Monday, February 22, 2010

Carlton Walbridge Taylor, Part Two: By Nancy Taylor Wright

Carlton and Jeannie lived in a house on Lake Helen-- one of many small lakes in Lake Helen, the city. Every year I go to the other end of the lake to sit to watch the fireworks rather than being down on the park end where they have bands and food (because it isn't so crowded on my end--it draws 30,000 people some years --and we can have our chairs and cooler of beer and snacks and chat easier with the crowd), and every year, I looked over at this house along the lake long before I knew that that was where Uncle Carlton and Aunt Jeannie had lived.

One friend of mine told me that the house, with many orange groves surrounding it, was near the old swimming hole, and remembered the house because of ‘those dogs’! Uncle Carlton evidently had dogs that chased people away from the yard.

While in Lake Helen, Carlton and Jeannie attended The First Congregational Church--Carlton was organist, Sunday School teacher, and Deacon at this church.

Nancy found this interesting story in Carlton’s letters:

In Uncle Carlton's letter to Uncle Bryant dated January 11, 1933, he wrote:

"You will be interested in a dream I had... I had not thought of Orrin [ their brother] specially for several days. Well, on Sunday morning early I was suddenly awakened by this dream. I thought I was playing one of my big Christmas pieces on the organ when a man hurried up and placed a telegram on the music in front of me, and I stopped. No message at all -- just a telegram.

Well, [note: at church] I had a lot of Xmas music, and it all went off beautifully. And I was playing a big postlude -- when a man came hurrying up and said he had a telegram (which had been telephoned over from DeLand), The name was twisted some -- but there was the sad, sad message from Laurens [note: re Orrin's death]. And I didn't finish my postlude! Can you explain it? I can't."

So, as his dream foretold, Carlton was playing Christmas music at Sunday church when he was informed of Orrin's death. Orrin, aged 67, died on Christmas of 1932; Laurens in the message was Orrin’s son.

Nancy continues:
I also have a picture my neighbor gave me of Uncle Carlton and Aunt Jeannie's 50th wedding anniversary (8-26-1940). The article in the DeLand Sun News of 8-27-40 titled "Mr and Mrs C. W. Taylor Observe Golden Wedding", Receive Friends at Home in Lake Helen on Their 50th Anniversary....describes:

"Rooms throughout the house were decorated in a gold and yellow color motif with baskets of yellow dahlias, bowls of marigolds and roses placed in lovely arrangement. Mrs. Taylor received the guests in a floor length gown of pale beige chiffon trimmed in gold lace. The dining table was overlaid with a damask cloth of pale yellow and centered with a three tiered decorated wedding cake topped by a miniature bride and groom. Tall glasses filled with iced punch and orange sherbet were served with tiny yellow cakes and yellow mints."

Uncle Carlton died on January 18, 1943 after a prolonged stay in the hospital during the 1942 Holiday Season suffering from prostate cancer. Aunt Jeannie stayed in Lake Helen until 1945 when she evidently moved out to Omaha, Nebraska with her daughter Marion and husband.

Picture One: B.W. in the orange grove
Picture Two: Carlton and Jeannie on their Fiftieth Anniversary
Picture Three: The Lake Helen house, taken in 2008
Picture Four: The First Congregational Church that they attended
Picture Five: First Congregational Church, looking today much as it would have to Carlton and Jeannie


Pat said...


You have put so much work into this with all of your research, digging through records,asking various people and visiting the Lake Helen house and church--thank you!!!

So wonderful to know more about our ancestors....AND, very interesting about Carlton's dream about his brother Orrin's death.

Thank you!!

CB said...

Yes, fascinating to read of these dreams or portents, am not sure i'd welcome one but I am sure that Aunt Esther visited me in early AM the day after Tim was married!Same thing!
And the picture picking oranges is one of BW, who was so proud to get to go to Florida for a visit! MY thanks to Nance also, we can use all the help we can get digging up geneology!!

CB said...

PS- Esther was Tim's godmother and had planned a bridal shower for Rosemary but never got to hold that or attend wedding!! Died 3 months before.