Karen Zach - The Paper of Montgomery County
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Friday, December 13, 2019
  • Census info: Future . . . and past
    Thursday, December 12, 2019 12:29 AM
    Lately, the scuttlebutt on the Indiana Genealogy Facebook page naturally has centered around the 2020 census. Some are readying to be enumerators; others want to know what will be included for genealogical purposes (like we’ll be around to see it released in 75 years) and still others have shown us handwriting examples of their ancestors who were census workers in the distant past.
    So, in honor of the upcoming census year, I thought I’d start with my favorite one and tell you about those men who took the enumerations in Montgomery County during July 1859-July 1860.
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  • Meharrys were givers from Montgomery County’s past
    Thursday, November 21, 2019 4:00 AM
    Those of us who grew up in Montgomery County know about as much about the Wallaces, Lanes, Elstons and such as we do about Abe Lincoln or George Washington; however, there is another (well probably lots more really) who deserves a great deal of glory in the annals of MoCo! I suppose many of you have heard of the Meharrys but may not know the amazing philanthropy involved with that name. I’m including Alexander Jr’s findagrave photo as I’ve seen several other family men and they all resemble this handsome fellow. 
    It all began with Alexander Meharry born in Ireland 5 August 1763. A good and righteous family, his folks were driven from their Scottish birthright property by Papist persecutors and ended-up in County Cavan, Ireland. Alexander married Jane Francis there in early 1794 and almost immediately embarked in a tumultuous 13-week voyage landing on the shores of New York. From there they removed to Lancaster County, PA. In Connersville, that state, Hugh, their first child was born two days before Valentine’s in 1797 on a rented farm. The next year they settled in Adams County, Ohio where the whole family suffered dreadfully with the ague as well as lost every ear of their first crop of corn due to an early and complete freeze. Then life smoothed out and all was well. In that place, the rest of their eight children were born, six more sons and one daughter: Thomas, Mary, James, Jesse, David, Samuel and Alex. In fact, Jane was carrying Alex when on the way home from a camp meeting, riding his favorite horse along, discussing their religious get-together, a huge Oak tree fell in the road with one of the large limbs breaking Alex’s skull (21 June 1813). Jane’s oldest was barely 16. The others left were 14, 12, 10, 8, 5 and 3. Plus, don’t forget the one on the way. Can you imagine?
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  • It’s classy camo for this wedding
    Thursday, November 14, 2019 4:00 AM
    It was back to my fav interviewing spot this week to meet a fun, nifty couple. Neither are Montgomery-born, but he graduated from Southmont and she graduated from nearby McCutcheon where she was active in Girl Scouts, 4-H, softball (an outfielder and clean-up batter) and played oboe in band. In 4-H she took foods, sewing, child development, and forestry mainly but one year did ten projects much to her momma’s chagrin. He was a football player for Mr. Coudret, plus had played tuba and wrestled a year. Born in Champaign, Ill., he moved to Thomasboro through 8th grade and came here in 9th grade where he lived in the famed painter, TC Steele’s boyhood home for a time. After marriage, they lived in Waveland until not long ago when they moved closer to Crawfordsville. We had a great time at Pizza Hut – I enjoyed ‘em immensely! What a great young couple.
    Before he even graduated from high school, he had a job at Raybestos, hired by my brother, even. He hadn’t realized I was a Bazzani so that was fun to fill-out information about all the side ways we have connected and hardly realized it. For instance, he coached their son, Austin, in soccer from Kindergarten-6th grade and coached our grandson, AJ, too, so we enjoyed catching-up on AJ being a Navy Nuke, now and Austin as a security guard. They also have an 11-year-old daughter, Camden who is “going on 30,” as he says. As a 6th grader at South, she swims, golfs and just finished the Addams Family musical, having a blast in that! So, he worked at Raybestos for 18 years as a tool and die maker. When Raybestos was having troubles (“Getting goofy”) he decided to look for another job. 
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  • A man from strong and good stock
    Thursday, November 7, 2019 2:43 AM
    Montgomery County has been extremely blessed to having so many talented writers and artists, and I was recently asked about one of the latter. Yes, I had heard of the man, but couldn’t really tell Bev much concerning him.
    As soon as I got home, I checked my very large (320,000+) people database, mainly area ones and I had him in there with a census record or two but nothing to really give me a feel of who he really was. So, the search began and what a fun and interesting one it turned out to be.
    Fred Nelson Vance was a native-born Montgomery Countian, viewing his first peak at the world on a somewhat artistic date even, 8-8-80. Born to a talented artist and intellectual reader, George M. and Josephine Nelson Vance, he was the only one of their three children to live to adulthood. Sadly, since Fred had no children, the talent stopped there or perhaps there is a cousin or two still spreading beauty? 
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  • It All Began With Eve
    Thursday, October 31, 2019 4:00 AM
    This week I’m featuring a most interesting local gal who loves to travel, especially to the Tennessee Mountains but can’t go anywhere much because of all her babies. She sleeps very little … because of her babies. Although she has two grown, tame ones of her own, these babies are wild ones. In fact, she is a certified Wildlife Rehabilitator.
    Having grown up in the country, she was always around animals of all kinds and forever had a fascination and love for them. People would ask her as a youngster about what to do in a certain situation in regards to their animals. Definitely, she’s a natural, plus has studied and read about them since back in childhood days. That’s not her only interest in reading, though, as she loves Nicholas Sparks, an occasional mystery as long as it’s not scary and some history such as the Holocaust. Plus animals, of course! 
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  • Cpl. Brown etched In stone
    Monday, October 28, 2019 12:13 AM
    Philip “Mark” Brown, buried in Oak Hill Cemetery is our soldier this week, joining Co D of the 116th (at age 20) where he was a corporal, serving the whole six months of the 116th’s existence. The 116th was active from Aug. 17, 1863 to March the 2nd the next year and lead the Morgan, Hines and Newburg raids, plus fought in at least the Battle of Blue Springs, Walker’s Ford, Pogue’s Run and a few skirmishes.
    Although more than one source said they only lost one man in battle and 64 to disease (average about 11 per month, which is mind blowing), the 1881 Beckwith History for Montgomery County had more than a dozen listed as KIA, plus William Gillian dying in Andersonville Prison. Quite a difference in information. The group spent most of the time in Eastern Tennessee. Mark Brown would become a pensioner for his part in the Civil War.
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  • How many towns in Montgomery County? 513!
    Thursday, October 24, 2019 4:00 AM
    513. Get that and it’s still growing! That is the number of the towns in Montgomery County found so far. Granted, many of them were just little whistle stops for the railroad or an area with 3-4 homes that someone tagged with the name of the oldest person living there, but all in all, these are places with at least some habitation throughout the 196 years of our county’s existence. 
    Probably I’ve been working on the little collection for at least 15 years and likely a couple over that, and it’s not just me, I’ve had lots of help (especially once I hit the first 100 it peaked a great interest), daughter Suzie, Jerry Turner, Dellie Craig, Kim Hancock, who have all contributed multiple ones, plus others sending me 2-3 they’ve found, all totaling that 513. The majority (although I’m working on updating the page to make it a bit easier to peruse – see the bottom to find the long list) can be found on my Montgomery GenWeb page ( although I’ve found a few yet that aren’t mentioned there. 
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  • Sunday, October 20, 2019 4:00 AM
    Although our soldier began receiving an old age pension for his three years service in the Civil War (Co H, 116th US Colored Volunteer Infantry) he didn’t accept the fact that he was old. Thus, he ran for public office – several times. Born near Frankfort, Kentucky, the day after Christmas in 1829, he appeared here after the war with determination to make an impression upon our fair city and that he did.
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  • Diving through time Karen gets 1890ish photo album to peruse
    Thursday, October 17, 2019 4:00 AM
    Recently, I was given a beautiful, old (1890ish) photo album (thanks so very much to Jeanie W) and my sweet hubs scanned it. You can see it here: It is in pretty good shape for being a century plus old and the majority of the pictures scanned very well. There were 40 photos Jim added to the GenWeb site and I’m so excited to have this addition to share.
    There are family photos, baby pictures, wedding ones and several adult individuals, as well. There is no indication of the owner or who the people (except in a few cases) are but definitely major hints as to who others could be.
    A dozen or so photographers are represented, but many are taken by the Willis family here in Crawfordsville. Other C’ville ones include the Nicholsons, Lawson & Ficken and HW Clark. Information about where and when these photographers existed are also on the website. A couple are from Indianapolis, Paris, Ill. and Brecken, Mo., even. 
    Two photos of Bert and Charles Hulvey are in the album, one of them as younger boys (see photo) ages maybe 10 and 13 and one I’d say in their 30s, possibly one as older men. Fairly sure several other photos of them as individuals and with families are also in the album.
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  • Monday, October 14, 2019 4:00 AM
    Such a sad story for this week’s soldier, one with a different twist, too! Kim Hancock didn’t order his stone, she found it. She discovered it while in the O’Neall cemetery at Yountsville. The stone was perfectly buried an inch under the ground. An unbroken, beautiful 18 x 45 memorial to a brave young man who fought in Company E, in the 72nd Indiana, better known as Wilder’s Brigade. 
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  • Thursday, October 10, 2019 4:00 AM
    Well, the reveal is immediate today! A few may say, “It’s about time she hangs up this article,” while others (hopefully, the majority) will be thinking, “Ahhhh, I will really miss trying to guess who Karen is writing about this week!”
    It has been a great haul, but honestly, I’m not 100% positive how long I’ve been writing, Around The County. If my calculations are about right, I’m a few weeks shy of ten years. Round it off to that, I’ve written about 520 articles, some about individuals, mainly couples and a few groups and families, so imagine close to 1,000 individuals. It’s been fun, real fun! Sadly, I know there are many more awesome folks in Montgomery County I missed out there! 
    My usual hang-out for interviewing was of course (my faithful readers will know this one) the Pizza Hut. The majority of the get-togethers were there, but the libraries were my meeting places, too (C’ville, Ladoga, Linden, Darlington and Waveland) as well as individual homes. There were others, even the neat little place where I work on Monday and Tuesday evenings (Italian Pie & Bakery in Waveland), Up The Creek, one was in a flower shop (and I’m highly allergic, plus have asthma so that was a bit scary) at a couple of ball games (hey, ya’ gotta’ catch ‘em where ya’ can) and the shocker to my grandkids (I’d never take them there) was I even met someone at McDonald’s. I’ll sure miss those places, especially PH.
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  • Monday, October 7, 2019 4:00 AM
    (James) A.B. Craig may be the Etched In Stone soldier with the least known information. He is in the listing of the American Legion soldiers’ graves to decorate under James Craig and is A.B. Craig in the Masonic (Oak Hill Grant Avenue) cemetery records. It simply said A.B. Craig interred May 21, 1900 and an S beside it which always indicates a soldier. No dates, no one to contact not even anything to do with payment or the kind of burial vault. Nothing, just the initials, last name and date he was buried (which is two days off by the way).
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  • Perhaps Karen got a bit off topic this time but read on to discover why
    Thursday, October 3, 2019 4:00 AM
    Ever been somewhere waiting on someone and they were already there wondering where you were? Bingo! That’s what happened this week at The Forum when I met my guests. I texted “I’m here,” after about 20 minutes. “We are, too!” Right behind me. So, we got together, and had a super time. I have known them through various aspects but this was the first time I really got to visit much with them in such an enjoyable time!
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  • Friday, September 27, 2019 5:00 AM
    Compassioniate. Tender-hearted. Sensitive. Sympathetic. Oh, the list goes on and every one of these synonyms holds true for Nickee Sillery and Misha Anderson, two co-workers at the Montgomery County Animal Welfare League. There are many others there, too but I’ve just recently met Nickee and heard so much about her co-boss, Misha. Their job is not an easy one, full of emotion and frustration, yet they both do it with a flair. These gals can not get enough praise for saving so many fur babies.
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  • Thursday, September 26, 2019 4:00 AM
    Their brothers were the best of friends so my couple knew each other clear through school.  They even occasionally were on the bus together, but she was two years ahead of him, plus weren’t in the same crowds.  He noted: “Well, she was a good girl and I wasn’t particularly a good boy!”  He wrestled; she was in band and 4-H.  
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Copyright 2019
The Paper of Montgomery County,
a division of Sagamore News Media 
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P.O. Box 272
Crawfordsville, Indiana 47933


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