I know that I had never seen such a letter and found the concept of such a letter somewhat unbelievable. I wanted to see that letter, and my cousin promised to search for it, as she had a copy of it.
However they met, they married at the end of I often wonder about what their lives were like then. Did they know that war was coming? A year later they gave birth to their first child, whose birth was registered without a name by the town clerk.
But David and Clara were busy raising a family and running a farm. Two years later, in the middle of the war, they gave birth to their only other known child.
Such a small number of children was not typical of American families at this time. But the demographics of the country were changing.
With only two children to raise, David and Clara gave their all to ensuring they had good educations. This was a wise move, as Vermont would shortly lose much of its population as young people sized up their chances in an overcrowded small state after the war ended.
And so it came to be that the son of two small-town Vermonters — and my would-be great-grandfather — went to law school and moved to one of the largest cities in the United States, Cincinnati, in search of a brighter future than what was available where he had originated.
My great-grandfather in an albumen photo taken shortly after he moved to Cincinnati, Ohio. But my great-grandfather is a different story.
His family saved many of his papers.
He had the active social life typical of a young man then or now upon his move to the big city. Invitation for my great-grandfather to play cards. The writer wrote so exuberantly that she wrote off the right edge of the paper.
In his journal, also passed down to me, he calls it the most important year of his life. My great-grandfather in his office at the courthouse, dated very shortly after he was appointed Clerk of a US Appellate Court.
Telephones were rather new to Cincinnati while he was clerking, and he used the courthouse stationery to express his displeasure at the cutting of trees, perhaps hoping that it would add extra weight to his complaint.
His copy of his letter has a notation indicating he received a response, but that is not among the saved items. My great-grandfather also kept a scrapbook of items he found interesting in newspapers and other sources.
My great-grandfather would not live to see American women win the federal right to vote, though from the above clipping I suspect this man who had devoted his adult life to studying, understanding, and writing on American law would have been pleased.
My great-grandfather committed suicide in The family story I heard in response to my discovery is that he had had cancer for many years and the pain had gotten to be too much for him to bear.
I subsequently discovered that another family story is that he had killed himself to spare his family the debt of what he believed to be an incurable disease.
His death was carried in numerous newspapers around the country, openly reported as a suicide. Most of the articles said that he had had a long-term illness for many years and had only very recently become despondent over it. My great-grandmother was owner of the lot where he was interred, and likely provided the information on the card.
His death certificate was not so obtuse: There should be no shame in telling people that one is depressed or has some other mental health problem, nor in asking for help if one is suicidal, but too often these are feelings and thoughts that people keep to themselves.
I have no way to know if my great-grandfather told anyone he was despondent beforehand, nor how long he contemplated suicide before he carried out his thoughts.malou52 is giving away Writing Pen Office Ballpoint Pens Stationery Study School Supplies Black Gold for Ink.
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