Friday, January 27, 2012

Evelyn Taylor Turns Ninety!

This picture was taken in Evelyn's hotel room soon after arriving. Photo collage is from New Zealand family. Roses and chocolate- covered strawberries were from Mitch and Rhonda.

Pam, Lance, Amanda, Evelyn and friend, Charlie at Christmas time

Evelyn June Laufer Taylor, wife of Bryant Taylor (son of Floyd— you just read about his home appendectomy) turned ninety earlier this month. Bryant and Eve have three children—Lance, Mitchell and Pamela.

Eve writes:

I had my 90th birthday bash this past week. It was wonderful-- small luncheon at the Homestead (Lance and Amanda's 1832 home here in Le Roy) orchestrated by Pam. Then on Friday, Pam and I, Lance and Amanda went to Niagara Falls, US to stay overnight at the Seneca Casino.

Here, I was surprised to have my granddaughter, Shiloh Taylor, (Mitch's daughter who lives in Toronto) join us. We had a super dinner at the Red Coach Inn and then gambled for only an hour----the machines now do not take coins, but eat your five dollar bills---FAST! Lance won 14 cents, but I won $20.25 (came out $10 ahead).

Saturday, we braved the elements and viewed the Falls after returning to the Red Coach Inn for a wonderful breakfast next to a roaring fire. The finale to our stay was a concert at the Casino. Two people, impersonating Frank Sinatra and Barbra Streisand, sang and interacted with the audience for an hour and a half. Of course, Sinatra's music began when I was in college. I remember hearing, and shaking my head, at the silliness of these young kids, called Bobby Soxers, who were screaming and swooning when Frankie sang. He started it all!!!! Some of his songs Saturday brought tears to my eyes (and to others, I later heard).

It was all wonderful!

Eve, Congratulations on this milestone birthday--you look beautiful AND young!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Family Reunions--Summertime, Singing and CrackerJacks! By Pat Kinsella Herdeg

It is snowing and cold outside today. I LOVE winter, but all of this snow makes me long for the sunny warmth of summertime also. And, we all know that summertime means family reunions, whether they be at Uncle Harold's cottage, a pavilion at a nearby Finger Lake, or Aunt Sylva's farmhouse. Here are a few pictures to get you thinking of family get-togethers:

Taylor Reunion, 1989--Harold, Arnon, Ruth, CB, Doris

Sylva's home, 1955--Ruth in the forefront, Neil Maffei across the table, Charlie Lochner, Aunt Lil, Esther, Rick Lochner, Bob Coleman and Philly

September 1975--Wendell, Harold, Barb Taylor, Sylva

Taylor Reunion, 1983--We always had CrackerJacks!! And, as the night wore on, the songsheets came out and the singing began. Chuck Lochner leads us on his guitar and SpiderMan is my brother Chris (looks like he created that shirt himself, but I am not sure!).

Baker Reunion, September 1964 --Taughannock Falls State Park
Lots of Relatives here!

A huge thank you to my father, Jack Kinsella for taking so many pictures over the years at all of the family reunions--I have such a large number to pull from!

And, in this snowy January, a shout out to all of the Taylor Baker cousins sick or in the hospital this month. May you heal quickly, may your strength return tenfold, and may we soon be singing by the campfire and crunching through our box of CrackerJacks. Prayers to all of you!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Floyd Taylor—An Appendectomy at Home By Pat Kinsella Herdeg

Floyd Taylor
Back Row: Floyd, his father Bryant Waller Taylor,
Front Row: Rex and Bryant, Floyd's sons

Another slice of life from the journal of Emma Carson Taylor, my great grandmother.

In January of 1910, Bryant and Emma Taylor live on their farm in Oakfield, NY with their children and Bryant’s father, Daniel. Daniel’s wife, Cordelia (yes, if she is familiar, it is because we have often quoted from her voluminous journals) died eighteen months earlier and Daniel still talks to his Delia as if she were alive.

Floyd, twin of Lloyd Taylor, is seventeen years old. Just two and a half years earlier, the family watched their darling Millie die at age six in their home. Emma brings flowers regularly—pansies were Millie’s favorites--to the cemetery and her journal is filled with missing her littlest girl. To witness Floyd become so sick so quickly must have been very scary for all.

Less than ten years earlier, British doctors were not recommending surgery for appendicitis. So, it must have been a fairly new operation—and to take place at your home!

January, 1910:

“Thursday Floyd helped the boys husk corn and got some chilled. On Friday morning, he was taken with a stomach ache which kept up until we thought best to call Dr. Messinger. He came twice New Year’s and has been here twice today.

January 16th, Sunday:

Everything is beautifully white with snow and frost this morning. Sleighing is good.

It has been two weeks since the last writing. Since that time, we have had another never to be forgotten time of our lives. On Monday following that writing, the Doctor came once. Floyd was growing better.

Floyd read and stayed around all day; at night, he felt some worse and tired, went to bed only to roll and toss all night. Was sick on Thursday morning, so remained in bed. Friday I decided to call the doctor who came and we did all we could for him in the line of poultices and salves, but he steadily grew worse and more feverish, with a rapid pulse and symptoms worsened.

Doctor came twice, holding off the thought of an operation, for he knew Bryant and I did not think best to have one unless it was necessary. When he came Sunday morning, January 9th, we soon saw that he feared to wait longer. The swelling was growing larger.

So it was decided that Doctor and Mrs. Cottis of Batavia and Dr. and Mrs. Messinger should meet and perform our operation in the afternoon.

Leon, Lloyd and Florence were at church. They had not been home but a short time when the Doctors and their wives came. All thought of dinner was dropped and soon everything was in readiness.

The picture it made in our dining room shall not be forgotten in years to come (which I think means the dining room table was the operating table!). Floyd was brave as a boy could very well be, and while I could hardly make up my mind that it must be, he said “Now Momma, don’t you go and upset any plans made.” They gave him chloroform in his bed, carried him down, spent two hours over him—from 3:30 until 5:30—and carried him back.

It was some time before he began coming to. As he says, he spent one of the most miserable nights he ever had or wishes to—sick, thirsty, terrible. He can scarcely describe it. He couldn’t have but a few drops of warm water at a time all through the first twelve hours, then we gradually gave him cold water until the doctor said he could have all he wanted. For three nights, Papa and I were up with him so never changed our clothes. Last night, he slept all night without waking. We surely would not like to pass through such an experience again.

What about Leon and the rest of the children? Well, we might say they have suffered a great deal in thought during this ordeal, as we surely all have. I hope we are stronger and better. We surely have had to face probable death, and life looked frail at best during the worst of it. Work that had to be done was done, the rest has gone undone. We are all very happy today for things look brighter.

Oysters and ice cream for dinner.”

Oysters were special treats, usually only for holidays in their house. Ice cream too meant it was a festive event.

One week later:

“All of our relatives are some concerned about not knowing about Floyd. Carlton (brother of Bryant) speaks of Walbridge not getting well as fast as they might wish (Walbridge—fourteen-year-old cousin of Floyd-- would die two months later from complications with diabetes—insulin was not used yet). Mary Taylor tells that a baby boy came to Jessie and Arnon Taylor Henry but never drew a breath. So the world jogs on and as we live each day we are trying to be more as our Savior would have us be and are well and happy with the dear ones about us.

Father Taylor knows nothing of Floyd’s troubles.”

As you may have guessed, by Floyd later marrying Aunt Goldie and having two boys, Rex and Bryant, Floyd survived his home operation. I try to think of what Emma and Bryant must have been coping with—this home filled with children and doctors and operating instruments and on top of that, they never told Grandpa Taylor, who also lived in their house! And, Emma’s last sentence, ‘to be well and happy with the dear ones about us.’ She so missed Millie but was trying to move on.

I passed this story on to Aunt CB (aka Mom) for any input, particularly on the medical side. She replied:

“For your understanding, hospitals were not used very much UNLESS all was lost until the mid to late 1920's. People were generally cared for at home. Surgery was the VERY last resort!

Even at Rochester General Hospital, the operating room was the library; filled with books-- the doctors wore their frock coats, seldom shirtsleeves. First "modern" addition was to wear a butcher’s apron [an idea one of the nurses had to save doctors’ clothes].

Appendicitis was not well known and not understood, so Dr. Messinger was very brave and ahead of his time. Chloroform was used then but rarely as it was so very flammable and remember, very little electricity then, hence must use daylight. Eventually, ether was to be used, still flammable but easier on the patient. With Chloroform one must be very careful not to give too much and kill the patient. Ether was still used in my day, when I was in Waterloo; I gave it many a time for deliveries. Not used much today I think, and even then, not much in big cities.”

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Memories of Ruth Taylor Maney By Aunt CB

Ruth Emma Taylor Maney, as many of you know, was the oldest child of Lloyd Taylor and Ethel Baker. Born in 1918, she married Thomas Maney in 1942 and lived her years in Geneva, NY. Aunt Ruth died in 2000. She would have been 94 years old on January 9th. As a Birthday Celebration, her little sister, Aunt CB, tells this story:

Some many years ago we were visiting daddy’s cousin who lived in Springville, N.Y. (where he was born.) She was the daughter of his Aunt Anna Carson Spencer, Helen Spencer Weber. She had married but had only one adopted daughter, so she was eager to pass along to a blood relative all of the voluminous genealogy she had spent years collecting. I was as eager to accept it as she was to give it, as with Mom and Daddy gone, I knew little of the Livingstons and I did not have any of Emma’s journals at that time.

Helen had tried to keep track of all of her grandmother’s siblings (her grandmother was Jane Livingston who had left N. Ireland in 1854, come to the USA and eventually married William Carson in Geneseo.) Jane was the oldest of 11 children so Helen had some job.

She had no idea how to keep track of everyone, so she went to her butcher and asked him for a few feet of his wrapping paper. This is what she spread out on her dining room table and under the heading of each of the eleven siblings she kept track of birthdays, weddings, babies and deaths through the years. Now she was ready to pass it along and luckily, I was there!

The butcher paper, all six feet or so of it, then spent some time in my drawer, as I was busy raising a family. However, whenever I could steal a half day away I’d head to Geneva, bringing the roll with me, and Ruth, having made sandwiches to save time, would help me to decipher the tiny crabbed writing and dates!

We’d spread it all out on her living room floor, (she had two adjoining rooms so we were lucky!) and take turns, one of us carefully crawling around on the paper on the floor, trying to read the dates and writing, the other one writing down on a tablet what the first one said. It was hard on the eyes (Helen scribbled some names) and harder on the knees but we’d persist, and after 3 or 4 times of this we’d finally achieved success!

We had names, dates, and at least one address to write to which eventually, after several years, led us to cousins in Scotland that we never knew we had. In 1973, when I went to Scotland, I did not have this information, but by the time Beth went there, years later, she was able to meet one of these cousins and made friends!

I do correspond with two of them and enjoy their letters but the real joy is the memory of Ruth and me, rolling around on her floor, exhausted after two or three hours of trying to connect the correct names with the proper dates, and going crazy over nothing and just laughing ourselves silly! There were few times in our grown up lives when we were free to do this and when we did get together we made the most of it.
I miss her!

Monday, January 2, 2012

January Birthdays, 2012! By Pat Kinsella Herdeg

Another year is upon us here at the Cousins Blog. Thank you all for your help in keeping this site going, in suggesting new stories, in sending your pictures of various cousins. We could not do it without all of you. If you have any ideas on stories you want researched or written, email me. If you want to write a short story on your ancestor, please do!!

And now, on to the Birthdays:

Jim Kinsella
(See the picture above? The bottom row, second boy from the left is little Jimmy. The picture is taken at Otty Lake in Canada)
 Top row is Aunt Esther, Nancy Wright, Aunt CB,
Second Row is Dan Kinsella, Grandma Taylor, Tom Kinsella
Bottom Row is Ted Lochner, Jim Kinsella, Nancy's son Donnie, Beth Kinsella
 Liz Lehmann

Paul and Angela Kinsella

In Aunt CB’s family, James Matthew Kinsella , Elizabeth Lehmann ( Dan Kinsella's wife), and Angela Cooper Kinsella, wife of Paul Kinsella, all are the January Kids.

 Ruth Maney

Mike Maney
In Aunt Ruth Maney’s family, Ruth Taylor Maney herself is the Birthday girl. Aunt Ruth’s son, Michael James Maney also blows out candles.

In the Older Generation, Elmer Howland (Aunt Lil's husband), and Ruth Inez Baker (sister of Ethel, Adin and Lil), were born in January.
 Elmer Howland
 Ruth Baker

On the Taylor side, Bryant C. Taylor (son of Floyd) and his wife,Evelyn Taylor, both have birthdays this month.
Bryant and Eve Taylor

In Aunt Leona’s family, Geoffry Max Body-Maffei (Neil Maffei's son) is the Birthday Kid of the month.
In Aunt Sylva’s family, Sylva Joyce Howland Emhof, and Norris Arnold (Linda Emhof's husband) have January Birthdays.

In Aunt Phyllis’ family, Dawn Coleman Walker (Phyllis Howland's daughter), and Justin Henderson, son of Ron Henderson, grandson of Wendell, both are January BDay Kids.

Dawn Coleman Walker

Beth, Lena, Allen, Nick

Josh Hart-Wood

Nancy, Eric, Shawn, Jon, Sandy ( Lester--Chic--Wood's children)

In Aunt Gladys’ family, Allen Smerchansky, husband of Beth Barron (daughter of Kathryn Wood Barron), and three of Lester (Chic) Wood’s sons (and so, grandsons of Aunt Gladys)-- Eric Wood, and twins Joshua  and Jonathan Hart-Wood, all celebrate in January.

In Aunt Doris Hawkes’ family, Stephen Francis Hawkes,  and Mary Ann Cannon Hawkes (Charlie's wife) celebrate this month.

Congratulations to all—Happy Birthday!