Compact Comfort

Another anonymous “House” photo from the Kahoe glass plate negative collection.

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Keeping Warm

This photo from the Kahoe glass plate negative collection shows the Carr’s Nursery steam boiler.\

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Quite a Soap Opera

Xenia Daily Gazette – January 17, 1917


For nearly tow years, according to his statement in his petition for divorce, John H. Hyde, wealthy farmer of near Yellow Springs, sheltered in his home, under the guise of a “boarder,” a man whom he says he knew was his wife’s paramour.

In his petition, filed Tuesday afternoon by Attorney Harry D. Smith, Hyde names John W. Davis as the “boarder.” He alleges that Davis and his wife, Orpha Hyde, so intimidated him by threats that he feared for his life, and permitted their alleged relationship to continue under his own roof, from December 1914 to Octobr 1916.

The petition sets forth the Hydes were married in Springfield, May 10, 1908.

In December 1914, Hyde says, his wife persuaded him to permit John W. Davis to come into their home on a farm near Yellow Springs, as a boarder. Shortly after the arrival of Davis, he asserts, he learned that Davis while in his house as a roomer and boarder, was there for the purpose of continuing illicit relations with the plaintiff’s wife, “with the consent and connivance of the defendant.”

When he discovered the alleged illicit relationship, Hyde says, he confronted his wife with the facts, which she admitted, and asserted furthermore, that she intended to continue it, for the purpose of obtaining money which the plaintiff could not afford to give her, and threatened to kill him if he interfered with her or Davis. The defendant continued the unlawful relations with Davis, the petition asserts since December 1914, and “during all of the said time, by means of threats and assaults on plaintiff, has so intimidated plaintiff as to prevent him taking any action against defendant of said Davis.”

In February 1915, the petition recites, and “on many other occasions, the defendant assaulted plaintiff, and called him vile names, and threatened to kill him.”

It is alleged that in May 1915, the defendant and Davis went to Springfield together, and stayed there three days. That for many months during the year 1915, Davis and Mrs. Hyde made weekly Saturday trips to Springfield, and on many occasions stayed there all night together, and in May 1915 frequented a certain house in that city together.

In December 1914 early in January 1915, plaintiff alleges, his wife engaged in an altercation on the street in Springfield, with a former female associate of Davis, which was aired in police court.

The “open notorious and illicit relations of defendant and Davis have caused a large amount of comment and complaint in the neighborhood of the plaintiff’s home, and have been a constant source of annoyance and shame to the plaintiff,” the petition recites.

Continuing her alleged persecution of the plaintiff, he declares that his wife in the summer of 1916, refused to live longer at the plain tiff’s farm, her said conduct having cut her off from all decent and respectable association, and she demanded that that plaintiff buy a home at Akron, but, strange to say, e refused her demand. Whereupon, he says, the defendant herself went to Akron, procured a house upon a contract of purchase and in October 1916, moved from plaintiff’s home to Akron, taking with her the said “boarder,” who is now “boarding” with her at Akron.

Hyde’s plaint continues. He says that since their removal to Akron, the defendant and Davis, by means of threats have compelled the plaintiff to sign certain notes to Davis at different times, and that they are now threatening Hyde with suits on the notes unless he complies with their demands as to the purchase of the Akron property.

Ever since December 1914, the plaintiff declares that he has been kept in fear of his life, by reason of the actions and threats and malicious conduct defendant and Davis.

He makes a specific charge against his wife of adultery with John W. Davis, near Yellow Springs, from December 1914 to October 1916, and at Akron from October 1916 to the date of filing his petition. He asks that he be given a divorce and his wife barred from dower in this real estate.

Hyde was formerly very wealthy, but is said to ave lost much of his wealth, About 500 acres of farm land and about a dozen pieces of property in Yellow Springs are still in his name. His first wife secured a decree of divorce and large alimony from him several years ago. Last fall Hyde held a sale of personal property on his farm and is living in Yellow Springs.

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Semi-Hidden House

Another anonymous house photo from the Kahoe glass plate negative collection is half concealed by the magnificent trees (maple?), so the upper story can only be guessed at. What is visible of the lower story certainly has distinctive window features.

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J. Peery Miller Memoirs — Part 40

More about teaching in local schools…

Township school on Hyde Road, later converted to residence

A few of the advanced young ladies might be persuaded to study Latin, but very seldom could a boy be thus persuaded. The latter did not take kindly to the study of the languages, not even English, their native tongue. They were satisfied with their ability to talk, they could understand and express ideas fairly well, and why waste time studying the rules and regulations of grammar?

The state of Ohio dd not provide for high school instruction at public expense; until late in the 70’s of the last century. Hence all work of this grade was gratuitous on the part of the country school teacher. The teacher who was prepared and willing to teach high school branches was at a premium, and if he possessed the numerous other qualifications, he had no trouble in securing a position.

I herein insert a statement relative to my teaching service in Miami Township, Greene county, O., which the committee in charge of the one-hundredth anniversary of the founding of the public schools of the township requested me to submit. By it the reader will notice mention of my transfer to Antioch College at the opening of the school year of 1882.

My work at the College as a member of its faculty for thirty-three year is well known to my children, so a detailed account of it need not be written. The Antioch College catalogues and bulletins covering that period (1882-1915) mention all that is necessary in regard to the work assigned and its classification.

This renewed association with Antioch gave me an opportunity to work and study toward the completion of my college course, which had been so abruptly cut short—first, by my own careless disregard of the importance of continued attendance; secondly, because of business misfortune. The A. B. degree was earned though not formally confirmed because I did not insist. Early a full professorship was granted me by vote of the board of trustees. Later (1902) I received the degree of A.E. From the same source on the basis of scholarship and professional success. This recognition of my services was highly gratifying to me as well as to my friends.


To the Committee in Charge of the
Miami Tp., Greene County Schools Reunion


It is certainly a pleasure to r ecall my experience as teacher during the 70’s and 80’s of the last century—now over fifty years ago. Like many other students of Antioch College, I took advantage of the Hyde school district as the most convenient and otherwise desirable school in which to get my start. Experience must be acquired by all pedagogues aspiring to a professional career, and some body must tolerate the beginner and suffer the consequences. The Hyde district, charitably disposed, willingly lent a hand. The salaries paid were not large—in fact, they were astonishingyl small when compared with modern pay for like service, but the pittance was cheerfully received and many an Antioch student replenish his depleted funds, met his college expenses and graduated because of the aid received by teaching in the Miami township public schools.

The “Boarding around” custom on the part of the teacher as a part of his compensation, prevalent during the first half of the 19th century, was abolished and monthly cash salaries were paid. These ranged from $20 to $40 per month during and for a short time after the Civil war period. In some districts a higher price might be paid to secure a man whose physical development insured ability to govern the unruly scholars. In many places this qualification on the part of the teacher was at a premium.

Occasionally a local school-director would take the stand the all work would be placed on a common basis. A teacher as an employee, like a farm hand, deserved no greater compensation for his labor than that paid for farm labor, especially since he worked fewer hours per day. I was told flatly by one school committee that their district had never paid a teacher more than $1.50 per day (27.80 per week), and, what was worse, it would never pay more.

I taught the Hyde school several terms in the 70’s—a school famous for having among its early teachers Hon. Isaac Sherwood, distinguished as a General in the Civil war and as a member of the National House of Representatives since the War; Dr. William A. Bell, editor of the Indiana State School Journal, Superintendent of the Indianapolis city schools and later—1899-1902–President of Antioch College; Dr. Amos R. Wells, Editor of the Christian Endeavor World, Boston, Mass.; Mrs. Charlotte Pursselll Moor (Lottie Purssell), an enthusiastic Christian missionary to India, losing her life in this service at Tika, Assam, May 3, 1908; Marion Lawrence, the great Sunday school teacher and organizer. As General Secretary of the International Sunday School Association Mr. Lawrence is known all over the world.

In this same decade (the 70’s) I was employed five years in succession as teacher of the Confer district of this township (Miami), following which I served the Beehive district for three years in the same capacity. It is well to remember that the country schools at this period were ungraded and it was a perplexing problem for the teacher to know how to care best for the needs of forty or fifty pupils of all sizes and grades and do effective work A few of the older scholars could be interested in advanced work of high school grads, viz., higher arithmetic, algebra, physics and beginning Latin. This range added interest to the teacher but consumed time which required extra recitations out of school hours. Generally older boys refused flatly to study English grammar. They “ couldn’t see no use in grammar no how” and they didn’t care to bother with it.

After two years’ service in the Union schools of the village of Yellow Springs I was chosen a member of the Faculty of Antioch College. My years of service at the institution lasted from 1882 until the end of the school year 1914-1915, thirty-three years in all. This time added to the eleven years of public school. Work makes forty-four years of continuous teaching in Miami township, Greene county, Ohio.

Respectfully yours,

J. Peery Miller

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A Large Gathering

This photo from the Kahoe glass plate negative collection has the note “Bailey Family Gathering.” The pandemic waves of the 2020’s make it seem dangerous.

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Happy New Year

…from the Yellow Springs Historical Society

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CCC Camp – December 1936

Projects and quarantine…

Attracting National Interest

The arboretum now being designed for the John Bryan State Park located in a 200 acres tract west of the state highway and extending south to the gorge is a place where the trees, shrubs and vines native to the State of Ohio will be planted for scientific and educational purposes.

The plants will be located in forest groups typical of the different sections of the State; such as the beech and maple forest around Cleveland; the pine and oak forests along the Pennsylvania and West Virginia border, the hickory and oak forests of north-west Ohio, the elm forests of central Ohio, the hemlock and white pine ravines, the cedar and juniper hillsides, the hawthorne slopes, etc.

All the groups will be blended in together to make a natural effect and many beautiful views up the different valleys as most of the planting will be on the high ground, leaving the valleys open.

The arboretum is one of few of its kind in the United States and already there is a national interest in the design and development.

The first planting in the arboretum will start this coming spring as soon as the weather permits us to work in the ground.

R. W. Mefferd
Landscape Architect

The John Bryan State Park
April, 1936 to December, 1936
by Vick Wise

After about a year in Co. 553, I have seen many very interesting changes for the beauty of the Park. When I was first called on the job, I could not see how I could possibly stand 6 months of the work but with the help of the foremen and by finding interests in the different projects, I hate to think of leaving before the work is finished.

My first work was on the lower shelter house which, since it is completed, I think is the best piece of work in the park.

As you gather from the above, I worked on the carpenter gang, which, at that time, was composed of Bob Bryson, LEM, John Kand, who took excellent care in seeing that all our tools were kept sharp which is about half the work, Pop Cole, who also did some fine work on the big timbers. Brooklyn Rotruck succeeded Bob Bryson in the overseeing of the crew. Bill Barringer, Joe Donovan, and Louis Quedeweit were on the carpenter gang, too. Their work was on the tables that so many people have enjoyed a picnic lunch on already. Bill said that before these tables break down, very, very many people will also enjoy the tables in the same way.

From the completion of the big timbers, most of the carpenter crew went down to the river to put a safe bridge across it. This was while we were waiting for the logs or timbers to dry and for the stone workers to get their wall to where we could put the timbers on it. S. Cole, B. Swain, Ray Sommerville, Bill Barringer, Joe Donovan, and Ray Daniels were members of the crew with B. Rotruck as leader. We worked very steady so that we could get the bridge open and safe for the public by July 4, and they had it open then too! I had gone up to the shelter house to help with the stonework. Jim Stika was leader on this project, John Krupsa, asst. leader, Walter Abner, G. Shambach, R. Amburgey, C. Blodgett, J. Hartman, M. Tandrich, A. Tudor, and E. Rothwell. All I can say about the work down there is that you take a look at it and imagine the patience and work of the fellows who spent their time on the “rock pile” to pound out the rustic type stone for the shelter house. I have heard many people say, “I didn’t think that inexperienced boys could do such fine work.”

When the stone work was brought up to where the carpenters could put on the timbers, frame, and roof, they were finished with the bridge. So they came right up to start putting the pieces of timber together for the last time.

There is a very nice floor in the shelter house laid by Louis Quedeweit, leader of the floor crew, who were Sonny Suhovecky, M. Tandrich, and Whitey Denny.

We went from there to the bridge to put stone steps on either side and after that was completed, I went back to the carpenter crew. We put the finishing touches on the inside of the shelter house and since then we have been working on the left wing (Editors note: a left-winger, Huh?) of the stone wall at the park entrance, so that makes the carpenter crew stone masons for a while. If we have good luck and good weather, we ought to be able to show it to our foreman, Mr. T. J. Bellison, finished on Christmas Day. The fellows on this project are B. Rotruck, leader, Ray Daniels, M. Tandrich, A. Tudor, Aldrich, Ray Amburgey, Palmer, Traxler (Chief), and Witt. I have learned to like my work and want to learn more about it if I can, because I might have some use for it when I go to work in some other place.

By Vick Wise

During the last week, we had in our midst a very unfortunate and unwanted disease. As we are together this way in a camp this thing comes very close to us.

Of course, no one likes the quarantine that we have over us, but looking at it from another angle, we should be very glad to ayhve had only the one case in our camp. We should do all we can to limit it to just the once case all the way through the quarantine.

This disease and most others are carried by means of dirt and particularly by carelessness. The worst and most dangerous way to pass the germs around is by actual contact, and this includes smoking a cigarette after one or two others. The picture on personal germs that we had in the recreation hall a week ago Tuesday was a very good illustration of the way, and the speed with which, disease and germs will travel.

The prevention of disease is to a large extent up to the ones who do not want to catch or pass on anything that they would not want themselves.

In trying to prevent such things, we have to take care of ourselves by getting plenty of bodily requirements. This does not mean to overdo yourself on any one thing but to see that you get a required amount of each, starting with work and play. The saying is that, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” This would make Jack just as dull if he played to much. The muscular system would be all played out. The right amount of exercise helps digestion and this helps the internal organs to work right so you will be clean on the inside. Plenty of water is the best medicine that Nature ever gave. Next is to keep yourself clean on the outside. This we should know, and most of us do, but are sometimes careless. About it. We may put off brushing our teeth, or going down to wash before meals because it is too far to walk, but I ask you, do you feel as good when you are dirty as you do after you have just washed?

Often when you feel tired, it is just because a few of the organs need awakening. Don’t you, after a game of basketball or some strenuous exercises, take a shower so you will feel alive and get your original pep once more?

By taking care of ourselves we help all of the others around us and help to get the quarantine over in only 21 days instead of helping to add more days to it. As you know, after each new case, if there are others to follow, the 21 days start all over again. But I know you will all say, “It will not start again on account of my carelessness, but only by the will of GOD. And as the closing saying is, “God helps those who help themselves.” We all now He will help too

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We Wish You…

…celebration of whatever holiday is special to y0u…

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Relaxing at the Holidays?

From the swagged greenery and paper bells hung in the archway, this photo from the Kahoe glass plate negative collection could well have been taken during the Christmas season. It is labeled “Cicero Jacobs, 313 Dayton St, retired farmer,” and certainly shows a lot of typical interior furnishings.

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