Monday, November 01, 2010

A Day With Dad

I spent Halloween day with my dad.  I'm not often able to spend a lot of time with him alone, so it was good to be able to "hang out" for a bit.  We spent the day driving around his old stomping grounds in Jay County, Indiana where he showed me the places where our family members lived.

We spent time at the Mt. Zion and Salamonia cemeteries, identifying family members and discussing their relationships.  Most of dad's maternal ancestors were from Noble township and are buried at Mt. Zion.  His paternal ancestors were from neighboring Madison township and are buried at Salamonia.

Salamonia Christian Church (1842-1999) Church Bell

Not being from the area, I was glad that dad was able to show me where his grandparents, Eli & Cora (METZNER) HALEY lived, and stories about where he would go squirrel hunting with his dad.  We didn't stop and take pictures, as the house is no longer there, but it was good for me to get a sense of where the land was in relationship to other members of the family.

It was interesting to find out exactly where the "Lookout Hill" farm that my Civil War veteran 4th-great grandfather, Luman Walker Lemasters, had his farm.  His son, Arthur, lived in the house later, and dad remembered being on this farm.

We also scooted over into Ohio, since we were so close to the state line.  Dad told me how his aunt Vera and uncle Clarence would go to church over in Fort Recovery, Ohio.  We drove over there and while we were there stopped and took a look at the monument and the fort, something I had never seen before. It definitely looks like a neat place to visit, will have to make a trip over there in the summer when they have displays open.

My dad, the History teacher, Fort Recovery, Ohio
31 October 2010

We came back into Jay County, and drove around the countryside, with dad pointing out where LeMaster relatives lived (and some still do).  We traveled several gravel roads and little villages of the county.  Dad showed me a couple of places where he used to live and told a few good stories.  Overall, it was a good day.

Dad told a few humorous stories about my uncles that I need to write down, but won't publish yet.  One interesting one involved a 'church key'.

Some things I didn't know about my dad:
  • that he used to squirrel hunt with his dad; I've never heard him talk about hunting
  • some of the jobs he had at the mill in Portland and Fisher Body
  • that he could have been an investor in a golf course we drove past on the trip; never knew he had ever hit a golf ball
  • where his old girlfriend lived (though I wasn't supposed to tell mom)

I learned a few things about my dad and my family on this trip, and I hope that I continue to discover more.

1 comment:

Kellie said...

I am so glad you got to spend the day with your dad. I love hearing the family history and love even more visiting the places where they lived. The history out here in the Pacific Northwest is so different from back east. The stories from Todd's family center more on panning for gold, bears and cougars and hobos riding the rails.