Monthly Archives: January 2011

A Father’s Concern for his Daughter

In the somewhat shaky handwriting of a 72-year-old man, he signed the letter “[I] remain thy affectionate father, Jonathan Wright.” The letter, written December 12, 1820, was an expression of love and concern.  Jonathan had recently learned that his son-in-law, … Continue reading

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A Little Boy’s Shoes

Amid all the great and terrible things of history, parents have to put shoes on their children.  On the frontier, there was no Wal-Mart, no local store to provide any size and style of shoe a person wanted.  Other arrangements … Continue reading

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The Civil War of 1812

The War of 1812 is one of the least-remembered, least-documented wars in American history.  In preparation for celebrating its bicentennial less than one year from now, I plan to read Alan Taylor’s The Civil War of 1812: American Citizens, British … Continue reading

Posted in Harris family, Hill family, Kinsey family, Shaw family, Wars | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

From Immigrant to Entrepeneur

In 1849, my great-great-great grandfather, John Semler, came to America with his parents.  He was about fourteen at the time.  They settled in Somerset, Pennsylvania. They had come from the German state of Hessen-Darmstadt, from a small town called Nieder-Ohmen. … Continue reading

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A Love of Books and a Life of Challenges

Reading can provide an escape from the challenges of real life, and it can equip one to face whatever comes. My great-great-great grandmother, Ruth (Thorne) Dudley, was a reader (see my previous post, A Love of Books).  She valued books–several … Continue reading

Posted in Dudley family, Thorne family, Wayne County Indiana | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments