Thursday, March 19, 2015

Carson Descendants of Jane Livingston and William Carson of West Bethany, NY, By Pat Kinsella Herdeg

Family Reunion, 1930

Harold Spencer Jr., grandson of Anna Carson Spencer, sent us this wonderful Carson family reunion picture.
Anna, younger sister to our Emma Carson Taylor, married Samuel Spencer. They had three children: Helen Spencer Weber, Harold Spencer, and Harriet Spencer Washburn.

Here are the people in the picture that between Harold Spencer Jr. and CB Taylor Kinsella, we know:
Click on picture to make it larger and easier to see!
Carson Family Reunion:
We believe it is 1930, as Ethel Baker Taylor is holding a baby which must be Harold (born May 1930), all other siblings are there.
People we can identify:

  • ·         Standing on the far left is Harold Spencer (father to our correspondent, Harold Spencer Jr.)
  • ·         Standing third from left is Moore Washburn (husband of Harriet Spencer Washburn)
  • ·         Peeking over Moore’s left shoulder is Harriet Washburn
  • ·         Standing fourth from left is Anna Carson Spencer (grandmother of Harold Spencer Jr.)
  • ·         Standing next to Anna Spencer is Clara Taylor Burt (sister of Lloyd)
  • ·         Behind Clara Taylor Burt is her brother, Leon Taylor (brother of Lloyd)
  • ·         Standing next to Clara Burt is Florence Taylor Doran (sister of Lloyd) holding one year old Tom Doran
  • ·         Next to Florence is Emily Carr Taylor (second wife of B.W.). The man behind Emily is B.W. Taylor
  • ·         Sitting far right in dark suit is Jim Weber, husband of Helen Spencer Weber
  • ·         Sitting third from right is Helen Spencer Weber
  • ·         Sitting center in light suit is Sam Spencer
  • ·         Sitting third from left is Lloyd Taylor (just in front of first standing row)
  • ·         Woman sitting next to Lloyd is his wife, Ethel Baker Taylor, holding baby Harold
  • ·         Girl  sitting next to Ethel is Esther Taylor
  • ·         Next to Esther Taylor is Doris Taylor (right behind Sam Spencer)
  • ·         Little girl two in front of Lloyd Taylor is Lucille Taylor-next to her is most likely Arnon Taylor—there is only a shock of hair showing
    •   Girl between Ethel and Lloyd, and holding Lucille, is their  daughter Ruth Taylor
  • ·         Dick Doran must be there if his mother and younger brother is—most likely the boy next to Ruth (and right below his brother in his mother’s arms).

Anyone YOU know? Please leave a comment and let us know! Thanks.

Monday, March 2, 2015

STORMS By Evelyn Taylor

Evelyn Taylor again writes for us. She was married to Bryant Taylor, son of Floyd Taylor, twin brother to Lloyd.

 Bryant and Evelyn Taylor

The years that we lived on West Main Road provided us with many experiences with ice storms and blizzards.  That period from 1946 to 1968 was one of record-breaking winter storms, and "We were there."

In 1946 we lived in an 1850 gray, limestone, Federal style house which had been made into two apartments.  Bryant and I and his brother Rex and his wife Dene lived side by side.  The fellows were just returned from World War II, and we were starting our lives at last with civilian jobs and new homes, complete with brand new furnishings.  It was an exciting time!

But we were in for excitement we had never dreamed of: a Sunday blizzard.  Snow and high winds always create problems of low visibility and drifting.  This day the wind was from the northwest, and at the intersection of Keeney Rd. and West Main Rd.(Route5), a huge drift formed, eventually preventing any vehicles from getting through.

As a result, cars began to come to a halt on our side of the drift. Not knowing how long they would be delayed, Bryant and Rex asked them to come into our house. Before long, we had both of our apartments full of strangers to us and to each other.  There were probably more than twenty, including children and one infant.

Eve, Dene and Rex Taylor, 2010

It kept Dene and me busy raiding our "company shelves" and refrigerators to feed them.  Fortunately, both of us did a lot of canning so had peaches, pears, tomatoes, applesauce, and jams and jellies to help. This went on into the early evening before the plows finally bulldozed their way through, and Route 5 was once more open. Everyone scurried to get on the road again before the drift returned.

Recalling this today, makes me realize how people really pull together in emergencies, sharing what they have and helping out in any way they can.  That Sunday blizzard brought many strangers together, but each left a little bit better for the experience and no longer a stranger.

The storm did continue, and such a high drift formed between the house and barn that it was impossible to reach the animals.  Bryant tunneled through the drift finally to reach the livestock and chickens.  Before the storm ended, the drift reached the second story of the house, and Bryant plowed the last of it under in June.


Twenty years later in 1966 our whole family learned what a blizzard could do.  The snow had been falling steadily all day and night with a wind that erratically changed directions.

We awoke to find that our front and side doors were unable to be opened because of snow piled up against them. We managed to get out the front door eventually.  Now came the hard reality  --  our tractor with its blade for snow plowing was inside the garage, and the snow was drifted up to the top of the garage doors; a pickup truck near the gas pump was almost completely buried; the side door had snow up to the middle of the storm door.
Our Collie dog needed to go out, so we took out the upper glass panel of the storm door and lifted her out, but the snow was too deep for her to get through.  We solved that problem by letting her out into our screened-in patio at the side.  Here the screens had filtered out some of the snow, which meant it was only a few inches deep, and she could handle this depth.

We all pitched in, to the best of our strength, to dig out the tractor which seemed to be the most essential piece of equipment. I cannot recall how long this nightmare lasted, but after the snow stopped, our neighbor came to clear the driveway with his tractor and hydraulic bucket.  The drifts were just too big for our blade to push.

It is said that out of everything bad that happens, some good comes. All the kids in the neighborhood had several days of no school, countless drifts to burrow into to make forts, and mountains of snow to slide down.