FROM YOUR PRESIDENT
The old year is fast coming to a close and I want to thank all our
members and wish you a very happy holiday season. As we look forward
to the new year and all the promise it holds, I hope each member
will think about what they will do to make your Historical Society
better in the coming year.
We will be finishing our Back In Time garden at the Old School
House, open our exhibit at the Pump House Museum as well as holding
our Tuesday Talks at the OSH. This year we will begin a new project,
the Michigan Hometown Stories of Saugatuck and Douglas, a one hour
documentary being produced by the WGVU public television network.
Your Society has been picked to be the first historical society to
help research the content for this documentary. We will be giving
you additional information in the future. This project is the first
of its kind in Michigan. It is planned that a number of South
Western Michigan towns will be done in the future, but we are the
first. This documentary is planned on being presented in time for
WGVU's 40th anniversary. Again, wishing you all a safe and joyful
BOARD NOMINATIONS TIME
It is time to consider Board nominations for 2012. The Nominating
Committee has begun meeting to form next year's slate for the
Society board which will include names for Vice President and
Secretary as well a several members at large.
If you are interested in serving on the SDHS board or have
suggestions for good additions, please contact Jon Helmrich at
857-3574 or firstname.lastname@example.org
with your ideas or questions. The slate for 2012 will be finalized
Welcome from Jack Sheridan leader of the Society Family History
Group. The Group meets on the first and third Thursday of every
month at 3:30 in the Old School House. Our next meeting is
Thursday December 15th. Please join us to see what we are all
about and discover what you are all about. This short column
appears in the Newsletter each month.
Presently, Group focus is on building family trees by learning and
utilizing web based digital research techniques. In our current
meetings we are learning new ways to search United States censuses
- 1790 to 1930. And hold on! The 1940 census is coming out early
next year. These records are a treasure trove of information and
are computer searchable in many new and different ways.
Each month in this column a member will tell about an exciting,
family history discovery. This month’s
EUREKA! moment is contributed by Chris Yoder:
Chris writes: "My great grandfather William Dillon lost his mother
in 1855 when he was 13 years old. The children were farmed out
after their mother's death. Our family history in that line was
stone - walled at William and his wife Mary who lived in Kosciusko
EUREKA!! Recently, thanks to
an Indiana Find-A-Grave volunteer researcher working
on the cemetery in Milford, Indiana, I discovered that Mary's
maiden name was "Arnold”. The researcher had found this in the
death certificate for one of the Dillon daughters, and added it to
the Find-A-Grave record. Certainly, this clue will
help me make the next step to find and identify the parents of
both William Dillon and Mary Arnold.
Chris, who is responsible for our local SDHS input to
Find-A-Grave explains: The SDHS has partnered to use the
tools on the
Find-A-Grave web site to document over
3,600 individuals buried at Riverside Cemetery, over 1,900 at
Douglas, 1,500 at Taylor and hundreds more at other area
cemeteries. Documentation includes, when available, a tombstone
photo, a personal photo and an obituary
Across the nation, and around the world, Find-A-Grave
has records for over 72 million cemetery plots and these records –
available free of charge on line - might help you with your family
Local cemeteries can be reached through our
SDHS On Line Research Center.
If you have family members buried locally and have photos or
biographies to share and add, if desired, to Find-A-Grave,
contact Chris Yoder at:
email@example.com or 269 857-4327.
Contributed by Jack Sheridan. Contact me at:
or 269 857-7144.
The Saugatuck High School Staff is looking to
start a mentoring program for students beginning their Junior year
in which they are partnered with a local, community mentor that
works or used to work in an industry or a career pathway that the
student may be interested in.
The mentoring relationship would be
(1) structured (meaning the mentor would not necessarily need to
develop or think of things to do with the student or students that
they work with)
(2) focused on ACT Prep and the exploration of careers and
post-secondary programs of study
(3) flexible in terms of time commitment (some of the mentoring
would occur online).
In general, we are looking for
individuals/companies who would be willing and able to do the
- Work as a mentor for a small group of students (~3)
- The time commitment for this would be approximately an hour
every other week. Ideally we would love this relationship to
continue through the students' senior year.
- Come in during a lunch period to talk to Juniors about what they
do and the industry they work in.
- Ideally, this individual/company would also be willing to do the
next item in the list.
- Serve as a business/organization site for a small group of
Juniors to visit and learn more about (The visit would last
approximately an hour and a half to two hours). Ideally, this
would dovetail with the companies that talk to Juniors about their
business during a lunch hour.
We are looking for a wide array of different
careers, businesses, and career pathways including health and
human services, small businesses, not-for-profits, larger
If you should know of someone or a company or
business who may be interested in participating in this
opportunity, please feel free to pass along this email to them or
their contact information to me at
If you should have any questions or concerns,
please do not hesitate to let me know.
Thanks for your time, Jason Pasatta, Ottawa Area
Intermediate School District
ONE FINAL PEARL HARBOR MEMORY
O'Leary- "I was originally from Flint, Michigan, and that morning
we had gone to church and come home and grabbed sandwiches for
lunch. My grandmother had a cousin who lived in Detroit and would
come over to visit on weekends.
That day after
lunch my mother, my sister, my grandmother and I all loaded up the
car and started off to take the cousin back to Detroit. My mother
was driving -- my sister and I were both teenagers and weren't
We had the car radio on, and were
probably about as far as Pontiac, when the news came across the
radio. The news was hard to grasp - it was a big shock. The
Japanese were in Washington, DC then talking about NOT going to
war and we knew about it. Everyone's reaction was to ask 'what can
we do', you know?' There was a gas station about a block from our
house and right away they were taking old tires down there and
piling them up and anything that was metal, they were taking to
the stations. It effected people very early."
HERE for a recap of all the Pearl Harbor memories which
have been collected.
contributed by Chris Yoder
A DOZEN DAFFODILS FOR THE DEARLY DEPARTED ("D4") 2011
Nathan and Doreen Tubergen and Joy Muhlenbeck
For a second year, a hardy crew braved windy
weather to plant 36 dozen daffodils at graves in Riverside,
Douglas and Taylor cemeteries. Plots were selected, in the most
part, to address folks with no descendants or no local ones
remaining. Thanks to HUNTREE for providing a 12 dozen of the bulbs
used. Volunteers included Joy Muhlenbeck, Doreen and Nathan
Tubergen, Charlie Hancock and Chris Yoder. Some of those
1. Rev Ezra Scovel (1794-1874) -Graduate of Middlebury
College, VT. Pastored in Mexico, NY and elsewhere. "Mr. S. was not
a man of the most exact habits. His penmanship was a scrawl ; his
horse was seldom harnessed aright; his fences tumbled down; and
his garden grew over with weeds; he was always forgetting
something; when "father Robinson," a paragon of precision, his
successor, went into the barn, he looked around and inquired where
brother Scovel hung his harness, and was told that he never hung
it anywhere ; he kept it on the floor." It is also written that
"He was a kind pastor, and a clear, concise, sententious preacher.
In the communion service, it was conceded that his equal was
seldom found." Survived by a daughter in New York.
2. Mary (1826-1892) and Anna (1861-1881) Dana-
Mary came to Michigan in 1865 with her husband David Dana, a
brother of Charles A. Dana, then acting Secretary of War in
Washington. She was widowed. In the death notice for daughter Anna
who died at 20 of consumption (TB), the Commercial Record writes
of Charles Dana, then of the New York Sun newspaper " Upon
application at her death, he sent her the magnificent sum of $10.
You may expect to hear at any time now that the subscription price
of the Sun has been advanced". Both rest in Potters field in
HERE to see the rest of those honored.
contributed by Chris Yoder
CANADIAN GENEALOGIST TRACES SAUGATUCK FAMILY
David Falconer of Nepean, Ontario with the
Falconer Family Plot at Riverside
In 1873 two brothers, Daniel and Thomas Falconer, settled in
Saugatuck Township, along with their wives, their younger children,
and their widowed mother, Ann (McGlashan) Falconer. These Falconer
families and their kin made their homes in the Saugatuck area in the
1870s through the 1920 and they included the only Congressman buried
in Riverside Cemetery, Jacob Alexander Falconer (1869-1928) who
represented the state of Washington.
In Sept 2011David Falconer of Nepean, Ontario visited Saugatuck to
track down and document his family history, and to share information
and photos on these folks. He was greatly helped by the materials
available on-line at the SDHS and by Aaron Sheridan, the sexton for
He writes of our SDHS materials: "Thank you VERY much for the
documents and for all the information you gave us. It has enriched
our genealogy expedition immeasurably, and given us a lot of new
insight into my Falconer ancestors who settled in Saugatuck. It’s
fantastic how the obituaries, photos and other documents are linked
together."- Best regards, David Falconer
After his return home he updated his work "Falconers in Allegan
County, Michigan", and has graciously provided us a
copy which now resides on the SDHS web site.
Ann (McGlashan) Falconer (1799-1879)
contributed by Chris Yoder