Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year 2011

From a 1900's Postcard

West High School Band in London,England Parade

Good Luck to the West High Band in their performance in the London- England New Year's Day Parade tomorrow -January 1,2011.

Like old the saying about the Postman- "neither snow nor rain nor heat or the gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their rounds"-

They will have weathered gigantic fund raising efforts , the 2010 New York City Blizzard , airport delays, airplane trips across the ocean , London mist , tours of London and tomorrow the parade . This is an incredible learning adventure that they will have experienced and will always remember.

Good work and enjoy your memories, Students. You have earned a big round of applause !!

And to the West High Music Department Faculty, WSH Staff, Community and anyone else involved in helping make the trip possible- Thank You.

Have a safe journey home to West High School and Painted Post, New York

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas to All

Merry Christmas December 2010 and a Happy New Year for 2011

Monday, December 20, 2010

The Lindley Cornet Band 1884 to 1900

The Lindley Cornet Band
From A Brief History of Lindley and It's Pioneer Families By William Hilton Burr 1951 (Transcribed by Catherine M Pierce - Town of Lindley Historian -12-18-2010 )

"Few still live who remember the Lindley Cornet Band. This organization flourished between the years 1884 and 1900. It was composed of 24 members all of whom lived in Lindley and Erwin Center. (now known as Presho-)
It is difficult today to understand how such a large organization could have been found in the town. But it was. For years, the Band led the Memorial Day parade at Lindley in the forenoon, then at Lawrenceville in the afternoon. We played at Fourth of July celebrations, political parades and picnics in surrounding towns. We were never invited to play before the King and Queen of England, but we traveled about the country as far as Corning, Addison, Wellsboro and Elkland. Our last parade was at Lindley and Lawrenceville May 30th, 1889. Two days later the great June flood came down through the valley, swept away the town hall containing many band instruments which were stored in the town hall. Some of them were later found in the bottom of the river and the bass drum was carried away and found in the wrecked town hall. Some of the band men went away from Lindley. Their places were never filled and the existence of the Band was ended by the flood of 1889.
During the time when the Lindley Band was flourishing, there was a rival Band at Lawrenceville. Rivalry between the two competing bands ran at high tide~ especially on Memorial Day. The Lawrenceville band came to Lindley to march in the Memorial Day parade in the forenoon and the Lindley band marched at the Lawrenceville parade in the afternoon. We had the largest Band, the best uniforms and made the most noise, but I have always had a suspicion that, perhaps the Lawrenceville Band made the best music.
Our Lindley band always marched in columns, four abreast. Ira Lyon and Emmet Carey played tubes, Porter Watson played the B Flat bass, William H. Burr the baritone. In the next column Harry H. Lyon and William Jones played the tenor trombone; William Huggins and Frank Camp, the alto trombones. In the third column Charles E. Bouldt and William Pepper played clarinets, William C. Riffle and Fred Carey played the B and E cornets. In the fourth column William Manley and Andrew Black, George M. Riffle, Marius Manley and Otis Riffle played cornets at times. In the last column came Henry Leavenworth with his bass drum and cymbals and L.G. Gale with is snare drum.
I well remember that the first production that our teacher ventured to let us
play was "Go Tell Old Aunt Abbey That Her Grey Goose is Dead". No one who has been a part of a Band beginners' bedlam with twenty beginners with twenty different instruments of twenty different sounds are trying to play can doubt the reason why Old Aunt Abbey's goose died. Probably she could not stand the racket. "

( If at first you don't succeed ,try and try again-especially when learning to use a new scanner-- Kitty)
Sometimes when reading a person's version of an event,you end with more questions than when you started.
Mr. Burr gives two dates for the end of the band - 1. after the 1889 flood and 2. 1900 in the title of his article.
From the invitation, we know that several gentleman were still part of the band in 1894 and playing at the Town Hall . Was this new Town Hall built after the 1889 flood.? or one built later?
We own the building which was the Town Hall/PostOffice and Grange Hall before the present Town Hall/Post Office opened after the 1972 flood. Our deed leads us to believe our"Old Town Hall " was built in 1897. Which date is correct?
A Google search wasn't very successful in finding a definition of a "Select Dance" One source seemed to indicate a musical selection was chosen before you asked a partner to dance. HMM-Logical???
What kind of dance music was popular in 1894??
William H. Burr, the author. was educated at Alfred University and Cornell. He practiced law in Rochester, then devoted his time to oil interests in Wyoming.He retired from business and at the time he wrote the book resided in Royalstown,Mass. Fortunately, Mrs. Kathryn Loughridge had a copy of of his book which gives considerable information about Lindley before Mr. Burr left for a college education . We are fortunate that a copy of his book still exists.
Unfortunately, however, much of Lindley's history for this time period has been lost . As historian, I am always excited when someone shares records and information about Lindley's history. Thanks to the blog, I am able to share some of this with the readers. I hope you find the stories interesting.
I came across a quote in a Historical pamphlet --Tradition May 1961 that I think explains a need for knowing about our past " I feel strongly that our nation cannot know where it is going unless it uses the guide -lines and guide posts of the past." Richard D.Mudd, M.D.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Dance Invitation -1894

From Wilma Welty( former Lindley Historian) files. I may have posted this previously, but it is fun to note the information and names. Does anyone know what is considered a "Select Dance " with music by a Cornet Band??
As I was writing this, I remembered reading about the Cornet Band in William Hilton Burr's -1951 Brief History of Lindley and It's Pioneer Families. Hopefully tomorrow ,I can make a copy and print his recollections of the band. It gives us a different perspective of life in Lindley in the late 1880's-to the early 1900's.
Stay tuned!!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Remember to vote

Don't forget to vote tomorrow at" OLD" Lindley-Presho Elementary School from 7:30 AM to 9 PM .

Every vote counts.

Still no word on petition to NYS Education Commissioner concerning the closing of the Lindley-Presho School.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Amasa Gordon Story

Recently I had a query about Amasa Gordon who was living in Lindley in the 1860 census. The following article gives insight into the length that historians will go to -to give" the rest of the story" as Paul Harvey would say.
My thanks to Peg for sharing the story with us. It will go in the Lindley files under Civil War Veterans. If anyone has more information to add to the story, please contact me and I will forward to Peg.
In the 1860 Lindley census,the Gorden family is living in the vicinity of what most of us know as the Don Herrick farm . On the little knoll behind the house is a lone gravestone which bears the name Betsy Welden wife of Harvey Welden -died Oct.23,1879 age 56 years-2 months.
One wonders what happened to the Welden family and especially the girl living with the Gordon family.
Sounds like more genealogical research is needed to complete Amasa's story .
The above photos were taken at the Corning Civil War Monument Ceremony on Park Avenue.-Veteran's Day 2010 .The monument will be 100 years old next year(2011). Each year a candlelite ceremony conducted by the Corning American Legion Post honors area veterans . The luminaries shown are labeled with veteran's names.

Finding Amasa
By Peg Ross, Town of Greene Historian
Recently I wrote about a six-year-old boy, Amasa Gordon, who was placed as a servant in the household of Gaylord Cummins in the Town of Smithville. He was to be there until he was twenty-one years old and be honest and behave kindly to the Cummins family and on their part, Amasa was to be fed, clothed, taught the art of "aggraculture" and to read, write and do arithmetic. This happened in 1820 when the towns in this area were just beginning to be developed. The story generated some interest on what happened to this boy. Did he grow up? One of our daughters who read the story took it upon herself to see if she could find him in later years. Then I entered the search. Finding people is an interesting process with many stumbling blocks as anyone knows who has tried to find ancestors. This is an attempt to put a human face on Amasa Gordon – an attempt that is superficial in that most of the findings aren’t backed by conclusive facts but make good sense. Keep in mind that spelling was not consistent in the 1800s and also that in Census records dates are very often incorrect, off by a few years. The records depended on how well the enumerators wrote the data down and how truthful people were.
I made an error in the spelling of one of the Justices of the Peace that signed the legal indenture document. I read his name as Elisha Ladd but his surname was Sadd. The L and S were written similarly and this is the kind of error that shows up on the Census records also. Elisha Sadd was one of the first settlers in Genegantslet and was an active participant in the local government being a Justice and also Town Clerk from 1810-1815.
Amasa L. Gardon shows up in the 1850 U.S. Federal Census. He is 38 years old, estimated birth to be 1812. He is a farmer living in Caton, Steuben County, New York with a wife, Margaret, 42 years old.
In 1860, Masa L. Gordon is 47, est. birth 1813. He is a day laborer and can neither read nor write (Oh Oh. That part of the bargain with the master wasn’t fulfilled). He now lives in Lindley, Steuben County, New York with his wife Margarett and Julia A. Welden, 6 years old. There is a neighboring family named Welden who have many children and another Welden family with many children on the same Census sheet. It seems likely that Amasa and Margaret took in one of the Welden children to care for her.
At this point I decided to call the Town of Lindley Historian, Catherine Pierce, to see what I could find out. The minute I mentioned Smithville, she said, "We had families who moved here very early from Smithville". She mentioned the names Cram and Gridley specifically. Also the Mersereaus who settled the Guilford area. Perhaps Amasa’s wife was related to one of these families. But I felt I was on the right track knowing that Smithville prompted a quick response from the historian.
I then looked at the website of Lindley and discovered that Amasa L. Gordon was listed as a Civil War veteran from there. He enlisted on 12 Oct 1861 in Corning in the 86th NY Infantry, Co. F. He seemed rather old and I thought perhaps it was a son even though there was not one listed in the Census. I found his age on one of the rosters and he was listed as 42. Then I looked up the names of every Civil War soldier in the Union Army. There was only one Amasa L. Gordon listed in the whole United States. Amasa was not an uncommon name but Amasa L. Gordon seemed to be. He was discharged for a disability in May, 1862. Historian Pierce mentioned that was the end of a typhoid outbreak.
Because next year begins the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, a few words about Amasa’s 86th NY Infantry Regiment is in order. You’ll hear much more about our own 114th Regiment in the near future. The 86th, known as the Steuben Rangers, passed the first winter doing guard duty at or near Washington and was not ordered to the front until Aug. 1862 when it lost 118, killed, wounded and missing at the second Bull Run. It bore a prominent part in the battle of Chancellorsville, was engaged at Brandy Station, and in the thick of the fight at Gettysburg. It won renown as a fighting unit. It was commonly named "the fighting regiment of the Southern Tier." Out of a total of 1,318, the regiment lost 98 killed in action, 73 died from wounds and 153 from other causes – a 25% staggering loss of the regiment.
In 1870, Amzi Gordon, age 56, est. birth 1814, is living in Corning, Steuben County, NY. He is a laborer and cannot write. His wife, Margaret, is 58.
In 1880, L. Amaser Gorton (I’m amazed I found him!), age 64, est. birth 1816, is still living in Corning, Steuben County, NY, with wife Margaret, age 67. Amasa has become younger. There is no job listed except Margaret is a housekeeper as she has been in all the censuses. There is again a neighboring Welden family.
The last entry is pure guesswork and take it as such. As there is no 1890 U.S. Census – it burned – other records have to be searched. I found the following from the Wellsboro Agitator, a newspaper printed in Wellsboro, PA, which is less than 50 miles from Corning on December 2, 1890. "Last Thursday Amasa Gordon, Charles Rightmire and the latter’s son went out hunting rabbits on the hills along Bear Creek near Tioga. A Tioga correspondent says that Gordon was standing on a log with his gun cocked watching for game. When he got down from the log, the gun was discharged, the load tearing through the muscles of his left arm fracturing the bones and severing the arteries." The article goes on in great length about all the procedures. It took a long time to get him to a doctor because only one neighbor had a horse and he lived quite some distance away. He was taken to a doctor’s office where it was decided to amputate his arm just above the elbow. Gordon never rallied from the shock of the injury and died later the same day. He left a young wife totally unprovided for (?). Amasa would have been 76 years old.
Whether this was his death, I don’t know. It fits in many ways but having a young wife does not seem too plausible. But Amasa Gordon was not a common name in Tioga or Steuben Counties.
I hope you have fun searching for someone you’re interested in and as for this search of Amasa L. Gordon, I leave it up to you. Is it believable? I like to think that it is and from humble beginnings he lived a good long life.