Friday, January 28, 2011

Tiffany-a Gem of a Surname

My great grandmother was a Tiffany. Although I was a little afraid of her as a little girl and not real connected as a teenager, she has turned out to be a pretty fascinating woman and I intend to tell you more about her in a later story. But today, I thought I would write a little about that Tiffany line in general. We were always told that we were related to THE Tiffanys, but were descended from the wrong brother.
Five generations: Ethel Marsh Tiffany Paige holds her great great granddaughter, Corina while my mother Loraine and her mother Elinore and my brother Charles look on. 1969

Although, I do have a Tiffany diamond, passed down to me from my grandmother, Elinor Tiffany Paige Waters. So, with that bit of information I went out looking to see just where we were in regards to THE Tiffany's.
 I have done a lot of research and have been able to document back to my 10th great grandfather, Henry Tiffany born in Yorkshire England in 1577. Henry's son was born in London stayed there all his life. Henry Jr and his wife, Elizabeth, had a son Humphrey in 1630 who decided to make the voyage to America some time about 1660.

There is a lot of information on the Tiffany family. One of  the funniest things I found was a description of what the Tiffanys as a "race" were like. In the book The Tiffany's of America: A History and Geneaology, by Nelson Otis Tiffany For and in the Interest of Charles Lewis Tiffany of New York City  the author writes:

The Tiffanys are as a rule, physically strong, from medium to large stature, many being over six feet in height. They are too high-spirited and active to take on a suberabundance of flesh, are stately in bearing, erect in carriage, quick and clear-cut in movement, and have large heads, the upper brain developed in excess of the base. The head is well carried on a sturdy neck. The chest is deep, the lungs large and full, the body and limbs round, well knit, closely jointed. The shoulders are inclined to droop, with the arms carried close to the body. Skin and hair are fine in texture, nails are thin, giving evidence of a sensitive and somewhat nervous organization, the mental predominating over the physical. The faces are comely, with nose straight or slightly arched, nostrils large, indicating strong and full lung capacity, and the line from the nostril to the corner of the mouth, known as the line of success, is sharply defined...

The complexion is usually dark, but not swarthy, the eyes are brown, dark blue or dark gray. A blonde Tiffany is practically unknown. Probably the most marked characteristic of the Tiffanys is the expression of the eye, which is as positive and distinct as the Maximillian lip...The Tiffany eye is the first feature to attract the attention of a close observer. It is bright, giving evidence of temperate habits. Its expression changes rapidly with the mood, indicating health and buoyancy, sympathy, grief, determination, or anger, wtih quickness and unerring certainty. It is a Tiffany mark. The Tiffanys are good livers, and are fastidious in dress. As a race, the Tiffanys are long-lived, retaining their mental faculties unimpaired to a good old age."

Now, as most of you know, I stand about 5'1" if I stretch. I don't really fit many of these characteristics,  certainly I am not "too high-spirited or active to take on a superabundance of flesh".  But, my eyes do change with my moods, I think, which the author says indicates health and buoyancy. And, I am healthy and indeed, very buoyant. So there are some characteristics that survived.

Humphrey Tiffany was the first Tiffany referred to in the record books on this side of the pond. He was a well known character in his day, living in Swansea, Rehobeth, Attleboro and that area of Massachusetts. His wife's name was Elizabeth, but we don't know her maiden name. He was known as Squire Humphrey, which indicated he was justice of the peace. He was a taxpayer and a successful guy, from what I've read. But his biggest claim to fame, aside from being our immigrant ancestor, was how he died.

From the diary of Samuel Sewall.   "Wednesday, P. M., July 15. Very dark and great Thunder and Lightening. One Humphrey Tiffany and Frances Low, Daughter of Antony Low, are slain with the Lightening and Thunder about a mile or a half a mile beyond Billingses Farm, the Horse also slain, that they rode on, and another Horse in Company slain, and his rider who held the garment on to steady it at the time of the Stroke, a coat or cloak, stounded but not killed. Were coming to Boston.  Antony Low being in Town the sad Bill was put up with regard of that Solemn judgement of God; Fast day Forenoon.  July 15, 1685. 2 Persons 2 Horses." 

Historians think that Squire Humphrey and Ms. Low were probably in Canton when lightning struck them. A plaque was placed on the spot of their demise, and was there for years, well into the 19th century that read:

"Squire Humphrey Tiffany and Mistress Lowe,
by a stroke of lightning into eternity did go."

As I read the account from Sewall's diary, I wondered if this is where the expression "...and the horse they rode in on" came from. I am wondering why Squire Humphrey and Mistress Low shared the same horse, aren't you? He was married with lots of children at the time of his death.

One of those children, continuing up into my tree, was James, born in Milton, MA in 1665. He married first Bethiah Fuller, with whom he had thirteen children between 1693 and her death in 1711, the last being born in 1710. Do the math. That poor woman! After poor Bethiah passed on to a well deserved eternal peace, James married another woman named Elizabeth (maiden name unknown) and had another 4 kids. James died in 1732, leaving a long will naming all of his surviving children and his second wife, who married right away, outlived the second husband and married again.

But my ancestor was James, the second child of James and Bethiah born in 1697 in Attleboro, or Bristol, RI, depending on which record you believe. He also married an Elizabeth and if you are counting, that makes 4 generations in a row of Tiffany men marrying 4 different Elizabeths. Not easy to keep track of. However, for this Elizabeth we have more information.  She was Elizabeth Allen born in Attleboro in 1704 to Rachel and Increase Allen. Don't you just love that name? Elizabeth and James Jr, had seven children. James lived to be 79 years old and died in 1776.

One of his sons was Daniel, my ancestor, and another I want to mention was Daniel's brother Ebenezer. More about him later.

Now, Daniel was a Revolutionary War Veteran but long before the war, he married Miriam Hodges in 1760. He  was 21 and she was just 15. I'd love to know more about that story, but all I know is that she died a year later, leaving no children. Then, in 1762 he married Mary Woodcock, who had 10 children by Daniel, including Edmond Hodges Tiffany, my 4th great grandfather, undoubtedly named in memory of Daniel's first love. I wonder how Mary liked that? Mary died  after 25 years of marriage and Daniel married a 3rd time at the age of 50, fathered one more child and lived out his life near his birthplace of Attleboro, dying at the age of 78 in Norton, MA.

Edmond Hodges Tiffany married a gal, also named Mary, who was from Woodstock, Connecticut and settled there with her. They had two children: Lucy and Edmond Prelate Tiffany, for whom I have an obituary.

Click on the clipping to enlarge.
Edmond Prelate was the first one to bring the family to Southbridge, where the next 3 generations were born: Harlan, my great great grandfather, Ethel my great grandmother Elinor my grandmother. Edmond's obituary was eloquently written, I think, and tells us quite a bit about old great great great Grampa. He was a machinist, not a jeweler, however.

Edmond's son, Harland Tiffany is a fellow I have quite a bit of information about from the book of newspaper clippings I have. He was my great grandmother's father, and a very well-known man about town in Southbridge, MA in his day. He worked for American Optical company for 50 years before retirement. He had no sons and so his name stopped with Ethel Marsh Tiffany Page. But his is a story I'd really like to tell one day.

But let's get back to Ebenezer, Daniels' brother. Ebenezer had a son named Comfort.

Chloe and Comfort
Comfort married Chloe and moved to New York and there a son, Charles Lewis Tiffany was born. He would become the jeweler.

Charles Lewis Tiffany
Charles had a son, Louis Comfort Tiffany, the designer and maker of Tiffany lamps.

Louis Comfort Tiffany
So, as it turns out, Charles Lewis Tiffany is my 2nd cousin 5 times removed. And Louis Comfort, my 3rd cousin 4 times removed.

The Tiffany diamond I have, was given to me as a baby by my grandmother, who received it herself as a baby. I think it is visible in this picture of her as a baby.

It may even go back further than that. There is no Tiffany & Co. mark anywhere, so it may just be family folklore, but who cares. I am still going to call it my Tiffany diamond. Here is a picture of me wearing it and a closeup for a little perspective.

Me at about age 1 wearing my Tiffany diamond.

If you get really close to the screen and squint, you maybe can make out an actual diamond in there that's no bigger than FDR's ear. It's the quality that counts, though, right?

So, there is the Tiffany story in a nutshell. I will go into more depth about some of these folks at another time. For now, just remember, if you need a diamond, I probably can't get it for you wholesale.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Henrietta Won an Award! I don't want to brag, but...

I have a couple of stories I am working on that I really want to take extra time to write before I share them with you. In the meantime, I will brag just a little bit.

I recently received two ANCESTOR APPROVED awards from two fellow bloggers for Henrietta last month and didn't even know it until now! The genealogy blogging community is a group of dedicated and passionate folks who love to share what they find and how they find it. There are so many blogs out there so this one gal, Leslie Ann from Ancestors Live Here, created an award for these bloggers.  She wrote this when she first awarded it:

As a recipient of this award I ask that you list ten things you have learned about any of your ancestors that has surprised, humbled, or enlightened you and pass it along to ten other bloggers who you feel are doing their ancestors proud.

So, this award comes with some responsibility attached to it. First I have to find the ten things that I have learned that surprised, humbled or enlightened me in some way. That will be easy because it happens every day and with almost every ancestor I have come across. Whittling it down to ten will be the challenge. I tried to choose a few examples that I hope to use in future blogs. I don't think I revealed too much about them, so please do keep logging in each week. So, those ten choices were more or less random and pretty easily made, considering the amount of material and numbers of ancestors I have to choose from.

But, then, I had to start really reading the other blogs.  I thought that would be very tough, but as it turns out, although there were so many to choose from, it wasn't easy, but reading them and getting to know them was quite a lot of fun.

Part I  Ten things that I have learned that surprised, humbled or enlightened me about my ancestors

    Samuel Atkinson Budd
  1. My most recent surprise was that I just this week learned that there are copious letters and sketches by my gggrandfather Samuel Budd, civil war veteran of the 1st NY Mounted Rifles, at the New York Historical Society's library! I am eager to get my hands on them all this summer!
  2. The first surprise I remember as a neophyte to the genealogy game was discovering that my gggggrandparents, Fisher and Loruhama Ames, are buried in my home town cemetery, just on the other side of the worn pathway that runs by my grandparents resting place. A place I visited often as a child and as an adult, and there they had been for one hundred and fifty years when I discovered them. I never even knew their names until I began this journey.
  3. I was humbled to learn the story of my gggrand uncle Salem Judson Tiffany, who died in Andersonville Prison during the Civil War and that there is a generous fellow out there in the genealogy community who has located his grave and invited us on a golf cart tour of the whole area. 
  4. I was humbled and enlightened when I learned that my gggrandfather Daniel Waters, son of a lighthouse keeper from Scotland, immigrated here and then served in our Civil War.
  5. I was enlightened to learn that my great grandfather, James Paige, was a whizkid in his day who, even in his short life accomplished so much and was such a respected and successful young man with American Optical Company in Southbridge, MA.
  6. When I learned of the love story between young great grandfather James Paige and my great grandmother Ethel Tiffany, I was not only humbled but deeply touched. A love letter written by him to his young wife is a treasure I have. Although one of the first stories I wanted to tell you here, I want to be careful before I share it that I have written it in a way deserving of its uncommon tenderness and  devotion.    
  7. I was enlightened by my great grandmother Josephine Patten Willett who raised such remarkable daughters during a time when women were not valued as much as in the generations that followed. She raised strong, independent women in a turn of the century Manhatten, for the most part as a widow.
  8. I was humbled by the heroism of Ed's fifth great grandfather, Abner Crowell, who was captured and held prisoner aboard a British Prison ship in Newport Harbor during the American Revolution. Abner, a Cape Cod seaman whose ship was probably taken by the enemy and used as a floating dungeon, perished when the British deliberately sank these prison ships hoping to stop French ships from entering the harbor after the France-American alliance was struck in 1778. The unspeakable conditions I have read about will make this a difficult piece for me to write about, but one I hope to complete in the near future.
  9. On the other hand, I was surprised to learn that some of my Davis and Hall ancestors who were living in Vermont on the Quebec border during the revolution, may well have been loyalists or at the very least wafflers, who probably moved back and forth from Derby Line to Bolton,Quebec depending on where they could make a living to feed their families.
  10. And finally, I remain enlightened every day when I find a small remnant or a complete tapestry of the lives of all of our ancestors, left behind long after they have left us, in documents, personal recollections told to me by generations above me or by a photograph or a curl of hair of a child who died young. I can see my great grandmother sadly and lovingly, closing her eyes as she brings to her lips and places a kiss on the soft blonde curl. Holding it in her hand, she runs her thumb over it once more before wrapping it carefully in tissue paper, then slipping it into the now yellowing envelope, placing it inside the old scrapbook that I now have, filled with newspaper clippings kept by three generations of women; a volume full of life's celebrations and tragedies.
These glimpses of their lives that we get each time we find another hint of what our ancestors were like as individuals and what they overcame and how they persevered, all culminating in our existence today continues to enlighten me. That's what feeds the passion I have to find out more about them and to write about them.


Thanks for the award, fellow bloggers! I eagerly pass it on to the following bloggers, their links provided here for you. Please take a moment to take a look at them if they pique your interest:

Scottish Genes (GE-nes News and EventS)
Dear Myrtle's Genealogy Blog
over thy dead bodies
Life From The Roots
West in New England
The New England House Historian
The Symbolic Past
Forgotten Old Photos
GenealogyBlog I took a couple of courses from this blogger, Leland,  at the GA conference. Great Guy-very knowledgeable!
Find Your Folks-I met Drusilla at the GA conference. She inspired me to start Henrietta! She's VERY tech savvy, as well as being a great writer and a fun person.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

A Curious Book of Genealogical Treasures

I have a rather curious book that my mother left to me. It is about 6 x 8 inches, hard covers with blank lined paper pages, a journal of sorts. It is in very poor condition, the binding broken and frayed, pieces missing. I can tell from the edges of the pages that if they were all there and still neatly postiioned one on top of each other, there would be a printed pattern on the edges in faded red and blue and beige.

My Curious cat and the Curious Book of Genealogical Treasures

Not much is written in it by hand, but there are a few notes here and there. It contains hundreds of clippings from newspaper articles mostly from Southbridge, Massachusetts. They seem to run from 1881 through 1949, but they are not pasted in the book in chronological order. I can only guess that someone pasted these articles into this journal, in most cases on both sides of the page, after discovering them in various drawers or a box, and as they came across them they were added. And, I think they were collected by more than one person over the 70 or so years they span. There are a few articles about weddings golden wedding anniversaries and even one about my great grandmother's 5th birthday party. Some stories about happenings around town and in neighboring communities. Some about career successes or changes,but,most of these articles are obituaries. Whoever collected these and then pasted them in this book must have been somewhat obsessed with death. And so, it is to me a curious thing to have such a collection, but such a treasure trove for any genealogist.

A sample of the treasures in this book.
I believe because of the notations found next to some of the articles and because some of the oldest articles are from Woburn, Massachusetts that the obituary collection may have been started by my Great Great Great Grandmother Lorena Pelsue Hyde Grammer (1835-1919). Lorena was affectionately referred to as Gramma Grammer, always causing a chuckle. I think Lorena began the collection but it was her daughter Minnie Viola Hyde Tiffany Blanchard (1865-1932) who began pasting things into the book. Then, it was continued by my Great Grandmother Ethel Marsh Tiffany Paige(1884-1974).

Gramma Grammer's death notice followed by a note written by Minnie in 1919.
I can envision Minnie finding clippings in her mother's trunk or a drawer or maybe Gramma Grammer mailed them to Minnie from Woburn to Southbridge and they began to pile up, so she eventually pasted them onto these pages. Most clippings are about a family member or close associate. But some are probably just interesting tidbits of news.

But, today's story isn't about Gramma Grammer or Minnie or any of the women in my family. It's not even an obituary. But it is an article, written in 1901 that I did find in the book.

It's a story about a woman named Jennie Lind Evans written in 1901 that either Minnie or Gramma Grammer or my Great Grandma Ethel thought worthy of including in the collection of clippings. Because I could find no connection to the family, it has been a puzzle to me why it's included there and an intriguing little mystery. Here is a transcription of the article:

Jennie Lind Lewis, Deserted by Her Husband Dr. Evans, in DakotaWell Known in Spindle City

Lowell, June 18-Jenny Lind Lewis, who was deserted recently by her husband, Dr. E. B. Evans, in North Dakota is well known here. She was born and bred in Lowell and comes of a highly respected family. From her childhood she has always been musically and dramatically inclined, and has essayed leading roles in amateur theatricals. Recently she joined the professional ranks, and before her marriage had a leading part in the “Gayest Manhattan” company. She has a soprano voice of remarkable sweetness, and for ten years back has sung in leading church choirs here.

     Little is known of her husband here. They were married by a local minister in January last at the Lewis residence on Stevens Street. The groom left for Fargo, N. D., the same evening, leaving his bride to take care of her sick father. Previously the marriage had been postponed several times on account of Mr. Lewis’s sickness.

     In April last, Mrs. Evans started for her new home at Fargo, but as an epidemic of smallpox was raging there the trip was postponed. On May 13 she finally started for Dakota and was hardly settled down when the doctor disappeared. He is still missing.

     In a letter sent to her parents recently, Mrs. Evans says she is hopeful that he will come back. Her parents are of the same mind.

     Evans has been established in Fargo two years and had an extensive medical practice. He graduated in ’97 from the Baltimore Medical College and stood seventh in a class of 140. His former home was in Rome, N. Y. where a sister and brother reside.

So this article left me with two questions: 1. Was this THE Jennie Lind that some of us have heard of over the years known as the famous Swedish Nightengale? and 2. What the heck happened to Dr. Evans?

The answer to the first question was quickly answered by a simple Googling. THE famous Jenny Lind was born in Sweden and lived from 1820-1887, and certainly never in Lowell. (Did you know that Hans Christian Anderson, who had a crush on her, gave her that nickname?) However, given the timing, it's a good bet that Jennie's parents, Mr. and Mrs. Lewis named her after the Swedish Nightengale, so popular when Jennie was born.

So, I did a little research with census records and so forth. It's really too bad the reporters back then didn't check their facts like they do now. (right.) What I found out is that Jennie Lind Lewis was born the youngest child of Sarah (Bean) and Morgan Quincy Lewis in New York, not Lowell,  in 1873. When Jennie married good old Dr. E B Evans she was single 27 year old musician living at home with her entire family in Lowell. She had an older sister Jessie who was a stenographer at the time and a brother Nathan, also a musician. Her brother and sister were both single and in their 30s but apparently Jennie was the one responsible for the care of her sick father. Her mother and father were not working so it would seem the kids brought home the bacon for the family.

Another clue in the article was that Jennie had a "leading part in the 'Gayest Manhattan' company". I started to look in New York but instead I found the family in Manhattan, Kansas in 1880 where Jennie began her career in the theater. So much for being "born and bred in Lowell...from a highly respectable family." Her family may well have been highly respectable, but I am not sure the reporter knew much about them at all and probably added the phrase to fill up space.

So here we have poor Jennie  left on the very night they were wed, now out in Fargo all by herself, married to an established doctor who couldn't wait to get back to his "practice" for some reason and then just up and disappeared. She must have thought her world had come to an end. How would she go on? Did she go on?

I couldn't find Jennie in Fargo in the 1910 census. But I was pretty sure she had no reason to stick around there. So, I switched gears and started researching Dr. Evans. I couldn't find him in Fargo in 1910, either. But I sure did find something!

In a 1901 publication called the Northwestern Lancet, a semi-monthly medical journal, that seems to give a lot more than medical information, we read:


Dr Edward B Evans of Fargo was married at Lowell Mass Jan 7 
Then, in June 1901:

Dr E B Evans, assistant county physician at Fargo ND has furnished the public a sensation by deserting his bride of ten days and disappearing. His marriage to a member of well known theatrical troupe was announced in these columns last month.

Followed by this entry in July:

Dr EB Evans the Fargo physician who disappeared from Fargo last summer shortly after his marriage has been located in Cleveland Ohio. The waitress with whom he eloped is also in Cleveland and his wife is singing in a Minneapolis church.

Well! This would explain why I was unable to find him or Jennie in Fargo in 1910. Going back, I did find him listed in the 1900 census. Just prior to his marriage to Jennie Lind Lewis, good old EB was living as a 25 year old single physician, just down the street from what looks to be a boarding house full of single women from Norway, Sweden, France working as waitresses for a hotel. Hmmm...

So, there we have it. We know she was Jennie Lind Lewis, from New York, Lowell, Kansas Minneapolis, and briefly Fargo but not from Sweden. We know the Doc may have been tired of waiting for Jennie to marry him and maybe was distracted by the local gals or the foreign imports. His waitress must have been quite a dish to tempt him to leave his bride and an established medical practice in Fargo and run away to Cleveland.

Just as I was about to close this posting, saying that I didn't know what became of either of them, I received a reply from a woman named Maryanna whom I found on who  I had written to. She is Jennie's GGGrandniece. She told me that Jennie came from a very musical family who traveled all over performing. Maryanna's ggGrandfather Nathan, who was Jennie's brother, was involved in teaching and performing music in St. Lawrence, NY for many years.

Maryanna told me that Jennie remarried a man named Satterthwaite in 1902, just a year after the dasterdly doctor left her in Fargo.
Also found in the Northwestern Lancet:

The marriage of Mrs Jennie Lind Lewis Evans known in Fargo and Minneapolis to Dr ST Satterthwaite is announced at Fargo.

Well, Jennie's new love was also a physician from Fargo. His full name was Samuel T. Satterthwaite and in 1905 Jennie and Dr. Sam returned from a voyage abroad on the ship the Saxonia. Perhaps she was performing there and he accompanied her.

Maryanna turned me onto a fabulous Web site called: Dead Fred  People can post their old photos and then you and I can search by surnames. (I will be going back to visit that site soon.) has a picture of a program for a musical performance in Chicago and Jennie's photo is on the cover. This is by far a better photo than from the newspaper article I had.

Program found on
From other things Maryanna told me about Jennie I was able to find her in Worcester, MA where she lived with her mother and sister as recently as 1920 and 930. Her sister Jessie  was a teacher of "Expression". Jennie was using the name Jane L. Satterthwaite, perhaps thinking it was a little more sophisticated than Jennie for a 60 year old widow who was listed in the City of Worcester Annual Report as one of the Directors of the Free Public Library there.

Miss Jenny Lind Lewis

 Worcester if not far from Southbridge where my Great Grandmother Ethel grew up. Ethel was also a singer, the same age as Jennie whose performances are mentioned in several articles in the Curious Book. Perhaps they knew each other, but I am sure if nothing else, Great Grandmother Ethel had seen Jennie Lind Lewis perform.

Great Grandma Ethel Marsh Tiffany Paige, age 14
in 1899.

We don't know yet what happened to Dr. Evans, the cad. Who knows, he might have gone on to be a respected physician at the Cleveland Clinic. If that's the case, I bet the folks who hired him didn't know what we know now!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Half-Uncle Alonzo--Part II

Part II. click here if you missed part one

Last week on Henrietta:

Alonzo, Ed’s great grandfather’s half brother, whose mother died when he was 3, was raised by his father Amos and stepmother Hepsibah in and around Townsend Massachusetts. He married Ellen Willard, the girl next door, and they moved to Ottumwa, Iowa with their three children Florence, Frank and Nelly. Alonzo  headed west with others from the east, before Horace Greeley ever suggested it. Their fourth child, Lillian, was born soon after they settled in Iowa, a place just ten years into statehood, where there were opportunities for an ambitious young man and his growing family in a community coming into its own just prior to the beginning of the Civil War.

He was building his painting business and making friends and becoming an active member of the little community, populated in some numbers by other transplanted New Englanders and New Yorkers. His neighbors were plasterers and laborers, carpenters, and the like, but he was one of the very few in that neighborhood of his peers who owned real estate and personal property worth taxing. A value of $500 on his home and $200 on his personal property wasn't much, but it was more than most had at the time.

Nearby lived another Massachusetts native named Daniel Eaton. Daniel was a cabinetmaker and a contemporary of Alonzo’s who came from Templeton, Massachusetts, not far from where Alonzo had lived. Daniel settled in Ottumwa a few years earlier than Alonzo and is credited with being one of the first merchants there. It’s likely they were distant cousins and maybe Alonzo was there at his invitation. Alonzo and Daniel and their neighbors began to turn Ottumwa into something much more than just a few crude buildings when after just a few years they were suddenly interrupted by the start of the Civil War and specifically by President Lincoln’s second call for volunteers.

In 1861 after helping to organize the 2nd Iowa Volunteers, along with his fellow Ottumwans, Alonzo, now 30 years old he was ordered to remove to Missouri in June to secure the railroads. But, in August, Lieutenant Eaton was assigned as brigade quartermaster at Pittsburgh Landing in TN, separating him from the others in Company K who went on to follow orders into battle. His friend Captain Charles Cloutman from New Hampshire, was Captain of Company K only because although elected by his company, Alonzo declined the office at Charles' request. Captain Cloutman led the company leaving Alonzo behind, now in charge of supplies for the front.
Civil War Monument Ottumwa

In February of 1862 the 2nd Iowa moved out of Missouri, and was ordered to Fort Donelson Tennessee to meet the enemy and plant the Union flag. Guy E. Logan includes in his book Roster and Record of Iowa Troops In the Rebellion, Vol. 1 the following account by Colonel Tuttle:

The Second Iowa Infantry proved themselves the bravest of the brave. They had the honor of leading the column which entered Fort Donelson. Colonel Tuttle then goes on to mention by name those who especially distinguished themselves by coolness and bravery in the assault upon the fort. Of those in the most responsible positions, ... says of them:

They were gallant to perfection. Lieutenant Colonel Baker had a ball pass through his cap and come out near his temple, Major Chipman was among the first to fall severely wounded, while cheering on the men of the left wing, and refused to be carried from the field, but waved his sword and exhorted the men to press forward. Captains Slaymaker and Cloutman fell dead at the head of their companies before they reached the entrenchments. “

Alonzo must have been devastated knowing that his friend and 8 others that day had been killed. If he hadn’t given in to his friend’s request, perhaps Alonzo would have been leading K Company on that fateful day. Within a few weeks the company would go on to Shiloh, losing more of his comrades. In an interview he did in 1905 back in Springfield, MA he said that he would not see most of these men ever again.

A few months after his friend lost his life at Fort Donelson, Alonzo would learn of his father Amos’ death back in Massachusetts. And within days of losing his father, he would receive happy news of the birth of his 5th child Walter. But enduring the loss of his friends and father and the separation from his family, Alonzo continued to serve his country in proud and remarkable fashion. So well did he do his job as quartermaster that by that fall he was put in charge of Land Transportation and Forage and Mechanical Shops in Corinth, Mississippi with 2,000 men serving under him and a payroll in excess of $40,000 per week.

His performance came to the attention of General Grant who was Commandor of the Army of the West. And Grant then assigned him to take "entire charge of the mechanical shops and the forwarding of supplies to the front". That assignment was in Holly Springs, MS where he remained until it was destroyed in a raid that December.

However, while he was on duty there at Holly Springs, he suggested that a government corral be established in Mattoon, IL "for the recuperation and sale of unserviceable cavalry and artilery horses." Grant was quick to put Captain Eaton’s plan into action, establishing corrals in Mattoon and St. Louis and in a report to Washington General Grant wrote “Captain Eaton is one of the most honorable and energetic men in my department.” By another order, General Grant appointed him "inspector of unserviceable animals in the whole department of West” and was responsible for the disposition of all horses for the rest of the war. By the time he mustered out in October 1865 he had bought and sold hundreds of thousands of dollars of goods and supplies as quartermaster, seen to the disposition and sale of tens of thousands of horses, by his own authority sold at auction the corrals and buildings in St. Louis and Mattoon and had closed his accounts, all balanced to the penny. My kind of accountant!

Captain Eaton and his family, stayed in Mattoon after the war. In 1870 he was no longer a painter, but now a Grain Speculator. The value of his real estate soared to $40,000 and his personal property had grown from $200 to $10,000. Personal Property that was taxed back then was carriages, watches and pianos and Alonzo and Ellen had all of those listed. That same year Alonzo served as Mayor of that town. He also began the First National Bank of Mattoon, where he served as president, and was an officer in the Mattoon Hotel Company. Alonzo at the age of 38 is a well respected, successful member of the community after only a few years.

He then moved his family to Chicago, perhaps with his eye on an even bigger and better life where his impressive success continued. In 1880 he was still making a good living as a Grain Speculator. Living with Ellen and his two youngest children, Walter and Lillian, and their Irish housekeeper, Kate O’Brien. He served as Secretary for the Chicago Open Board of Trade from 1881-1885. And, while I was researching I stumbled across a website that summarized the history of Chicago’s commodities market. It appears as if the Union Army Quartermaster, who is not named, had quite a bit of influence on the evolution of today’s markets.

At the website we find the following information:

During the Civil War the Union quartermaster procured supplies with contracts that postponed delivery of commodities until they were needed and payment was secured. These contracts created a market in “seller's” or “buyer's” options for the future delivery of commodities. Delivery before a date was “optional” because of the risks of transporting commodities to Chicago. Speculative purchases and sales of commodities were also inspired by these options. Regulations governing them were published by the Board of Trade in October 1865. These crude seller's or buyer's options evolved into “futures” contracts by the end of the 1870s.

I am no economic scholar but I'd say Alonzo was certainly positioned well and had inside knowledge of the market as a "Speculator" at the end of the war.  To think that he may well have had some impact on the way those markets work even today is kind of fun.

But, as successful as Alonzo was in business, it must have been a blow when in 1881 Ellen Sawtelle Willard Eaton passed away at just under 50 years old from uterine cancer. She suffered for 6 months before succombing to her illness. They had been married for 30 years and she had raised 5 children, sometimes without Alonzo's presence, during very difficult circumstances. I am sure she was an intelligent and supportive partner for Alonzo. She must have been a very strong and admirable woman.

But, Alonzo wasn't one to give up, despite his certain sadness. Soon thereafter his head was turned by young Emma Cooper from Park Ridge, Il. She was 22 years his junior and only a year older than his oldest daughter Florence. Alonzo and Emma were married just two years after he buried Ellen. Emma was a socialite from all accounts, enjoying her clubs and associations and entertaining guests.
Emma and Alonzo's Marriage License. (click on to enlarge)

Though having already lived a full life by most standards, Alonzo was only in his 50s when he returned home to Massachusetts with his new wife. His son Walter had also moved to Massachusetts just before them, becoming a successful accountant. For a time Alonzo and Emma lived with Walter and his family in Worcester, probably while Alonzo divested himself of real estate and other property back in Chicago.

Soon they settled in Springfield, Massachussetts and Alonzo began yet another chapter in his life. He opened a Real Estate office and he and Emma ran a hotel and worked on developing a resort area on Pearl Hill in the Fitchburg area. Many accounts of their comings and goings can be found in the Fitchburg Sentinel from those days. In one article, he and Emma celebrated their “wooden” or 5th anniversary with 60 of their closest friends one November evening in 1888 in their home. One of his guests gave them a wooden parlor table.

One of Alonzo and Emma's real estate holdings from tax records. (click on to enlarge)
He was busy with various civic and commercial undertakings, including serving on the Trade Commission for Fitchburg. Emma and he were buying and selling real estate in both of their names. We find him presenting plans for a hotel at Eatonia Park, the resort he is developing on Pearl Hill. Around the same time, he was promoting the need for a Chemical Engine for the Fire department in 1891, talking about the equipment Chicago had already acquired some time before. He was a member of the Masons, The Eastern Star, The Grange and was an Odd Fellow. They were quite the toast of the town from what I can determine.
Alonzo's Death Certificate. Note occupation: Hotel Proprietor

Alonzo outlived all but two of his children and  died in 1907 at the age of 76. His body was taken back to Chicago for burial on the train. In an article about his memorial service in the Fitchburg Sentinel, the following was written:

Account of memorial service appearing in Fitchburg Sentinel
(click to enlarge)

When I read the article above about his memorial service, I was curious about the Springfield Ethical Union, of which he was a dedicated and active member. I found some interesting information. This was one of several "unions" associated with the American Ethical Union, an organization that believed that Christianity and the afterlife as well as other mainstream religious beliefs were all just fictional, superstitious beliefs. Although they welcomed a number of differing opinions, clearly they are at the very least agnostics.

As it turns out, before returning to Massachusetts, Alonzo and Emma had aligned themselves with the Central Church of Chicago that was founded by Professor David Swing, a confidant of Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln. Professor Swing had been a Presbyterian minister who was charged with heresy and ended up resigning from that ministry before establishing the Central Church. Apparently he had published some writings and delivered sermons questioning Christianity and leaned toward Unitiarianism, denouncing the Trinity, and much more from what I can make out.
Proffessor David Swing

Out of that relationship, and perhaps his experiences during the war, Alonzo began to question Christianity, and ultimately his belief in God.  In a publication called The Humanitarian Review, a monthly booklet that promotes atheism or at least the scientific questioning of Christian beliefs, this letter to the editor appeared in June of 1907.

What an interesting life Alonzo had. He was a tradesman, a unique type of war hero, in my mind; a man who married the girl next door and dared to relocate a thousand miles from home and raise a family. He became a mover and a shaker in an exciting time in finance; a public servant and a local celebrity in small towns and big cities. He must have been quite a guy to marry such a young bride in his middle age and to keep up with the social whirl that she seems to have enjoyed. And he was well-respected in spite of being an atheist, of all things, a controversial way of thinking for the period then and still by today’s standards.

Alonzo's final resting place in Chicago, Cook County, Ill

It's hard for me to imagine he was able to accomplish all of these things and lead the life he did without some divine assistance. Or, perhaps he and Daniel Webster had something in common and there wasn't anything divine about it.

Whatever the truth was for Alonzo during his lifetime, I am sure he was set straight after his death. Perhaps he was met by his long dead mother and his father Amos and his beloved Ellen. And maybe Captain Cloutman led the way through the Pearly Gates.