Role of Women for Independence

This editorial tells how women helped during the Revolutionary War.


Friday, July 2, 1915


They Had Glorious Share in Winning American Liberty.

ads-1915-07-02It has been said that in every woman’s breast there lies the possibility of great heroism. What she can do when put to the test is amply illustrated by the events of history, not alone in our own country, but in all others.

Anecdotes of women of the Revolution, showing what they did and what they suffered in so doing, happy in the thought that they were serving the country they loved, are positively thrilling.

One wonders how many young women of today would offer themselves to carry a message from one army to an other across a country fairly bristling with hostile troops when not a man could be found intrepid enough to take a letter from General Greene to General Sumter. Emily Geiger, a frail young girl, undertook the task and set out on horseback on a sidesaddle. She was intercepted on the second day of her journey by Lord Rawdon, who had her locked up until a Tory matron could be found to search her person. By this unusual Lord Rawdon lost his coveted information, for as soon as back was turned she ate the the letter, bit by bit. When eventually released she succeeded in reaching her destination, where she was able to give her message orally, if not in true military and documentary style in consequence Sumter soon joined Greene’s army. Emily later married a wealthy planter.

The fascinations of women have seldom been used in better advantage than upon a certain afternoon shortly after the retreat from New York, when a troop of British soldiers were detained at the house of Mrs. Murray, who gave them cake and wine and such sprightly talk that they remained two hours just long enough to allow General Putnam, the last to leave the city, to make retreat across the dangerous highroad on which the British were loitering. Think of the excitement of this little Quaker when she realized that by her subterfuge she had saved a part of the American army.

There is no doubt that we owe our present wealth and ease to the courage and resourcefulness of the early America women quite as much as to the efforts of the men. She was the mother of those great men whose intellects were the backbone of the American nation. It was her sacrifice and nobility that made it possible for them to be what they were. Their lives are her eternal panegyric their works the undying proclamation of her power.

Don’t Do As I Do

lason-henry-pI got this photo from my grandmother in the late 1960s, long before I got started in genealogy. The man on the left was related to my grandmother. I also like the photo because he looks similar to me. From what I remembered he was in the Spanish-American War in the Philippines and then stayed on to be a policeman for a while there in the Philippines.

The picture sat in an envelope in the bottom of a file drawer all these years. I thought that he was my grandmother brother, George Buell, as he would be about the right age. In the past few years, at times I would try on various websites to find if my remembrances were correct. I kept looking for George Buell but couldn’t find anyone by that name in the Spanish-American War. That made me think that maybe he didn’t serve in the military.

Just a couple of weeks ago I was searching for something else in that file drawer and on the bottom was that envelope with the picture. I finally looked at the picture for the first time in many years. More important, is that there were two letters also in the envelope. They told me that the man on the left isn’t my grandmother’s brother but it is her cousin, Henry P. Lason.

I quickly found Henry’s military record online. He enlisted April 3, 1901 at Seattle, Washington at aged 21 into Co. F. 2nd Battalion Engineers that went to the Philippines. He was discharged Nov. 13, 1903 at Manila, Philippines. One letter states that he is on his way back to the U.S. in May 1904. That means he was only on the police force for about six months.

Yesterday, when I went to scan this photo I had to pull it out of the frame that it has been in for over a hundred years. On the back of the photo are the names of the other two policeman. In the center is Martin V. Morgo and on the right is Albert Nautz. They are part of the 3rd precinct of the Manila police department.

Sadly, Henry Lason died May 15, 1905 at age 23 in Tompkins County, NY. His mother filed for a survivor pension and I have ordered that from the National Archives. Maybe that will give some more information on Henry.

The point of this story is that neither I (or you) should let all the things just sit in a file. Every once in a while go back and look at old documents, photos. etc. If you can safely take pictures out of a frame (never open daguerreotypes), see if there is any identifications on them.


Upcoming Genealogy on TV

WDYTYA-banner“Who Do You Think You Are?” will be returning for a short summer season on July 29th on the TLC channel. From press releases these celebrities will be looking for their ancestors:

  • Tom Bergeron, who is aware of his French Canadian roots on his paternal side, but wants to know what brought his ancestors to North America. He goes as far back as his 10x great grandmother to find the answer.
  • Bryan Cranston, who comes to discover an unfortunate pattern amongst the men in his family.
  • Ginnifer Goodwin, who sets out to learn about her mysterious paternal great grandparents, whom her father, regretfully, does not know much about either.
  • Alfre Woodard, who strives to find out more about the paternal side of her family, and explores how her surname came to be.
  • J.K. Rowling, who sets off to uncover her maternal French roots and discovers a surprising twist in an old family war story. (This episode has previously aired in the UK.)

The third season of the PBS series “Finding Your Roots” will be delayed. This is due to an episode on last season featuring Ben Affleck.  He asked that the fact that an ancestor had been a slave owner be omitted from the episode. The producers got in trouble when PBS concluded they violated network standards by allowing Affleck to have “improper influence” and “by failing to inform PBS of Mr. Affleck’s efforts to affect program content.” The upcoming season will be first checked by an independent genealogist before being aired. A fourth season of “Finding Your Roots” is on hold and probably new producers will be hired before being filmed.

Markers and More

greece-henpeckBack in 2001 I went around Monroe County and took photos of Historic Highway Markers. They tell the history of a building or an area in a town. I thought it was time to update the photos. In 2001 I was using a digital camera that took photos that were only a total of 300 kilobytes and that’s why those old photos are so small. Recently I had to buy a new digital camera when my last Kodak camera wouldn’t charge any more. My new Sony camera takes photos that are 20 megabytes. I am putting the photos in this new album in the pictures section of the GenWeb of Monroe County website.

I have made it about half way around the county so far having completed the towns on the west side of the county. I have been amazed how many of the Highway Markers have been painted in the last 14 years. Nobody can decide what colors the markers should be so colors have changed for many. I found a couple of markers that I wasn’t able to find in 2001. So far only one marker that I found in 2001 is now missing. There was just an empty pole. I wonder if it is out being repaired or painted or is now permanently gone.

I thought that seeing as I am touring the county that I would also take photos of churches; both old and new. I found that in the Town of Greece there about 50 churches. Other Towns have a lot less . So far, I also have added a photo of one Synagogue and one Buddhist Temple. All of those photos are on the picture pages under each Town and also under “religious.” I think I will take photos of churches in the rest of the Towns but skip churches in Rochester as there are just way too many. Besides, there are old postcard pictures posted of the older churches in Rochester.

Old News – Zeppelin Shot Down

This is the story of the first Zeppelin dirigible being shot down. The pilot was actually born in India but his family was living in Canada at the start of WWI. What the news story doesn’t mention is that Warneford died on June 17th, before this story was published. He was ferrying an airplane with American journalist, Henry Newman, as a passenger. A wing on the airplane collapsed and the journalist was killed instantly. Warneford was taken to a hospital but died soon after. He was buried in London with his ceremony attended by thousands of mourners..


Fairport, NY
Wednesday, June 23, 1915


Warneford Gets Victoria Cross For Exploit In Air.


The_Great_Aerial_Exploit_of_Lieut_WarnefordIn Great Battle In Skies Youthful British Aviator Destroys Huge German Dirigible–His Machine Turns Somersault and Falls Within Foe’s Lines, but He Escapes.

Surpassing in his exploit all the imageries of Jules Verne or H. G. Wells and providing one of the real romances of the war, Sublieutenant Reginald Alexander John Warneford, a Canadian, is the first man to destroy a Zeppelin in flight. And the feat is regarded as all the remarkable, since the aviator less than four months ago made his first voyage into the air.

For all time Warneford has become a national hero and his lone battle in the skies will take a place alongside the most brilliant tales in British military history. His V. C. was the first ever given for the conquest of one of the monster air craft which are throwing the women and children of London and the eastern coast of England into panic.

It was about half past 2 o’clock in the morning when Warneford was returning from a raid over German supply depots north of Brussels that he descried far off to the west, between Brussels and Ghent, what seemed to him to be an airship flying low over the ground.

Swift Race Upward.

Swiftly shifting his elevating planes, the young officer fed more fuel to his motors and began a rapid upward spiral. It was only a few minutes before the great Dreadnought of the skies loomed large below him, and its crew at the same time sighted him. Then began a struggle for positions.

It was a battle of a David and a Goliath, or, to make a more apt simile, a wasp and an eagle, with victory for the little, buzzing, quick darting destroyer of the air.

As the dirigible’s stern was lowered she shot as though from a giant catapult almost perpendicularly into the air. Her engines, aided by her buoyancy, made her ascent much more rapid than that of the tiny aeroplane, but Sublieutenant Warneford had the advantage of time, and at the end of twenty minutes he had maneuvered to a point almost directly above the Zeppelin and to a height of more than 6,000 feet.

While still climbing to a good tactical position the young aviator saw the puff-puff of the machine gun mounted atop the dirigible, and above the droning of his motor he heard the whir of the bullets singing past his ears. Then glancing earthward at the vast bulk of his antagonist directly below him, he released the trigger holding a bomb. It tore through the Zeppelin’s envelope. Only a wisp of smoke followed.

Won With Last Bomb.

The aviator released bomb after bomb. Only minor explosions resulted. But with the last missile in his rack he reached his target.

When this bomb was dropped Sublieutenant Warneford was only a few hundred feet above the dirigible. A terrific explosion followed and a burst of flame spread instantly from bow to stern of the Zeppelin.

Caught in the whirlpool of air currents caused by the explosion, the aeroplane turned completely over and started a dash to earth. Hanging head downward, with his flaming victim crashing earthward below him, the aviator fought for control of his machine. After a drop of 2,000 feet he succeeded in swinging the machine into a loop and then to an even keel. But he had to descend, and he landed in an open field within the German lines.

After a moment’s pause to obtain his bearings and before a German detachment half a mile off could train their rifles on him. Warneford had recovered his breath. Hr set his propeller in motion again and was winging his way swiftly to the British headquarters.

Fall a Tangled Mass.

The Zeppelin fell a tangle mass of ruins across an orphanage near Ghent, its frame blackened and twisted, its crew of twenty-eight men dead beneath it, together with two nuns, two children and a man dead wher they were crushed in the orphanage, the Grand Beguinage de St. Elisabeth, one of the best known convents in Belgium. The burning mass set fire to the buildings which were inhabited not only by nuns but by a large number of Belgium women and children refugees. Terrible scenes followed. The man who was killed lost his life attempting to rescue his child, who also was killed.

It is beloved in London that the Zeppelin was returning from the east coast of England, where it had killed five and wounded forty persons.

Sublieutenant Warneford learned to fly last winter at the royal naval air station at Hendon, near London, under Commander John Cyril Porte, formerly of the Wanamaker transatlantic expedition. He took his certificate from the Royal Aero club as a pilot on Feb 15 last.

Old News – Boy’s Band

The State Industrial School referred in this article dates back to 1846 when it was created as the Western House of Refuge (in Rochester) to house juvenile criminals. Then in 1850 it was decided to also send juveniles to W. H. of R. for crimes as minor as vagrancy. By 1855 there was a capacity for 400 boys. In 1886 the name was changed to State Industrial School. In 1902 1,000 acres of land were bought in the Town of Rush and by 1907 the move was complete. Sometime in the 1970s or 80s a high fence with razor wire on top was added. It is now a limited security facility for around 40 boys.


Honeoye Falls, NY
Thursday, June 17, 1915

Boy’s Band From Industry Gives Concert

ad-1915-06-17The State Industrial School Band numbering about 20 pieces spent Saturday afternoon last in Honeoye Falls as the guests of Pierce Ritzenthaler. The boys came over in a carryall and were accompanied by their leader Fred L. Remington, Ray Yeomans and Mr. Ritzenthaler. During their stay the boys entertained the residents of Monroe street with a fine program and later favored several others with one or two selections, including Lillibridge Bros., S. Wilkinson and the publishers of the Times. Mr. Remington, the capable director of the band (who by the way is a schoolboy friend of the writer) has been director of music at the State institution for 25 years or more. His present organization has been under training only six months and it is remarkable how well they do for so short a time. They are all bright young fellows, and surely conducted themselves in a gentlemanly way while here. In the evening they rendered a few selections before the regular band concert and it is to be regretted they were not able to remain for the program to follow.

Top Songs of 1965 – #14

“I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)” by The Four Tops was the next song to go to the top of the record charts in 1965. The group (Levi Stubbs, Abdul “Duke” Fakir, Renaldo “Obie” Benson and Lawrence Payton) had been together since High School but originally had served as a back-up group. In 1964 they released “Baby I Need Your Loving” which had only made it to #11 on the Billboard chart. The group was able to stay together until 1997 when Payton died. Then in 2000, Stubbs suffered a stroke and was replaced. Benson died in 2005. The group still preforms but only Fakir is an original member.

“I Can’t Help Myself” was written by Motown’s main production team of Holland–Dozier–Holland.

The song was the number one hit on the Cash Box record chart for the weeks of June 13 – 26. It was also on the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart for the week of June 13 – 19 and then again for the week of June 27 – July 3.

Download songs of The Four Tops (for a small fee) from

Honor for Eastman House

Museum main hallway

Museum main hallway

Today the George Eastman House was recognized by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) as a historic engineering landmark. This honor is in recognition for their  collection of photographic and cinematographic materials. They have a complete set-up from the 1850s featuring a daguerreotype camera that is signed by Louis Daguerre. There is an original Kodak camera from 1888. There are also a technicolor camera that filmed MGM classics, and a camera used on the NASA lunar orbiter. The collection contains about 16,000 items but most of the collection is housed in a huge underground warehouse below the museum. To see those items not on display, a person can make an appointment with the museum staff.

A good portion of the museum’s collection came from Eastman Kodak who not only kept cameras and other photographic materials that they manufactured but also competitor’s items. The collection at the museum gets a about 150 new items per year.

For more information see these links:

Top Songs of 1965 – #13

Supremes_Back_in_my_arms_againThe Supremes are back again on the top of the record charts in 1965 with”Back in My Arms Again.” This is their fifth song in a row to be a number one hit. They performed the song on the TV show Hulabaloo! on May 11th.

Back in My Arms Again”was written and produced by the Motown team Holland-Dozier-Holland. Backing instruments were by the Funk Brothers, as were most of Motown’s recordings of that time.

the song was the number song on the Cash Box record chart for the week of May 30 – June 5. It was the top song on the Billboard Hot 100 chart for the week of June 6 – 12.

Download songs from the Supremes (for a small fee) from

Kodak History Notes – Kodachrome

kodachromeOne of the most successful products that Eastman Kodak ever sold was their Kodachrome film. It was first produced in 1935 as movie film but the next year it began being sold as 35mm slide film. For many years it was used for professional color photography, especially for images intended for publication in print. In fact, professional photographs liked this film for its brilliant colors. Originally the film was sold with a process=paid mailer. Then in 1954 a lawsuit put an end to precess-paid mailers in the US. It is said that Kodachrome slides will last for 185 years if stored in darkness. Digital photography put an end to Kodachrome in 2009 after 74 years. The last roll of Kodachrome off the manufacturing line was used by National Geographic photographer Steve McCurry and copies of his photos from that roll are housed at the George Eastman House (museum).

Below is Paul Simon’s song Kodachrome from 1973.