Ophelia Easton). There were 11 years between the two, so Richard and Jennie’s children were about a decade younger than my grandfather Frank M. Brodhead and his siblings Lewis and Andrew.

Visiting with Jennie and her kids was Elizabeth Smock Ketcham, Jennie’s older sister, of 224 Summer Avenue in Newark. I found her on Find a Grave and evidently she remarried in later life and lived to a ripe old age of 94.

Among the other visitors, I see my grandfather’s younger brother, Lewis Dingman Brodhead (1884-1933), and possibly a girlfriend (Lina Ryan) on July 24. He’d have been 23 at that time, and this was three years before he eloped with Mildred Hancock.

Top: Parents Andrew D. Brodhead and Margaret Lewis Martin Brodhead. Their three sons: Frank Martin (seated left), Lewis Dingman (right), and Andrew Jackson (standing in rear) (PHOTO of the three brothers courtesy of James & Barbara Brodhead)

The name Hefley (December 13, but for some reason on this page of July and early August visitors) sounded very familiar to me so I asked my Mom about them. She says the Hefleys, who gave their address here as 515 Chilton Street, Elizabeth, NJ, were good friends of my grandparents and that they were a very nice family. He, Morris Hefley, was a stock broker who lost everything during the Great Depression. She, Mabel Hefley, was a happy homemaker who was known for the great cakes she used to bake. They were members of the First Presbyterian Church and had six daughters, but had always hoped for a son. Daughter #6 Wilma was my mother’s age—Mom says they’d hoped for a William, but ended up with Wilma.

As for the other names, I’ll have to do a bit of sleuthing.  Florence A. Earl of Conant Street, visiting on August 2, 1908, was probably one of my grandmother’s cousins on her father’s side of the family (William Earl Woodruff).

Elizabeth Daily Journal on January 20, 1909. Page 3.

Thomas A. Kidd, who visited on July 25, lived at 225 Milton Avenue in Rahway, which seems to be the same address given by Alvira Anness earlier in the month (see last post). I found the small obituary shown here for someone with this name; if this was indeed the same person, perhaps he was boarding with Alvira and her family. Sounds like he experienced a great deal of tragedy in his life, poor man.

If/when I learn more, I will add the info to this page.

Categories: 1st Presbyterian Elizabeth NJ, Brodhead, Elizabeth, Union Co., Greenville, New Jersey | Tags: , , | 6 Comments

112-year-old Brodhead family guest book — Post III

I’m back with another page of my grandparents’ guest book. Now this one is very interesting to me because it shows some visitors from the Lewis/Wait family line. These are relatives of my grandfather Brodhead’s on his mother Margaret Lewis Martin’s side of the family: Sarah Effie (Lewis) Nicholls and her 6-year-old son Raymond L. Nicholls, people I discovered a number of years back as I researched that line.  And here I find them in the book on July 20, 1908, all the way from Blue Mound, Illinois! And joining them on that day were Margaret Lewis Martin’s sister Mary M. Andrews and her 12-year-old daughter (from her first marriage) Alvira Anness, who were living at 225 West Milton Avenue in Rahway.

You can look at the below tree to see the relationships. Raymond and Alvira were my grandfather’s much younger second cousins. Sarah was a first cousin to Margaret and Mary. The three all shared grandparents Margaret Lewis Wait and Jacob Lewis.

Other visitors were John Hunter, 566 Jefferson Avenue, Elizabeth, NJ, “Enjoyed a good dinner” on July 14, 1908, and Mr. and Mrs. T. F. Winans on July 24, 1908. I don’t know which Winans these were. Once I figure that out, I will update this page.

1-David Wait b. 20 May 1754, Edinburgh, Midlothian, Scotland, d. 11 Nov 
  1810, Perth Amboy, Middlesex Co., NJ
 + Irene Bell b. 20 Oct 1764, d. 31 May 1804, Perth Amboy, Middlesex Co., NJ
|-----2-David Wait b. 15 Jan 1785, Perth Amboy, Middlesex Co., NJ, d. 7 Nov 1825
|-----2-John Oliver Wait b. 10 Jan 1787, Perth Amboy, Middlesex Co., NJ, d. 
|       23 Nov 1876, Home of son James Wait, Perth Amboy, Middlesex Co., NJ
|      + Elizabeth Crow b. 11 Sep 1792, Woodbridge, Middlesex Co., NJ, d. 9 May 
|       1854, Perth Amboy, Middlesex Co., NJ
|     |-----3-Margaret Ann Wait b. 7 Mar 1817, Perth Amboy, Middlesex Co., 
|     |       NJ, d. 26 Mar 1851, Perth Amboy, Middlesex Co., NJ
|     |      + Jacob Lewis d. After 25 Mar 1851
|     |     |-----4-Charles Smith Lewis b. 22 Dec 1834, Perth Amboy, Middlesex 
|     |     |       Co., NJ, d. 8 Feb 1921, Blue Mound, Macon, Illinois
|     |     |      + Nancy Elizabeth Clemmons b. 19 Nov 1841, d. 1905, (Hall 
|     |     |       Cemetery, Blue Mound, Macon County, Illinois)
|     |     |     |-----5-Sarah Effie Lewis b. 26 Mar 1867, Blue Mound, Macon, 
|     |     |     |       Illinois, United States, d. Mar 1913, Blue Mound, Maco
|     |     |     |       n, Illinois, United States
|     |     |     |      + Elton Luther Nicholls b. 19 Feb 1864, Medina, Ohio, 
|     |     |     |       USA, d. 1 Sep 1905, Macon, Illinois
|     |     |     |     |-----6-Raymond L. Nicholls b. 30 Apr 1902, Macon, 
|     |     |     |     |       Illinois, d. 10 Jan 1989, (South Macon 
|     |     |     |     |       Cemetery, South Macon Township, Macon, 
|     |     |     |     |       Illinois, USA)
|     |     |-----4-Sarah Augusta Lewis b. 26 Nov 1836, Perth Amboy, 
|     |     |       Middlesex Co., NJ, d. 2 Apr 1900, (Alpine Cemetery, 
|     |     |       Middlesex Co., NJ)
|     |            + First Lt. Moses Martin b. 1833, Woodbridge, Middlesex Co., 
|     |             New Jersey, d. 1883, Tompkinsville, Staten Island, New York
|     |           |-----5-Margaret Lewis Martin b. 15 Jun 1859, Perth Amboy, 
|     |           |       New Jersey, d. 25 Nov 1945, Elizabeth, Union Co, 
|     |           |       NJ
|     |           |      + Andrew Douglas Brodhead b. 17 Aug 1853, East Mauch 
|     |           |       Chunk, Carbon Co., PA, d. 6 May 1917, At Home, 
|     |           |       Elizabeth, Union, NJ
|     |           |     |-----6-Frank Martin Brodhead b. 5 Feb 1882, Perth 
|     |           |     |       Amboy, Middlesex Co., NJ, d. 8 May 1951, 1321 Ra
|     |           |     |       ritan Rd., Scotch Plains, NJ
|     |           |     |      + Fannie Bishop Woodruff b. 11 Jun 1882, Conant 
|     |           |     |       Street Woodruff Farmhouse, Hillside, New 
|     |           |     |       Jersey, d. 5 Sep 1965
|     |           |-----5-Mary Marsh Martin b. 30 Sep 1863, New Jersey, d. 15 
|     |           |       Aug 1955
|     |           |      + Winfield S. Anness b. 25 Oct 1861, Stamford, 
|     |           |       Connecticut, USA, d. 29 Nov 1899, Woodbridge, 
|     |           |       Middlesex, New Jersey
|     |           |      + Andrews
|     |           |     |-----6-Alvira W. Anness b. 13 Oct 1895, Middlesex, New 
|     |           |     |       Jersey, USA
Categories: Anness, Blue Mound, Macon Co., Brodhead, Elizabeth, Union Co., Illinois, Lewis, Martin, New Jersey, Wait | Tags: , | Leave a comment

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