Friday, April 24, 2015

Friend of Friends Friday: Fire and Loss of Life

Evening Star (Washington, DC)
22 October 1855

FIRE AND LOSS OF LIFE -- About one o'clock on Sunday morning, the 14th inst., a calamity took place at Falkland, the farm of Mr. John Hill Carter, in Prince William county, Va.  One of the negro houses took fire, and out of six negroes occupying the building only one escaped -- the others being burned to death.  The victims were two young men, one woman past middle age, and two children, one a boy ten or twelve years old of age, and the other a girl some two years younger.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Wedding Wednesday: Stormell-Rind

Evening Star (Washington, DC)
22 November 1906

The home of Mr. and Mrs. A. J. Boyer, 221 I street northwest, was the scene of a pretty wedding Tuesday evening, November 20, when Miss Osceola Stormell of Woodbridge, Prince William county, Va., and Mr. Robert Grierson Rind of Bowie, Md., were married by Rev. W. H. Balinger, pastor Calvary M. E. Church, South, Georgetown, assisted by Rev. Charles Lynch, pastor of the Methodist Church of Occoquan district, Prince William county, Va.  The parlors were handsomely decorated with growing plants, palms, ferns and chrysanthemums, while roses and flowers profusely adorned all the apartments.  The wedding march from "Lohengrin" was sung by the Misses Veirkarn of Alexandria and played by Mrs. A. A. Lohr of Washington.  A large company of friends and relatives of the couple was present from Virginia, Maryland and Washington.  The bride wore point d'esprit and Valenciennes lace, and a wreath of lillies of the valley.  She came in the parlor with her father, Mr. Sherwood B. Stormell of Prince William county, Va., and was attended by her sister, Miss Virginia Stormell as maid of honor.  The latter was dressed in organdy and carried pink chrysanthemums, and was preceded by Miss Marian Lohr as flower girl, bearing yellow chrysanthemums.  Mr. Edwin L. Cockrell of Washington, uncle of the bride, was best man.  The bridegroom is a well-known resident of Bowie, Md., son of Mr. Charles Grierson Rind and a young man of large acquaintance in Washington and throughout Maryland.

The bride's going-away gown was of navy blue broadcloth, with hat and gloves to match.  An informal reception followed the ceremony, supplemented by refreshments, served amind profuse expressions of good wishes for the future happiness of the couple.  A large number of presents were sent the couple, including many valuable pieces from a number of the leading business houses of Washington and Baltimore.  At 10 o'clock Mr. and Mrs. Rind left to spend their honeymoon in theh south.  Upon their return they will be at home to their friends for a few weeks at No. 221 I street northwest, after which they will reside permanently at Riverdale, Md.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Will: James Tant (1824)

Prince William County Will Book M, pg 116
28 Sep 1823; 05 Jan 1824

In the name of God Amen I JAMES TANT of the Village of Occoquan County of Prince William & State of Virginia, do make and publish this my last will and testament in manner and form following.  That is to say, First, it is my will and desire as soon after my death as practicable that all my property be sold to the highest bidder on a credit of six months.  Secondly that all my just debts and funeral expenses be paid.  Thirdly that the following distribution be made of the residue of my estate.  First, to my brother JOHN TANT I give and bequeath one full half of all my estate independently of my wearing apparel which I wish to be given to him entire.  Secondly, out of the other half, I wish Mrs. PORTERS CLARY to have the sum of ten dollars, and Mr. ENOCH WARD to have the sum of five dollars, and THOMAS L. SELECMAN to have the sum of five dollars (to be paid to his father for his use).  Thirdly, I will and desire that the residue shall be equally divided between my son JOHN TANT belonging to Mr. DENNIS JOHNSTON and my daughter LUCY TANT, belonging to Mr. PHILIP PRITCHARD.  Fourthly, I desire that Mr. MICHAEL CLEARY, Mr. JAMES RUSSELL and ADDISON H. CLARKE, act jointly as my executors to carry this my last will and testament into effect hereby revoking all former wills by me made.  In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 28th day of September in the year of our lord eighteen hundred and twenty three.


Signed sealed published and declared by the above named James Tant to be his last will and testament in the presence of

At a Court held for Prince William County January 5th 1824.  This last will and testament of JAMES TANT decd. was presented to the Court and being proved by the oaths of ZEBULON KANKEY and JOSEPH ANDERSON is admitted to record and at a court held for Prince William County February 2d 1824. ADDISON H. CLARKE one of the Executors named in the last will and testament of JAMES TANT decd. came into court and made oath to the same according to law and having taken the oath of an Executor and performed what is usual in such cases certificate is granted her for obtaining a probate thereof in due form.

Teste, PHIL. D. DAWE

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Sunday's Obituary: Jennie Martin

Evening Star (Washington, DC)
26 January 1898


Mrs. Jennie Martin, widow of George J. Martin, died suddenly a few days ago under distressing circumstances.  After Mr. Martin's sudden and shocking death, by accident, at Springfield, Mass., his widow with her three little children left that city, where they had gone only a few days before, at the request of Mr. Martin's father, to make their home, and started for her own home in Prince William county, Va.  Her brother met them at the railway station, and placing her and the little ones in the carriage, started on a three-mile drive to the home she left six years ago, a happy bride.  Mrs. Martin closed her eyes and layed her head back in the carriage.  Her brother, thinking she was fatigued by the journey, would not disturb her, but devoted his time to the horse and the children.  On arriving at the gate of their home he took the little ones out and then turned to arouse his sister.  To his horror he found her a corpse.  How long she had been dead he did not know.

Mrs. Martin was known and much esteemed in Washington and the circumstances of her husband's death caused great sympathy for her.  Her own demise coming so close upon that of her husband's is peculiarly saddening to her friends.  Her little children, a girl five years old, and two boys younger, are bereft of parental protection at a very tender age.  Mrs. Martin was buried last Thursday in the family log at her home in Virginia, and her aged parents have taken the little orphans under their care.

It is a singular coincidence that Mrs. and Mrs. Martin's deaths occurred while each was almost on the threshold of the childhood's home.  The couple resided at 915 North Capitol street in this city.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Friday's Faces from the Past: Alyce Keys Chapin and Children

This family photo is a lost heirloom discovered by a good Samaritan in an antique store in Ashland, Oregon that found its way "home" to my cousin Gentsia,  Dated 1906, it shows Alyce Keys Chapin with her children, Genevieve, Lois, and Paul.

Alyce was the daughter of Henry Armistead and Sarah Frances (Lynn) Keys of Prince William County.  She married Paul Chapin, son of Gurden and Julia Paul Chapin, on 7 October 1896 in Washington, DC.

(Thank you, Gentsia, for sharing!)

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Thriller Thursday: The Late Difficulty in Nokesville

Alexandria Gazette (VA)
25 January 1870

To the editor of the Alexandria Gazette:

Dear Sir: I notice in the Prince William Advocate an extract taken from your paper, in which it is alleged upon the authority of persons living in the neighborhood of Nokesville, "that the late difficulty between Mr. Bunn Grigsby and the Messrs. Marsteller has been settled.  The former was compelled to sign a paper and to submit to a severe castigation, but the later afterwards gave up the paper and expressed regrets for acting so hastily."

We respectfully request that we may be permitted through the medium of your paper to say that no such settlement as above stated, nor has any settlement whatever of the said difficulty been effected.

Very respectfully, L. A. MARSTELLER & Bro.
Nokesville, Pr. Wm. co., Jan 24.

Alexandria Gazette
24 February 1870

THE LATE DIFFICULTY AT NOKESVILLE -- Mr. Marsteller, who was shot at Nokesville on Monday evening last, is reported to be recovering.  The attack upon him was not unexpected, as he had written to a young gentleman in this city, telling him that the difficulty between himself and Mr. Grigsby had not be settled, and asking him if convenient to pay him a visit, and stay with him until the Messrs. Grigsby and their friend, who had been to Morrisville, in Fauquier county, after his brother, but were unable to see him on account of his sickness, left the neighborhood.  These three gentlemen took the night train at Manassas and returned to Lynchburg on the evening the shooting took place.

Evening Star (Washington, DC)
24 February 1870

It was thought last night at Nokesville that Mr. Marsteller, who was shot there on Monday last by Mr. Clay Grigsby, as heretofore stated in the Gazette, might probably recover, though the ball was still embedded among the muscles at the base of  his skull.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Wednesday's Child: Estelle Taylor


August 30, 1922
January 1, 1927

(Woodbine Church Cemetery, Independent Hill, VA)