Thursday, March 10, 2011

Diadamia Mott Youngs by Spencer Drown and Pat Kinsella Herdeg

March 10th--Happy Birthday Diadamia, or Damie, as she was known.

Here on the cousins’ blog, we have written before of Diadamia Mott Youngs, who married William Youngs and was the mother of Rosena, Edwin and Kate Youngs (Kate would go on to marry Byron Baker—their children were Ethel, Adin, Ruth and Lillian). See the previous story at: has provided me with many clues and documents about our ancestors. Occasionally, it lets one far flung cousin find another. Last month, Spencer Drown, a descendant of Kate Youngs Baker’s older sister, Rosena, contacted me and we exchanged pictures and family information.

Spencer writes:
This recollection of Diadamia is from my cousin (really my grandmother Dorris Spencer's cousin) Olga Spencer Fenby. Olga was the daughter of Edwin Ernest Spencer, the son of Louvet Spencer and Rosena Youngs. Olga sent us a bunch of history jottings on the Spencer family.

Edwin E. Spencer's four older children knew "Grandmother Youngs." Until near the end of her long life she spent several weeks with the Spencer family in the summer. Diadamia was very deaf. She claimed this handicap came on her when she was talking on the phone during a thunderstorm. We were very careful not to use the phone when we heard thunder and saw lightning.

At that time there were no hearing aids. Grandmother Youngs carried what she called a "trumpet" and if she wanted to converse with someone she would just put one end in her best ear and extend the cord, the end of which the other person would hold close to his mouth in talking.

We children never had much contact with her. We considered her queer and too old to be interested in what we might have to say. There was a framed picture of Rosena in our parlor
(Pat adds—Rosena--Diadamia’s daughter--died when she was only 26 years old, 39 years before Diadamia died). She would open the seldom used parlor, stand before the picture and talk with Rosena. She spoke of her Spencer great-grandchildren as Rosena's grandchildren.

Diadamia and Charles Spencer, one of Rosena's grandsons

Diadamia lived until the age of ninety. For her 90th Birthday, she enjoyed a cake with 90 pink candles. The newspaper article about her birthday explained: “She is still very active, having pieced two quilts and knit seven pairs of socks and a pair of mittens over the past winter. She is now working on another quilt”. Today, we would need 179 candles squeezed onto her birthday cake, but Diadamia, we are thinking of you today, on your Special Day.


Pat said...


Thank you again for sending all of your pictures and family information.

Welcome to the Cousins Blog!

Lucille/Mom said...

Thism is the value of the blog! It not only draws us all together BUT also we meet new Family!
As I have followed my interest in geneology I have often wondered what those early deaths wee attributed to ! Wish I knew!

Kathryn said...

Now we know more about Diadamia! Yay!!!
Pat, I do appreciate all the work you do on this Blog. Great job!!
Thank you!
Lots of love coming your way.

Pat said...

Thank you, Mom and Kathryn!

I love to dig up new bits of information about our relatives and ancestors.

Spencer and his cousin Olga's recollection is a case in point--ever since I read this, I keep seeing Diadamia opening the door to the seldom used parlor and telling her long dead daughter stories of the children and grandchildren she missed watching grow up.

And, I grew up listening to the best of story-tellers, my father, so I at least want to get as many as I can written down, which this blog helps us all do.