Posts Tagged With: pneumonia

Zula Ley: Little-Known Fact #4

Ley Zula Robert Jr. 1918

A 1918 portrait shows my great-grandmother, Mary Zula Lucrece (Fisher) Ley, and her newborn son, my grandfather Robert Earl Ley Jr.

Tragic Death Tied to Flu Epidemic

When I started this blog, it was to share what’s most interesting to me about genealogy — the way the lives and personalities of our ancestors come to life in the stories we uncover.

At times those stories are tragic. Perhaps none more so than the story of my great-grandmother, Zula (Fisher) Ley.

Posts in the last weeks have shared snippets of her young life — acclaim for her acting in a senior play, notching a finalist finish in a national beauty contest, sneaking off to Wellsburg, W. Va. to marry Great-Grandpa Earl Ley.

These and other portraits show Zula as vital, intelligent, beautiful.

But her life is defined for her descendants by its tragic end, subject of the second post ever in this blog. It was front-page news in neighboring Dover: how the young wife, 24, of a prominent dentist passed away of influenza and pneumonia late on a Sunday night at home in New Philadelphia, Ohio.

An account in the hometown Daily Times, however, also ties Zula’s death to a sudden epidemic that winter.

The Feb. 2, 1920 edition, front page, broadcasts in bold headlines: FLU EPIDEMIC CLAIMS THREE; RED CROSS TAKES UP BATTLE. Whole Families are Reported Ill. Relief is Sought. Three Persons Die Over Weekend.

While influenza is fast enveloping New Philadelphia in a grip that claimed three fatalities Sunday and Monday the Red Cross is preparing to combat the epidemic with nurses.

Mayor E. N. Fair Monday as chairman of the influenza committee of the Red Cross was seeking a nurse for a family where help could not be obtained to take care of the ill.

Whole families are ill with the epidemic, and many patients were reported on the verge of death, Monday.

Young Wife Dies

Mrs. Mary Zula Ley, 24, wife of Dr. Robert E. Ley, Dover dentist, succumbed to influenza-pneumonia at 11:30 p.m. Sunday following ten days’ illness.

The death of Mrs Ley which occurred at the residence on West High street, caused widespread sorrow.

The husband and one son, Robert Earl, aged 16 months, survive.

Years later, with more information known about our family history, it is believed the hereditary presence of Factor V Leiden, which causes abnormal clotting of the blood, particularly in veins, may have contributed to Zula’s death.

Reported in neither paper was the stillborn death of her infant daughter, also named Mary on a separate death certificate.

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For the Record | Zula Ley, 1920 Obit

Ley Zula Robert Jr. 1918

A 1918 portrait shows my great-grandmother, Mary Zula Lucrece (Fisher) Ley, and her newborn son, my grandfather Robert Earl Ley Jr.

Mary Zula Lucrece (Fisher) Ley | 1895-1920

This blog series explores the lives of Ley ancestors as revealed in their obituaries. Much of this information was gathered during a March 2011 research trip to Tuscarawas and Harrison counties in Ohio. A scan of the obituary is available at the bottom of this post.

From The Daily Reporter (Dover, Ohio), Monday, Feb. 2, 1920 (front page):

Mrs. Robt. Ley Dies

Mary Zula Ley, 24, wife of Robert Ley, well known Dover dentist, died of influenza and pneumonia at 11:30 Sunday night at the family home at 813 West High Street, New Philadelphia. She had been ill for ten days.

Mrs. Ley was born in York Township and graduated from New Philadelphia High School in 1913. She taught school four years, two years in rural schools and two years in the Dover city schools.

She was married June 27, 1917 to Dr. Ley, who survives with a 15 months old son, Robert. She also leaves her parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Fisher; three brothers, Clyde, New Philadelphia; Oscar of Dennison; Byron of Midvale; and one sister, Mrs. Olin Abbuhl of Uhrichsville.

Funeral services will be held from the home at 2:30 Wednesday afternoon.

The above article is also notable for what it doesn’t say. My great-grandmother also miscarried a four-months premature daughter, whom the death certificate records as Mary Zula Ley, after her mother. They are buried in the Fisher plot in East Avenue Cemetery, in New Philadelphia.

What else was happening in the world on Feb. 1, 1920? It was a quiet day, according to recorded accounts. Only recently, the League of Nations took effect, and the United States voted to join the League. In January, Babe Ruth had been traded from the Red Sox to the Yankees. And police raids on suspected Communists rocked cities including Buffalo and Boston.

Ley Zula 1920 obit Times-Reporter

Zula Ley headstone, East Ave. Cemetery

Zula Ley headstone, East Ave. Cemetery

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Jonathan Foutz Family | Charles Ross Foutz


Donald Dale Foutz Vance Cleveland Foutz Pennsylvania 1960

Don Foutz, left, and his father, Vance, during a trip east to Pennsylvania to visit Don's sister Doris in 1960.

Charles Ross Foutz | 1885 – 1918

Title the above photo “Two Dudes in T-Shirts Lounge in Lawn Chairs”. It’s one of my favorites of my grandfather, Don Foutz, and great-grandfather, Vance Cleveland Foutz, together.

I discovered it in the trove of photographs, newspaper clippings, vital documents and odds and ends saved by my grandma Erma Foutz in the years after my grandpa’s death. The picture was among a series taken during a trip Don, Erma and Vance took east to Pennsylvania in the summer of 1960 (did my dad and his brothers go, too?) to visit Don’s sister, Doris Waddington.

It’s probably taken in the backyard of Doris and Wayne’s place in Harrisville, Pa. Father and son are shown sitting the same way, dressed the same way, in slacks, T-shirts, white socks and loafers, and looking passively at the camera through their similar pairs of glasses.

It’s a scene you could imagine walking into, grabbing a beer, sitting down, and joining in the conversation. At the time, my grandfather was 46, his father, 72. One man in the prime of life, the other in his sunset. What would they have talked about?

It seems so simple, so commonplace. Father and son. And for Don and Vance, at least, it was. During my grandfather’s whole life, his own father was never more than a few blocks away, and for much of it, not even that far. But in this instance, they are enjoying a privilege, at a certain stage of their lives, that no Foutz men of the previous generation, or the generation after would enjoy.

My grandpa Don would die of lung cancer at age 66 in November 1980, when his sons were no older than 36. This week’s series of posts has chronicled the immediate family and descendants of my great-great grandfather, Jonathan Foutz. In exploring the lives they led, where they lived them, and whom they shared their years with, I’ve made much of the early deaths of all but Vance and his sister, Lila, and the unfortunate effect that had on later generations of Foutzes staying connected.

Over a period of 20 years, from 1899 to 1918, seven out of nine family members would pass away:

in 1899 — fifth child, John Cephas Foutz, at age 21

in 1900 — father Jonathan Foutz, at age 55

before 1910 — third child, Rachel L. (Foutz) Coleman, in her 30s

in 1915 — oldest child, Sherman S. Foutz, and mother, Rebecca Jane (Caldwell) Foutz, at 47 and 67, respectively

in 1917 — fourth child, Ida Belle Foutz, at 44

and in 1919 — sixth child, Charles Ross Foutz, at age 32

“Brother Dover Man Dies”

Just as I imagine what it would be like, stepping into the picture above and joining a conversation of the generations, I believe that my great-grandfather, Vance, would have been unusually close to his brother Charles.

For starters, they were the very youngest of a big family, back when big families were common in Harrison County, Ohio, and their members were recruited at an early age for farm work, and once married, set about raising a sprawling family on farms of their own. Vance and Charles’s siblings were as many as twenty years older — more surrogate parents, or uncles and aunts, than brothers and sisters.

Sometime before 1900, this feeling of distance to their nearest kin would be reinforced by Jonathan and Rebecca’s move, with oldest son Sherman, to Washington D.C., where Sherman was an appointee to the Treasury Department under President Cleveland. Vance and Charles, not yet in their teens, were hustled into the same house as their young niece, Grace, and nephew, Oscar, while the rest of the Foutz clan were left to their now adult lives back home.

How did the experience of being the first Foutzes in almost 100 years to leave the farm shape my great-grandfather and great-great uncle? And how were they further shaped when Jonathan died young that September 1900?

No public documents remain to trace the family’s movements in the years immediately afterward. But Charles and Vance are next found in the twin cities of New Philadelphia and Dover, in Tuscarawas County, the next one over from their old home in Harrison County.

Sometime before 1906, Charles marries a West Virginia gal — Rosa Bell White, of Monongalia. They have four children together who are living at the time of Charles’s death: John, born in 1906; James Earl, 1908; Herbert R., 1911; and Margaret, 1916. Another son, Harold Russell, is born just 18 days after my grandpa Don Foutz in 1914, but dies at just 8 months of broncho-pneumonia.

The family lived at 127 N. Tenth Street and 427 Logan Street in New Phila during the 12 years before Charles’s death. They worshiped at the First United Methodist Church. At the time of the 1910 census, Charles was employed as a packer at an enameling company. By 1918, he was employed as a polisher at the Wise McClung Co. in New Phila, which had first rolled out its new line of electric vacuum cleaners late the year before.

That summer, in the heat of July, Charles becomes sick with lobar pneumonia. He suffers for 10 days, and endures complications from cholecystitis (gallbladder inflammation) before dying at 6:30 a.m., Sunday, July 21. He is buried in East Avenue Cemetery. He leaves Rosie a widow and four children fatherless, and perhaps a brother bereft as well.

Remarriage and More Kids for Rosie

In correspondence between my great aunt Louise (Moore) Foutz and my grandparents, Louise makes reference to “red-haired nephews from Canton” coming to visit Vance Foutz and his family often. In an earlier post, I posited that these could be the sons of Rachel Foutz, whose family was scattered to Canton, Kent and even Los Angeles after her apparent death. But might these be Charles’s boys instead?

Within a year of Charles’s death, Rosie has remarried. One day after Independence Day, 1919, she and Thomas Clifford Colvin are wed in Franklin County, Ohio.

Thomas is also a widower. He and his first wife, Mary (Lute) Colvin were living not far from the Foutzes in New Philadelphia when Mary died of uterine cancer in October 1916 at age 40. In 1910, Thomas was working as a coal miner and living as a roomer in Mary Lute’s house at 349 W. St. Clair Street. Mary was a divorced mother of three: Ethel, 16, Florence, 12, and Ralph, 12. She married Thomas later that year.

By the time Rosie and Thomas are married, he is father of two children by Mary Lute — Clarence, born in October 1910, and Carl, born in 1913. All six kids and parents are living, in 1920, in the rear of a house at 384 East High Avenue in New Phila — right next door to my great-great grandparents Clement and Anna Johnson. (To be accurate, their address, which is listed as 390 East Avenue from 1900-1920, changes to 890 East High Avenue in 1930 and at the time of Clement’s death. Hard for me to say, exactly, where this is today. But they are listed right next door, on the same census page, in 1920.) Because he and Clement (and my great-grandfather Charles, father of Vance Foutz’s eventual daughter-in-law, Erma Johnson) are all miners, it is likely they knew and even worked with one another.

By 1930, Thomas and Rosie have moved to Canton. They share a house with an Anna Boer (born in Arkansas) and family, and Rosie is listed as a co-head of household with Anna. Thomas works as a laborer for the power company. James (who drives a grocery truck) and Margaret Foutz, at 18 and 14, are still members of the household, while there are two new half-sisters, Jessie, 8, and Rosie, 3. Meanwhile, Clarence Colvin, 19, is listed back in New Philadelphia as a resident of the County Jail.

The whereabouts, after 1930, of Rosie and Charles Foutz’s other children, are less certain. There is a Charles J. Foutz — with mother born in W.Va. — matching John’s age living in Canton in 1930 and working as a shipping clerk. He is married to Amy and has a young daughter, Doris, born in 1924. The Colvin brothers and the Colvin half-sisters, as well as Margaret Foutz, all drop off the public record at this point, and we find no more of John, or Charles John, Foutz.

I have found a James Earl Foutz matching James Foutz’s age who lives and dies in Canton at age 65 in August, 1974. He has at least two children with Alitha Jones: one son, James William Foutz, born in 1937, worked as a millwright in Canton, married a woman named Smith and had 2 sons and 2 daughters; and one daughter, Dorothy.

I’ve also located a Herbert R. Foutz, again matching the birth date of Charles’s son, who lives and works in Willoughby, Ohio in Lake County as a car salesman. He marries a woman named Eleanor and has seven children at the time of his death in January 1963 at a too-young 51 — three married daughters, Elaine Benson, Audrey Herrington and Barbara Melton; and four younger children, Patricia, Linda, Herbert Jr. and David.

If any of these descendants of Charles and Rosa Foutz are still living, it’s a connection to Jonathan and Rebecca that hasn’t been made, at least by my family, for decades.

As for Rosie, she dies of a heart attack in 1948 after suffering from diabetes for several years. She is buried in West Lawn Cemetery, Canton. The death date of Thomas Clifford Colvin is not known, but it appears he dies after his second wife.

Charles Ross Foutz obituary, New Philadelphia 1918

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Jonathan Foutz Family | Lila (Foutz) Hatheway & Descendants

Delilah Ann Foutz Hatheway

Lila (Foutz) Hatheway | 1869-1936

This is the fourth post in a series exploring the family of my great-great grandparents, Jonathan and Rebecca Foutz.

The first post discussed the life of Jonathan Foutz, including his birth and early life as a farmer in Harrison County, Ohio, and the still-unknown circumstances surrounding his early death in 1900 at age 55.

The second post shared the story of Rebecca Caldwell‘s childhood in Bowerston and Sherrodsville, Ohio, and caught up with her again following her husband’s death as she lived her remaining years in the home of her youngest son, my great-grandfather Vance Cleveland Foutz, in Canal Dover.

Third in this series was an exploration of the prominent life, tragic death and remaining mysteries of Jonathan and Rebecca’s oldest child, my great-great uncle, Sherman S. Foutz, and his descendants, known and unknown.

Now, we pick up the thread again with Jonathan and Rebecca’s oldest daughter, Lila.

Whereas the spelling of my surname would change throughout the 1800s, from Pfouts to Pfoutz to Fouts and, finally, Foutz — my first ancestors liked to keep it simple when it came to the given names they chose for their children. Uncles, nieces, aunts, grandfathers, grandmothers, nephews, sons, daughters — many could be counted on to share the same Michael, Catherine, John, Jacob, Mary, Elizabeth, Tabitha and Jonathan, etc.  But I haven’t uncovered any evidence — so far — of a Sherman Foutz before my great-great grandparents bestowed it upon their oldest, in 1867. Maybe it was an honorific inspired by the exploits of that great (and terrible) Civil War general.

But the origins of the name they chose for their second child are easy. To the baby born July 24, 1869, near Bowerston, Ohio, was given the name Delilah Ann, after Jonathan’s mother, Delilah Ann Jones. But throughout her life, she would go by Lila.

Birth, Marriage & Motherhood Within a Dozen Miles

Unlike previous generations of farming Foutzes, Lila attended school and learned to read and write at an early age. But I don’t know whether she received any of the advanced schooling her older brother Sherman did.

She became a wife at 21, marrying Samuel George Hatheway Aug. 12, 1889. Sam came from another prominent farming family in the area. His mother, Mary Mahala Fisher’s family were among the early settlers of Harrison County and had farmed near Bowerston for 80 years.

The Hatheways settled near Dennison, west of Tunnel Hill and Bowerston. Their first child, Gertie Belle, born on New Year’s Eve, 1889, died before she reached 6 months. But 6 of their 7 succeeding children would live into adulthood:

* Nellie Jane, born March 1891, would marry Jesse Loren Heavlin in August 1909. They had at least one son, Gilbert. She died in Feb. 1961, at 69.

* Twins James Earl and Frank Merle were born Jan. 21, 1894. James died before his 8th birthday. Frank married Edna Mae Smith in 1918. They lived in Loudonville, Ohio, in Ashland County, before Frank (and maybe both of them) were living at home again in Dennison with his father. I haven’t found any record of children. He died June 23, 1963, also at 69.

* Albert Alonzo “Bob” Hatheway, born October 1897. Married Helen Rectanis. Kids include Helen and Richard. Died March 31, 1955 at age 57 in Scio, Ohio.

* Erma Grace, born March 1899. First marriage to Joseph Healea, in 1897 or 1898. They had at least one child, Mary Ruth, who may not have survived past infancy. The two appear to have been divorced by 1930, and Erma later marries Grover Waldo Johnson. They make their home in Columbus, Ohio for a time, but die within a month of each other in 1984, back home in Tuscarawas County; Erma goes first, in October.

* Herbert Ross, born Nov. 1904. Married Edith Lois Host, Feb. 3, 1921. They had at least five children — Helen (Palmer), Merle Gene, Norma (Page), Donna (Quillen) and Richard — and at the time of his death, in January 1980 at 75, his obituary listed 16 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren. He lived his entire life in Dennison.

* Mildred May, born March 1907. Married Ray Byron Gibson Oct. 15, 1924. Lived in Scio, Ohio. Had at least two children — Jack and Betty are listed in the 1930 census. Died Nov. 26, 1994 at age 87.

Sam also made his living as a farmer, and survived his wife by 13 years. Lila may have been in Columbus visiting her daughter Erma and son-in-law Waldo Johnson in June 1936, but she had been sick for several weeks prior. According to her death record, she was treated and operated on in Grant Hospital in Columbus. The cause of death was pneumonia, but the doctor’s (illegible) writing reports something uncovered by the operation that was found to be benign, but that Lila had suffered from for almost three weeks.

She was buried in Tunnel Hill Cemetery, just west of Bowerston.

Sam Hatheway Lila Foutz gravestone Tunnel Hill Cemetery

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July 24: A New Entry in the Family Datebook

In honor of my brother Dan Foutz’s marriage to Laura Hicks this week, I thought I’d share a few of the milestones family members past and present have in common with the soon-to-be-wedded’s chosen month.

For those of you we’ll be celebrating with in Oregon — see you soon!

For Dan & Laura — congrats! And Laura, welcome to the family tree.

Great-grandparents Viola Palmer and Charles Johnson were married July 1, 1911 in Dennison, Ohio.

July Family Milestones

1 — WEDDING of Charles Arthur Johnson and Viola Palmer

Great-grandparents. Parents to Grandma Erma (Johnson) Foutz Miller. They are the only couple in the family — that we know of — to share a wedding month with Dan and Laura. They were married in Dennison, OH on July 1, 1911 — 99 years ago! She was 22; he was 24. They were married 47 years.

4 — Esther Bliss (Goddard) Weible

My great-great grandmother, mother to Robert Ohio Weible. She was born July 4, 1852 in Londonderry, Vermont.

Grandma Ley

6 — Suzanne Abbott (Weible) Ley

Grandma. Born July 6, 1918 in Dover, Ohio.

10 — Ellen Jane (Kinsey) Ley

Born 1874 in Port Washington, Ohio. Great-great-great aunt, and mother of Jane Ley.

Great-great-great uncle Albert Weible

13 — Albert Weible

Great-great-great uncle, and brother to great-great-grandfather Franklin Eli Weible (R.O.’s dad). Born 1852 in Dover. He was a schoolteacher.

13 — Rebecca Jane (Caldwell) Foutz

Great-great grandmother. Born July 13, 1847, it was said (in a bio of her oldest son, Sherman) that she and her husband, Jonathan Pfouts, were born on the same homestead, that of our great-great-great grandfather Gideon Pfouts. After her husband died in 1900, at just 55 years old, she lived with her son, Vance, and his wife, Laura, in Dover, where she passed away in 1915.

13 — Joseph Blough Weible

Another birthday on July 13, this time in 1836. Another great-great-great uncle, another brother of Franklin Eli. Born in Dover, he was a farmer, and lived to be 92.

20 — Norman Johnson

Great-great uncle. Brother of Great-Grandpa Charles Johnson. Born in 1910 in New Philadelphia, Ohio.

24 — Delila Ann (Foutz) Hathaway

The ancestor who shares Dan & Laura’s special day, was born in 1869 in Bowerston, Ohio. She is the oldest sister of our great-grandpa, Vance Cleveland Foutz. She was named for our great-great-great grandmother, Delilah Ann (Jones) Pfouts. She married Sam Hathaway in 1890 when she was 20. They were married 46 years. They made their home in Dennison, Ohio. She died in 1936 at age 66 following a three-week bout with pneumonia. She is buried in Tunnel Hill Cemetery, northwest of where she grew up in Harrison County.

Great-grandma Beatrice Ethel (Morgan) Weible -- or M.A. Weible -- about 1910.

27 — Beatrice Ethel (Morgan) Weible

Our great-grandmother. Mother to Grandma Sue (Weible) Ley. Known as M.A. Weible, she was a beloved friend and confidante to our mom. She was born July 27, 1892 in Carnegie, Pennsylvania. According to our dad, she wore her hair like she did in this picture her entire life. Dan’s middle name, of course, honors her family, the Morgans, who emigrated from Wales about 1870.

30 — Samuel Chase Foutz

Our little bro! Born in 1986. We were sent to play at the Dover ballfields and park in the care of our Ley cousins, Doreen, Andrea and Lizzie. I remember staying at Grandma and Grandpa Ley’s house and getting the news as Mom underwent a C-section to get Sam into the world. Though Sam can point to a famous signer of the Declaration of Independence as historic inspiration for his name, Dan and I mainly think it’s because of the red-headed hell child on “Different Strokes”.

31 — Eliza J. Foutz

Our third great aunt, depending on how you do the family intermarriage mathematics. As I related in that post a couple months back, Elizabeth J. Fouts was the daughter of Joseph Pfouts. Joseph was the nephew of our great-great-great grandfather, Gideon. (Joseph’s dad was Gideon’s oldest brother, Michael.) What happens is that one of Gideon’s sons, Nathaniel (a younger brother of our great-great grandfather, Jonathan) marries Elizabeth — his first cousin’s daughter. So, Nathaniel’s first cousin became his father-in-law.

Eliza was born in 1862, about five years after Nathaniel. They were married in 1822, when he was 25, and she was 19. They had two kids — Annie, born soon after their marriage, and William, born some 11 years later. Not much is known about Annie. But William Andrew Fouts (he kept the S spelling) lived 82 years, dying in 1977 in Urichsville, Ohio. As for Nathaniel and Eliza, they took over Gideon’s land as he and Delilah grew older, and passed away within 6 years of each other. They were married over 50 years, as of Eliza’s death, in 1933.

Nathan & Eliza's headstone, Long View Cemetery, Bowerston, Ohio

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