Washington County Chapter of Ohio Genealogical Society
Washington County Chapter of Ohio Genealogical Society met at the Washington County Library with Vice President Ernie Thode in charge. The annual First Families potluck luncheon will be held on Saturday, May 19, at noon at the home of Don and Sharon Gardner at 1645 Millers Lane, Marietta. Lila Hill announced her retirement from the First FamiliesChairmanship. Families who can trace their genealogy to having been in Washington County by 1830 are invited to apply by contacting Ernie Thode at the Local History and Genealogy Library at Fifth and Washington streets. It was reported that Julia Engle of the library is recovering at Marietta Convalescent Center. An audit report has been postponed. Ernie Thode discussed briefly the ongoing process of indexing the 1940 census. Several members are volunteering with this project. It was voted to place a book, Land Records by Christine Rose in the Library in memory of Elizabeth Cottle, noted local genealogist. A bus trip to the new Ohio Genealogical Society in Mansfield is tentatively scheduled for Wednesday, July 18.
John Ogden, local historian from Woodsfield, Ohio and a board member of the Monroe County Historical Society, gave a presentation on April 21 to the Washington County Historical Society. His topic was the Underground Railroad (UGRR) in SE Ohio, and he spoke of slave crossings along the Ohio River Valley especially in Washington, Monroe and Belmont Counties. At times when the river was low, persons could wade across and in the winter walk across the ice, but at other times they were ferried across the river into free territory. He discussed the courageous men and women, both black and white, who helped the escaping slaves travel further north into safety. He spoke extensively on the village of Stafford in Monroe County and how the entire village was dedicated to helping slaves into freedom. His discussion also focused on the various churches in the area especially the Wesleyan Methodists who were active abolitionists. William Steel of Stafford was an early organizer of the UGRR is this area. Several Methodist ministers around SE Ohio preached antislavery and abolitionist sentiments. Ogden read an interesting 1843 letter from Steel to David Putnam at Harmar concerning escaping slaves and speaking of 20 Virginia slave hunters passing through the area. One of the most outspoken preachers in this area was Rev. Philip Greene, who was well known in Marietta. Greene grew up in Pennsylvania knowing John Brown of Harper's Ferry fame and was his life long friend. Ogden praised the brave men and women both black and white who helped many into freedom along the Ohio UGRR.
Coming events include Morgan County Historical Society is sponsoring a walking tour of Stafford, Ohio, on Sunday, May 20, at 2 p.m. beginning at the United Methodist Church. The Washington County Chapter of Ohio Genealogical Society meets the third Saturday of each month at 1 p.m. at the Washington County Library in the basement. Anyone interested in learning more about genealogy or hearing a program is invited to attend.
Marietta Chapter OSDAR
The Marietta Chapter held their May 5 meeting at the chapter house. Lunch was served by the hostesses, Martha Tipton and Jane Morris. The tables were decorated in a patriotic them. Regent Anita Shumake opened the meeting with the Rituals.
Five new members were given the Oath of Membership by the Chaplain Opal Miller. The new members were Mary Cornwall, Nancy Morris, Lisa Rose, Jami King and Susan Hobansack. Each member was given a red rose by Anita Shumake, a handbook, chapter pin and American flag by Sherrill Alltop.
Following was the Memorial Service for the deceased chapter members of the last year. Jennifer Maddox was eulogized by Nancy Riley, Elizabeth Cottle by Anita Shumake, Julie Fleming by Jane Morris and Ethel Schoeppner by Sherrill Alltop. A candle was lit as each obituary was read.
Special guest was Leverne Piatt, Regent from the Jared Mansfield chapter in Mansfield, Ohio. Also Lineage chairman from OSDAR. She commended the chapter on their new members and the work of getting applications prepared for approval. She gave her condolences for out deceased members and praised us on the service. Other guests were Wanda and Steve Frash. Their daughters Lisa Rose and Jami King were new members for the chapter. Jean Bergen gave the National Defense message by National Defense Chairman Nancy Compher, honoring all South Carolina Daughters who are veterans. With a banquet, a ceremony at Arlington Cemetery. After debarking in Baltimore harbor and stopping at Fort McHenry and were able to raise the flag that morning, they found that the National Park Service did not have a military discount for their park entrance fee. We found that a bit ironic. Regent Anita Shumake gave Jane Morris a OSDAR award for her outstanding service for the Veterans.
There will be a planning meeting later for the fall season and the next chapter meeting will in September. Shumake adjourned the meeting.