The Genealocial Society of Whitley County

[Currently being entered]

[When completed this line will be removed}

The Kaler, Traub, Kerr, Mossman,
Connor, Briggs and Nickey
Ancestors of
Walpole &Bertha (Mossman) Kaler
of Whitley County, Indiana
by Harriet Kaler &
Margaret Kaler Langohr


Descendants and Ancestors
Walpole Kaler           Bertha Mossman
1878 - 1938              1882 - 1957



This compilation of genealogical and biographical data is dedicated to the five grandchildren and nine great grandchildren of Walpole Kaler and Bertha Mossman by their three Children:
   William Mossman Kaler   to
	Karlton Sheldon Kaler
		Ronald William Kaler
		Jeremy Michael Kaler

   James B. Kaler    to

	Jana Sue Kaler
		Mark William Smith
		Scott Paul Smith
	James B. Kaler III
		James B. Kaler IV

   Margaret Kaler    to

	Judy M. Langohr
		Stacey Ann Ebeling
		John Carhart Ebeling
	Lucy Ann Langohr
		Andrew Palmer Grant
		Margaret Kaler Grant

Descendants of 
Walpole Kaler Bertha Mossman b. Oct. 24, 1878 b. Oct. 13, 1882 d. July 25, 1938 d. Sept. 18, 1957 m. Sept. 12, 1901

  I.  William Mossman Kaler b. Oct. 15, 1903
       M. July 12, 1932
       Harriet Hathaway Montgomery b. Oct. 3, 1906
       1.  Karlton Sheldon Kaler b. July 18, 1937
           m. Jan. 25, 1964
           Patricia Ann Elsholz b. Aug. 7, 1941
           a.  Ronald William Kaler b. Sept. 24, 1968
           b. Jeremy Michael Kaler b. June 18, 1973

 II.  James B. Kaler b. Jan 13, 1906 {d. Sept. 2, 1985}
       m. Jan. 4, 1936
       Shirley Smith b. Dec. 15, 1912
       1.  Jana Sue Kaler b. Apr. 17, 1943
            m. Aug. 8, 1970
            William Fitz Smith b. Aug. 11, 1942
            a.  Mark William Smith b. Aug. 4, 1975
            b.  Scott Paul Smith b. Apr. 17, 1977
       2.  James B. Kaler III b. Apr. 5, 1949
            m. Sept. 6, 1969
            Leslie Newell Wydeen b. July 31, 1948
            a.  James B. Kaler IV b. Nov. 16, 1970

III.  Margaret Kaler b. Oct. 27, 1911
       m.  Aug. 39, 1934
       John Langohr b. Nov. 3, 1912 d. Sept 20 1969
       1.  Judy M. Langohr b. Feb. 13, 1937
            m. Dec. 27, 1958
            Dwight George Ebeling b. Dec. 18, 1935
            a.  Stacey Ann Ebeling b. July 31, 1961
            b.  John Carhart Egeling b. July 31, 1961
       2.  Lucy Ann Langohr b. Nov. 9, 1942
            m.  June 26, 1965
            John Palmer Grant b. Oct. 31, 1942
            a.  Andrew Palmer Grant b. Feb. 3, 1972
            b.  Margaret Kaler Grant b. June 6, 1973


In preparing this compilation of the Descendants of Ancestor of Walpole Kaler and Bertha Mossman, it was thought that an individual compilation should be made for each of their nine great grandchildren which their parents should keep for them until they married or came of an age to appreciate their origins. Their parents and grand parents should be responsible for filling out their genealogical charts and furnishing any pertinent information about other branches of their families.

We are indebted to Samuel P. Kaler, Bertha M. Kaler, and Margaret Kaler-Langohr for their research and biographical sketches of their pioneer ancestors. There has been no attempt to follow family lines except by direct descent. An exception was made to include biographies of their three children = William, James and Margaret, together with their spouses. We do this because all were known to the grandchildren of Walpole and Bertha Kaler. These same grandchildren loved and were loved by Grandma "Dickie" Kaler. Judy Langohr and Karlton Kaler were babies when their Grandfather Kaler died in 1938 and the other children had not yet been born.

The genealogical charts were prepared by Harriet Kaler, wife of William Kaler. All the charts trace the genealogy of the children names in the chart through his great grandparents and have been individualized for the 17 descendants of Walpole Kaler and Bertha Mossman who were living in 1980.

Genealogical Charts

Chart IStarts with a great grandchild of Walpole Kaler
and Bertha Mossman, Behind this can be placed
pictures, News items, biographical sketches, etc.
of this child.
Chart IIStarts with a grandchild, parent of child in
Chart I. Behind this chart include biographical
sketch of husband and wife, pictures, news items,
Chart IIIStarts with a child of Walpole and Bertha Kaler,
parent of child in Chart II, and traces his
lineage to his great grandfather.
Chart III 1-8 Continued with the great grand parent lines.
Lines which need an additional chart use a letter
with the number. The eight lines are as follows:
1. George Kaler
2. Catharine Traub
3. David Kerr III
4. Rozanna Premer--no further information available
5. Francis Mossman
6. Rheua Conner
7. Silas Briggs
8. Rebecca Nickey.

[These charts are full page fan charts that I cannot duplicate in the original layout]
[These are more traditional equivalent chart. that shows the same data.]

Genealogical Chart For William Mossman Kaler:

					George Kaler 			Chart III-1
					b. Oct. 3, 1821 - York, PA
					d. Dec. 15, 1892 - Columbia City, Ind
			Samuel P. Kaler
			b. Feb 17, 1853 - Crawford Co., Ohio
			d. Feb. 22, 1913 - Columbia City, Ind.
			|		|
			|		|
			|		Catharine Traub			Chart III-2
			|		b. Nov. 21, 1829 - Columbia Co. PA
			|		d. June 8, 1906 - Columbia City, Ind.
		Walpole Kaler
		b. Oct. 25, 1878 - Larwill, Indiana
		d. July 25, 1938 - Detroit, Michigan 
		|	|
		|	|
		|	|		David Kerr III			 Chart III-3
		|	|		b. July 10, 1814 - Beaver Co., Pa.
		|	|		d. 1907 Larwill, Ind.
		|	|		|
		|	|		|
		|	Elizabeth Alice Kerr
		|	b. Feb. 22, 1853 - Richland Co., Ohio
		|	d. Sept. 22, 1919 - Columbia City, Ind.
		|			|
		|			|
		|			Rozanna Premer			Chart III-4
		|			b. July 27, 1819 - Wayne Co., Ohio
		|			d. Jly 16, 1866 - Larwill, Ind.
William Mossman Kaler
b. Oct. 15, 1903 - Columbia City Indiana
		|			Francis Mossman			Chart III-5
		|			b. Aug. 28, 1810 - Washington Co., Pa.
		|			d. June 21, 1904 - Columbia City, Ind.
		|			|
		|			|
		|	James Albert Mossman
		|	b. Aug. 20, 1852 - Whitley Co., Ind.
		|	d. Nov. 1941 - Detroit, Mich.
		|	|		|
		|	|		|
		|	|		Rheua Conner			 Chart III-6
		|	|		b. June 21, 1817 - Coshocton Co., Ohio
		|	|		d. May 16. 1903 - Coesse, Ind
		|	|
		|	|
		Bertha Mossman
		b. Oct, 13, 1882 - Coesse Ind.
		d. Sept. 28, 1957 - Columbia City, Ind.
			|		Silas Briggs 			Chart III-7
			|		b. Aug 16, 1826 - Ross Co., Ohio
			|		d. Nov. 19, 1913 - Columbia City, Ind
			|		m. Sept 16, 1852
			|		|
			|		|
			Sarah Elizabeth Briggs
			b. Mary 14, 1856 - Whitley Co., Ind.
			d. May 1930 - Chicago, Ill.
					Rebecca Nickey			Chart III-8
					b. Sept. 27, 1835 - Whitley Co., Ind.
					d. Mar. 1904 - Columbia City, Ind

Chart III - 1 Genealogical Chart for 1. George Kaler Johannes Kehler Chart III-1a b. July 26, 1714 - Switzerland m. 1745 | | Heinrich Kehler b. Jan. 19, 1762 - Switzerland d. Clinton Co,, Pa. (to America 1781) m. Feb 16, 1788 | | | | | Catrout Millenbaugh | | John Kaler (Kahler) b. June 11, 1790 - York, Pa. d. Jan. 14, 1875 - Crawford Co., Ohio m. 1810 | | | | | Catharine Frein | d. Sept 30, 1805 - York Co., Pa. | Georg Kaler b. Oct 3, 1821 - York, Pa d. Dec 15, 1892 - Columbia City, Ind. | | | John Bieger | | | | Elizabeth Bieber b. Feb 24, 1791 - Berks Co., PA d. July 3, 1873 - Crawford Co., Ohio | | Catharine (divorced)
Chart III-1a Genealogical Chart for 1a George Kehler: Heinrich Kehler b. 1651 - Switzerland d. Oct 3, 1755 - Switzerland (104 years old) | | Johannes Kehler b. July 26, 1724 - Switzerland d. | | Elizabeth -----
Chart III-2 Genealogical Chart for Catharine Traub: Henry Traub b. 1746 France (to American 1752) | | George Traub b 1770 - Lehigh Co., Pa. d. 1809 | | Henry Traub b. Nov. 14, 1800 d. June 14, 1890 | | | | | Christine Hartzell | b. Germany | | Catharine Traub b. Nov. 21, 1829 - Columbia Co., Pa. d. June 8, 1906 - Columbia City, Ind. | | | Quaker from England | d. in America | | | | Mary Hadesty b. Aug. 13, 1803 d. Jan. 18, 1880 | | Mother widowed when young - remarried d 1834 - Pa.
Chart III-3 Genealogical Chart for David Kerr III: Jamex Kerr Chart 3a d 1785 - N. J. | | David Kerr I b. July 14, 1750 - Camden Co., N.J. d. May 3, 1826 - Beaver Co., Pa. | | David Kerr II b. Feb. 14, 1791 - Beaver Co., Pa. d. Dec. 17, 1864 - Shelby Co., Ohio m. Mar 7, 1811 | | | | | Cornelia Chamberline | b. Feb 28, 1766 | d. Jan. 15, 1844 - Richland Co., Ohio | | David Kerr III b. July 10, 1814 - Beaver Co., Pa. d. 1907 - Larwill, Ind. | | Rachel Sweek b. Oct. 3, 1794 - Pa. d. Oct. 10, 1837 - Shelby, Ohio
Chart III-3a Genealogical Chart for 3a James Kerr Robert Kerr Came to Camden, N. J. 1708 From Scotland | | James Kerr b. d. 1785 - N. J.
Chart III-5 Genealogical Chart for 5. Francis Mossman: James Mossman Chart III-5a (minister Scotland) b. 1660 (to America 1710) | | John Mossman b. 1709 - County Down, Ireland d. 1802 Mossmantown, Pa (to America 1783) | | John Mossman b. Mary 24, 1769 - Ireland d. Aug. 23, 1839 - Muskingum, Ohio | | | | | Elizabeth Hermand | died age 71 | | Francis ?Mossman b. Aug. 28, 1810 - Washington, Pa. d. June 21, 1904 - Columbia City, Ind. | | Polly Lewis b. 1771 d. Oct. 5, 1868 - Ohio
Chart III-5a: Genealogical Chart for 5a James Mossman James Mossman b. Aug. 1573 - Scotland (Hanged) | | John Mossman (inherited father's lands 1592) | | | | | | John Arres | | | | | | | | | | | Christina | | | | | | | Mariotta Arres | | James Mossman b. 1660 - Scotland America 1713 (Minister)
Chart III-7 Genealogical Chart for 7. Silas Briggs: Joseph Briggs d. (Estate settled 1808) (to America 1787) | | Samuel Briggs b. 1776 - Augusta Co., Va. d. Jan. 27, 1841 - Ross Co., Ohio m. 1801 | | | | | Rosemary | | Silas Briggs b. Aug. 16, 1826 - ross. Co., Ohio D. Nov. 19, 1903 - Columbia City, Ind. | | Agnes Shepard d. Nov. 12, 1839 - Ross Co., Ohio
Chart III-8 Genealogical Chart for 8. Rebecca Nickey: Dr. David Nickey Chart III-8a b. Sept. 2, 1741 to America 1769 d. Dec. 1803 - Augusta, Va. m. 1764 | | Samuel Nickey b. 1766 - bavaria, Germany d. Feb. 17, 1832 - Augusta, Va. m. Jan 1, 1806 | | | | | Mary Elizabeth | d. 1810 | | Samuel Nickey b. June 2, 1809 - Augusta Co., Va. d. Aug. 24, 1864 - Whitley Co., Ind. | | | | | | Christan Balsey | | | | | | | Ann C. Balsey | b. Mary 1, 1781 - :Lancaster, Pa. | d. Feb. 27, 1861 - Whitley Co., Ind. | | | | | Elizabeth Keinadt Chart III-8d | | Rebecca Nickey b. Sept, 27, 1835 - Whitley Co., Ind. d. Mar. 1904 - Columbia City, Ind. | | | William Gradeless | | | | Elizabeth Gradeless b. May 10, 1814 d. Mar. 7, 1861 - Whitley Co., Ind. | | Sara Waugh
Chart III-8a Genealogical Chart for 8a Dr. David Nickey: Johanne Nieke Sohland, Labau | | George Nieke b. 1710 Saxony to America 1743 d. 1773 Lancaster, Pa | | Dr. David Nickey b. Sept 2, 1741 to America 1769 D. Dec 1803 - Augusta Co., Va | | | Johanne Christothe Donathe | b. Saxony | | | | Johanna Eleanora Donathe b. Oct 30, 1713 - Reichenbach, SAxony d. Mary 1, 1790 - Cumberland Co., Pa.
Chart III-8d Genealogical Chart for 8d Elizabeth Keinadt: Michael Keindat | | Elizabeth Keinadt | | | Casper Diller | | | | Margaret Diller | | Barbara

                       BIOGRAPHICAL SECTION

                            PART I

Kaler . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

Traub . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7

Kerr  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8

Mossman . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  13

Connor  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  19

Briggs  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  27

Nickey  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  39

     The great grandparent lines reach back as far as 1573

when James Mossman was hanged by the English in Scotland

for supporting Mary Queen of Scots.  His home in Edinburgh,

which he rented to John Knox, is a tourist attraction today.

     In 1651 Heinrich Kehler was born in Zurich, Switzerland,
and lived there for 104 years.  His grandson and namesake

came to American in 1781.

     We have so many stories of the Kaler and Mossman families

helped to settle our country that we feel these should be

passed on to our own grandchildren to bring life to the 

people in their genealogical charts.
     Part I follows all the family lines form the first
available information we have and continues through sketches

of the grandparents of Walpole Kaler and Bertha Mossman.

     Part II which follows will start with their parents.


1. Kaler                                                page 1

HEINRICH KEHLER                           Elizabeth
  B. April 24, 1651
    Canton of Zurich, Switzerland
  b. Oct. 3, 1755
    Canton of Zurich Switzerland
Children: Johannes Kehler b. July 26, 1714
    Heinrich Kehler was a weaver.  He took part in the 
wars and disturbances of his country when part his seventy-

fifth year.  Died at his birthplace at a little more than

one hundre and four years, leaving one children, Johannes,

the fruit of a second marriage late in life.  Of his wives

there is no record save:  "Surviving him lives his wife

Elizabeth and his son Johannes."

                         * * *

  b. July 26, 1714
    Contaon of Zurich, Switzerland
    His wife was a stout, cheerful dame, his junior by

several years, who contributed largely to his success in

life.  He was a devout Lutheran, a leader of the church and

its record keeper for many years.  He was well-to-do and

one of the important personages in the quaint old village

that nestled on the shore of Lake Zurich.  He was a manu-

facturer of woven fabrics and for some years a member of the

legislative body of his country and for a time its presiding

officer.  The couple had three children.  The only survivor

was Heinrich.

1. Kaler                                               page 2

HEINRICH KEHLER      m. Feb. 16, 1788     CATHARIN FREIN
  b. Jan. 19. 1762
    Canton of Zurich, Switzerland
  d. Clinton Co. Pa.
Children: 1. John b. June 11, 1790
          2. Barbara b. Oct. 17y. 1791
          3. Catharine b. Feb 14, 1794
          4. Mary b. May 14, 1797
          5. Jacob b. July 23, 1799
        * 6. Henry b. Jan. 20, 1803
          7. Elizabeth b. Sept 17, 1805  

     Heinrich came to America, landing at Philadelphia

in May 1781.  He worked as a personal servant or attendant

of General Nathaniel Green and was with that brilliant

officer in his campaign against Lord Rawdon. In the retreat of
Ninety-Six neither the General or his servant stopped to

eat or sleep for thirty-two hours. At the battle of Euraw

Springs, Heinrich received a musket ball in the abdomen,

but remained with the command until cessation of hostilities

and lived to see the new republic well establish.

     General Greene secured his employment with a Mr. Leedon,
of Baltimore where he worked until 1788 when he married

Catharine Fein, a domestic in Mr. Leedon's family. At that

time he changed his name to KAHLER. The couple moved to 

Monheim Township, York Co., Pa. and bought sixty-eight acres

of land paying $240 in gold. They improved their farm and

made a good living.

     *Henry Kahler died Feb 2, 1825 at half past eleven at
night.  He was extremely bashful.  During the month of Aug. 1824
he was working for a neighbor and at dinner take he saw a
louse in the butter.  Too timid to pick it out, he ate it and
immediately took to vomiting, rupturing some internal organ
and never recovered.  He lingered until winter and died.

1. Kaler                                                page 3

  b. June 11, 1790                       b. Feb. 24, 1791
    Monheim Township                       Franklin Township
    York, Co., Pa.                         Berks Co., Pa.
  d. Jan. 14, 1875                       d. July 2, 1873
    Crawford co., Ohio                     Crawford C., Ohio
    Children: 1. Catharine
              2. Peter
              3. Henry b. Juy 12, 1815
              4. John b. Oct. 12, 1817
              5. Elizabeth b. Nov. 5, 1819
              6. George b. Oct. 3, 1821
              7. Jacob b. Mar. 12, 1824
              8. Charles b. April 11, 1826
              9. Samuel b. Mary 5, 1828
             10. Mary Ann b. Jan. 22, 1830
             11. Rachel b. Jan. 22, 1830
             12. Cyrus b. Mar. 15, 1832
             13. Jesse b. Jan. 20, 1834
     At fourteen John was apprenticed to a man names Ruch

to learn the shoemaker's trade. He readily earned the trade

and soon made good wages as a journeyman. He stayed with

Ruch until he married Elizabeth whose father, John Bieber,

was wealthy. He was separated from is wife at the time

the Kaler were married. A second wife and son squandered 

the family fortune and Elizabeth was cut off with a single

thousand where it should have been a hundred thousand.

     After his marriage John set up business for himself.
He prospered and in 1811 bought a farm. In supplying the

government with footwear for the army in the War of 1812

his business was ruined and he lost the farm.

     He now resolved to go to the Wild West as Ohio was

then called but could not go without some money. He rebuilt

his business and bought another piece of land which they sold,

dropped the "h" from the name and started westward with their

1. Kaler                                               page 4

friends, the Peter Arters to Crawford County, Ohio.

     They left York County in 1828 with their wagons. When
they got near the Ohio line, John became ill and did not

recover for quite awhile. Elizabeth and the boys rented a 

small farm in Harrison County, Ohio, In 1829 he began to 

recover and worked at his trade and the boys had some good 


     They enjoyed the life in Harrison County and were

exposed to some of the evils of slavery in nearby West

Virginia. The oldest son Henry became an abolitionist.

     The journey from Harrison County to Crawford County

in the spring of 1831, was fully as hazardous as the former

journey through Pa. The intervening country was very wild

and covered by dense forests and numerous treacherous swamps,

and the woods were full of wild animals and Indians.

     The trip took nearly three weeks and led through the 

village of Mansfield, estimated to contain about 15 houses.

Her they learned that their friends the Arters were about

20 miles away o they got a guide to help them find the

Arters. Before nightfall their wagons stuck in the mud and

they were preparing to spend the night in the woods. Henry

saw a light and investigated and they found they were only a

quarter of a mile from Arter's cabin. So for three weeks the

family enjoyed Arter's hospitality. John bought a choice 

piece of land found by Arter. Ten or a dozen children and

four heads of families filled all the floor space of the

one room log cabin at night, some of the boys sleeping

1. Kaler                                               page 5

outdoors on the brush. Within this time the scattering

settlers for miles around came together on an appointed

day, built a house, fully as pretentious as any in the

country, and did it between daylight and dark, without a 

cent of expense; the assistants bringing their corn bread

in their pockets. It was a round log hut 18 x 20 feet with

a split puncheon floor. The chimney was of mud and split

sticks.  The first place built of green wood against green


     The laborious task of clearing the forest went on well
with father and boys, though the father worked mostly at

shoemaking. They sold this farm in 1840. After exploring

other counties in Ohio, John was satisfied to remain in 

Crawford County and bought a farm much nearer to the Arters.

He walked to Cleveland to buy this choice piece of land and

by 1849 had a frame house built which replaced a log house

built earlier.

     John and Elizabeth were cared for in their last days
by their son Jacob. They were married 63 years.

1. Kaler                                              page 6

GEORGE KALER          m. June 10, 1846     ELIZA PATTON
  b. Oct.3, 1821
    York Co., Pa.     m. Feb. 22, 184   CATHARINE TRAUB
  d. Dec.15, 1892                         b. Nov. 21, 1829
    Columbia City, Ind.                     Columbia Co, Pa.
                                          d. June 8, 1906
                                            Columbia City, Ind.

Children: 1. Liza Ann, b. Jan. 9, 1848
          2. Rachel b. Jan. 22, 1850
          3. Samuel P. b. Feb. 17, 1853
          4. William A. b. June 30, 1859
          5. james B. b. Apr. 14, 18

     George Kaler was 7 years old when the family started
their move from Pennsylvania to Ohio. They stayed for a 

time in Harrison County where he and his brothers used to 

play on "a large flat sone large enough for the entire

foundation of a barn". In 1831 the family moved again to

Crawford Co. and George recalled how proud they were of

their own home. S.P. Kaler saw the ruins of this home in 

1867 or 1868.

     George learned the shoemaker's trade in his youth,
probably from his father and continued this calling for 

many years but finally abandoned it to become a farmer.

In March 1875 he came to Whitley County near Larwill and

in 1889 retired in Columbia City.

          (This line is continued in Biographical Section II.)


2. Traub                                               page 7

HENRY TRAUB   m 1769
  b. 1746
    South of France
    Henry Traub came to America in 1752 with his mother.

His father had died.  He was a French Tutor to wealthy

Quaker families in Philadelphia

                   * * *

  b. 1770
    Milford, Pa.
  d. 1809                           d. 1802
    George Traub was one of the clerks of the Continental
Congress and later served as private secretary to Thomas

Jefferson, by whom he was tendered a diplomatic position of

some importance which for some unexplained reason, he de-

clined.  His son Henry was 9 years old at the time of his death.

His wife Christina Hartzell's family had lived in 

American for three generations.  Her ancestors had come from Germany.

Her father was in the Revolutionary War under George Washington.

                        * * *     
HENRY TRAUB      m. Apr. 10, 1822     MARY HADESTRY
b. Nov. 14, 1800                        b. Aug. 13, 1802
Upper Milford, Lehigh Co. Pa.
d. June 14, 1890                        d. Jan. 18, 1880

     Henry Traub was a carpenter and cabinet maker.  His

Wife's father was a Quaker and died when she was young.  He

mother remarried, was an expert Neddlewoman whose work was 

in the family in 1900.  The mother died in Pa. 1834.

     Their daughter Catharine was born in Pennsylvania and 
brought to Crawford Co. Ohio in 1831.  As she was a babe at that

time,she was carried all the way in the arms of a neighbor who

accompanied the.

     (See GEORGE KALER  page 6 for genealogical dates.)  


3. Kerr                                                 page 8


     Robert Kerr with brothers John and David landed in

Philadelphia in 1708. They had spent the previous year in

Ireland but were Scotchmen who calimed they were descendants

of Robert Kerr, Earl of Somerset, the infamous Lord Kerr

who was so conspicuous a personage during the reign of

James I. Robert located in Camden, N.J. James is the only

children of record. Record also saays Robert owned property in

1730 and his estate was settled in 1740.

                        * * *
  d. 1785 (from old burial ground record in Camden.)
     He had 2 children: a son who died in the Revolutionary
War the other David.
                        * * *

  b. July 14, 1750                     b. Feb. 28, 1766
    Camden, N.J.                         New Jersey
  d. May 3, 1826                       d. Jan. 15, 1844
    Beaver Co. Pa.                       Richland, Ohio
Children: 1. John b. Jan. 17, 1786
          2. Mary b. May 16, 1787
          3. Rebecca b. Jan. 4, 1789
          4. David b. Feb. 14, 1791
          5. James b. Dec. 8, 1792
          6. Sarah b. Feb. 28, 1795
          7. William b. July 21, 1797
          8. Robert b. Nov. 16, 1799
          9. Jesse b. Mar. 9, 1802
         10. Rachel b. Oct. 25, 1804
         11. Ebenezer b. Jan. 5, 1808

     In Volume 14 page 775 "Pennsylvania Archives of the

Revolutionary War," we find "David Kerr, born July 14, 1750:

was a private in Capt. James McClure's company, Col. William

Montgomery's battalion of the 'Flying Camp'; captured at

Fort Washington, November, 1776. He was exchanged Jan. 1777."

3. Kerr                                                page 9

     David was part of the group of Scotch, Irish Presbyterian
settling western Pennsylvania. In the fall of 1785, less than

a year after their marriage, David and Cornelia (6 months 

pregnant) started on their wearisome journey together with two

Chamberlain families and one or tow others. In the last 

two years of her life Cornelia used to entree her grandchildren and

great grandchildren with an account of this trip over the

mountains and across the state of Pennsylvania.

     She used to tell the children about gathering beech nuts
on the way. The trees were full of them. They took a horse, a

cow, a sack of cornmeal, a little cook-in kettle and a few 

other things. The rugged state could not them be crossed by a 

vehicle had they possessed one.  Upon the horse was strapped

the greater part of their belongings, and upon them sat Mrs. Kerr.

Each person carried what they could, and the cow was also

pressed into service and was compelled to carry the kettle about

her neck. They subsisted on cow's milk, with a stinted

allowance of the cornmeal and such game as they could collect

and cook anywhere in the almost unbroken wilderness. As it was

late in the season they kept from perishing several nights by a 

shed of brush and fire of logs kept burning all night.

     They got to Beaver County, Pa. in time to clear off
a little spot and raise some corn and vegetables in 1786.

David got a patent on a large tract of land about 36 miles

below Pittsburgh. He was one of the first ruling elders of the 

Mill Creek Church not later than 1793.

     The first house of worship had an underground passage of
entrance to protect the worshippers from the Indians.  It was

a log cabin 18 x 20 feet without doors or windows, lighted

from the roof.

3. Kerr                                                page 10

     After David's death in 1826, Cornelia with her daughter

Mary and sons Robert, Jesse, Ebenezer went to Richland Co.,

Ohio in 1831. The older children had already gone to Ohio.

Jesse built a log house for his mother and Mary. They came 

into his house after his wife died.

                       * * *
DAVID KERR II        m. Mar. 7, 1811    RACHEL SWEEK
  b. Feb. 14, 1791                        b. Oct. 3, 1791
    Beaver Co. Pa.                          Northumberland Co., Pa.
  d. Dec. 17, 1864                        d. Oct. 10, 1837
Children: 1. John b. Feb. 7, 1812
          2. David b. July 10, 1814
          3. Jesse b. Mar. 4, 1817
          4. Robert b. Apr. 20, 1820
          5. Cornelia b. Jan. 25, 1823
          6. Ellen b. Mar. 15, 1827
          7. Nancy b. Oct. 2, 1830
          8. Matilda b. Mar. 2, 1836
     This David Kerr was a soldier in the War of 1812. In

1823 he too moved to Richland, Ohio, staying with his brother

John who was already established in Mansfield. In the

meantime he leased a farm about 2 miles west of Mansfield

until 1832 when he moved to "beech woods".

     After Rachel's death in 1837 he married Elizabeth Taylor

by whom he had the following children:
          1. Margaret Lee b. Jan. 7, 1839
          2. Eliza Jane b. Feb. 28, 1841
          3. Ebenezer b. July 5, 1843
          4. Isaac b. Jan. 25, 1846
          5. Francis b. Jan 17, 1849

3. Kerr                                                 page 11

  b. July 10, 1814                  b. July 27, 1819
    Beaver Co. Pa.                    Wayne Co., Ohio
  d. 1907                           d. July 16, 1866
    Larwill, Ind.                     Larwill, Ind.

Children; 1. Matilda b. Dec. 10, 1838
          2. Emily Jane b. Mar. 16, 1841
          3. William b. Aug. 8, 1845
          4. James b. Oct. 10, 1846
          5. Mary Abigail b. May 3, 1848
          6. Sara Rebecca b. Nov. 6, 1850
          7. Elizabeth Alice b. Feb. 22, 1853
          8. David Nelson b. Oct. 13, 1853 (died in infancy)
          9. Charles Lee b. July 22, 1892    "   "    "
         10. Henry Martin b. Aug. 4, 1863

     David Kerr was 9 years old when his father's family 

left for Ohio. His early life was one of hardship and pri-

vation incident to pioneer life but he acquired a fair edu-

cation for the day. At the age of 19 he had saved enough

money to enter 40 acres of land about two miles northeast of 

Crestline, Ohio, which his Uncle Robert had helped him measure

off and locate.

     In Feb. 1833 he found that one George Kimmel was ex-

pecting to enter the same tract in a few days. At 2 o'clock

in the afternoon he gathered what money he could and started

for the land office at Wooster on foot, a distance of 50

miles. He ran nearly all night stopping but once or twice

east of Mansfield to rest, eat and catch a little sleep

and reached Wooster about 9 o'clock the next morning.

after exchanging his paper money for specie at a small

premium, he entered the land and then started home more

leisurely than he had come. Had he been one day later he

would have lost the prize as Kimmel intended starting the 

next morning on horseback. In due time he received his patent

signed by Andrew Jackson.

3. Kerr                                                page 12

     His occupation was now carpentry, chopping wood and

teaching school. In the summer of 1837 he built a barn for

a man in Seneca county. At the same place Rozanna Premer was

working. She belonged to a large and wealthy family living

near New Pittsburgh, Wayne County, Ohio. They were married

and settled on a little farm where they lived until 1850

when they sold out and moved to Crestline. He went into

a shoe store with James Miller, lost about $500 and was

glad to quite. In 1858 he bought a farm in Larwill, Ind.

where he moved in the spring of 1859. In 1862 his little

son David N. died and he buried him on a beautiful spot

but a few rods from his house, overlooking the beautiful

lake on the farm. He then laid out a cemetery and it became

the burying ground of the village. About 1877 he sold the

cemetery to a corporation and it was enlarged and beautified

and named Lake View Cemetery. He reserved a large and 

beautiful plat near the center, where already lay his devoted wife

and two children.

Margaret Langohr and Harriet Kaler visited this cemetery

in 1978 in order to get the date of his death. It is engraved

on a very old marker on which also appears the name of


     This line is continued in Biography Section II. See
S.P. Kaler-Elizabeth Alice Kerr.


5. Mossman                                             page 13

  d. Aug. 3, 1573
     James Mossman was a goldsmith whose father had remade
the Scottish crown for James V and the crown for his wife

Mary of Guise, the mother of Mary, Queen of Scots. He became

the court jeweler for the Scottish king James VII.

     While he was at court, he rented his comfortable home in
Edinburgh, Scotland, to John Knox. It is likely at the time

John Know lived there, the household consisted of himself,

his wife and three daughters, and perhaps the two sons of his 

first marriage. For its time the house had comfort and grace,

legacies from the time it was occupied by the wealthy

Mossmans with their shop on the ground floor and their

home above. In these apartments sat the great men of the

day, the Earls of Moray, Morton and Clencairn; Lords Boyd,

Ruthven, Ochiltree, and many another whose names are

conspicuous in the history of their time.

     The house dates from 1490 and was inherited in 1595 by
Christina Arrest, the grandmother of Mariota Arres, James'

wife. It is today a tourist attraction and was seen in the 

fall of 1979 by Lucy Langohr-Grant when her husband Dr. John Grant

went to Edinburgh to read a medical paper at the University of 

Edinburgh. On the east wall under a large Renaissance window

on the first floor is James Mossman's armoured panel: a

shield charged on chevron between three oak leaves and three

crowns. There is mention of certain lands belonging to James

Mossman, goldsmith and his son John in published Act of 

the Parliament of Scotland.

     James unfortunately became embroiled in the cause of
Mary Queen of Scots. Elizabeth's troops captured him defending

5. Mossman                                             page 14

Edinburgh Castle. "William Kirkaldy of Grange, Knight,

sometime Captain of the castle, and James Mossman, Goldsymith

were hauled in two carts backward from the Abbey to the 

cross of Edinburgh, and there hanged, third August 1573."

After his death several children emigrated to Australia,

New Zealand and America. One of these was John who inherited

lands granted to his father.

                        * * *


    Inherited James' lands 19 years after his father's

tragic death.

                        * * *

  b. 1660
    James became a Presbyterian minister and emigrated to
Ireland. He came to American in 1713, and took up land now

covered by the city of Boston. He then prepared to bring

his only son John to the New World but was cut off by death.

                        * * *

  b. 1709
    County Down, Ireland
  d. 1802 Mossmantown, Pa.             d. at age of 71
     They had eight children: James, Francis, Eleanor.
Nancy came to America, landing in Baltimore, in 1783. John in

his 81st year came with John, Lillian, and William landed

Baltimore Mar. 15, 1790. They stayed in Baltimore until 1794

when the entire family settled in Fayette County, Pa.

     In the fall of 1797 some of the family and friends
decided to explore the then far west, Allegheny Co., Pa.

On leaving Pittsburgh then a place of forty houses, the

5. Mossman                                              page 15

followed an Indian trail to West Salem township, Mercer Co.

Each of the party selected a claim and girdled a few trees

to mark it and erected one cabin.

     They returned home after an absence of two months, the 
entire journey on foot. The next year they returned to more

fully establish their claims and after clearing a patch

and erecting a cabin on each claim, they returned with their


     The next year on Oct. 1, 1799, they started with their
families from Fayette Co. for the new home in the unbroken

wilderness. They were obliged to pack everything on horseback,

there being neither wagons or wagon roads: even the best

paths had not been selected or places to cross streams. Each

family took an iron kettle for making maple sugar and other

purposed and those were closely packed with sacks of flour.

The men walked and led the heavily laden horses and the

journey took two weeks. The cabins were typical of the day,

about 12 feet square, ground floor, split clapboard roof

held in place with poles, doors with wood hinges and latch,

chimneys of wood and clay. Here they established Mossmantown.

     There were 4 Mossman families, two unmarried sisters, John
Mossman now 91 years old and 6 young men in the party making 

the trip.

5. Mossman                                          page 16

JOHN MOSSMAN     m 1793             POLLY LEWIS
  b. May 24, 1769                     b. 1771
    County Down, ireland                America
  d. Aug. 14, 1839                    d. Oct. 15, 1868
    Muskingum, Ohio                     Muskingum, Ohio

Children: 1. Elizabeth b. July 14, 1802
          2. Sarah b. Jan. 21, 1804
          3. James b. Aug. 12, 1805
          4. Joseph b. Oct. 10, 1807
          5. Francis b. Aug. 28, 1810
          6. Mary Ann b. Aug. 29, 1812
          7. Eleanor b. July 2, 1814
          8. Amelia b. Sept. 20, 1817
          9. Orpha b. Aug. 20, 1819
         10. rebecca b. Apr. 22, 1821
         11. Catharine b. Jan. 23, 1824
     When the other members of the family went to Mossmantown,

John took his family to Washington Co. Pa. in 1799 and to

Muskingum Co. Ohio in 1815.

                         * * *

FRANCIS MOSSMAN      m. Jan. 22, 1835      RHEUA CONNOR
  b. Aug. 28, 1810                         b. June 21, 1817
    Washington Co. Pa.                       Coshocton Co., Ohio
  d. Jan. 21, 1904                         d. May 16, 1903
    Columbia City, Ind.                      Coesse, Ind.

Children: 1. John F. b. Feb. 14, 1837
          2. Mary C. b. June 23, 1838
          3. Alcinda b. Mar. 26, 1840
          4. Jseph L. b. Sept. 3, 1841
          5. William E. b. Sept. 17, 1843
          6. Paul b. May 26, 1845
          7. George S. b. Sept. 23, 1846
          8. Orpha L. b. May 6, 1849
          9. Francis M. b. Feb. 2, 1851
         10. James Albert b. Aug. 20, 1852
         11. Maxamilia b. May 21, 1856

     In 1840 Francis decided to move from Coshocton, Ohio, 

to Whitley Co., Ind. to be near an old friend, Andrew Compton,

and entered a fractional quarter section about 2 miles from

the Comptons. He gave Anderson dn another man a contract to 

clear eight acres and put up a cabin, which they completed

within 2 years. The family has marked the site of this cabin.

5. Mossman                                            page 17

     In Oct. 1842 Francis moved his family to this farm and
cabin. They came in a large covered wagon with three horses.

His father-in-law, Mr. Connor, came along, riding the lead

horse.  They stayed the last night on the road at Bond's mill

now the Barney farm, a couple of miles northeast of Columbia

City. The rest of the distance they were obliged to cut out

a road as they went. The Comptons had come by way of Huntington

and crossed the Eel River near present South Whitley. Neither

Mr. Mossman or his family was satisfied with the isolated

situation. In February following he went to Leesburgh to

mill. The snow was very deep and he could not see the logs

and other obstacles and broke three tongues out of his sled.

He was gone three days and came home determined to sell

and move. At this time a small clearing was much more

considered by purchasers than the kind of land. The next

day old Mr. Leedy from Richland Co., Ohio, bought the farm

and his son David Leedy at once moved on it and lived there

until old age compelled him to move away.

     The Mossmans moved into David Hayden's kitchen, a mile
north, until they could relocated, Mr. Mossman then started

to find a home nearer Fort Wayne that he might find a market.

He bought a tract now covered by Lindenwood Cemetery on tax

title. Another man wanted it and gave him a great scare

about the title and bought it from Mossman at once at $50

profit. Returning he stopped at Rev. Wolff's, in Union Township,

Whitley Co. and was persuaded to locate in that neighborhood.

He at once moved into Wolff's cabin in Feb. 1843. It took

tow days to reach the placed, staying overnight in Columbia City.

He soon bought a quarter section of School Land and located a 

half mile north of present Coesse, there he accumulated a

5. Mossman                                             page 18

very large farm and was always very prosperous.

     The local deer population feasting on his craps was
quite a problem for him in earlier times. One day a deer chased

by dogs and followed by an Indiana ran into his corn field.

Francis grabbed his gun and joined in pursuit. He and the 

Indiana together killed the deer and dragged it to the cabin yard

where they butchered it and each took half the meat. Imagine

Francis' surprise when he found out this Indian was Chief Coesse.

     In order to get cattle to market in the populous cities
of the east, pioneers organized cattle drives to Buffalo, N.Y.

where they shipped the cattle via the Erie Canal. Francis not 

only raised cattle but bought more when he and neighbors made

their annual drive. Some of the men rode hoses while others

walked herding the animals. At night they camped out. It took

three months for the trip to Buffalo and return to Coesse.

     As an old retired farmer, Francis delighted in playing
with his two granddaughters who were part of the household.

He often carried little Bertha in his arms into the flower

garden and around the farmyard. They loved listening to the 

birds singing. Bertha called them Dickie birds. Her grandfather

started calling her Dickie, a name which followed her through-

out her life. This same granddaughter has left us the beau-

tiful account of her grandmother which follows.

     Mrs. Mossman died at the home of their son, James Albert,
in Coesse and Mr. Mossman died at his home after he had moved

to Columbia City. Both are buried in the graveyard of the 

Coesse Lutheran Church.


6. Conner                                             page 19

     The folowing biography of Rhuea Connor was written
about 1940 by her granddaugher Bertha Mossman Kaler. The
original is in the possession of Margaret Kaler Langohr.

                RHEUA CONNOR MOSSMAN

     I would like to write an ode to my grandmother, singing 

her virtues and wisdom and the beauties of her mind, but as I 

have not that power I can only set down in simple words my 

memories of her.

     I believe I knew her more intimately than any of her

grandchildren, for from my earliest childhood I spent house

in her living room, at the period in her life when she had

almost all leisure time. We both enjoyed reading and in

her room I could read undisturbed.

     I do not think she ever read fiction in her life, but

she would pore for hours over Hume's "History of England"

and such kindred books as our limited library had. How I

would love to share with her the numerous magazines and books

we have today. She would have enjoyed them so much.

Children intuitively analyze the characters with whom

they are closely associated and I say, without reservation,

that I believe my grandmother was one of the most intelligent

woman I have ever known, as well as the most innately refined.

She scorned anything vulgar. This was not an acquired Mid-

Victorian refinement, but the result of a naturally pure spirit.

     I never saw my grandmother laugh and I do not think it

would have become her. She was unable to cry, too, when

tragedy came into her life, as when her beloved son, George died.

I believe she suffered more because she could not give vent to

6. Conner                                              page 20

her emotions - her beautiful dark eyes just became a little 

more tragic.

     Grandmother did not make friends easily for she was not 
interested in small gossip. But what friendships she did make

were deep, real and fine = based on a common intellectual

plane - with those whose characters she admired.

When her services were needed, my father said that she

would go anywhere and help - in times of sickness or death.

     The flag carried by the Fifth Indiana Battery during
the entire Civil War was made at my grandmother's home by

herself and eight other ladies because she had the only sewing

machine in the country. My grandfather, Francis Mossman, was the 

treasurer of a fund raised by the citizens of Union Township,

Indiana, to pay men to go to the Army. After the war a sum

was raised for the widows and orphans from this township and

grandfather had charge of its disbursement.

     It is interesting to note that due to this, a great
granddaughters, Margaret McLallen, was eligible to join a 

patriotic society and was sent from Los Angeles as the repre-

sentative of their society to the King George VI Coronation.

How my grandmother would have gloried in that!

     Two of my grandmother's outstanding traits were, first,
her ambition for her children to succeed, to do something,

to be somebody worthy of respect in this community - not in

the climber sense, for she was too great a lady in her own

right for that, and secondly , her stern moral code, which

seemed almost too relentless. Because of one son's marriage of

whose wife she did not approve, she refused to ever enter his

home, although he lived on an adjoining farm, and she was never

6. Conner                                              page 21

very friendly to their children. She never mentioned the wife's 

name now was she discussed, but as a child I always felt

sorry for my cousins when they occasionally came to see us.

I think her unrelentlessness broke my grandmother's heart

as well as that of her great0minded son, George, whom all

the children agreed was the most brilliant of the six sons.

His favorite poet was Milton and he could quote pages from

"Paradise Lost and regained". George died when about forty

years old, Aug. 18, 1887.

     Of my grandmother's early life I do not know a great 
deal. She was born in Coshocton County, Ohio, near Dresden,

the only girl in a family of six brothers. Her name was

Rheua Connor. Her grandmother lived with them and I can

remember Grandmother telling me, "My grandmother was a very

noble woman". She had a small tintype of her and destroyed

it because she did not want her descendants to think of a

very beautiful character as the frail old lady in the picture.

How often this is true. We do not think of the aging bodies

of those we know and love very well, but others who did not

know them can only visualize them by their photographs.

     In this pen portrait of my grandmother I wish I could
envisage her as the very lovely young woman he must have been.

She had very large, dark, expressive eyes, dark brown hair, was

slender and very graceful. This combined with a certain

dignity that was much a part of her charm.

     After I was married, Mrs. Franklin Foust, wife of the 
Columbia city banker, told me that grandmother was noted for

her beauty as a girl - that she remembered the morning of

my grandparents marriage, her father coming in and saying,

"Well, Frankie Mossman is marrying the prettiest girl in

6. Conner                                            page 22

Coshocton County today".

   My grandparents came to Indiana with nothing but their 
youth, stout hearts, and courage. We can scarcely conceive

what hardships Grandmother must have gone through to go with 

her husband into the almost unbroken wilderness and establish

a new home in that forest - to leave all those so dear to her.

I don't think she ever saw any of them but once or twice after

that. She lost a child on that laborious trek. She told me

that many times the Indians came to their cabin when she was

alone and asked for food. She said, although terrified,

she always set out some food for them and they never molested


     Grandmother made one trip back home eon horseback taking
her oldest son, John, a baby, with her through forest trails

for at least two hundred miles. We wonder how she could do it.

     Grandfather had over 1,00 acres of land bought from the 
government. As the country became more settled and the forests

cleared, the family moved from their original log cabin home

where the children were all born to the old homestead, about

three-quarters of a mile from Coesse, Indiana. The site of it

is known yet as "Mossman Corners". this rambling farmhouse

was set back from the road some distance on a small rise.

On three sides were main traveled roads.

     My father had five hundred acres in this tract and it 
was here that I was born and lived with my parents and

grandparents until I was married in 1901.

     My grandmother must have had an overwhelming desire for
beauty. She once told me, "I always prayed before my children

6. Conner                                               page 23

were born that they would be beautiful" - but most certainly

her prayers were answered, for her daughters all had beauti-

ful refined faces and manners, and her sons were all fine

looking, stalwart, intelligent men.

     Her desire for beauty took its expression in raising
flowers - and it has always been a mystery to me how she could

have acquired the enormous variety she had without our

modern methods of obtaining seeds and plants. The majority of

her flowers, as need be, were perennials, and how grateful

I am to her for being able to grow up knowing so intimately

all these lovely varieties - masses of fragrant syringa

and iliac bushes, snowball, honeysuckle, and every shade

of roses. I especially loved our white moss roses and the 

yellow ones, perhaps because they were a little more unusual.

One monthly rose bush that had such perfect rich red roses on,

my father transplanted to his home in Columbia city. At the 

time, he said it was over fifty years old. We had great

beds of tulips, iris, and peonies - white, pink and red.

My father would have the farm hands mulch these beds once

a year and grandmother would otherwise take care of them herself.

     We had an abundance of every kind of fruit on our farm
due, I think, to her interest in these things - cherries,

apples, peaches, plums, pears, currants, raspberries, black

berries, gooseberries, etc. Growing up with all these around

they almost assumed personalities to me. We usually stored

to or 609 bushels of apples in our outside fruit cellar along

with potatoes for winter use. Grandmother often grafted

fruit. In early days she spun and wove, made all their own

clothes, soap, candles, and, no doubt, many other things

I do not know about.

6. Conner                                              page 24

     I can remember what great brown loaves of salt-rising
bread she made. My father said that on Sunday nights she

made such wonderful biscuits and served them with honey as

a special treat for her children.

     My grandparents did all they could to promote the education
of their children. As a girl Grandmother had attended a

"female seminary", but there was nothing like that in his 

new country Grandfather gave a teacher they admired very

much five hundred collars if she would teach his children the 

following year. They had debating groups on Sunday afternoons,

spelling bees,and the like. they gave the children singing

lessons, although I do not believe as a family they were

musical. Aunt Mack, the youngest child, was sent to Ft. Wayne

in later years and became a stenographer - working in

Jacksonville, Florida, about 1880. This was considered

quite an accomplishment in that day. At one time, when there

was some talk of establishing Wittenberg College in that

part of the country, Grandfather offered th donate the land

and grandmother boarded the minister one winter free of charge

trying to promote it. The Lutheran Church later decided to

establish it at Springfield, Ohio.

     How many rich and happy memories must have flitted across
the mind of days gone by, of her children growing up around her,

of birth, of death, sorrow and joy, when she was the center of

it all to the days when this was all past and she sat tran-

quilly smoking her pipe,hours on end, with almost a

tragic expression in her beautiful dark eyes. She always wore

a little cap of black lace and ribbon. Aunt Orpha kept her

supplied with these, sometimes with a little lavender ribbon

6. Conner                                              page 25

woven in. I can remember one lovely dress of royal purple

that Aunt Orpha sent her. Grandmother had the Mossman pride

and always looked very neat.

     Cousin Mazie had told me she always felt ashamed as a 
girl because Grandmother smoked a pipe, but I can truly say

I never did. It was no more a part of her than the food she

ate. Her character, intelligence, and personality were so

much greater than such trivialism.

     I must have questioned her about it, though, for I
remember her telling me she started smoking to quiet the pain

of an impacted wisdom tooth with which she walked the floor

for several days. As they lived in the forest far from

doctors and dentist we can understand this.

     While one of her sons became a multi-millionaire, a
daughter the wife of another, a grandson an inventor of note,

and many of her children occupied positions of importance

all over the United States, I do not believe any of these

ere as important to her as her desire that they maintain the

strict moral code she had laid so heavily on their consciousness

and which in turn they have transmitted to their own children.

     I never saw any unduly outward observance of religion
on my grandmother's part, yet I know she was the most

deeply religious woman I have ever known. I think she walked

with God at all times with ever a prayer on her lips for 

her children.

     I never heard her complain, scold or nag. She was too
great for that. Yet I do not doubt when she commanded, her

children obeyed at once.

6. Conner                                              page 26

     I would like to close these recollections with the 
words Thomas R. Marshall wrote about his mother, for they

so truly voice my thoughts about my grandmother.

	"A woman who with hand grasping the Unseen Hand walks

the briar bordered paths of life, unashamed, unafraid, un-

harmed. She is clad in garments of beauty for me, and age

does not soil them nor years make them cheap and tawdry.

her tongue is without guile,having never been the messenger

of a lie."

	(see FRANCIS MOSSMAND page 16 for genealogical dates.)


6. Briggs                                                   page 27

 (Estate settled 1808)
SAMUEL BIRGGS         m. 1801            AGNES SHEPHARD
  b. 1776
    Augusta Co. Va.
  d. Jan 27, 1841                          d. Nov. 12, 1839
    Ross Co., Ohio                           Ross Co., Ohio

Children: 1. William b. Apr. 21, 1808
          2. Sarah b. Sept. 8, 1810
          3. Hannah (Died in infancy. No record)
          4. Jesse, b. May 2, 1813
          5. Elizabeth b. July 9, 1817
          6. James b. Dec. 25, 1819
          7. Smauel b. Feb. 20, 1822
          8. Robert b. Aug. 18, 1824
          9. Silas b. Abu. 16, 1826
         10. Andre b. Apr. 5, 1829

     The record at the Washington Court House in Ross County,
says that Samuel Briggs and Agnew Shephard were buried on

their farm and in the 1960's their stones were removed to

a local cemetery.

     He came in 1803 from West Virginia (then Virginia). His
first job was Keeper of the Poor at the County Poor Farm.

His house was brick with white trim across a small drive

on the road from the frame institution. In the early 1960's

they were still standing. The institution had been courted 

into a granary. Originally the institution had a central 

hallway with individual rooms going off of both sides of the

hall. Agnes prepared the food and did the laundry.

     After they saved enough money from this job they invested
it in farm land in Ross County. On their farm they built a log

cabin with a loft overhead for the children. In the 190's

this log cabin was still preserved with the original tools and

iron work around the fireplace. The floor was earth with salt

spread into it which gave it the quality of cement. In the

7. Briggs                                              page 28

1960's the building was still standing but the iron works

were sold. One end of the log cabin was walled off, making a 

separate room whose entrance was form the outside. This was

the spring house used to refrigerate food. At one end of

the spring house was a box built to contain the water from

the spring. A ledge in the box held small crocks of food, the 

deeper water in the box held larger crocks. This box was

the width of the building and the cool water made the entire

room cool.

    Later they built a beautiful brick house in the grand
manner. It was two story with pillars on the front porch,

green shutters, painted fret work. Later owners sand blasted

the brick removed the shutters, altered the porch, and

removed original shrubs and pins, changing the character

of the building.

    They had a large family of children--Six of the children
migrated to Whitley County, Indiana, in the late 1830's and

early 1840. Four were boys and two were girls. They all

settled on land adjacent to each other east of Columbia City.

some of the children stayed in Ross County and their descendants

are still there. One brother went to Iowa. The first brother

to come to Whitley County was Jesse, followed by Andrew, then

James, Elizabeth. Last to come was Silas from whom we are

descended. They followed the Nickey with whom they started

to intermarry.

7. Briggs                                              page 29

SILAS BRIGSS       m. Sept. 16, 1852          REBECCA NICKEY
b. Aug. 16, 1826                             b. Sept. 27, 1835
 Ross Co. Ohio                                 Whitey Co. Ind.
d. Nov. 18, 1913                             d. Mar. 1904
 Columbia City Ind.                            Columbia City, Ind.
Children: 1. Desta Jane b. Oct. 29, 1853
          2. Sarah Elizabeth b. May 24, 1856  (Lillie)
          3. Clara Odell b. Oct. 4, 1858 (Dellie)
          4. Dvid b. Feb. 20, 1861
          5. Brit b. Apr. 5, 1861
          6. Silas Edward b. June 24, 1865
          7. Steven b. Sept. 15, 1867
          8. Charles b. Jan. 12, 1870
          9. Frank b. July 9, 1872
         10. Fred b. March 29, 1875
         11. JEsse b. oct. 4, 1880
     The family of Silas Briggs were pioneers in settling 
Ohio having come from Virginia in 1803. Following the usual

pattern, they bought land, cleared it and built a log cabin.

More land and more children were added in the following years.

Their affluence was eventually climaxed with a fine family home

of brick styled in southern classic architecture. Their

original log cabin containing a spring house separated by a 

wall but under the same roof, stood close by the mansion. It

was used as a summer kitchen with the spring house part being

useful for cooling food.

     Growing up in a large family on a pioneer farm made
Silas familiar with sharing labor in order to make a living.

Although schooling was brief he acquired the basics of the

3 R's in the three month terms of three years. With the

death of his father when Silas was fifteen, his mother having

already passed away, he took employment on the farm of his

brother-in-law,Jacob Nickey, for six dollars a month.

     Silas became a drover when the opportunity to drive
cattle from Madison County, Ohio to the eastern market in 

Philadelphia, Pa. presented itself. Late he traveled to

7. Briggs                                              page 30

Sangamon County, Illinois, where he herded cattle from that

place to Lancaster, Pa. Walking and sometimes riding a horse 

this distance of 900 miles,making it in 90 days, was a dif-

ficult task involving much responsibility. Besides it was

an education, seeing different parts of the country from

prairie land through eastern woodlands, over mountains and

streams to the seaboard. As a drover he would contract to

drive cattle, hogs, mules and even turkeys which he allowed 

to rest in the trees at night and gathered together in the

morning by sprinkling grain on the ground.

     Three brothers and two married sisters had left the
Brigg's homestead in Ohio to settle on land in Whitley County,

Indiana, which was offered for sale by the United States

Government. The sisters were wives of pioneers. All their

farms were adjacent to each other forming almost a Briggs

related compound. In 1848 when Silas came to Indiana he was 

the last of the Briggs to arrive. His brothers and sisters

were anxious to have him join them by claiming some available

land next to brother James' farm.

     In making this decision Silas rode his horse into the
proposed area of 160 acres as far as he could go. Then he had

to walk and finally crawl through this thicket of wilderness.

Some of it was rich bottom land along the Eel River. Other

parts gently rolled away from the river. The heavy growth of 

virgin timber and the underbrush as well as the scattering

of rocks and boulders would have to be removed. Although

he purchased this land, he alter felt that he might have done

better buying prairie land in Illinois when he went on a cattle

7. Briggs                                       Page 31

buying trip there. In Illinois there would not be the labor\

of clearing trees. yet Indiana woodlands provided timber for

a cabin, wood for heating, fences and other construction.

     Samuel Nickey had preceded the Briggs into Whitley County

from Ross county, Ohio. The families had known each other

there. In fact Silas' sister Elizabeth was already married 

to Jacob Nickey, Samuel's brother, Silas courted and married

Samuel's only daughter, Rebecca, a little lady charged

with abounding energy.

     The Nickey's were proud of their ancestry. They valued
education and aimed to marry well. To thee qualities

Rebecca added a deep spiritual commitment and dependency upon

the lord. However in pioneer society very little education

was available as the labors of the people were consumed in

maintaining a day to day existence with its hardships. These

resulted in a cultural set-back of a generation or more.

yet the thread of Nickey attitudes was passed on and developed

in the family. This combined well with the Briggs philosophy

of self reliance and dedication to achievement by hard work.

Eleven children were born to Rebecca and Silas. The first

three were girls followed by the birth of eight boys, two

of whole died at an early age and were buried in the old Don

cord Cemetery. Every child worked their assigned duties in the

family enterprise. The girls helped with the household chores.

the boys helped their father clearing land, raising crops, 

milking and raising cattle as well as sheep and hogs.

	From information handed down it seems that Sarah Elizabeth,

named for her two aunts, with her blue eyes and soft curly

7. Briggs                                              page 32

brown hair was a favorite of her father. Her sisters felt

that she came out better on the giving end of things from 

him. Jesse Briggs, the youngest, was especially near his

mother's heart. He helped her with cooking and household

chores as the girls were married and all the boys were still

home. She was so proud of Jesse as he was an excellent

student and graduated from Wittenberg College and Northwestern

Medical School. He practiced in Churubusco.

     As adjacent land to his 160 acres became available, Silas
bought it, eventually owning 750 acres. He took pride in

keeping a "clean" farm which meant have the fence rows mowed

and weeds kept out. On Sundays he walked about his yard or

fields he kept a pocket knife handy in order to attack any

offending weed. People said that he didn't have a thistle

on the place.

     No one could have been a more enthusiastic supporter of

the Democratic Party then Silas Briggs. He expected his sons

to follow in his footsteps politically as he had with his own

father who had named Silas' brother Andrew Jackson Brigs as a 

testimonial to his persuasions. It was his disappointment that

two of his sons became Republicans as they blamed their hard

times on President Cleveland.

     During the Civil War Silas had a contract with the 

federal government to supply large amounts of beef for

military use. By traveling about the countryside buying cattle

it was possible to make a hundred dollars a day. However,

it was impossible to do that and keep his farm operating. So

he only did cattle buying on a part time basis. Besides being

a successful farmer and stockman he was respected for him

7. Briggs                                              page 33

business accumen. He was a man of his word, it being his bond.

     Many years after living in Indiana Silas and his brother
Andrew, decided to make a trip out to Iowa by train. There

they expected to visit their brother, Robert, who had chosen

to settle there rather than follow the Briggs clan to Indiana.

Since their arrival was unexpected and their appearance altered

with maturity they decided to have some fun by posing as

cattle buyers from the east. When they got off the train in 

the little village they asked the stationmaster where Robert

Briggs lived. Finding that it was about a mile down the road

they walked. There they were met by their brother who re-

sponded heartily to their cattle buying inquiry. Since it

was late in the day, Silas and Andrew asked if they could get

a meal there and accommodations for the night. During the

meal the brothers asked leading questions of Robert trying

to elicit information of his life in Ross County, Ohio and his

association there. By the time the meal was finished Andrew

and Silas had to divulge who they really were. There was

great rejoicing over this surprise reunion for a couple of days.

Andrew and Robert were disgusted with Silas because he cut

the visit short, announcing that he had to get home as it

was time to put the bucks in with the ewes.

     By 1869 the Briggs family had prospered enough to build a

stately Victorian home of brick with white trim and green

shutters. It accommodated the needs of the everyday life as 

well as the social life of this growing menage. A brick

spring house and a commodious brick summer kitchen matched 

the style of the house. Three porches, two of which had white

7. Briggs                                             page 34

painted columns with ornate wooden capital, were extensions 

of the house Here more boys were born and grew to maturity.

     The high point of Briggs life in this home occurred in

1902 when Silas and Rebecca celebrated their golden wedding

anniversary. All of their children with their spouses and

the grandchildren came home. Also present were aunts, uncles,

cousins and neighbors. The day was spent in feasting, visiting

and in picture taking. A professional photographer was on

hand to record a picture of Silas and Rebecca with their 

grown children and another picture of them with the families

of all their children revealing a considerable number of the

third generation.

     Not long after this occasion the Briggs retired from the

farm moving into a large Victorian house at the southwest

corner of Chauncey and Ellsworth Streets. Silas distributed his

land holding to his six sons who could now have farms of their

own.  Gifts of other equal property were arranged for the 

daughters. Rebecca didn't live long as pneumonia claimed her

life. She had worked so hard for so many year that she was

completely worn out. Their son Charles and his wife

Mattie with their little boy came to look after Silas.

     This grandson, Charles Robert Briggs, recalled in 1979
some interesting and pertinent information about his grandfather

Briggs.  He remembered him as a man of five feet eight inches

in height who walked with a limp using a cane. The limp was

caused by a broken hip which happened in his youth. Some

fellows were tusseling with Silas trying to take away some

hides belonging to him. In the struggle he slipped, hurting

himself in the fall. 

7. Briggs                                             page 35

     Silas had blue eyes and a disfiguring mole on his chin
which he covered with a growth of hair that was trimmed into

a distinguished goatee. On Sundays he put on his best suit,

shined his shoes, took his cane, walked to Grace Lutheran


     Apparently Grandfather Briggs was as particular about the
appearance of his yard in town as he had been about the 

one on the farm. He seemed to think that little Robert's 

small red wagon made tracks in the grass. So it wasn't 

surprising that the wagon disappeared. Robert later found

it hidden in the barn.

     Silas died in 1913 in his eighty seventh year in
Columbia City. He was buried in the northeast section of the

old part of Eel River Cemetery.

Sources: Briggs Family history, Nickey Family History.

         Relatives: Clara and Charles Robert Birggs and
                    Dr. Orville Briggs, local historian and
                    genealogist, Mrs. Nellie Raber.
                    visits to his childhood home in Ross
                    County, Ohio, andhis home in Union
                    Township, Whitley County, Indiana

7. Briggs                                             page 36

(Writen for a tour of old homes conducted by the whitley
County Historical Society, Sept. 16, 1979 by his great
granddaughter, Margaret Kaler-Langohr)

     Silas Briggs, needing larger accommodations for his

growing family of eleven children had this house built in

1869.  The home reflects the rising affluence of the pioneer

who had come from Ross County, Ohio in 1848. At that time

three brothers, Jesse, James and Andrew and two sisters,

Sarah Briggs McClain (Mrs. Hugh) and Elizabeth Briggs Nickey

(Mrs. Jacob) had preceded him, settling farms neighboring to 

this one.

     Chauncey Goodrich was engaged as contractor. Wagon loads

of brick were hauled from Ft. Wayne for th exterior surface

and to construct the ten inch wide partitions which formed

the ten foot high walls.

     During the course of building, workmen discovered a

partially washed out Indian grave. Silas, to had always

made of point of getting along with the Indians in the 

neighborhood, forbad the workers to disturb the site. He

felt that the Indians might be offended at the desecration of

their dead. In his absence, the men dug up the grave hoping

to discover relics. Only a few bones, a skull, a couple of 

metal rings and some beads were in it. The rings were traded

for a Bible. The skull became part of a collection of a 

Larwill resident.

     The foundation of the house is made of rocks and stones

gathered from the fields. A full basement is under the house,

containing three large rooms and a cistern.

     On the first floor is a sizable kitchen complete with a

7. Briggs                                              page 37

pantry on the north side of the house. The front parlor faces

the south. Between these two rooms are the dining room that

formerly was the living room, a stairway and another room

which was probably a bedroom. Four bedrooms are up stairs,

one of which was originally reach by a back stairway from

the kitchen.

     A matching brick summer kitchen of generous proportions

was built several feet form the east side of the house,

opposite the kitchen door. Part of the original fireplace

used for cooking and heating can still be seen on the eat

wall. the family ate at a long tressel table that had benches

at ether side. Renovations by occupants in modern times

joined the summer kitchen to the house making a utility

room from the resultant space.

D     r. Jesse Briggs of Churubusco used to recall helping

his mother with the prodigious feats of cooking in this

kitchen. On Saturdays it was necessary to start at four A.M.

working all day making bread for the week and a variety of

foods for feasts to serve the many relatives and friends

who came on Sundays. Baking more than thirty pies was not an

unusual task: they were gone by Sunday night. Everyone was

welcome at any time to share a good country meal with the


     The present owner, David Bilger, has cleverly extended
the north and south walls of the summer kitchen with matching

brick to make a two-car garage. Note that the window frames

are of the same style as those of the house. Through the 

years changes have been made by a succession of owners. Two

7. Briggs                                              page 38

bathrooms have been added, the back stairway closed and 

modern plumbing and electricity installed. the ten inch

brick partitions have been a deterrent to much interior

structural change.

     Taking advantage of a natural spring at the bottom

of the slope on the north side of the house, a brick spring

house was built. The spring is still there but the structure

has disappeared with the years. In its interior was a trough

into which the spring water was piped. A run-off pipe kept

the water level. Buckets of milk crocks of cream or butter

as well as other foods were kept cooler than the outside

temperature in summer.

C     harles Robert Briggs, a grandson of Silas Briggs,

Possesses an early photograph of this home which was considered 

a sow place. The picture reveals that the kitchen porch was

enclosed with lattice work and had a circular top on a 

lattice door. The porch on the opposite side of the house

being smaller served as an entry way to the living room. In

style it related to the larger on eon the south side, with

square columns whose capitals were fashioned in ornate scroll

work of wood. The bases of the porches were enclosed with 

lattice panels. Green shutters at all of the windows emphasize

the vertical lines of the house. Three differently placed

chimneys allowed for use of heating stoves in the main rooms.

the roof extended over a wide white painted cornice.


8. Nickey                                              page 39

 b. Sohland, Lobau
   b. 1710                            b. Oct. 30, 1713
     Saxony                             Reichenback
     America 1743                       Saxony
   d. 1773                            d. May 1, 1790
     Lancester, Pa.                     Cumberland Co. Pa.
Children: 1. Johann George b.1738
          2. Gottfried b. Feb. 28, 1740
          3. David b. Sept. 2, 1741
          4. Elizabeth D. 1745
          5. Johanna E. b. 1744
          6. John b. 1748
          7. George b. 1749
     George and his dauntless wife Johanna Eleanora Donathe,

were founders of the Nickey family in the United States.

Johanna's father was a master clothmaker in Lusatia, Saxony.

     Their feet first felt the solid ground of America under

them on bleak Nov. 26, 1743 when they left the small sailing

vessel "Little Strength" anchored off Long Island, after ten

weeks of rough weather in crossing the Atlantic from Rotterdam.

They had come as Moravian missionaries to Bethlehem, Pa. where 

they became Lutherans.

                        * * *

  b. Sept. 2, 1741
    Hernbut, Saxony
  b. Dec 1803                  d. 1810
     Augusta Co. Virginia
Children: 1. Samuel b. 1766
          2. Eleanora b. 1770 Lancaster, Pa.
          3. Sarah b. 1774

     From infancy David Nickey was reared in the orphanage,
or Children's House at Herrnbut or in some other Moravian

School. He was a part of the Moravian System. He scarcely knew

7. Nickey                                              page 40

the names of his parents. When he arrived in America with

his three year old son, Samuel, in 1769, he was a man, 28,

a father himself, as he met for the first time his own

parents now aged and thinking of death. He settled in Lan-

caster, Pa. and served in the Revolutionary War under General 

Rand of Lancaster in the Medical Corp. Afterwards probably

practiced medicine among the German pioneers. In old age he

settled on 245 acres belonging to Michael and Elizabeth

Keinadt, grandfather and mother of Ann C. Balsey.

                        * * *

SAMUEL NICKEY     m. Jan. 1, 1806      ANN C. BALSEY
  b. 1766                                b. May 1, 1781
    Bavaria, Germany                       Lancaster, Pa.
  d. Feb. 17, 1832                       d. Feb. 27, 1861
    Augusta Co. Va.                        Whitley Co., Ind.

Children: 1. David b. Apr. 22, 1808
          2. Samuel b. June 12, 1809
          3. Christian b. Feb. 10, 1811
          4. Mary Ann b. July 12, 1812
          5. Jacob b. July 1, 1814
          6. Rebecca b. Nov. 17, 1815
          7. Julia Ann b. Apr. 4, 1819
          8. Catherine b. Feb. 22, 1822
          9. Rose Ann b. Jan. 19, 1818
         10. Henry b. June 15, 1826

     Samuel's family first settled in Pennsylvania but soon
afterward moved to Augusta Co. Va. where he married Ann C.

Balsey. The Balsey's were said to be cultured, well educated

and well-to-do people.

     Samuel Nickey died in Augusta Co. Feb. 17, 1831
Already his children had begun settling in Ross Co. Ohio. Soon

after his death Ann and the unmarried children went to Ross Co.

and in the fall of 1834 came to Whitely Co., Ind. where

other members of the family were settling to take advantage

of the cheap land that was available.

	(for more details on the life of Samuel and Ann Nickey
see Bertha Kaler's account of her grandmother, Rebecca Nickey)

8. Nickey                                              page 41

  b. June 12, 1809                    b. May 10, 1814
    Augusta Co. Va.
  d. Aug. 24, 1864                    d. Mar. 17, 1861
    Whitley Co., Ind.                   Whitley Co., Ind.
Children 1: Martha
         2. William
         3. Rebecca b. Sept. 27, 1835
         4. David b. July 6, 1837
         5. Mary b. Nov. 18, 1840
         6. Addison Boyd b. Aug. 22, 1844

     This family moved to Whitley Co., Indiana in 1833 coming

before the Briggs whom they knew in Ross Co.,Ohio. There

is a description of Samuel in Bertha Kaler's account of her

grandmother, Rebecca Nickey, which starts on the next page.

     This account was written on Kaler Katering stationary

probably after receiving the Nickey Family History. The

rough draft is treasured by Margaret Kaler-Langohr and

was copied for this compilation.

8. Nickey                                              page 42

                   REBECCA NICKEY BRIGGS


                   BERTHA MOSSMAN KALER

     I want to write about my "most unfrogettable character",
my grandmotehr Rebecca Brigs, so that my children 

and grandchidlren my know what a rich heritage in character they

have received from her.

     I hope I can bring to them how different living was in
those early days without any of our modern conveniences--

the long hours of heavy and hard work for those pioneer

families, especially those filled with ambition to get ahead

in the world, to obtain land for home for those many children

they had.

     My grandmother was born Nov. 21, 1835 in Whitley Co.,
Indiana, the oldest children of Samuel Nickey and Elziabeth

Gradeless--she had one sister Mary and two brothers, Addison

and David Nickey.

     She was married at the age of 17 to my grandfather,
Silas Briggs, son of Samuel and Agnes Shephard Briggs from 

Ross Co., Ohio.

     My grandfather moved to Whitely Co. before his marriage.
The farm he purchased was almost unbroken wilderness. On this

he built a log cabin where some of the children were born. Later

he built one of the finest brick homes in the country. By

his abounding energy and with the help of his wife and chidlren

they cleared the forest, added additional land. He owned 600

acres of the best land in the county, had two large well

stocked barns and other buildins, and it was his proud boast

that he didn't have a weed on teh place. I think my grand-	

8. Nickey                                              page 43

father was a good business man as well as farmer--he had

the keenest deep blue ey3s and amazing vitality.

     I can remember by father (his son-in-law) saying once that
Silas Briggs was one of the highest respected men in Whitley 

County and that his word was as good as his bond.

I had often wondered at my grandmother's intense re-

ligious fervor through all her life of toil, bearing children,

8 boys and 5 girls and losing only two days. When quite young

her religion was her solace and strength. A few years ago a 

Nickey family history was published by Ella Metsker Milligan,

Instructor Emeritus in History of the Fine Arts of the

University of Denver and herself a descendant of the Nickey

family. After reading this and being a believer in heredity

rather than environment, I can see why my grandmother would

not have been any other than deeply religious. Her forebears

to this country were Moravian Missionaries and helped establish

a church in the new world--George Nickey, the first to come

over, was an ordained pastor.

     But to go back away, her grandmother Ann Balsey was the 
daughter of Christian Balsey, a Swiss Ensign of the 2nd

company, 3rd Battalion, Lancaster County Militia, Pa. He

was in the service of the colony from June 1775 to Dec. 1782.

He fired the first shot at the Battle of Long Island and

was known for his skill with firearms.

     Ann Balsey was the oldest child of this marriage. Their
home was Reading, Pa. Her parents were well to do and she

grew up in an atmosphere of culture and refinement. She

sent her early years in the Swiss School of the Cloisters

at Ephraty.

8. Nickey                                               page 44

     She later moved to Carlisle, Pa. and went into business
there. Carlisle at this time reflected the social and com-

mercial life of Philadelphia and was lavish in gaiety and good 

living. Here Ann attended Dickinson College. She was interested

in her church work and sports and in this atmosphere the

character, that was to know real pioneering, wad formed.

     Later her father moved to the Shenadoah Valley in
Virginia, Augusta Co. Her he built a Swiss chalet. Their

home was the center of the much social activity and her friends

the Porterfield girls, daughter of Gen. Porterfi
eld of
Staunton came often for an outing.

     On one of these occasions they brought Dr. Samuel
Nickey from Lancaster, Pa. with them--his father and David

Nickey d been surgeons to the 3rd Battalion of Lancaster

troops during the Revolutionary War. Out of this visit the

romance of Dr. Nickey and Ann Balsey rapidly developed and

on New Year's day 1806 they were married.

     For this wedding there were lavish preparations of
game, pastries, cheeses and cordials. The cream of Virginia

society attended, Ann was gowned in stiff white silk with

high waist, girdled under the bust, low neck and puff. The

bride's ruddy complexion, lustrous grey eyes and walnut brown

hair glinted with red seemed brilliantly beautiful. The

groom was clad in gray silk breeches and hose, short red

wesket, black cut away frock coat and tall black silk hat.

      Dr. Nickey served in the War of 1812 and afterward they
settled near Staunton and raised a family of sons and daughters.

Dr. Nickey died in 1832. With keen and clear decision inherited

8. Nickey                                              page 45

for her soldier father, Ann decided to take her family to

the Northwest Territory. they settled first at Ross Co. Ohio

where one of the girls and three of the sons married in 1834.

the next year they all decided to move farther north to

Indiana. Here in the midst of her family soon united again

in a community of families, she prompted and abetted their

religious and educational enterprises and enjoyed their


     The name Nickey studs the pages of history in Whitley
County in which they shared responsibility of the development

of government and education in an outstanding way. Many of

their homes were copies of the homes they left in Shendoah,

red brick mansions, white trimmed and green shutters. In the 

foreground evergreen trees, surrounded by well kept fields.

     My great grandfather, Samuel Nickey, father of Rebecca
had imagination and foresight. through his creative ability

in diversified farming and was able to accumulate a lovely

farm home of several hundred acres and build a house similar

to the handsome homes of his family in Shenandoah Valley.

He was intensely religious and helped build and also gave land

for the M.E. Church at old Concord cross roads. The church as 

long since disappeared but across the road from where it

stood, in the old cemetery sleep many of the Nickeys and

Briggs whose families intermarried and took such an integral

part in the settling of this part of the country setting

a high standard of clean living and righteous thinking. Of

my great grandmother, Elizabeth, I know nothing, but I inherited

a very fine picture in a large oval frame of my grandfather

Nickey, taken about middle age. He appears to have been a 

very handsome man, keen-eye, tho rather austere.

8. Nickey                                              page 46

     My Aunt Desdie, his eldest grandchild gave me perhaps 
the truest picture of his character--she had spent some time

with her grandparents as a child--she said he was such a noble

person, king to those abut him, intensely religious, he

never allowed any except necessary work of feeding livestock--

done on Sundays and all of the family those that worked for

him were taken to church every Sunday.

     I have tried to give what little I know of my grandmother's 
people so that we may understand better the background of 

their educational and religious aspirations that helped form

her fine character. Tho' she was denied any advanced education

due to the hard life of a pioneer family in getting a start in

this new country and her early marriage precluded her from it,

yet knowing her grandmother had had a higher education, no

doubt made her wish for it and for her own children. She was 

always fond of reading, I never received a letter from her

that she did not enclosed a few clippings of poems or

articles she thought might help me.

     I wish I were able to clarify my own thinking so that
I could be able to five you a true picture of her as it

stands so vividly in my mind.

     When I think of really what a few hours of my life I
ever spent in her compnay, twice that I remember staying all

night--an then our large fmaily gatherings at Thanksgiving

and other time through the year-yet I feel I knew her,

so well from small impressions that form in a child's mind

and grow and stay with them through a ife time shapting one's 

character and manner of thinking.

8. Nickey                                              page 47

     Our whole manner of living was vastly different from 
the present day, that I doubt if you children can ever

realize it--no radio, autos, airplanes, movies, rural mail

delivery, telephones, or any of the myriads of conveniences

that we accept as such a necessary part of our lives now.

     We had to drive with a horse and buggy or carriage,
seven or eight miles, over dirt roads that often in winter were

almost impassable. We canned or stored all our fruits and

vegetables that we had to raise and garner, no lazy person

had any standing or respect.

	When I think of this gentle well bred girl, Rebecca, Marrying
so young and bearing eleven children, helping to carve out

a home in the wilderness, i am mazed that she had the spirit

and fortitude to carry on so cheerfully as she always seemed

to do. I know little of these earlier years except what I

heard from my mother, how they made their own clothes,

helped clear the ground and do much heavy work so that when

I was a children, they had a beautiful brick home set in a 

spacious lawn, surrounded by well kept flower beds and evergreen

trees of all kinds--Barns were always well painted and

large fields under cultivation. I doubt if in all Whitley 

County there was a more prosperous appearing or better kept farm

     As the boys and girls of the family married and settled 
on farms near my grandfather's, we really had a large crowd when 

all the aunts and uncles and children got together for out

Sundays in the summer or at Thanksgiving and what really

feasts there w ere and what hours of preparation they must have

entailed--The daughters and daughters-in-law were all excellent

cooks and vied with each other in making the most delicious

cakes--Aunt Desdie always brought a huge roasted turkey and

8. Nickey                                              page 48

grandmother had one or two besides baked hams--pumpkin and 

mince pies, cookies, etc.--so while we children played, our

elders prepared the feast--after dinner and dishes were done

we assembled in the parlor and Aunt Desdie played the old

family organ and the boys sand--usually all church pieces--

the boys had exceptionally fine voices, rich and melodious--

I can remember grandmother's look of supreme happiness as she

looked with such pride on her dear ones. The day always seemed

much too short, for by four o'clock we usually had to be on

our long jurney home to take care of the stock.

     Grandmother had a young woman that lived with them many
years as "hired girl" as well called them, but Grandmother was

the driving force behind all the work around her house-up at

four o'clock every morning starting fires, getting the boys

up and to their chores around the barn, and  a great breakfast

usually of ham, and sausages and eggs, fried potatoes etc.

to fortify them for the day's work. At noon another big meal

to prepare and again at night--add to this milking, making

butter, raising children, gathering eggs, washing, ironing,

baking, sewing canning, hard grueling work all day long

and a great part of her young life carrying children--caring

for them.

     It seemed to me that more and more was expected of her
yet thru it all she never seemed to lose her cheerful spirit,

company was always welcome and well fed--many of the most 

influential and prominent people in the country were frequent

visitors and their were many that were farming people, cattle

buyers, would stop in for breakfast--no charge was ever made--

8. Nickey                                       Page 49

no one was too humble or too great in the design of her

kindness and charity

     I don't think anyone ever came that she didn't give them
something to take home, vegetables, fruit, eggs, meat, all

went away with them-buggies filled with the fruit of her labor.

This was just a joyous giving to her with no thought of

recompense yet 'bread cast upon waters will return". It did to

her and her dear ones for they have been abundantly cared for.

     While her life to many may have seemed nothing but hard
work, I think her compensation came in the delight she

took in all her children whom she loved dearly.

     Her pride and joy was her last child, Jesse Howard, Their
deep affection for each other was mutual, he was her baby, the

apple of her eye and as he grew in strength and manhood he did

many things to lighten her load. By dint of his careful

saving, aided and abetted by her, he was able to go to

college and medical school--her "croix de Guerre", purple

heart came to her when she received his always high scholastic


     When he had finished his medical studies and had come
home to pack his belonging preparatory to going to

Churubusco, Ind. to take up his life's work as a doctor

in that community, I happened to have stayed at Grandmother's

that night. In the morning she and I stood alone after he

had bade us good-bye and started up the road, driving his

little black horse in his top buggy-waiving until he was out

of sight, she had thrown her toil worn hands and apron over

her head, cheerful until he had gone, the bitter tears coursed

8. Nickey                                              page 50

down her cheeks--I tried to comfort her, but she said,

"always before he came back and this was home, but it won't

be the same any more."

     Her years of toil were abut at an end. Grandfather
bought a nice residential property in Columbia City, Ind.,

furnished it nicely and they moved there--but she only lived

about two years after leaving the farm--I doubt is she was 

as happy there in this strange new environment as she was

at the farm that she helped to create into a beautiful

home with all the rich memories if had for her of her children

and friend. I was at their home the day she took sick, she

was still up and around the house, but soon her darling

Jesse came and saw how very ill she was, he picked her up

in his strong arms and carried her up stairs and put her in

bed. All the children came and cared for her most tenderly

but mercifully she only lived a few days longer. The longer I

live, the more I realize that whatever of goodness and

truth she passed on to her children will be multiplied in

their destinies a thousand fold. Her frail body is gone but

her life and teaching go on inexhaustible.

     When a life has reached its span, fulfilled itself, there
should be no sadness, for death is but a part of living.

     Love and religion where the two abiding forces in grand-
mothers' life, there was always so much love expressed between 

the brothers and sisters and in the family life--she always

greeted us with so much deep affection, and it was the 

greatest occasion of my life to get to go to my grandmother's.

Jesse only two years older than I was, was my dear playmate.

I wish I could convey to you, my dear children, the pictures

8. Nickey                                              page 51

I carry in my mind of a great fire blazing on the hearth

in the kitchen, grandmother getting a good dinner ready for

us' grandfather going down cellar and bringing up a basket

of choice apples and his peeling them and having me try wedges

form the different kids. He would bring out a hunk of dried

beef and whittle off some pieces for us to eat and nothing

ever tasted so sweet and delicious.

     After diner was over, Jesse and I would perch out on the 
top step of the porch and watch the great yellow moon of

early fall rise over our little world with its mellow light,

throwing into sharp relief and forest in the background.

     The home was on a small hillside and the old milk house
in the far corner of the yard with a natural spring in it, where

the milk was strained and kept cool. Uncle Charlie told me

once about standing on the hillside in early evening and

hearing grandmother graying fervently. To me this was such

a poignant picture of the awed barefoot boy listening while

his mother took her troubles to God-one of my aunts told me

that before their big he was built, they lived in a 

log cabin in the woods and the night before Steve was born,

grandmother took her small children and knelt down by  stamp

in the woods and prayed so earnestly, that she had never

forgotten it. It is no wonder her spiriet was troubled, always

the work, work, until she felt she could do no more, heavy

with children and the uncertainties birth involves--but so

great was her faith that she received "the peace that knot

no understanding." Her religion was something real and 

definite and necessary, a source to draw the help she needed.

8. Nickey                                              page 52

	On the date of their fiftieth wedding anniversary the
family held a celebration at the family home, the now

grown up family of six sons and three daughters, their

families and many friends gathered to partake of the feast

prepared. Dr. Heathcox, out Lutheran minister gave an ap-

propriate talk of their life and its accomplishments and

Dr. Jesse, with a most beautiful speech of appreciation 

to them, presented his father with a gold headed cane and

his mother with a gold ring. Dr. Jesse has since fittingly given

this to the granddaughter, Rebecca Briggs, her only name-

sake--which ring she greatly treasures.

     There are many things I wish I had the ability to
portray more adequately but I hope I have told you a few

things you will want to know osmetime about your great

grandmother. I know I would appreciate more than anything

in the world if I had had some such message for and bout

my great grandparents.

     (See SILAS BRIGGS   page 29 for genealogical dates).


Section II

                      BIOGRPAHICAL SECTION

                             PART II

     We, the three children of Walpole Kaler and Bertha

Mossman, come now to our more immediate ancestors to tell

you what we remember about them and how out lives have

turned out. We concluded this compilation with the biographies of:

Parents of Walpole Kaler and Bertha Mossman:

     Smauel P. kaler- Elizabeth Alice Kerr

     James Albert Mossman- Sarah Elizabeth Birggs


Children of Walpoke Kaler and Bertha Mossman:

     William Kale- Harriet Montgomery

     James KAler- Shirley Smith

     Margaret Kaler- John Langohr

     We sincrely hope our children and grandchidlren will

have an apprecaiton for their "root" and will be encouraged

to keep these records up to date for future descendants of

this family.

             WILLIAM M. KALER, Clinton, New York

             JAMES B, KALER, Grosse Pointe., Michigan

             MARGARET KALER-LANGOHR, Columbia City, Indiana

Parents                                       Page 1

Parents                                       Page 2

Parents                                       Page 3

Parents                                       Page 4

Parents                                       Page 5

Parents                                       Page 6

Parents                                       Page 7

Parents                                       Page 8

Parents                                       Page 9

Parents                                       Page 10

Parents                                       Page 11

Parents                                       Page 12

Parents                                       Page 13

Parents                                       Page 14

Parents                                       Page 15

Parents                                       Page 16

Parents                                       Page 17

Parents                                       Page 18

Parents                                       Page 19

Parents                                       Page 20

Walpole Kaler                                  Page 1

Walpole Kaler                                  Page 2

Walpole Kaler                                  Page 3

Walpole Kaler                                  Page 4

Walpole Kaler                                  Page 5

Walpole Kaler                                  Page 6

Walpole Kaler                                  Page 7

Walpole Kaler                                  Page 8

Kaler Katering                                  Page 1

Kaler Katering                                  Page 2

Kaler Katering                                  Page 3

Kaler Katering                                  Page 4

Kaler Katering                                  Page 5

Kaler Katering                                  Page 6

Kaler Katering                                  Page 7

Kaler Katering                                  Page 8

Kaler Katering                                  Page 9

Kaler Katering                                  Page 10

Kaler Katering                                  Page 11

Kaler Katering                                  Page 12

Kaler Katering                                  Page 13

Kaler Katering                                  Page 14

Kaler Katering                                  Page 15

Kaler Katering                                  Page 16

Kaler Katering                                  Page 17

Kaler Katering                                  Page 18

Kaler Katering                                  Page 19

Kaler Katering                                  Page 20

Kaler Katering                                  Page 21

Kaler Katering                                  Page 22

Children                                          Page 1

Children                                          Page 2

Children                                          Page 3

Children                                          Page 4

Children                                          Page 5

Children                                          Page 6

Children                                          Page 7

Children                                          Page 8

Children                                          Page 9

Children                                          Page 10

Children                                          Page 11

Children                                          Page 12

Children                                          Page 13

Children                                          Page 14

Children                                          Page 15

Children                                          Page 16

Children                                          Page 17

Children                                          Page 18

Children                                          Page 19



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Special Thanks to Harriet Kaler for granting permission to the Dr. Gradeless to share these records.

This site is maintained by Donald E. Gradeless. Your input is welcome.

The WCHS does not assume responsibility for this web page. Content decisions by Dr. Gradeless.

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November 2, 2005 - DEG

Copyright 1980 Harriet Kaler used with permission of Mrs. Kaler

Copyright 2001-2010 Genealogical Society of Whitley County.