Tuesday, November 29, 2011

...And the Winner Is

I thought I might as well carry this series through since I'm having a mid-life crisis and actually voted (for free) for the group that won this years Sing-Off. Pentatonix amazed me from the get go and I felt they deserved to win. I hope they make good on it. Now I will have two hours of my life back again every Monday night.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Cat Has My Tongue

I'm not sure if it is my dread of the holiday season due to the huge crowds everywhere or my being very busy at work or this being the season of lots of family obligations, but I am behind on my blog post writing and I have nothing in the reserves. Maybe I'm just burnt out.

Whatever the case, my blog posts might be light for awhile until I get my blogging spark back.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Miscellaneous Ramblings

The last polls that I read say that only 43% of Americans agree with the Occupy Wall Street movement and yet they claim to be the 99%. Shouldn't they change their name to the 43%?

I heard a lady of 27 being interviewed in New York. She was up to eyeballs in debt for a degree in History and couldn't find a job. Go figure.

Although I consider myself a political Constitutionalist/Independent, the last election cycle I changed my voter registration from Independent to Republican so I could take part in the first in the nation caucus. With this crop of candidates so far, I'm thinking about switching back just so I don't feel obligated to participate this time around.

I heard a political ad on my way to work yesterday morning telling me that I should vote for someone who is a political outsider if I really wanted to fix Washington. I couldn't think of who that might be until the fast voice at the end told me it was paid for by Rick Perry. Really? He is a governor of a state, a large one at that, and that makes him a political outsider? A large portion of our presidents have been governors. Besides, our current president was about as much as a political outsider as Perry is and look where he has gotten us. But at the end of the day, Perry could probably be the best candidate who meets my every desire in a President and I'm not sure I could vote for him. The last governor from the state of Texas left my hide feeling more than a little chapped and I'm not sure I want to take a chance on another one anytime soon.

People are already camped out at Walmarts and other big boxed stores to be first in line on Thursday. Why? I just can't imagine it being worth it to camp outside for two or three days to rush into the store and be the first person to buy some cheap crap made in China all to save what.... a few bucks? My Christmas shopping is all done because I did it early and did it online so that I could try and find the gems among so much Chinese junk being sold as consumer goods these days. I'm sure I paid more than those people sitting in the rain right now will pay on Thursday for the three doorbusters that they actually have in stock but at least I will have time to spend with my family on Thanksgiving.quality.

The Supper Committee failed? Did anyone think they would succeed? I sure didn't. I'm actually glad because their will be mandatory cuts now regardless of political affiliation. The only problem is that there are already attempts to undo the legislation mandating these cuts. I hope that fails as big as the Super Committee did.

I'm smoking a turkey tonight for the feast tomorrow. For some reason smoked turkey, or any meat for that matter, tastes much better the second day than the first. I'm also smoking a whole pork loin and a chicken or two while I am going through the effort in the dark of tonight. I look forward to cold smoked meat sandwiches for the next few months. Lunch just doesn't get any better than that. Fortunately my wife will be home and I'm spending it down on the farm with my parents. I'm thankful for that.

I hope everyone out there has a great day tomorrow and spends it with families where they should and not sitting on pavement waiting to be the first in line to buy crap sent to you by those Chinese who care so much about you.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Blown Away Yet Again...

I know they are good before I turn into the program. I know I am going to be blown away whenever I hear Pentatonix perform. I get goosebumps when I hear the name of the song they will perform and it is one familiar to me. So one would expect that I am prepared every Monday night. But dang, they blew me away again and with a song of which I have never heard. It was a performance to end on and now the voting is underway. I honestly am about as excited to see who wins next Monday night as I was waiting for Christmas as an eight year old. No matter who wins, this has been a season that I frankly can't believe will ever be topped.

And in a first for me, I actually logged into the website and voted.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Your Help Is Needed

I've stared and stared at this marriage license and I finally decided I need help. There are a couple parts that I would like you, my reader to take a look at and tell me what you see. The first part is what it says on the second line down in the upper right hand corner before the words '18 years of age'. I'm also at a loss for what the first word on the third line in the same area says. The final area is the name of the 'Minister of Gospel' on the fourth line up from the bottom and again on the bottom line.

My translation of this document is as follows:

John Kuck                                                               Issued June 1            A.D. 1860
    and                                                                      (???????????) is 18 year of aged
Mary Mayer                                                             (?????) he is 23 years of age

                                                                Jo Daviess County, Illinois, June first      1860
I, Christian Nery, Minister of the Gospel hearby certify that on
this day I joined in Marriage Mr. John Kuck
with Wife Mary Mayer agreeably to the authority given in the above License.
                                                                             Rev. Christian Neary

The reason I ask is that in my hunt for whom my 3rd great grandmother Mary Meyer was and where she came from, I gave her marriage license a second look. When she was married to John Kuck in 1860, he was 23 years old and she was also 23 years old, if the date on her gravestone is to be believed. John was one month and two days older than Mary. If Mary was actually five years younger, that might explain why I am having a hard time tracking her early life down.

Another clue I found recently was her obituary that listed her as being a member of the German M.E. church for 25 years which means that she was most likely in the country by 1954. But that got me thinking about the Reverend listed on her marriage license whom I've only glanced at previously. I'm pretty certain the first name is Christian but the last name is obscure to me. I did a search of all Christian's living in Jo Daviess county in 1860 and that was no help in tracking down this mysterious person.

All of this is my attempt to go back to some of the hard evidence that I have of my ancestors and to look at it with a fresh set of eyes. I'm trying to pay attention to details and track down clues that may not even be pertinent to my ancestor in hopes that it might get me through a couple of the brick walls, the biggest of which are the 2 nameless sets of 4th great grandparents out of my total 32 sets. Finding Mary Meyer's parents would increase my knowledge up to 31 out of 32 sets.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Another Photo Mystery

By now you've probably come to recognize the picture above which I have included in numerous posts on the Kuck side of my family tree. Written on the back of the photo in non-period ink were the words John and Mary Kuck with son George. No mention on who the fourth person in the photo is. Because of the tragic early death of Mary and five of her seven children, possible ages rule out that the older boy is my 2nd great grandfather George so I assumed he was the one in the dress sitting on father John's lap. The woman on the right looked Swiss to me though I would be hard pressed to define what that means and with the ink on the back informing me that it was my 3rd great grandmother Mayer Meyer Kuck, I accepted it as so. That is until I received the below photo from my new Kuck cousins who descended from Mary's brother-in-law Frederick Kuck. On the back of it is written, in more period looking pencil script, that this is John Kuck's first wife Mary Meyer and as you can tell, these appear to be two completely different people which leaves me with a mystery.

My inclination is to believe the picture above provided by my distant cousin because the writing was much older and the fact that my grandparents who gave me the first picture, have been confused often when referring to this side of the family. Then my cousin had an interesting theory that I hadn't thought about before. Perhaps the first picture is of my 3rd great grandfather John Kuck, his son and my 2nd great grandfather George Kuck, his wife Elizabeth Cogswell Kuck and their only son, my great grandfather Victor Kuck. A three generations of Kuck photo with George's wife thrown in to boot. Intrigued, I flipped back and forth through pictures but eventually created the montage seen below to help me do side by side comparisons with known photos of each on the right and clips from the first photo above on the left.

Starting with the assumption that the baby is my great grandfather Victor and is around two years of age, George would have to be around 29, his wife Elizabeth 23 and John aged 60. I guess I can buy the ages being about right to fit the theory. The pictures of the unknown lady whom I had been told was my 3rd great grandmother Mary Meyer looks very similar to my 2nd great grandmother Elizabeth Cogswell Kuck. However, the deep set eyes (or overhead lighting) of George Kuck in the known photo I have of him does't reflect the eyes of the unknown man in the first photo. The ears do match, definitely the jaw line does to and even the mouth but the eyes just look different. The eyes of the young man look more like those of George's older brother Henry Kuck seen below who would have been 34 years old at the time his first son was 2 years old. The eyes and jawline however don't look the same. I have no picture of his sons or his wife to compare.

So for now, I'm inclined to believe that the only picture of Mary that I had until recently is not of Mary. Whether it is actually of John Kuck's daughter-in-law Elizabeth Cogswell Kuck is up in the air. The good side to all this is the second picture from the top is probably Mary so I still have a picture of her and she is still a mystery to me but more about that in a later post.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Saddle Shops and Houses

You may recall the above photograph of the Kuck Harness Shop that I posted in this blog post a couple weeks ago. Although I didn't say specifically, I believed at the time and led readers on that this Harness Shop was originally that of my 3rd great grandfather John Kuck in Charles City. After reviewing some recently obtained pictures, I now think that this harness shop was actually one that was started up by John's younger brother Frederick (although some articles in old newspaper suggest John owned it too) after John trained him in the art of harness making. That is Frederick in the photo above standing in front of his store and an unknown couple standing on the balcony above.

My 3rd great grandfather John Kuck's Harness Shop can be seen in the above picture. It is the fourth building back on the right with no awning and no sign up on the top of the shop. From my research, this is the third shop he worked in. The first one in Galena, Illinois he most likely apprenticed and learned the trade. Coincidentally, a rival saddle shop in Galena was owned by Ulysses S. Grant's father and the clerk was none other than our future 18th president . John set up his own shop shortly afterwards in Lansing, Iowa which only lasted for two years before he moved to Charles City, Iowa and started his last shop.

This is a frontal view of the shop which provides lots of fascinating details. The sign above the door says J. Kuck Harness Shop while the window on the left says Leather Store and the one on the right repeats Harness Shop. I believe the smaller sign to the left of the door and below the window says Cash Paid For Hides and I'm speculating that the hide tacked to the door is probably a buffalo hide since on the back side of the photo it is written that buffalo skins hung along the wall to be chosen by customers and made into lap robes. Who ever wrote that was also confused as to the location and wrote that it is either in Charles City or just down the road in Rockford and still stands as of 1953. It most definitely is in Charles City and it still stands as of last month because below is a picture of it in its current incarnation. One more word on the picture above though before I move on is that is if you zoom in and look closely in the center window, you can see someone looking out. Perhaps it was my 2nd great grandfather George?

This is John Kuck's Harness shop as it stands today. I'm guessing buffalo robes are out of the question but a stiff martini would be a safe bet.

When my 3rd great grandfather John Kuck decided to retire from the business, Frederick bought his store in Charles City and ran it a few years before he died and his sons sold it to the highest bidder at a public auction. Frederick's sons also sold all his possessions and house since they lived elsewhere. Above is a picture of Frederick Kuck's house just a block from his brother John's house in Charles City. On the back is a paragraph written about Frederick's son Herbert who at age 12, climbed out of the window, slid down the pillars and joined 'the gang' for a 4th of July celebration until 2:00 a.m. and received a good hiding when his mother found out three weeks later.

Finally, above is a blurry picture of John's house at 802 Ferguson Street in Charles City that is still clear enough to tell that it was a nice house. Both the houses of John and his brother Frederick were nice so I must assume that the harness shops were money making ventures. Unfortunately John's house on Ferguson Street is gone and over top has been built the Port Charles Assisted Living center and Frederick's house is underneath a parking lot for a YMCA.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

In Case You Missed Last Night... WOW!

Taken from last night's Sing-Off. Try to remember that this is a capella meaning they make every sound you hear.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Minty Chocolatey Cleanliness?

I like mints and I like chocolate. Heck, I even like them together in the form of chocolate bars or ice creams but I must confess, I never thought of them in the form of hand cleanliness. For a few days one week, I detected the faintest hint of chocolate whenever I was brushing my teeth at the sink in our main bathroom. Because we were fresh from Halloween and I am brushing my teeth alongside my daughter to encourage good hygiene, I just assumed that it was coming from her mouth. Then one morning in the wee hours just after midnight, I stopped in at that bathroom for a little business after getting a drink downstairs for an exceptionally parched throat, and while washing my hands was overcome with the smell of chocolate and mint. I knew where it was coming from but couldn't really understand why. A gag from my wife? I finished washing with warm water and went back to bed. The next morning upon investigation, I found the bottle you see above. I just can't understand how anyone would think this was a good combination for hand soap.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Leaving Everything Behind

Kuck Immigrants: L-R John, Frederick and Anna
I've pondered this quite a lot simply because it is beyond what I can imagine. I find myself asking the question, what would it take to leave everything you knew behind, parents, culture, siblings and move to the far side of the world with nothing but the clothes on your back? I'm not sure I can fathom an answer.

John Kuck, my 3rd great grandfather, was the second son of Hinrich Kuck, born in 1836 in the swampy lowlands of Adolphsdorf, Germany. On an early summer day in June of 1853 at the ripe old age of sixteen, he would board the ship Arnold Boninger in Bremen and set sail for Baltimore on the far side of an ocean. The Boninger was built and named for a tobacco company in Duisburg only the year before but two years later would be in the midst of the Austro-Prussina War against Denmark. Perhaps it was the looming war which drove John to immigrate or the lack of land in an area brimming with large families or the promise of the American dream. Fortunately for me, he went, he met his wife to be and the rest is history.

Arnold Boninger
At the time of his departure for Baltimore, John Kuck left behind both parents, Hinrich aged 45 and Anna Gerken Kuck aged 40, both in the prime of their lives. Since John's Germanic name was Johann, the same as an older brother, I assume the older brother died in or shortly after child birth and the name was recycled as often was the case making John the oldest sibling. Still in Adolphsdorf were younger brothers Hinrich Jr., Dietrich, Frederick and Wilhelm along with younger sister Anna. John would never get to meet younger brother Georg who wasn't born until a couple years after his departure.

As I wrote in a previous post about John's life, he traveled westward from Baltimore making several stops, raising capital and finding a wife before settling in Charles City, Iowa and opening up a saddle and harness shop in 1864. That was the year that John most likely learned through a letter back home that his father had died at age 56. John had two children by then and by 1868 was up to four with the birth of my 2nd great grandfather George. I'm guessing the American dream must have been realized because he sent for two more of his siblings, Frederich and Anna who arrived around that time. I have yet to find their immigration papers with certainty but from other clues, I'm fairly certain they came in that year. Both went straight to Charles City, Iowa and shacked up with big brother John for a time according to the census of 1870. Both Frederich and Anna would marry in the next year, Frederich to Katherine Brandau older sister of John's future wife and Anna to Frederick Tubbesing, a name I only recently learned. Frederich would move to nearby Rockford to start his life and Anna would move up to Redwing, Minnesota to begin her life. Back home in Germany, older brother to Frederich and Anna, Dietrich and the two remaining brothers Wilhelm and George would bury their mother Anna Gerken Kuck the following year.

Anna Gerken Kuck
By the death of his mother Anna, Dietrich Kuck had been married seven years to wife Meta and had one daughter Anna with another child, Martin on the way. After Martin was one and ready to travel, they too packed up their bags and in 1874, sailed on the ship Oder for New York City. They went straight to Charles City and set up their home. I have no information as to what became of the remaining two siblings Wilhelm and George.

With most of the family now safely together on American soil living the American dream, life was good for a few years until the winter of 1878 and 1879. In that year John would lose five of his seven children and wife Mary Meyer Kuck to a diphtheria epidemic. Mary was only 42 at the time. John would remarry again to Elizabeth Brandau, younger sister to Frederich's wife Katherine Brandau and life would resume.

Dietrich Kuck, the last Kuck member to immigrate would be the first to die at age 51 in 1894. Sister Anna would die five years later in 1899 at the age of 49.  Frederich Kuck would die in 1907 at the age of 61 and with him, Kuck's Harness and Saddle shop would close its doors and open no more. John's eldest surviving son Henry Lincoln Kuck would carry on the tradition halfway across the country by joining forces and opening the Kuck & Bonny Saddle shop so I suppose John was gratified to know that though his saddle shop was closed, his saddle making legacy continued and indeed, Kuck saddles fetch a high price on the internet.

John's second wife Elizabeth would die in 1910 at the age of 53 and once again at the age of 74, John would find himself alone in this world once again. Except now instead of penniless and owning nothing more than the clothes on his back, he was a product of the American dream and a quite prominent man around town. He had two sons from his first marriage who were both successful, married and had kids of their own. My great grandfather Victor Kuck born in 1895 was fifteen years old and living in nearby Rockford must have known his grandfather quite well. John had three more children with his second wife Elizabeth Brandau Kuck and the eldest was married though childless and the other two still lived with him so he did have some company. Daughter Clara would later be quite the independent lady moving out west to Montana and then on to California. She would at one point take a ship all the way through the Panama Canal, stop over in Havana, Cuba and continue on to New York City though she would soon end up back in California. Big moves for 1931. At that point she was 48 years old and still single and I lose track of her until her death in 1966 at the age of 83 still living in California. She married a Herbert Foot sometime after the age of 48 but never had children.

Clara Elizabeth Kuck
John would die on the first day of November in 1916 at the age of 79. My great grandfather Victor, a man whom I remember well and have wrote about before, would have been 21 years old and undoubtedly attended the funeral. Had I only knew of John and been as interested in his life as I am now, I would have loved to ask questions of Victor about his grandfather. I don't have an obituary for John so I don't know what those left behind had to say because the local paper has a gap at that time in the online records that I have access too. I don't know if it was due to a fire or just a lack of a publisher but someday I hope to dig into that area a little bit more and see what I can find. His house at 802 Ferguson Street is now under the back lawn of a retirement home. I am only left with a few pictures, thankfully now more than just the one, and my question of what drove him to leave everything behind for a chance at a new life.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Crab Rangoon Pizza: My Way

Being inspired after eating at Fong's Pizza that I mentioned in an earlier post, I decided to try making my own version of Crab Rangoon pizza at home. My first attempt was almost right on the money so I decided to post the recipe for all to enjoy.

I make my own dough because it is really easy to do and it tastes so much better than any premade refridgerated  or just add water versions.

Add a package of yeast and a tsp of sugar to some warm water and let it sit for about ten minutes until there is a lot of foam on top. Add it (and additional water to get a total of around 1-1/4 cups) to four cups of flour, a tsp of salt and a couple Tbsps of olive oil and mix. I use a stand mixture here. Knead a bit and place in oil smeared bowl to rise in a warm place for an hour.

Crab Rangoon topping
Mix together an 8 oz package of cream cheese, an 8 oz can of crab meat that has been drained, a splash of soy sauce, pepper, 1/4 cup minced red onion, 1 minced green onion and 1 minced clove of garlic. Spread on rolled out dough.

Top with strips of crab rangoon wrappers that you cut with a knife. This worked out well but I may try baking them ahead of time next time and adding them after the pizza was cooked. Place in oven set to highest temperature (mine goes to 550 F) on a baking stone and cook until done. Pull it out and drizzle it generously with some sweet chili sauce which is found in most Asian grocery stores. It is sweet and spice and perfects the pizza.

The final product tasted almost just like Fong's version though the wontons on top weren't as evenly golden brown which is why I suspect they precook them and add them after the pizza was done. Good eats!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Date With Death

Not sure what to think about this posting I saw on a bulletin board. Are they trying to motivate people into adopting the puppies with the threat to kill them if nothing happens by tomorrow or are they trying to make people sympathetic to their situation so that they fill better about killing them after trying 'everything' they could to adopt them out? Whatever the case, I'm guessing that leaving their face out of the picture was deliberate.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Singing On Steroids

I don't talk about television shows very much because frankly none of them are very good, at least since Seinfeld went off the air. Mostly I watch the evening news and some shows on PBS but that is about it. However, two years I happened to come across the Sing Off already half way through the first season and was blown away.

If you aren't familiar with the Sing Off on NBC, it is a cappella competition where groups compete with no background music. Yeah that sounds real boring which I suppose is why I never caught an episode until halfway through the first year but when I did, I knew I wasn't in Kansas any more. These groups lay down music that bar none, I enjoy much better than the original recorded tracks.

During the second season, a group by the name of Street Corner Symphony took the competition to a whole new level and really set the hook. They ended up placing second to another equally talented group who just didn't sing songs that were as familiar to me but resonated with the public. I thought at the time that no other group of groups could top the second season, that is until the third season arrived.

This season, already half way over, for lack of better words is OFF THE HOOK! Earlier this week while watching the two hour episode via DVR so I can watch it in just over an hour, I actually teared up more than once because the songs they were singing were so awesome. The round this week was all about Superstar Medleys and the groups all delivered. I am very thankful that I am not a judge on that show trying to determine which group to kick off.

By far, my favorite group of this season is Pentatonix which with five people, kicks out the most complex songs I have ever heard. If that weren't enough, their sound is at least ten years into the future of a cappella if everyone got on board with it today. This week they sang a medley of Brittany Spears songs which was mostly lost on me but it certainly was still a pleasure to listen to even if I have never heard the original songs. Another outstanding group which actually moved me to tears last night are the Dartmouth Aires which did a Queen medley that would have made Freddie proud. Their rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody was spot on. Another group the YellowJackets with their large size and evidently years of entertaining experience always blow the roof off the joint when they sing and this week was no exception with their Billy Joel medley. They took something very familiar to me and made it their own in a way so unique, I would rather have their version of the album if they ever made one.

I could go on and on but I won't. But I do ask that perhaps next Monday night if you haven't already done so, tune into the Sing Off and listen to a group or two. I promise  you that you have never heard an a capella group like any of these groups.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Fleshing Out the Family Tree

Almost a year ago, after lots of research and sifting through a file of records, I wrote a blog post called The Life and Times of John Kuck which was supposed to be my final record of 3rd great grandfather. It contained the picture above, the only picture I had of either my third great grandparents John and Mary Meyer Kuck and one of a couple of their son and my 2nd great grandfather George Kuck sitting on John's lap. It was a good blog post and I still read it every now and then when I ponder about my genealogy journey thus far. It contains the best and worst of it all in one photo. The best being that I found the immigrant ancestor for my living Kuck ancestors and set the story straight. The worst being that Mary Meyer is one brick wall that I have hit repeatedly with research and have gotten no farther than her maiden name, she immigrated from Switzerland at some unknown time and that she died young with five of her children in a diphtheria epidemic in late 1878 and early 1879. Beyond that, I know nothing of her.

Over the years I have searched for Kuck descendants of John and three of his siblings who immigrated to the United States but without success. Most of the lines end abruptly due to childless deaths of unmarried descendants. A few would survive only to have no male offspring which makes tracing them with any certainty very hard. Only one of them allowed me to find the name of someone who may still be living but because she was born of an age before computers and is old enough now to avoid them altogether, I can find no trace of her. I was stuck to waiting for the 1940 census to come out, which it will sometime next year, to hopefully find more clues on possible missing distant cousins. Then out of the blue, I received an email from a distant Kuck cousin who is a descendant of John's brother Frederick and had seen my Kuck posts on a genealogy forum and asked if I knew of anyone researching this particular family. Boy did I.

We ended up emailing each other a few times setting up a visit in mid October, then a few months away, to compare notes and meet each other since she was from Tennessee and I was from Iowa. The short version of a long story was that I had lots of information on a side of the family, John, that she didn't know anything about and she had lots of pictures of a family that I had never seen outside of the picture above. It was a genealogical match made in heaven.

Above is one of the pictures in her collection of my 3rd great grandfather John Kuck and his second wife (not my 3rd great grandmother) Elizabeth Brandau. She also clued me in on a factoid that I had every opportunity to know since I had the evidence already but had never put two and two together. John Kuck's second wife Elizabeth Brandau was the younger sister of Katherine Brandau who was married to Frederick Kuck, John Kuck's younger brother. Kind of forms a big X of ages and families when traced out.

John Kuck was the original immigrant in the family and after he got himself established after thirteen years, he evidently sent for three of his siblings, Frederick, Dietrich and Anna Kuck to join him. For years I suspected they were siblings because they all resided nearby or in John's house in the census records but eventually I got proof when I made contact with a German genealogist doing a project for the church they belonged too in the old world who had lots of information on the family including the names of his siblings. John Kuck ran a harness shop for years in Charles City, Iowa and trained his two surviving sons George and Henry in it and at least one brother Frederick. George and Henry would work in it for awhile until they became of age and at that point, George traded leather for general merchandise and Henry would move out west to The Dalles, Oregon and become a saddle maker of some note whose saddles still fetch high prices on Ebay and the likes. I always assumed the saddle and harness store went with Henry but I recently learned that Frederick eventually took over the store to allow John more time to become involved in being a 'leading citizen' of the community as he is often lauded in old newspaper accounts. Frederick is seen in front of the Kuck Harness Shop below.

It did however end with Frederick's death in 1906 when a newspaper article stated that his son's Herbert and Orlando (who would both go with the last name of Cook) decided they had no interest in it and sold the business and family house before returning to their own homes in Galesburg, Illinois and Seattle, Washington respectively. On a side note, the article made mention to some 'outlaw notes that bore the Civil War stamps' found among Frederick's possession, a reference which I know nothing about and need to research. Below is another photo of the Kuck Harness Shop of the inside taken the year of Frederick's death of heart disease and the last year the shop would be in business as it turned out.

So once again, I find myself in awe at adding more old photos of my ancestors to my growing collection which started out at the round number of zero about a half dozen years ago. It is days like this that keep my hopelessly addicted to researching my family tree. I will probably add a few more posts with more photos of this branch of the family to my blog over time just so it gets chiseled into the internet stone for future researchers to stumble upon and perhaps wonder how Ed from southeast Iowa figured into all of this.