07 September 2012

Getting the point across ... The End.

It's was hard to tell who sent this initially. 

There is only one photograph of the sender, and comparing this photograph with others in my collection, I couldn't positively identify him. However, since the recipient of the message is Grace Stoddard (my grand aunt), and her most ardent admirer was Ossian Ray, who lived in New Hampshire - and therefore makes sense of the NH reference - he is my best bet. 

Besides, they eventually married in 1905 and had one daughter, Betty Ray, two years later. 

It's fun to think about earlier eras when folks didn't have all our instruments of high speed communication and they took the time to make elaborate letters like this one. 

Thank you to all the sentimental relatives for saving it!

My translation:

(1) My dear Grace I hope it will not boar you to puzzle this out if it does stop at once and forgive  (me).
(2) I envy (picture) being able to travel in fact I am more jealous of him than that Dann boy though he is interested
(3) in flying. If you will come to the mountains I will let you take your bird book on our outings.
(4) The Waumbek will be steamed this summer. I can't bear to trot over. Why not take me with you? Don't let
(5) Sue become engaged to any Englishman with a beak and don't you get infatuated with I.
(6) I wonder if you will meet many men on the ship it is a
(7) great place to see what is in them. I am frightened of moon on a ship
(8) they say it leads to wedding do be careful about sparking at (jousting) speed?
(9) Do write me many times this fan and console me. I shall fill the mailbox with letters for you.
(10) I am so glad Rob can rest and is 'Two to one er'. I must apologize for lack of wit and (gem)cy
studying is the reason?
(11) I hope you will think this is a happy thought and not that it's (?)
(12) Give Sue my love and keep some for yourself  June 1, 1902 (photo with head removed) 

The End

Honk! Honk!

(I wrote this posting last summer, and neglected to actually press the button to, well, post it.)

I'm just back from a wild goose chase in Maine.

The kind that starts with a rumor... and ends with lots of nothing. Okay, that's not entirely true... I did find scads of relatives in Brunswick and Thomaston; just not the ones I was searching for. It was nice to have a mission on our trip to Maine while Alex was learning how to plank a boat. I spent the last week making short forays to various libraries and historical societies in Knox County - Bath, Thomaston and Rockland all have wonderful resources for the genealogically bent traveller.

The story goes like this: Thomas Deane, son of Jonas Deane of Taunton and Eunice Turner, was born in 1691 in Scituate, MA. He married Lydia Cole of Swansea, MA, daughter of Hugh Cole of Plymouth, MA and Deborah Bucklin of Rehoboth, MA. Already the story gets a little sticky; depending on the sources, Lydia's parents could also have been John and his first wife Mary (Lewis) Cole. Fred E. Crowell says in his New Englanders in Nova Scotia column, that "Thomas Deane and family removed to Scarborough, ME before Feb. 17, 1740." and that "Mr. Deane is said to have later removed to New Meadows, now Bath, ME, where he died."

And there is where I started looking: Bath, ME. If Thomas Deane - or Dean - had died in Bath, no one seems to know about it. In fact there are no Thomas Deane records of death/burial (with the correct dates) in Maine that I have found. And it is from a want of searching either. I have since found a place not unreasonably far from Bath that is called Dean Hill. I wonder if it would be a stretch to go climb it and see what is there, maybe a gravestone conveniently marked with Thomas Deane on it?

Well, the next time I'm in Maine...