Local History and Genealogy

Wednesday, December 18, 2013



Spread Christmas Spirit with Lavish Hand--Formal Opening Thursday Night

 Angola is being decorated in holiday attire this week, ready for the formal opening of the Christmas shopping season on Thursday evening, Dec 8.  At 7:00 o'clock the lights will be turned on and windows unveiled, it will be seen that the well known reputation of the city for its beautiful holiday decorations has been fully maintained.  New lighting equipment was supplied this year, and the arrangement for lighting the monument with flood lights has been turned to advantage to enhance the beauty of the public square.  Four fine trees have been placed on the mound in the square with four strands of colored lights.  Street lighting posts have been turned into Christmas trees with various colored.  Thursday evening at 7:00 o'clock, the Legion band will come out and lead the procession of happy people who will officially welcome in the Christmas season. All the lights will be turned on, Santa Claus, we are told, will be here, and the Christmas windows will be lighted, and the Old Man Gloom will be routed.  The Psi Iota Xi Sorority  and the High School Girls a Capella Choir will sing.

For the entertainment of the children during the Christmas season, the merchants have arranged for three free matinees on Saturday afternoon, Dec. 10,17,and 24 at the Brokaw Theater.  Parents are invited to leave their children there while doing their Christmas shopping.

Sugar Distribution Saturday

The free distribution of sugar which has been carried on during the past few weeks, will be continued
on Saturday afternoons at 2:00 o'clock with many fine gifts added.

Stores Ready for Season

The stores of Angola are blossoming out in full Christmas attire.  Fine stocks of merchandise are ready and suitable gifts for everyone can be found.  The prices this year run lower than for many years, and the public will be surprised how cheaply Christmas cheer may be provided.  The new lines of Christmas toys are very unique, with a tendency toward the substantial and useful.  Purses, jewelry, man and women's wear, furniture, hardware novelties and electrical equipment are all available at very reasonable prices this year.

Fine programs are being arranged in the schools and churches, opening Sunday afternoon with the College Chapel in the Christian church auditorium to which the public is invited.

Steuben Republican December 7, 1932

Wednesday, December 4, 2013


Alanson Wellington Hendry

The subject of the following sketch was born in Erie county, N.Y. March 22, 1820, and in 1828 removed to Geneva, Ashtabula county, Ohio and departed this life at his home in Angola, Ind., Sunday evening, Nov. 23, 1902, aged 82 years, 8 months and 1 day.  In 1834 he moved with his parents to Carlisle where he attended the public school and assisted his father at blacksmithing.  In 1841 he began the study of law in the office of  of J.D. Benedict at Elyria.  He depended upon his own efforts for his support and education, teaching school and working hard.   

Mr. Hendry came to Indiana in 1842, locating at Orland, Steuben county, where he taught school during the winter of 1842 and 1843.  He was admitted to the bar and began his profession at Angola, Ind, in August 1844 and continued with marked success until 1865, reaching the head of his profession, trusted by his clients and respected by his brethren and neighbors.  He was a moving force in the construction of the Fort Wayne, Jackson and; Saginaw R R.  He contributed to its building with money and time and it was largely through his influence that the railroad was built through Angola.  He was always interested in all that benefited his town or community and gave liberally to its advancement.  He was elected a member of the Indiana State Senate as a Whig in 1852 in the then strong Democratic district of Steuben and DeKalb and re-elected in 1856.  In those stirring times he moved to full discharge of his duties, regardless of the threats and flatteries of men.  He served with distinction on committees of judiciary, education and elections, and stood unmoved amid the ravings and wrangling of party strife, defying Lieutenant Governor Willard, and foiling his effort to organize a fraudulent Senate. 

In his later years he has lived a less strenuous life, but no less active in his charities and public spirit. 
His home life has been ideal, with no complaining or reviling on his part.  With malice towards none, he has grown weary in his long march, and now rests from his labors, but his works do follow him.  A good man has gone, a sweet home life is broken and a faithful wife, who hand in hand down the years, sits amid the scenes of that beautiful past and tries to be comforted.  Good bye.

Funeral services were held at the home Tuesday afternoon, Nov 25, Prof L.W. Fairfield of the Tri-State Normal college, officiating.  Burial in the family vault near Circle Hill.

Steuben Republican - November 26, 1902


Wednesday, November 20, 2013



Fierce Blaze Battled For Hours by Fire Department - Severe Loss To Angola

National Mill Before The Fire
Angola suffered the most disastrous fire in her history last Saturday forenoon when the National Mills was completely destroyed.  The fire was discovered about 9 o'clock in the forenoon, and was caused by spontaneous combustion in a dust collector on the third floor of the building.  The mill, including the building was owned by J.E. Page, who bought it last September from W.C. Sherburn.  The loss is estimated from $20,000 to $25,000 and the insurance was $14,000,  $8,000 of which was on building and machinery and the balance on the contents.

Taken soon after the roof and
upper  floor  fallen in.  Firemen can
be  seen  to the left on the
 roof of  the plant of the
Indiana Utilities Company
The mill was running a usual, and William Allen, the miller, had just been up on the third floor a few moments before the fire and noticed nothing out of the ordinary there at the time.  He had returned to the lower floor of the mill and within a couple minutes he noticed that the electric motor which drives the machinery was laboring under its load, and called Mr Page's son Joseph, who was loading an auto in preparatory to a trip to Orland, and they rushed to the motor and threw off the currant, and hurried up to the third floor, and by the time they arrived there found the upper floor so full of smoke and fire that they could not gain entrance. They immediately returned and turned in the fire alarm to the water and light plant which is located in the south one story addition to the mill.  The company responded promptly to the alarm, but the nature of the fire gave it such headway that it could not be controlled.  For about a half hour it looked as though the department could hold it in check and confine it to the third floor of the mill but it suddenly burst out of the roof and quickly spread to the lower floors and it was easily seen that the building could not be saved.  

Photo shows the fire
at it's height, when
the flames were mounting
100 feet in the air
The firemen labored heroically in their battle against the flames and at times were in exceedingly perilous
situations.  It soon became evident that the greatest effort must be exerted to protect the water, light and power plant of the Indiana Utilities  Company, which adjoins the mill, and with a strong wind blowing from the northwest, the heat about the power plant was intense, making the work there difficult and hazardous.  The pumps and engines in the plant were operating to the limit, and even then there were times that the water pressure was too low to reach above the second story of the building.  The heat from the fire was intense, and a number of buildings in the neighborhood caught fire, some of them repeatedly , and earnest effort of citizens was necessary to guard them.  The work of the Boy Scouts about the Sheldon hay barn was especially commendable, this building having caught fire five times, and at one time the fire went through into the baled hay, but a member of the organization stationed inside extinguished it.   number of residences in the surrounding locality were also guarded by their owners.  The Chester Crain residence, several blocks away, and on the way to the college, caught fire twice, but was quickly extinguished.

The owners of the mill were somewhat fortunate in regards to the contents.  They had a couple carloads of wheat in transit, one of them to arrive the next morning, and the stock of wheat was comparatively low.  They estimate that they had about 600 bushels of wheat in the mill, and nearly a car load of oats.  There was also about 100 bushels of flour, but Irvin Metzgar chanced to come upon the scene with his wagon and team soon after the fire started, and his wagon was hurriedly loaded with flour, and others following with wagons assisted in this work and the flour was practically all saved in good condition.

The walls of the building remain standing, but the interior was completely gutted, and everything is a total loss,  It was built in 1895 by Kinney & Croxton, and soon passed to Croxton & Pilliod, where the milling business was conducted for some time in connection with the power plant, and since its erection it has changed hands a number of times, and it has always been used for the milling business.  It was a substantially built structure of three stories and a basement, two stories being of brick, and the upper story of frame with steel siding.  It was one of the best of the industrial buildings of Angola, and the loss is keenly felt, it probably being the most disastrous fire in the history of the city.

Steuben Republican March 7, 1917

Saturday, November 2, 2013


A Few short human interest items taken from
columns in the Steuben Republican

One evening this week a certain grass widow and another young woman of this village, who no doubt have a great affinities for mankind dressed themselves in men's array and paraded our street to their own satisfaction.  Now this grass widow, is waiting the action of our Court, to get a divorce, and it looks as though she was in a great hurry to attract the attention of the men, that she soon would be in market again for matrimony. We think such conduct is very unbecoming, and no one claiming to be a lady would ever be seen with men's clothes on the street, with the intention of attracting the attention of men.  We would advise them to lay aside their men's attire, roll up their sleeves and take a turn at the wash tub and perform the duties necessary to the keeping of a clean healthy kitchen, and think that that kind of business would be more honorable to the, and satisfactory to the world.

Steuben Republican April 7, 1860

The trustees of the Old Cemetery (Old Angola) wish that people who have occasion to bury their dead in that place would see Jacob Stealy, the secretary, before digging graves.  The men who dug Will Brode's grave last week , by mistake opened up another one.

Steuben Republican  January 14, 1903  

West Maumee street is becoming quite popular as a race track these days, nad the racing is not confined alone to those who may think they own fast goers.  Nearly every day there is one or more races on this street and Sunday is no exception.  Last Sunday afternoon three young bloods, each driving a farm horse, raced from Hotel Hendry to the depot, the one in lead yelling at his horse like a Comanche Indian.  One little girl near the Christian Church was nearly run over, and many others hurried from the street. People living on this street are greatly annoyed and kept in constant anxiety fir the safety of their children, and if there is a remedy for the evil it ought to be used.

 Steuben Republican August 12, 1903

Wednesday, September 25, 2013


This year, through the co-operative help of all liberal minded citizens of the community, one epoch in the history of the Angola Schools was brought to a close and another of of broader usefulness to the community was ushered in.

The plan of the Board of Education to construct a new vocational building, incorporating a gymnasium and auditorium, could not be realized, due to the fact that the cost of construction exceeded the bonding capacity if the School City by more that 20,000.

Community Gymnasium 1923 before brick facade
The demand on the part of the students and patrons of
Community Gymnasium 1924 after brick facade 
the school for a gymnasium was very general, but hope for obtaining the coveted object was waning when a courageous citizen voiced the sentiment of the community and called a meeting of those interested in building by voluntary subscription a gymnasium for the use of the school and various organizations if the community.  It took the prophetic vision of Major Guy Shaughniss to foresee the possibility of actually building a community gymnasium.  He had a plan drafted and called a meeting at the court house of all citizens.  The fact that only a few people attended the meeting was no indication of a lack of interest.  The plan was presented and served as a basis for discussion.  A committee consisting og C. A. Redding, chaiman; Guy Shaughniss and H.B. Allman was then selected to determine the actual needs and to revise the plans.  A few days later, a second meeting was called, where the building committee presented more detailed plans.  Attorney A. C. Wood recommended that a corporation to be know as the Angola Community Building Company be organized.  Major Shaughniss was selected as president, and the previous building committee was endorsed and instructed to proceed with the completion of the plans and the erection of the building.  A finance committee consisited of F. A. Emerson, Ed Williamson, and Herb Metzenberger, to whom was delegated the task of raising funds.

The building committee then employed W. A. Bunker as superintendent of construction.  During fair week vacation, boys of the high school volunteered work and began excavation for the basement, and dug trenches for the foundation and walls.

The committee than called for bids and let the contracts for the foundation and materials for construction.  C. A. Redding, chairman of the building committee, took charge of the work in person, and the success of the project is due to his tireless efforts to get the building enclosed and ready for use during the present year.  Much credit is due to carpenters and helpers, whose interest in the undertaking prompted them to put in extra hours and expend extra energy to hasten the work.

The dedicatory ceremonies were held on January 27-29.  On the opening evening the school children gave a program.  This was followed on the next afternoon and evening by a series of basketball games, with the formal dedication at a mass meeting Sunday afternoon. 

Since the day if the opening the building has been in constant use.  Extensive improvements have been made in staging and scenery.  The building can be changed quickly from am attractive auditorium with a seating capacity of 2,000, to an excellent gymnasium with a playing floor fifty by eighty feet, and room to adequately accommodate 1500 spectators.

Through the contributions of citizens, $6,300 was raised, of which $5,200 has been paid.  The total cost of the building to date is approximately $12,000.

The lot on which the building is located is leased to the Community Building Company.  The Board of Education then rents the building from the Community Corporation.  The building is still unfinished, and as soon as the funds are available the brick will be put around the outer walls.

The Annual Key 1922
Angola School Yearbook

Friday, August 30, 2013


Steuben (Steubenville)
The town of Steubenville was the first town or village established or platted in Steuben County, and was by far the largest and most prosperous of all the vanished towns of the county.  The town was located on the Old Defiance and White Pigeon Trail, about three-quarters of a mile north of the main street of what is now Pleasant Lake, and was on the east and west sides of the present road (150 W).

1831 Survey Map
Isaac Glover, who entered the land on the west side of the road and who purchased land on the east side of the road from Reuben Warnick, entryman, had the town surveyed by John Kroner, Surveyor, in October 1835, and dedicated the plat to the public November 12, 1835.  The first plat consisted of of fifteen blocks of eight lots each, three of which blocks, 1,3, and 7, were marked "blank" on the plat and in the dedication, it stated that these three blocks were "set off for public use."  This plat is recorded in the Deed Record Volume 2, page 130 of LaGrange County, which included Steuben County at that time. 

The street furthest west was called First Street and it is shown adjacent to the mill pond on the plat.  The north and south streets were marked First to Sixth Streets.  There were four east and west streets named Joseph, Armstrong, Mary and Glover Streets.  (Joseph and John Armstrong purchased the first lots, so evidently the two north streets were named for them, Mary Street evidently was named after Mary Glover, wife of Isaac Glover, and Glover Street for the founder).

1856 Map of Steuben County
The ford across Pigeon River, where the old road crossed, and which ford is mentioned in the written accounts of Abner Winsor and other early settlers, was located about thirty rods down the stream from the village, according to Giles T. Abbey, who came to Steuben in the fall of 1838; this ford was the only place that Pigeon River could be crossed by team for several miles and was used for some years until a bridge could be built.  (The first bridge in Steuben County was built on this old road where it crossed between Silver and Hog Back Lake).

A large number of lots were sold in this village and some forty or fifty houses were erected, some of logs, a few of brick, but mostly frame houses.  Dr. Conant built a large two-story store building near the bank of Pigeon River, but the building was never used as a store for some reason.

The Tavern was on the west side of the highway opposite the house later built by Dr. Alonzo P. Clark.  This tavern was kept by Seth W. Murray, one of the very early settlers of the county.

Evidently there was quite a boom in this village in the early part of the year 1837, for the town was replatted on March 27, 1837, by Isaac Glover, and several more blocks added with several additional streets included, and the shape of the town was changed considerably.

The future prospects of this center of civilization must have been very bright in the years 1835 and 1836 but something happened in the year 1837 that broke the spirit of the founders and inhabitants of this early metropolis, and the promoter, Isaac Glover, lost his entire property and moved away.

 Part II --- The County Seat Controversy

 In the year 1836 Thomas Gale came down the Defiance and White Pigeon trail from LaGrange county, and with four other men, established the town of Julius, six miles west of Angola.  He then went on down the trail to the town of Steuben, looked the situation over, and with his partner Cornelius Gilmore, tried to form a partnership with Isaac Glover and make a real town out of Steuben.  Mr Glover refused to have any business dealings whatever with Gale and GIlmore due to religious differences: Glover being a staunch member of one of the outstanding churches while Gale (and possibly Gilmore) was a Spiritualist (commonly called "Free Lover"), and this difference of opinion led to the controversy over the location of the county seat of Steuben County.

The County of LaGrange was organized February 2, 1832, and included all of the present County of Steuben and the north twelve miles of what is now DeKalb County.   Gale and Gilmore, failing to acquire an interest in teh thriving town of Steuben, came further north and east and decided to start an opposition town at the center of section 26, Pleasant Township, which section they entered at Fort Wayne Land Office April 4, 1836; this town they did estaableish June 28, 1836 as Angola.  Before they risked etablishin the town, however, they has to do some work bhind the scenes, for the town of Steuben, being nearer the center of the unamed territory, and having a fine start of buildings, enterprise and population, was the logical location for the county seat.

In the fall elections of 1836 Thomas Gale, by skillful work, was elected State Representative for LaGrange County, and at the January session, 1837, of the State Legislature of Indiana introduced a bill to establish the County of Steuben, to include only the present area of the county, and to drop off the two south tiers of townships.  The bill passed and Steuben County was organized as a separate county January 18, 1837.  Angola, then being somewhere near the center of the new county was selected as the county seat.  At that time the town of Angola had not been established, but had been platted, and the plat was introduced in evidence, together with a promise of a courthouse without cost to the county and a representation that there was a water power site in the east part of the village.

Isaac Glover, failing to get the county seat at the town of Steubenville, read the handwriting on the wall , and sold out his interest in the town and farm lands adjoining, to Dr Alonzo P. Clark and the town quickly declined, business ceased and eventually the village vanished.

Many of the buildings were moved to other parts of the county.  One was moved about one-half mile east to the James Long farm and was used for a school house for many years; two buildings were moved to the south part of Pleasant Lake, and occupied as dwellings; others were torn down and moved away, while some being obstructions to farming were burned down.

About all that remains to remind one of the towns is the remains of the old dam on the old course of the Pigeon River southwest of the town site; a few stones and brick from foundations that are occasionally plowed or dug up, and the old cemetery about one-half mile north of the town site where many of the first settlers in Steubenville are buried, but the graves of most of the pioneers are unmarked and unknown.

Note: For my authority in stating religious differences caused the downfall of the town of Steuben (Steubenville), I have a written statement to that effect by Giles T. Abbey, father of Mrs John B. Parsell of Angola, who states that he came to the town of Steuben, then called Steubenville in the year 1838 and taught his first term of school in the schoolhouse

Written by Orville Stevens for the Angola Herald January 16, 1942 and January 23, 1942

Monday, August 26, 2013

Letter From Civil War Camp to the Steuben Republican

Camp Nevin, Hardin Co.,
Dec 9, 1861

Messrs. Editors

It is with a sad heart, that I write you the first time.  Yesterday we buried the first man of Company A., who has yet died among us, James Gatehouse.  He died in the Hospital Dec. 7th at 4 o'clock A. M.  His remains were the next day followed to the grave by the whole Company, headed by the chaplain.  He was first taken with the measles and before he recovered from these, fully, by the lung fever.  He was a good soldier, and died lamented by all.

Always ready, and faithful, he enjoyed the confidence of his officers, and the respect of his comrades; but his place is now vacant in our ranks.  He lies far from home and kindred, beneath the soil of Kentucky.

Citizens of Steuben!  James Gatehouse died for you, and your homes -- for his country and posterity.  He periled his life in deference of the best interests of mankind, and lost it.

He lived for humanity, and died a hero.  May his countrymen, while they cherish his memory, not forget his wife and family.

Lieut. Melendy, U.S.A.

Steuben Republican December 21, 1861

Tuesday, July 9, 2013


Instantly Killed Last Thursday Morning 

Being Deaf, Failed to Hear Signal of Engineer ---- Was An Old Soldier

Lawrence West, aged 84, was struck by the northbound passenger train near the Butz sawmill early last Thursday morning and received injuries from which death immediately followed.  The force of the blow threw him sixty feet clear of the track and broke all the larger bones of his body and bruised his skull.  He was dead when the spectators reached him. 

Mr West, who is quite deaf, had started from the Park Avenue crossing to walk toward the depot.  He apparently from the testimony of the spectators to the accident, did not hear the oncoming train nor the signals of teh trainmen until the train was within a dozen feet of him.  HE then made an effort to get off the track without success, but sufficient that he was thrown clear of the track and not ground under the cars.

The train continued to the station and discharged it's passengers and then backed up to the scene of the accident and gathered all the information possible and rendered such assistance as could be given before leaving Angola. Morris Hickery was the engineer.  Dr P. N. Sutherland, the company's surgeon, was also called and he made an examination of the body and the nature of the injuries.  The remains were taken to the Klink funeral home and prepared for burial.

The deceased was an estimable man who had lived his entire life in Steuben County.  He served over three years in the Union army in the 30th Indiana Regiment, being discharged at Victoria, Texas in 1865 at teh age of 22 years.

Coroner Ford N. Swift held an inquest at the Klink establishment Saturday morning and after hearing the testimony of two eye witnesses to the accident, James Cline and Paul Butz, he returned a verdict of accidental death for which the railroad company was in no way responsible.  


Lawrence West, son of Joshua and Jerusha Van Norman West was born near West Unity, Williams County, Ohio, December 25, 1840.  Early in his life his parents moved to Flint, Indiana.  There he grew to manhood and when the Civil War came upon his country he responded to the call for soldiers to defenc the flag, abolish human slavery and maintain teh Union.  He enlisted in Comapny G, Thirtieth Indiana Voluntary Infantry, which was organized in La Grange County and served three years and four months.  He was mustered out and honorably discharged from the service at Victoria,Texas on October 22, 1865, at the age of 22 years.
    He was united in marriage to Catherine Arnold, at Flint, on the twenty-fourth day of December, 1866, by Freeman Green, a justice of the peace, to which union were born six children, one son and five daughters, all of whom survive him.  They are J.W. West of Traverse City, Michigan; Lillian Hunt, Tecumseh, Michigan;  Mrs. J. Lane, Angola; Mrs B. J. Barhite, Toledo, Ohio; Mrs. S. L. Wayland of Toledo, Ohio; Mrs Earl Cline, Angola; and an adopted son, Harold, of Toledo, Ohio.
    Years ago he moved to Angola where he made his home until his death.  He was 83 years, 8 months, and 11 days old.
    Besides the life companion and the children he leaves to mourn their loss one sister, Mrs. Charlotte Davis of Ashley; two brothers, Westly of Colon Michigan; Charles of Muskegon, Michigan and a host of other relatives and friends.
    Funeral services were held at the Klink funeral home Sunday afternoon at 2:30 o'clock, Elder J.O. Rose officiating.  Burial in Circle Hill Cemetery.  All the above named brothers, sisters, and children of the deceased and a great many other relatives from Kalmazoo, Sturgis, Burr Oak, Bronson and Kendallville were present at the funeral.

Card of Thanks

We desire to express our appreciation to all those who so kindly ministered to us by deeds of helpfulness and flowers during out bereavement in the loss of our husband and father.
Mrs. Lawrence West and Children

Steuben Republican:  September 17, 1924







Tuesday, May 28, 2013


Almost anyone who is from Angola knows of the dog standing guard at a grave in Circle Hill.  At one time the dog statue was a large copper one but was replaced by a much smaller one after the original was stolen.  This dog stands guarding the grave of Dan Webster.  The Croxton House and Barn still stand, across Maumee street from St Anthony of Padua Catholic Church, in Angola

The Pioneer Colored Resident of Steuben County Crosses the River
Sketch of His Life--Born and Reared a Slave, He came North at the Close of the War, 
and Had Lived in Angola Nearly a Quarter of a Century.

     Daniel Webster, the well known colored man who had lived with Wm G. Croxton, of Angola, for so many years, died suddenly last Friday night.  He had been in ill health for six months or more, but was able most of the time to be around and do light work, and his death was very unexpected.  Only a few minutes before it he assisted Mr. Croxton in unhitching and caring for the horse.  Mr. Croxton came home from the children's entertainment at the Opera House about 11:00 o'clock, and, with his little granddaughter, had barely reached his house, having left Dan in the barn, when he heard calls for help.  Going at once to the barn, with other members of his household, he found his faithful old servant on the bed in his room, apparently in great pain.  He lost consciousness and died almost immediately, before medical aid could be secured.  Heart disease was the immediate cause of death.
    For many years he was distinguished as the only colored resident of Steuben county, and it is safe to say that there is scarcely a man, woman, or child in all this region who didn't know "Uncle Dan", as he was familiarly called, by sight at least.  He was born of slave parents in Carroll County Tennessee, about sixty years ago.  His real name was Bludsoe, that, as is generally understood, being the name of his master: but for some reason, probably an aversion for anything that would bring back recollections of slavery days, he assumed the name Webster, by which he had been known since the war.  He came North with Col. Carpenter of Warsaw, at the close of the war, and lived in Warsaw, with Ex-Congressman "Billy" Williams and others for a few years: then he went to live with Capt. Jack Croxton, a brother of our fellow townsman, with he staid seven years.  Twenty-three years ago, he came to Angola to live with W. G. Croxton, and remained with him continuously until his death.
    Born a slave, very little is known of his early life, or of his relatives.  He had a brother known as Kail Brown, who came north with Gen. Tom Brown at the close of the war, and from him he got the name of Brown.  Kail died in Winchester, this state, about two years ago.
    Those brought close to Dan in everyday life, would occasionally find him in a reminiscent mood.  At such times he would entertain them with stray bits of his early history and recollections of slave life, which he would relate with the vivid picturesqueness of style and quaintness of expression which are unmistakable characteristics of the Negro race and dialect, adding a peculiar charm to the narrative.  His earliest recollections were of his parents and their master who, it seems, was a humane and kindhearted man; of the time when the daughter of the master married an unworthy member of a proud and aristocratic family in Mississippi; of  himself, then a sturdy lad with two or three other slave boys younger than himself, being given by his master to the daughter as a wedding present; of a long trip to their future home on a big Mississippi plantation; how his unfortunate mistress, like many another woman, soon discovered that she had been deceived and betrayed into an unhappy marriage; that her husband was a graceless profligate, leading an abandoned and dissolute life, which speedily terminated into the disappearance of the faithless husband and the cruel desertion of the wife, who was left with her little colony of colored children, friendless, helpless, and destitute; of the appeal to her father for help and protection; of the days of distress, and privation which followed, until the slow methods of communication and travel of those days brought relief; how they all, heartsick and homesick as they were, shouted and cried for joy when they one day recognized the familiar form of the master in the distance coming on horseback for their deliverance; how the old master settled some necessary business matters, arranged to send his deserted daughter home by a river boat, and then, with Dan and the other little barefooted darkey boys on either side of his horse, struck out for their old home in Tennessee; how the old master would take first one and then another upon the horse with him, and at times would pile them all on while he would walk and rest them, during the long journey, until they reached their old home - a story so full of tenderpathos and interest as be well worthy of being woven into those delightful romances of southern life and customs which come from the graceful pens of Cable, Reed and Harris.
    Dan had a high and innate sense of honor which would be an ornament of many a man claiming a higher position in life than he.  Little children liked him; he was their champion and their comforter.  His inborn chivalry prompted him to resent a slighting remark made of any woman.  His courteous manners and uniform good nature made all who knew him his friends.
   For nearly a quarter of a century he had lived in Angola with Mr. Croxton and was n ever was there more devoted, faithful and loyal attachment upon the part of anyone than he had manifested in that long service.  He had become like a member of the family.  His death deeply moved Mr. Croxton, who fittingly remembered his trusty servant with a funeral service and burial in every respect open to that which would be given a near and dear relative. Humble was Dan's place in life, he met his death while faithfully discharging his duty.  High or low, white or black, what higher eulogy can be paid to any man?
     Funeral services, held at the Croxton residence Sunday forenoon, were attended by a vast concourse of people.  The floral tributes were profuse, the casket being covered with beautiful flowers.  Rev. F. M. Kemper delivered a brief but most excellent address, and music was rendered by a quartette from  the Methodist the Methodist choir.  Mr Kemper's address was especially fitting and appropriate to the occasion, and many speak of it as the finest of its kind ever heard in Angola.  The pall bearers were Sam Shelton, Charles Vincon, B. Barber, and B. Ensley, all colored - and they tenderly deposited the casket in the in Croxton family vault in Circle Hill Cemetery.

Angola Magnet June 17, 1898    

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Attendance On Part Of School Teachers
Also Goes On Record Against Midweek Athletic And Social Functions -- For Better Schools

The county board of education in session last Monday in the county superintendent's office, agreed unanimously to employ no teachers who frequents the public dance halls.  Such action, in the opinion of the board, needs no argument in its defense.  The moral welfare of the schools was considered by the board to be the sole basis for the argument.  The new form of contract devised by the state provides fifteen days notice as necessary to annul either party.  The trustees propose to use this feature to enforcing the order and thus to promote its better campaign for better schools.

Other features of school administration were discussed by the board.  Inter-school athletics received its share of comment.  The opinion of the board seems to be opposed to all mid-week inter-scholastic games.  All such sports as well as all social functions of the schools should be scheduled on Friday or Saturday evenings.  

Some members of the board are also of the opinion that action ought to be taken concerning the employment of men who have the tobacco or pool room habit.

Steuben Republican July 13, 1921

Wednesday, March 27, 2013


The Oldest Person in Northern Indiana Lives in Angola and Enjoys Life

A few days ago we received a paper from Harvey A. Fuller, the blind poet, giving an account of the death of Nancy Williams at Augusta. Georgia, at the age of 110 years.  This called to mind again the presence inour city of Mrs. Elizabeth Maugherman , who has passed the century mark by six years.

She was born at Bricelines Cross Roads, Pennsylvania, June 1, 1805, and when one year old her parents moved to Starke County, Ohio, and most of her long life was spent in the Buckeye state.  When she was twenty-one years of age she went to Trumball county, Ohio, where she married Adam Maugherman. To the union were born seventeen children, six of whom are living, and with one of her daughters, Mrs. Stafford, on East mill Street, she is making her home.

Her father served in the War of 1812, and her husband in the Civil War, and she is now receiving a pension of $12.00 per month, but owing to her advanced age and touch with two wars she ought to have an increase the same as the men.

Mrs Maugherman moved to Williams county some sixty years ago, and lived there until about five weeks ago when she decided to quit work and take the world easy, making her home with her daughter, mentioned above.  Her facilities are good, her memory being remarkably so, and an hour spent in her company will convince any one that she is growing old "willingly, thankfully and serenely."  All her life she has observed early hours and plain living.  Her doctor bills have been few.  What a flood of memories must come into the mind of a person who has lived more than a hundred years.  Thoughts come into her mind of little errands she did for her mother a century ago, and although her mind is active to the things about her, she no doubt lives largely in the years long gone when all life was not strife as it is so largely at the present time.

One hundred and forty-four descendents of Mrs. Maugherman are living, representing five generations, the one to represent the fifth generation being Leona, daughter of Mrs. Elizabeth Ferrier, of Flint, Steuben county, Indiana and nothing gives her more genuine pleasure that a visit from this great great grandchild.

Her near friend, Mrs. Frank Somerlott, of Angola, who has furnished us most of the above information, speaks in highest terms of her life as a generous, christian woman, who is alive to the interests of the present day.  While she has lived to see the evolution of the oxcart to the aeroplane and other inventions just as remarkable, time has not ceased to be of any moment to her, and while the years of her long life have fallen away like leaves from the tree in Autumn, and she is an old woman and her children are grandparents, she is yet young in spirit and remarkably active.

Steuben Republican October 25, 1911

Thursday, January 31, 2013


Robert H. Snowberger Died Tuesday Morning - Only One Veteran Remains

Angola's last surviving veteran of the Civil War, Robert H. Snowberger, passed away at an early hour Tuesday morning at his home on North Wayne Street from repeated heart attacks with which had been afflicted for the past two weeks.  His death leaves only one surviving Civil War soldier in Steuben County - Daniel Weisel, of Salem Township, aged 99.

Mr Snowberger, who was 92 years of age, was born in Ashland County, Ohio.  He served with Company D of the Seventh Indiana Calvary for two years and seven months.  His service was with the western army in Western Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, and Arkansas, his organization being engaged in subduing guerrilla warfare and outlawry in the territory passed over by the main army.  He was engaged for six months after peace was declared, under General Custer, of later Indian warfare, in effecting order in Texas.  His life after the war was spent in Steuben County, in farming, and later as a retired citizen in Angola.  He was quite active until recent weeks and took pride in representing the remnant of "the old guard" in public occasion.

He is survived by his wife and two sons by a former marriage.  

Funeral services for Mr. Snowberger will be held at the Klink Funeral Home on Friday afternoon at 2:00 o'clock, Rev. J. O. Rose officiating.  The burial will be in the Pleasant Lake cemetery with military honors by the Angola Post of the American Legion.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013


State and County Highway Gangs Fight
Valiantly in Snow and Wind to Open Roads

Steuben county was caught in the tight grip of Old Man Winter Sunday night, and throughout Monday and a greater part of Tuesday, local and through traffic was paralyzed.  Following a mild Sunday, a fifty mile an hour gale and heavy snow swept over the county during the night.  the temperature was not extremely low, dropping Tuesday morning to the lowest point reached during the storm to 11 degrees above zero.Seven inches of snow fell, according to weather reporter John B. Parsell, which produced .8 inches of water.  MOnday morning the highways througout the county were completely blocked and rural schools were closed for two days.  Two Pleasant township school busses were able to make their routes both days, and the Angola schools continued in session with depleted attendance rolls.

Mail and bus service was badly crippled.  The morning mail truck from the south reached Angola after noon on MOnday.  Rural mail service was abandoned for the day and partial service was given Tuesday.  Bus service to Fort Wayne was limited to one round trip and a singe trip on Monday.  Greyhound bus service east and west was reduced to one bus each way during Monday.

A single one of the double rear wheels on a Greyhound bus came off a west bound bus a short distance east of Angola, Monday noon, and the passengers were brought into Angola to await a special bus.  Twelve passengers were marooned here until evening, when a special bus arrived and tool the passengers on the journey west bound.

Freight traffic was brought to a complete standstill as the large trucks became stalled in the drifts or their wheels spun on the heavy layer of snow on the pavements.  These did much to block the traffic,  One truck was reported abandoned north of Angola, almost completely hidden beneath the snow which drifted over it at the roadside. The stat and county highway forces worked steadily to open the roads and did everything in their power to aid traffic through to cantral points.

The storm to be general through the central and western states.  Chicago suffered the most severely of any storm in recent years, as streets and elevated transportation was halted.

In Fort Wayne a school janitor died in the school house of heart failure after spending an hour in strenuous work of shoveling snow.

In Steuben county the blockade of traffic was the severest since the storm at Christmas time three years ago when bus traffic was paralyzed and passengers were obliged to remain three or four days at hotels and in farm houses until he highways could be opened.

Steuben Republican  February 1, 1939

Thursday, January 10, 2013


     Last Saturday morning about 7:00 o'clock fire broke out in Ford Willennar's Restaurant at the southwest corner of public square and in a short time the building and contents were beyond repair.
     Mr. Willennar had gone to the rear of the room to start fire in the gasoline stove, and when had lit the gasoline he turned away for just a moment, when the entire room seemed enveloped in flames.  As there was no noise, Mr Willennar is sure there was no explosion, and this adds somewhat to the mystery of the fire.
The building destroyed was the last frame on facing the public square, and had stood there for over fifty years.  It was owned by John A. Booth who carried insurance in the Ohio Farmers for $500.  The contents were also insured in the same company for $350, and Mr. Willennar claims his loss to have been about $700. No doubt Mr. Booth will at once erect a brick building on the site of the one destroyed, and Mr. Willennar will look for another location in which to conduct a restaurant.
     Eugene Coleman, stat agent of the Ohio Farmer's Insurance Company was here yesterday and settled the loss on the building, stock and fixtures.  The company was obliged to pay a total loss on the building and contents due to the lack of water and pressure.  The fire department never made better time or got to a fire in better shape, and it is said by a number of members of the fire department that had they have had proper pressure they could have put out the fire in a very few moments and the loss would have been but slight.\

Steuben Republican August 10, 1910


The oldest person living in the confines of Steuben County is Mrs. Sarah Anspaugh, who will be one hundred years old on Oct 11, 1930.  Although confined to her bed and to a wheel chair as the result of injuries received in a fall several years ago, she is in splendid health and there is no reason why she should not live to round out a full century and enjoy the birthday celebration which is being planned at her home with her son, Jacob Anspaugh, one mile east and one-half mile south of Alvarado in Richland Township.  She takes a keen interest in things going on about the home and in the community and is proud of the distinction of having lived nearly one hundred years.

At times Mrs. Anspaugh is able to recall and talk interestingly of the things that transpired long before two-thirds of the present generation was born.  Her life history runs back through the development of this nation from struggling states to the greatest civil power in the world.  

Mrs. Anspaugh was the daughter of Samuel Cain and was born in Pennsylvania.  Her parents came to Williams county, Ohio when she was six years of age.  When she was seventeen years of age she was married to Jacob Anspaugh, and they lived in Williams County until 1865, when they moved to Richland Township in Steuben County, on the old Anspaugh place on-half mile east and one-half mile south of Metz, which was her home until two years ago, when her son Samuel who later owned the farm moved to Angola, and she went to live with her son Jacob. Their post office address is now Edon.

Seven children were born to Mr and Mrs. John Anspaugh for whom six are still living, one son dying nearly seventy years ago.  The survivors are all in good health and will all probably live to enjoy the coming centennial celebration of their mother's birth.  The are: Jacob Ansbaugh, age 80; Samuel Anspaugh, 78; Mrs Hester Kirk, 72; JOhn, 70; Amanda Flegal,67; and Grant 65.  Frank died at age 6.

There are nine grandchildren, Mrs. Clara Tingler and Mrs. Lura Metz, daughters of Jacob Anspaugh; George, son of Samuel; Mrs Clela Pervines, daughter of Amanda Flegal; Mrs. H. Barnhart, H.G., C.H., and Ralph, children of Grant Anspaugh, and Glen, son of John Ansbaugh.  There are eleven great grandchildren in her progeny.

Without doubt the community will join, at least by postcard acknowledgement, in the celebration of Mrs. Anspaugh's centennial celebration in October next.

Steuben Republican 1930

NOTE:   Mrs Sarah Anspaugh lived until the age of 102.