Sunday, May 31, 2020

Sentimental Sunday: Happy Birthday to My Son Eric (tomorrow)!

© Amanda Pape - 2020 - e-mail me!

Monday, May 25, 2020

Military Monday: WWI Honor Roll, University of Washington, Seattle

In honor of Memorial Day and for The Honor Roll Project, I decided to transcribe the World War I Honor Roll plaques at the Memorial Way NE campus entrance of the University of Washington in Seattle.

The plaques are part of the "Memorial Gateway," four pylons made of brick, sandstone, and terra cotta that stand near the entrance.  Construction began in 1928, and two bronze plaques that list the names of the 58 former students who died in World War I were donated in 1930 by Scabbard and Blade, the student military honor society. One was installed on each of the two pylons closest to the road.

Both plaques have a heading reading "Honor Roll World War 1917 1918" with the University of Washington seal.  At the bottom of each plaque. it reads "Presented by Scabbard and Blade 1930."

Here are the names on the first plaque (pictured above):

Lawrence E. Allen | Jeannette V. Barrows | Leo F. Bennett | Cherrill H. Bennett | Alford J. Bradford | Donald R. Broxon | F.E. Buehler | Florian H. Canfield | Arthurt E. Carlson | Lloyd T. Cochran | Dow R. Cope | Edw. C. Cunningham | Wm. R. Cutler | Walter C. Dunbar | James M. Eagleson | Geo. Vernon Evans | Albert M. Farmer | Chas N. Fletcher | Samuel Goodglick | Geo. C. Gorham | Rhodes H. Gustafson | Daniel Hart | Nicholas C. Healy | Clarence J. Hemphill | Alfred C. Hoiby | Everett Hoke | Earl M. Hoisington | Frank H. Hubbard | Howard D. Hughes

And here are the names on the second plaque (pictured below):

Francis D. Johnson | Clair A.R. Kinney | Harry B. Leavitt | Wilfred Lewis | Chas A. Lindbery | John H. Martin| A.D. McCleverty | WM J.A. MacDonald | Frank E. McNett | W.C. Morehouse| Roy Muncaster | Elmer J. Noble | Merle O’Rear| Allen C. Ostrander | Samuel N. Parker | Gerald S. Patton | Frank Peterson | Lester B. Pickering | H.A. Rees | Ralph Beebe Rees | James R. Ristine | Earl W. Shanly | Truman A. Starr | Wm. Sherman Tucker | Homer W. Ward | Leon H. Wheeler | Harold C. White | Chester W.J. Wilson | Lukens P. Young

Memorial Way (pictured below at night) is lined with 58 London Plane (sycamore) trees, one for each of the university's World War I dead.

© Amanda Pape - 2020 - e-mail me!

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Sentimental Sunday: Happy Mother's Day to My Mom in Heaven!

First Mother's Day without my mother, Geraldine Margaret Guokas Pape (1928-2019).  This is a picture of her from early 1957, when she was pregnant with me.

© Amanda Pape - 2020 - e-mail me!

Sunday, May 3, 2020

Sentimental Sunday: Finally Found My Great-Grandmother on a Passenger List!

For years I have struggled to find my Lithuanian great-grandmother, Elzbieta (Elizabeth) Banaitis / Banevičius / Boenewitch / Bonewitz Guokas (1875-1929) on a passenger list.  As you can see, part of the problem has been the multiple ways her name has been spelled, in various documents over the years (the ones given above are only a few of them).

Someone in the Lithuanian Global Genealogy Society (LGGS) on Facebook suggested trying some of Steve Morse's One-Step Webpages for searching passenger lists.  I've used Morse's forms for finding an address in various with great success over the years, so this seemed worthwhile to try.

I knew my great-grandmother had to arrive sometime before January 21, 1900, because that is the date she married my great-grandfather, Kazimieras (Charles) Guokas (1863-1939), in Bremond, Texas.  I also felt it was likely she didn't arrive before the death of Charles' first wife, Stefania Jasielonis Guokas, in August 1899.  Because the arrival was definitely between 1892 and 1924, I could use the Ellis Island Gold Form to search Ellis Island arrivals (keeping in mind, of course, that she could have arrived at a different port).

On the advice of LGGS members, I entered only her first initial E and last initial B.  I did narrow the years of arrival to 1899-1900, the years of birth to 1874-1876 (other records indicated she was born in December 1875), and the gender to female.  I did enter my e-mail address at the top.

I did narrow the ethnicities to Galician, Polish, Russian, and Lithuanian, as Lithuanians could have been recorded under any of these (although Russian would be most likely for 1899-1900).

Finally, I checked off most all the fields for the results page, except for ship image (which I don't care about), passenger ID (a number assigned by the Ellis Island Foundation), and I wanted the full date of arrival, not just year or month and year, especially since there was a narrow time frame for when she could have arrived in 1900.  I do have an Ellis Island Foundation account so I did enter my username and password for that site.

I got 34 results, but the 23rd one on the list (click on the image to make it larger) looked quite promising.

Here is the passenger record from the Ellis Island Foundation for an Elsbeta Bonaiguke, arriving January 7, 1900 on the Belgravia out of Hamburg, Germany:

I don't like the viewer for the passenger manifests on the Ellis Island Foundation site, but I now had enough information to find the manifest in both Ancestry and FamilySearch.  Here's a composite image of the left side of the page she is on from FamilySearch, with the headings at the top of the page, followed by some names above hers (she is number 24) to show that her nationality was Russian:

Notice the name just below Elsbeta?  It was transcribed by the Ellis Island Foundation as Palemona Szermuke.  I'll come back to this in a bit.

Here is a composite image of the right half of the passenger list from FamilySearch, again adding the column headings, but this time just showing the rest of the information for Elsbeta and Palemona, as well as the person just above so you can see the two women also have a ticket to their final destination (column 12).  That final destination (column 11) is Houston, Texas, to meet their "cousin" Casimir Guokas (my great-grandfather, column 16).  Further proof that I've got the right people is the address given for Casimir, 1314 R.R. [Railroad] St., where he lived in Houston from 1899 to 1907 and owned until his death in 1939.

The woman who traveled with my great-grandmother was her future sister-in-law, Felicijona or Policina "Pauline" Černas Guokas (1878–1953), who married my great-great-uncle Juozapas "Joseph" Guokas (1869-1933) on January 21, 1900, in Robertson County, Texas, the same day my great-grandparents married.

ETA:  My Lithuanian cousin Osvaldas Guokas has found what we believe is the baptism record for my great-grandmother.  On December 7, 1875, Elžbieta Banaitytė was baptized in Smilgiai.  Her parents were Kazimieras Banaitis and Justina Sirevičiūtė Banaitienė of Rozalimas.

© Amanda Pape - 2019 - e-mail me!

Thursday, April 30, 2020

Treasure Chest Thursday: A Letter to Richard Pape from the Department of Agriculture, November 1917

Abby, one of the current owners of the house my great-grandfather, John Pape (1851-1945), built and lived in from at least 1882 to at least 1925, at 1043 Sherman Avenue in Evanston, Illinois, contacted me a couple months ago, and she told me she'd found a few items related to our family in the house. 

This is the last of four items she sent me.  It's a letter written to Otto Richard "Dick" Joseph Pape (1898-1972), my great uncle, from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, responding to Richard's query on farm tractors.  It was dated November 12, 1917 - Richard had just turned 19.

What's of most interest to me, though, is that it was addressed to Richard in Galva, Illinois.  Galva is a small town near the western border of Illinois, about 175 miles east and south of the rest of Richard's family in Evanston.   Why was Richard in Galva?

Fortunately, Galva has some of the early Galva News available online through the Galva Public Library.  I did a search for "Pape," and the first hit was from page 5 of the April 19, 1917 edition, indicating in the Saxon area news that "Dick Pape, of Evanston, has returned to work for Hiram Murchison again this summer."

Saxon was a small community about nine miles east of Galva.  Only a cemetery remains there today.  Click the image of the map below to make it larger.

The spot marked with a green-and-white marker that's between Galva and Saxon is the Black Hawk College East Campus.  It is built on the former homestead of the grandparents of Hiram Nance Murchison (1880-1960), who farmed the land from his marriage in 1905 until retiring, moving to Galva in 1947, and selling the property.

How Murchison came to hire Dick Pape is still a mystery.  As referred to in the April 1917 article, Dick apparently had spent an earlier summer in the area.  I could not find any reference specifically to Dick, but there was a mention in the Saxon section of the June 28, 1916, Galva News (page 5) to "Mrs. Pape, of Evanston, visited at Hiram Murchison's over Sunday, returning to her home Tuesday."

The Mrs. Pape is most likely Dick's mother, my great-grandmother Gertrude Kramer Pape (1859-1919), but it could also be his aunt Catherine Hoffman Pape (1860-1927) or his cousin Hugo Aloysius Pape's wife Josephine Didier Pape (1880-1960), or it could even have been a misprint and been referring to one of Dick's three older sister, Miss Clara or Martha or Rhea Pape.

There was one other reference to Dick Pape that I could find, in the Saxon section on page 4 of the July 12, 1917, Galva News:  "David Johnson and Dick Pape spent the week-end in Chicago."  Note there's also a David Johnson mentioned in the June 28, 1916 clip pictured above, "riding in a fine new car."

As far as I can tell, this is David Oscar Johnson (1881-1964), who was a first cousin to Hiram Murchison (their mothers were sisters).  Johnson lived across the road from the Murchisons and was still single in 1916 and 1917.

How did Dick end up down here?  That's the piece of the story that is still missing.  I also wonder if this has anything to do with Dick winding up in New Leipzig, Grant County, North Dakota, the following year.  His World War I draft registration card places him there, as a farmer, on September 12, 1918, and he was still there, operating his own farm, when the 1920 Census was taken on January 9.  However, Dick was apparently back at the Sherman Avenue house in Evanston by 1925, and it must be sometime around then that the November 1917 letter that Abby found got left behind.

© Amanda Pape - 2020 - e-mail me!

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Sentimental Sunday: Ten Records From My Early Years

Over the last ten days, I've been participating in a Facebook challenge from my first cousin Paul Streff.  I was supposed to select "ten vinyl-era albums that greatly influenced my taste in music," and post "one album per day for 10 consecutive-ish days. In no particular order. No explanations, no reviews, just cover."

Well, I did that, and it was LOTS of fun - but I also wanted to explain a little about my selections (which weren't all albums).  Hence this blog post.  In this case, they are more or less in chrological order, in terms of when I remember first listening to them.

1.  Whipped Cream and Other Delights, by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass (1965)

My sister Karen and I shared a bedroom for many years, and I think a record player too, so I can't remember if the first few albums we had were hers or mine or maybe even belonged to our parents.  At any rate, Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass was one of the first groups I remember listening to, which inspired a love of the sound of brass that lasts to this day.  (I was even convinced to give the cornet a try in band in fourth grade - as the band already had enough of the woodwinds I *wanted* to play - although THAT didn't last very long.)  We also had the group's S.R.O. album, but Whipped Cream & Other Delights was notable both for the cover and the song titles.  What's not to love about honey, whipped cream, love potions, lemon trees, lollipops, roses, peanuts, ladyfingers, green peppers, tangerines, and butterballs?  Yum!

There's an interesting backstory about the album cover, which was often parodied.  And I never knew, until researching for this post, that Alpert was the "A" in A&M Records, which produced so many of the albums I loved.

2.  Midnight Cowboy, by Ferrante & Teicher (1969) (image source

This is another case of an album my sister and I might have shared, that may have belonged to our parents.  There was at least one other album by the piano-playing duo of Ferrante & Teicher in our house, but I can't remember which one it was.  I think I liked Midnight Cowboy because it had instrumental versions so many other songs on it that I liked, such as Simon and Garfunkel's Scarborough Fair and Sounds of Silence.   This might have something to do with my continuing preference for instrumental versions of popular songs.

3.  Hey Jude (single) by The Beatles (1968)

"Hey Jude" the single came out long before the album of the same name.  Where I first remember hearing it was in sixth grade, shortly after it came out.  My homeroom teacher, Sister Barbara Ann, had the class elect officers and choose a class name - sort of like we were a club, except that all the class were members.  The selected name was YACs - for Young American Catholics - and someone had the bright idea to come up with a class song - "Hey YACs" - to the tune of "Hey Jude."

I don't remember much of the words to "Hey YACs" - it went something like, "Hey YACs, let's keep it up, we've got a good club, let's make it be-e-e-tter."   I do remember sixth grade, as it was a pretty memorable year.  I won a local poetry contest and was a regional winner in a national essay contest.  The prize for the latter was a trip to Washington, D.C., for Nixon's first inauguration.  My fellow YACs had a party for me before I left - read more about that and the trip here.

So even though I never bought this record (nor any Beatles album, for that matter, although I like their music), I still find myself singing "Hey YACs whenever I hear that song.  And of course singing the four-minutes-worth of "naaa-naaa-naaa-na-na-na-na, na-na-na-na, Hey Jude" at the end.

4.  Classical Gas (the single) by Mason Williams (1968) / (album by Mason Williams and Mannheim Steamroller, 1987)  (image source: Wikipedia)

"Classical Gas" another song from that memorable sixth grade year.  More specifically, I first heard it sometime in January 1969, when the CBS 60 Minutes television show did a retrospective in images of all the tragic and memorable events of 1968, using this approximately three-minute song as the soundtrack.  Given what a tumultuous year that was, the song was burned on my memory - and I can still see many of the images in my mind whenever it's played.

I've searched but can't find a clip of that segment of 60 Minutes, but I did find a link to Classical Gas - 3000 Years of Art, posted by Mason Williams himself, which another example of the technique of kinestatis (more examples here) using "Classical Gas." This video was first shown in the summer of 1968 on The Summer Smothers Brothers Show (Mason Williams was head comedy writer), and must have inspired the 60 Minutes piece.

I didn't purchase this single in 1968, but I did buy the Mason Williams and Mannheim Steamroller Classical Gas album when it came out in 1987, which features other songs by Williams and has the iconic cover pictured above.  That's a plexiglass guitar on the cover that Williams actually played, one time putting some water and goldfish into it.

5.  Close to You (single) by The Carpenters (1970)  (image source: Wikipedia)

"Close to You" by The Carpenters was the first 45 rpm single I ever bought.  At the time it came out, I had a crush on a classmate named Dick Sanders, and the verse from the song about "on the day that you were born the angels got together, and decided to create a dream come true, so they sprinkled moondust in your hair of gold and starlight in your eyes of blue" seemed to describe him perfectly.

One of the reasons I loved The Carpenters' music was that I could actually sing along - I'm a contralto like Karen.

I later bought the single "We've Only Just Begun," (and I really liked its B-side, "All of My Life").  The sleeve for that single had the same illustration as the Close to You album it came from, pictured above.

6.  "Fire and Rain" from Sweet Baby James by James Taylor (1970)

"Fire and Rain" by James Taylor is a bittersweet song for me, and will always make me think of seventh and eighth grades.  Some parts of those years were good - winning the spelling bee and science fair in seventh grade, for example.  

But around Thanksgiving of 1970, an entire family of five that I knew was killed in a small plane crash.  Mrs. Jordan had been my Girl Scout leader in the past, and her three daughters went to my K-8 Catholic school - they lived just a few streets away from us.  My eighth grade class was pretty exceptional when it came to singing, and we were asked to sing at the funeral.  I'll never forget seeing the five caskets lined up near the altar, from the choir loft - it's a wonder we could sing anything.  Anytime I hear "just yesterday morning they let me know you were gone" and "sweet dreams and flying machines in pieces on the ground" and "but I always thought I'd see you again," I think of them and that funeral.

I do like James' Taylor's music, and bought the Sweet Baby James album (and the 1976 Greatest Hits album) much later on.  (The "Fire and Rain" single sleeve uses the same image as the Sweet Baby James album, just in black-and-white.)

7.  "If You Could Read My Mind" (single) by Gordon Lightfoot (1970) (image from Amazon)

The song "If You Could Read My Mind" (link is to a 1974 unorchestrated live performance) made me fall in love with Gordon Lightfoot.  I bought the single sometime in 1971, but eventually I bought nearly all his work.  I've been to very few concerts in my life, but his was one I drove 100 miles to see on a Sunday night, from College Station (during my senior year at Texas A&M) to the Houston Music Hall for a performance on February 26, 1978.  The image above is from the album of the same name (renamed from "Sit Down Young Stranger" when this track reached number one on the charts).

8.  Tapestry by Carole King (1971)

I first heard Tapestry by Carole King in the summer of 1971, between eighth grade and high school.  My family went to Rochester, New York, for the wedding of my oldest cousing Rosemary Streff to Steve Grandusky that June.  We stayed for a few days after the wedding, and I shared a bedroom with my cousin Beth Streff.  Every night when we went to bed, she'd put this album on for us to listen to while we fell asleep.  I eventually bought the album - but it was not the first album I bought.

9.  Days of Future Passed by The Moody Blues (1967)

Days of Future Passed, by the Moody Blues, was the first album I ever purchased.  I loved "Nights in White Satin" and "Tuesday Afternoon," and had bought the 45 rpm singles for both, but I HAD to have this progressive rock concept album about a day in the life of an everyday man.

I ended up buying most of the Moody Blues' work, including some of the members' solo and duet works (including Justin Hayward in War of the Worlds), the Moody Bluegrass tribute albums, and the Legend of A Band video - because it included the videos of my later-favorites of their songs ("Your Wildest Dreams" and "I Know You're Out There Somewhere"), which remind me of the 20+ years my husband and I spent apart.

10.  Godspell (1971 off-Broadway cast recording)

Godspell (original off-Broadway cast performance, not the movie version) might very well have been the second album I ever purchased.  The musical was very popular in my early high school years, especially the song "Day by Day," and I definitely liked it better than Jesus Christ Superstar.  I attended a performance on December 27, 1973, at the Houston Music Hall, the first "concert" I ever attended (I was 16).

© Amanda Pape - 2020 - e-mail me!

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Treasure Chest Thursday: Another Letter Found in the Pape House

Abby, one of the current owners of the house my great-grandfather, John Pape (1851-1945), built and lived in from at least 1882 to at least 1925, at 1043 Sherman Avenue in Evanston, Illinois, contacted me a couple months ago, and she told me she'd found a few items related to our family in the house. 

This letter is missing the top part that might have provided a date and the name of the addressee.  Like the last letter, it's also missing a signature.  Based on the dates of three other items found in the attic, I'm guessing this was written sometime between 1904 and 1917.  Research on one of the names in the letter (more on that in a bit) makes me think it was written in 1906, probably by a woman and sent to a woman.

You can click on the images to enlarge them.  Abby was able to come up with a transcription, which I have edited a bit.  If you think you read something different or additional, PLEASE leave a comment!

{page 1, above:}
. . .little quick to answer so soon.  I thought perhaps you would answer in a week, but not in one day, oh! no!  But you can’t imagine my delight in hearing from you.
This week has been “spring vacation,” and such a vacation!  It has rained, hailed, snowed and done everything possible to keep one indoors.   I expect a flood from the amount of rain we are having and just tell you they are “jolly good
{page 2, below:}
…water…suppose you [have] floods ou[tside] Chicago.
I am getting skinnier every day I live and am ashamed to have my picture taken.  I simply must have it taken soon, though.  Last spring I had typhoid and a touch of diphtheria so I suppose that every spring about that time I’ll feel the effects of it.  Yesterday afternoon Rowena Drew gave a Kensington {a covered dish supper} for three of her college friends who came home with her for Spring vacation, and I went to that and am going to one Monday at Katherine Waite’s.
You asked me if I had a picture of M.Y.  I did have some small ones but they have “flew the coop.”  I’ll ask her if she has any more and if she has I’ll send one.  “Babes in. . .

{in left margin on page 2, above:} 
Didn’t get to go to Katherine Waite’s because I was…If you can rake up some sort of a picture of D. B. {probably Dick Blake} send it, I’d like to. . .
{page 3, below:}
. . .  would certainly like to see and meet Dick Blake for I certainly like handsome fellows.  I suppose if I saw his picture I’d say “He certainly looks good to mother.”
Anson Jones is nearly twenty although short.  He doesn’t go with our crowd, but is a very good friend of mine.  Nearly all the girls [love] him.  I am sure you will look stunning. . .

There are a number of names mentioned in this letter:  Dick Blake (aka "D. B."), Rowena Drew, Katherine Waite, Anson Jones, and "M. Y." (probably a girl, based on the context).  Dick Blake seems to be a friend of the letter's recipient and thus living in the Chicago area.  Unfortunately, that name is a little too common for such a large city for me to be able to pinpoint him.

However...I found a Rowena Drew, a Katherine Waite, AND a William Anson Jones, all born in 1887, living near each other in Portsmouth, Ohio, on the 1900 Census.  This was particularly interesting to me because when my great-grandmother Gertrude Kramer Pape (John's second wife) died in August 1919, her newspaper obituary had a note at the end for the "Sioux City, Ia and Portsmouth, Oh. papers please copy."  Oldest daughter Clara was living in Sioux City at the time - but who was in Portsmouth?

Rowena Nye Drew's family lived at 191 Gallia Street in 1900.  Katherine Dillian Waite's family lived at 161 E. 4th Street in 1900.  William Anson Jones' family lived at 202 E. 4th in 1900.  In the July 1897 Sanborn map of Portsmouth below, Rowena would have been in the upper quarter of the pink-shaded section 13 (right at the corner of Gallia and Waller, in fact), Katherine at the bottom of the green-shaded section 15, and Anson at the top of the green-shaded section 11.

A 1908 Portsmouth city directory shows Rowena and Katherine at the same addresses as in 1900, but Anson (age 21 in 1908) is at 146 E. 3rd.  That's in the middle of the yellow-shaded section 10, still close to the girls' homes.

Unfortunately, none of this really gives me a clue about who wrote the letter, or to whom it was written, or how this connects to the mention of Portsmouth imn my great-grandmother's 1919 death.  The mystery continues!

© Amanda Pape - 2020 - e-mail me!

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Treasure Chest Thursday: A Letter to Clara Pape in 1904

Abby, one of the current owners of the house my great-grandfather, John Pape (1851-1945), built and lived in from at least 1882 to at least 1925, at 1043 Sherman Avenue in Evanston, Illinois, contacted me a couple months ago, and she told me she'd found a few items related to our family in the house.  Some of the items were "buried in attic insulation," like this one, and are in pretty bad shape.

This is a letter written to my great aunt Clara Martha Pape (1889-1975) from a friend apparently visiting San Francisco in 1904.  Clara had just turned 15 a couple months before this letter was written.

You can click on the images to enlarge them.  Abby was able to come up with a transcription, which I have edited a bit.  If you think you read something different or additional, PLEASE leave a comment!

{page 1, above}
San Francisco, Cali
Oct – 1[something] – 1904

Dear Clara-
I started to write a letter to you before I got yours.  But when I got your’s I started a new one.  My journey was a lovely one.  I have never seen anything more beautiful.  I am so tired of telling everybody the same thing over and over again.  Augot will tell you all about it for I am going to tell her all about it.
I have written to all the girls and am just about worked out.  My arm is so lame I can’t hardly write.  But you, you can read it if you try very hard.
I was at the Cliff House the first Sunday I was here, and I saw the seals.  I certainly
{page 2, below}
enjoyed it.  The next Sunday we went to Golden Gate Park.  It is a beautiful park.  I have sent some postals to Augot.  She will show you the places I have been.
I am just having a peachy old time here.  I wish you were here to share it with me.  I have not a bit of time to get lonesome.
My cousin is just as good as he can be.  He brings home books, roses and chrysanthemums home to me.  Saturday he brought home a doz. of the largest white chrysanthemums I have ever seen to me.  We sat on the lounge together.  You might know what fun we have (ha! ha! ha!)  He just can’t keep away from me.   (ha! ha! ha!)

{page 3, above}
He has more girls coming to the house, than you can count.  But he slights them fearfully.  When he is dressed up and I am dressed up and go down the street together, whee but we are a dandy looking pair.  (ha! ha! ha!)  He wears nose glasses.  Gee but he is a perfect Dude.  (ha! ha! ha!)  There are plenty of fellows here.  There is an awfully good looking fellow that comes to the house here.  He is dead gone on me.  He is as pretty as a picture.  (ha! ha! ha!)  I sang for them Sunday night.  He congratulated me, “ahem,” on my beautiful voice.  (ha! ha! ha!)  Bernie (my cousin) and I were sitting on the lounge with his arm around me and holding me so tight I couldn’t sit strait.  (ha! ha! ha!)

page 4, below - much of this is unreadable
I must be ... but don’t you think ... Al (that boy) ... in my cousin’s place (ha! ha! ha! ho! ho! he! ... Oh! I – can’t – stop ... myself ... the ... to anyone, even to Augot.  You know ... tell each other ... is a sacred ... If I didn’t trust you rest assured I would never tell ... if I hear you have told [any]one I shall never write another ...

I figured out who the "Augot" mentioned in the letter is.  The name is actually Aagot, a Norwegian name where the "aa" at the beginning sounds like the English "aw" or "au" sound, so the letter-writer's misspelling is understandable.

Aagot Drost was born August 31, 1887, in Christiana, Norway, the daughter of Nels Anderson Drost, a Dane, and Bolette Pederson, a Norwegian.  She came to the United States in 1891, although her parents had apparently been in the United States previously, as her older sister Karen, born in 1884, was baptized that year in St. Ansgar, Iowa.

Aagot, her three sisters and one brother lived with their mother just down the street from the Papes at 1027 Sherman, according to the city directories for the years 1899-1901, and behind the Papes at 1042 Custer according to the city directories for the years 1902-1904.  From 1897 through 1898, they were at nearby 1020 Florence in Evanston.  Nels was a laborer and apparently died before 1909 – Bolette is listed as a widow in the 1909 city directory and 1910 census, living at 2534 W. Railroad (now gone) in Evanston.  Aagot married Andreas Drost (yes, she married a man with her same last name) on November 14, 1921, at Park View Evangelical Lutheran Church in Chicago.  They had two daughters, Lillian (born in 1922) and Gloria (born in 1925).  They were in the Chicago area through at least 1940, but Aagot died April 12, 1973, in California and is buried in Brea.

Aagot would have been about 17 when this letter was written; Clara was 15.  My guess is that the unknown letter-writer was a girl about the same age who also lived in their Evanston neighborhood about the same time, with a cousin named Bernie who apparently lived in San Francisco.  So far, I haven't been able to figure out who the letter-writer is.

Interestingly, Clara Pape later lived in San Francisco, from at least 1955 (possibly as early as 1947) through 1974.  She worked at the Presidio military fort around 1959.

© Amanda Pape - 2020 - e-mail me!

Sunday, April 12, 2020

Sentimental Sunday: Happy(?) Easter, 1968

Easter 1968 (which was April 14), in the backyard of our family's home at 8015 Sharpview, Houston, Texas.  This was before my parents added another bedroom to the house, right about where we are standing.  In the back are me (age 11 and not looking too happy),  and my sister Karen (age 10).  In front are my brother Mark (almost 8), sister Mary (almost three-and-a-half), and brother Brian (almost 6).

© Amanda Pape - 2020 - click here to e-mail me.

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Treasure Chest Thursday: Walter Pape's 1916 German Test

One of the current owners of the house my great-grandfather, John Pape (1851-1945), built and lived in from at least 1882 to at least 1925, at 1043 Sherman Avenue in Evanston, Illinois, contacted me a couple months ago, and she told me she'd found a few items related to our family in the house.  Some of the items were "buried in attic insulation" and are in pretty bad shape, but this one is pretty whole.

The name in the upper right corner is Walter R. (should be F.) Pape, and the date is May 23, 1916.  Walter would have been 15, probably almost 16, and likely in high school (but I'm not sure which one).  It's apparently a German test - and he didn't do very well on it!

Walter's draft registration card from September 1918 indicates he was a student at Northwestern at that point.  He enlisted three weeks later (just a month before the war ended), and based on the 1940 census, he never went back to college.

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