Friday, March 30, 2012

Spring In My Backyard: Part 4

Redbud Blossoms

Redbud Blossoms

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Spring In My Backyard: Part 3

Redbud Blossoms

Redbud Blossoms

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Spring In My Backyard: Part 2

Sour Cherry Blossoms

Redbud Blossoms

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Spring In My Backyard: Part 1

Sour Cherry Blossoms

Sour Cherry Blossoms

Monday, March 26, 2012

New York City!

How do you get a farm raised country boy to panic? You send him to the inner bowls of New York City on business for a week. Hopefully next week when I return and the panic resides, I'll return to my blog. Until then, it will run on autopilot with some automatic posts of spring in my back yard.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Dealing With Governmental Red Tape

Overall, I would say that thus far in my life, I have managed to avoid governmental red tape. Sure I have had my run ins of having to provide documentation here and there and even had to wade through the multi-year process of marrying someone who was not a U.S. citizen. Believe you me, it was a process but as long as you read the directions of the scores of forms and followed them, things kept progressing... slowly. But the last place I expected to deal with governmental red tape was while pursuing my genealogy addiction.

In order to obtain Civil War military records, one must download a form from the National Archives, fill it out thoroughly including the person of interest's full name, state served, war served, side served, kind of service, company served, regiment served, arm in which he served, list whether officer or enlisted, date of birth, place of birth, date of death and place of death. After finding all this information out and filling out the paperwork, you have to mail it out and wait 90 days for a reply.

I have received a few packets of records thus far after 90 days of waiting but I have also receive a few rejection letters. The first one stated that they could not find the record. They found a record where I had correctly matched 12 of the 13 things required of me but incorrectly had the wrong state in which he was born. (I actually have the correct state but he must have incorrectly filled out or dictated it wrong back then.) Despite having also to fill out a phone number and an email address as well as a mailing address where I presumed they might call, email or write to question whether that was the record I wanted, remember I answered 12 out of 13 correctly, they simply stated they didn't have a record because the place of birth was incorrect. The remedy, correct it, fill out the 13 boxes again making pains to write the incorrect state of birth down, resubmit it and wait another 90 days. So basically I have to wait a half of a year for my answer.

Rejection letter two was even more vague. There was nothing on the paper except a check mark in the box stating they could not find the record and a circle with a slash mark written over the last name. The last name is Luther and belonged to my 3rd great grandfather Jesse Luther. Now here is the kicker. I have already received his pension records which contain the name Luther written and typed out hundreds of times. I have death certificates, census records, probate records, etc., all using the last name Luther. However, I had seen the name spelled Louther one time and remembered that after seeing my rejection letter. So after much digging, I found out where I had seen the name Louther and you guessed it, it was on a Civil War registration card. So despite there only being one Jesse Louther/Luther of Company I of the 211th Pennsylvania Infantry who was born on 19th of June 1836 in Fairfield township, Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania and who died on the 24th of July 1921 in Miller township, Scotland county, Missouri, they couldn't make that connection, didn't call, didn't email and didn't write. Now I have to refill out the form, lie about his last name and wait another three months after already waiting three months.

Rejection letter three found that I had filled out all 13 boxes correctly yet despite me checking the box saying I was okay paying for the extra copies beyond the standard fee that includes up to 100 pages, they sent me a form requiring that I okay the extra dollars. After all this, I wonder why they even bother for a phone number that I can be reached during the day and email address. They have shown they have no inclination to contact me to perhaps be more efficient.

Yes sir, this is red tape at the government's finest.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Captcha Impossible Revisited... Again

I just wanted to update everyone on this subject one last time.

Awhile ago Blogger switched to a new style of captcha coding to verify that you were human when commenting on my blog. It was horrible, hard to read and always took several times before succeeding. After investigating my options, I turned off my comment verification all together on any post that was posted within the last five days and on all older posts, turned on comment moderation. The tipping point for me was that blogger now had a spam filter but I wasn't sure it would work well.

After a month of using it, I have had many scores of spam comments gobbled up by their filter, all of them deservedly so, and not one real comment that didn't make it to the correct post. I have also not had one spam comment make it past the filter. So for now, it is a huge success in my book and to those who comment on my blog, I hope it is in your book too. I would highly recommend this route to those of you who still use the captcha verification phrases.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Zombie Burgers!

I'm not sure what the above artery clogging concoction was called. I'm hoping they weren't quite as bad for you when you split them with someone else and ate them over two meals on two different days. But I do know they were good. The left third were french fries with cheese curds and gravy, the middle third were cheddar cheese fries and the right third were chili cheese fries. As far as I know, the only place you can find them is at a place called Zombie Burgers in the Urban Jungle.

My wife had been there a time or two over the years but I had never been there. Whenever I am up in the Urban Jungle on the weekends during prime eating hours, the place is packed with a line two blocks long waiting to get carryout and no food is worth that kind of wait. But during a Saturday outing to the State Historical Society building just up the street to do some genealogy research a couple months ago, we stopped in a little before eleven in the morning when there were a few seats available. (Fifteen minutes later there was a line already forming outside.)

I've always maintained that the secret to any restaurant success, one must serve something unique, do it well, and don't try to please everyone with vast menus of meals. Although Zombie Burger's menu is a bit larger than what I would recommend, they follow the other two rules well. It is a place to get burgers. The burgers all have some sort of name that you would find in a classic zombie flick which is the unique part of the equation. The one above was my burger which I think was called the T-Virus Burger. It was essentially a meat paddy, topped by a huge portabello mushroom cap, topped with melted Swiss cheese and the standard burger fixings. It was very hard to eat and contain the mushroom from slipping out but it was oh so good.

Since these sat forgotten on my camera phone (which explains the lack of quality) for so long, I have forgotten what my wife had but judging from the picture and the menu which I also photographed, I think it was called the Dead Moines and is a burger with smoked Gouda, prosciutto, ham with the rest of the fixings.

Another unique thing about this place was that the menus were actually found on the insides of these zombie newspapers which made for good reading while waiting for our food. The food was excellent and I would love to eat there again sometime in the future but doubt that I will eat there too often. It is small with limited seating, the lines are extremely long and I don't think my arteries could handle fries like that more than once a year without some sort of repercussion.

Friday, March 16, 2012

The Cool Factor: Some Extra Parts and Head Scratching Required

As I mentioned in my previous post, one of the minor 'upgrades' to my 15 year old car was to replace the clouded headlight assemblies. My old ones looked just as bad as the one above and made driving at night hard and fairly dangerous here in densest population of deer anywhere in the United States. After investing in some very sticky winter tires, I planned to keep the car for a while so I thought I should looking into replacing the headlights if they weren't terribly expensive.

I could get the lights above for about $30 a piece or I could get the ones below for an extra $10 a piece.
My car is 15 years old and it was time to treat myself so I bought a pair of the ones below which were supposed to be direct plug -n- play replacements.

Since you probably picked up that I used the word 'supposed' up above, you know where this is going. In order to replace the headlight assemblies on my car, I have to remove the front bumper and grill guard off of my car. So I waited for one of those sunny and warm winter days in Iowa that we had in plenty this year, and did just that. I removed four bolts off the headlight assembly, unplugged the harness, removed the blinker bulb and they were off. I unwrapped the new ones and saw that they were the same size and shape, had the same wiring harness but had for additional wires protruding from them. What the?

I took a break and went inside to look at the computer and after a bit of searching, I figured out why. In the fine print, I didn't realize that these headlights came with some decorative halo ring lights around the main lights that evidently give it a cool factor desirable to those who like to pimp out their vehicles. I could care less but the perfectionist/anal retentive part of my personality couldn't live with four wires (eight if you count both lights) dangling underneath my car hood. But I was out of time for the day so I installed the new lights, taped up the eight dangling wires, reinstalled my bumper and called it a day.

I tried to figure out how to connect those into my car's electrical system but not being electrically inclined when it comes to 12 volt systems and also being partially colorblind, I couldn't figure out on paper. But a week later, we had another warm evening and time on my hands so I tore the bumper and grill back off, unbolted the headlight and decided to have another look at the thing. To me it made sense to have the halo rings turn on whenever the lights are on. The obvious choice seemed to be to hook them to the parking lights but they also share the duty of my turn signals and I thought it would look kind of funky to have halo lights blinking as well. Not to mention I wasn't sure if the blinker relays were sized large enough to handle the extra load. But short of running them up to the fuse box and tying them in somehow or tapping into some other circuit (while being color blind), I couldn't think of another options.

I got out my multi-meter and saw that I had three wires protruding from my blinker/parking light. I turned on the lights and checked all three and had voltage in the reddish looking one. I turned the lights on bright and checked and had the same thing. I turned the turn signal on and had voltage in a brownish looking wire but the voltage varied whether the light blinking or not at the time. The blackish looking wire never had anything. So I spliced my two reddish looking extra headlight wires into the reddish looking parking light wire with some splicers that I had bought at the local store and spliced the two blackish looking extra wires into the blackish looking parking light wire. I turned on the car and they worked all the time and best of all didn't blink when the turn signal was on. Nothing started smoking so I did the same on the other side and put it all back together, lights, grill, bumper and all. I think they look pretty neat in the dark but when it is lighter out, you see some nice looking lights on a 15 year car that has seen better days. I think that more than cancels out any coolness factor.

Not my car but the same style of headlights

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Monday, March 12, 2012

Finding the Perfect Solution At Last

My car will have it's 15th birthday sometime this fall and although it has quite a few scratches and dents, it has no body rust and still runs well. The muffler and exhaust system have been patched up over the years, I had the transmission rebuilt about three years ago and I recently replaced the extremely clouded headlight assemblies (that is another story in itself) with new ones but overall my car has a lot of life left in it. Since it is essentially worth more to me than it would be worth to someone else wanting to buy it, I keep driving it as my commuter car and retain it as a spare.

The one hitch is that I replaced the tires here about a year and a half ago and the set I put on were terrible in the winter. My car handled about as well as a hog on ice whenever there was any kind of winter precipitation on the road. Because my driveway intersects the road in the middle of a hill, it made things challenging to get into and out of my driveway at times. Not to mention that it just wasn't safe for me to be out on the road having problems with other cars right on the bumper of my car. So I sought out solutions.

I didn't consider tire chains because here in the land of moderate winter when the roads are frequently bare during winter for days at a stretch, I didn't want to be taking them on or off. I did consider buying an old set of tires and having them studded but then I found out that you have to have special tires that can be studded or come pre-studded. With this option, I would have to listen to that distinctive clack of the studs on dry pavement quite often and on just wet surfaces, something we have quite often in winter, studded tires actually would be worse as far as braking is concerned. The best option seemed to buy a dedicated pair of winter tires with softer tread. On a recommendation from a friend, I bought a pair of Blizzak tires.

Since I don't have the machine it takes to seat a bead on the rims, I took it in and paid to have my old(new) tires removed and the new Blizzak ones mounted and balanced. It is not terribly expensive compared to the cost of the tires but having to do it twice a year plus having to schedule the appointment and figuring out how to get to and from work would be a pain. But the good news was that the tires handle like a dream in crappy conditions, all three or four days of them that we have had this winter. The tread on them is so soft, I can actually push it in with little finger force, that is just sticks to the ice/snow and takes me where ever I want to go in relative safety. The price you pay is that the soft tread only lasts for about 15,000 miles and then you need new Blizzak tires.

I had one spare rim from my wife's old car that used the same rims as mine so I kept my eyes open for another rim to go with it all winter. Nobody seemed to have any. Finally last week when it was 72 degrees and I was sitting in the park watching my daughter play, I thought about the situation again and called the circuit of junk yards near me once again. The second place I called had just received four in on a recently junked car. A half hour later I had another rim for $30 and had dropped both rims and both old(new) tires off at the tire dealer to be mounted and balanced. Now I can change them over for my labor cost which is very cheap these days and about fifteen minutes of labor whenever I desire and shouldn't have to pay for the privilege ever again. Since my Blizzak tires will probably only see at most a couple thousand miles of use a winter, they will probably last the life of the car because I can't really see me having it when it turns 23 years old. At the rate it is holding up I might but I'm not going to bet on it.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Crossing Paths

In my attempt to maybe someday solve the genealogy brick wall of my 3rd great grandfather Joseph Baker, I purchased a book dedicated to providing strategies to do just that. The first couple chapters dealt with census records, death and probate records to find out more information on my ancestor. I've researched the census records to death and can only find one record with Joseph Baker listed, two years before his death. I have searched in three different counties he has lived in and have been unable to find either a death record or even some sort of probate record. In fact, other than a census record, all I have is indirect evidence through obituaries of his children and wife of where this family lived. Onward to the next chapter. The next chapter was all about researching the collateral family, i.e. those people who would have known and interacted the family. I started doing that and I have a feeling I'm on to something but I'm not sure yet how so I thought I would lay it out here in an attempt to maybe clarify things by the act of writing it down.

Joseph Baker's story begins somewhere in England, location unknown and after the Civil War, surfaces in the town of Colchester, Illinois. I only knew the name due to the obituary of Joseph's oldest son and my 2nd great grandfather. However, despite a research trip there, I never turned up any evidence to prove this. Again through obituaries of his children, I learned that Joseph Baker moved up to West Union, Iowa and then to Parkersburg, Iowa, two counties over, where he was caught for the 1880 Federal Census. Two years later he was buried in Cedar Falls, in the county between West Union and Parkersburg and two of his five children were evidently given up to the Chicken family for adoption, whether it was formalized or not remains unclear at this point. Joseph's widow Frances Bolton Baker would marry a man named Thomas Heppenstall who materialized from Colchester, Illinois to where ever Frances was living in 1886, a fact that seemed to confirm that the Baker family had indeed lived in Colchester. So I began my collateral search by learning about Thomas Heppenstall.

Thomas Heppenstall was the son of a coal miner Daniel Heppenstall who worked the mines of Colchester according to the 1870 census. Daniel was also an immigrant from England sometime between 1851 and 1860. But the fact that glistened in my eye was that Daniel Heppenstall came from Huddersfield, England the same place where Joseph's wife France Bolton Baker Heppenstall came from, even though she was born in Wisconsin. To adequately explain this, I need to take a step back and explain her migration route first.

Frances Bolton's parents John and Mary Shaw Bolton immigrated from Huddersfield, England in 1844 and settled down near Willow Springs, Wisconsin. Frances and her older sister were born here but their younger brother Jeremiah was born in California in 1954. This is because John Bolton went west seeking gold in the famous California gold rush with a group of people from Willow Springs and at least initially left his wife and children behind with the family of Elias Pilling. Not surprisingly, the Pilling family also comes from Huddersfield, England. John Bolton's wife Mary would eventually join him since I know their son was born in California but something would happen to John. The next record I have of the family is of his wife Mary along with her three children back to the Huddersfield area of England by 1861 where they show up in a census.  Mary was also listed as a widow on that census.  Mary and two of her children would remain there but Frances Bolton, future wife of Joseph Baker would return before 1869 and end up in the same town as the Heppenstalls. No doubt in my mind, she knew Thomas Heppenstall during her time in Colchester.

I pondered this thread for awhile wondering if Joseph was from the same part of England but have been unable to locate a likely Baker family there during that time frame.  So I next turned my attention to another thread. I decided to look into the Robert Chicken family. After Joseph died, two of his five children were given to this family and raised into adulthood. I suspect that Joseph died broke and his widow Frances just couldn't raise five children on her own without a job. The Robert Chicken family lived in West Union where Joseph Baker lived for a time before moving to Parkersburg but were they more than just former neighbors. I looked into the Chicken family ancestry and was quickly rocked back with surprise.  Robert Chicken and his parents came from Willow Springs, Wisconsin, the same place of Joseph Baker's widow Frances Bolton. I also learned the Robert Chicken was born in England and immigrated here from the Durham county area of England.  I checked but it is a long ways north of the area that the Bolton and Heppenstall families came from.

So as you can see, I have five familes, the Bakers, Boltons, Chickens, Heppenstalls & Pillings who have crossed paths over the years and are all intertwined. I'm guessing that if I keep pursuing these collateral families and how they weave together with my Baker family, perhaps someday I may be able to break through the brick wall of Joseph.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The Winter That Wasn't and Still Isn't

Awhile ago I wrote a blog post about The Winter That Wasn't and I am just writing to say that it still isn't. Meteorological spring is upon us and the Calender version isn't too far away and we've had only about seven measly inches of snow and that perhaps only covered the ground for no more than a couple weeks. The reason are the high temperatures that came along with the lack of snow. We have not had a single day below zero degrees, a first for us since the advent of written records. The days with highs below freezing can still be counted on my fingers without breaking into the toes.

Tornadoes, those things that we here on the fringes of tornado alley worry about usually in late April, May and June, are rocking and rolling throughout the country side wiping out towns from the face of the map. Every news report I see of towns utterly devastated makes me want to build my tornado/hurricane/fire proof monolithic dome house all that much sooner.

Monday, March 5, 2012

It's Getting Hot In Here

I'm a tightwad. I don't like spending all my money on intangible items so when it comes to heating the house, I keep it a bit on the chilly side. When my daughter was born, for her sake I raised the heat up so that she wouldn't get chilled but once she was able to fend for herself, i.e. cover herself with a blanket in the middle of the night, I dialed it back again. I'm not talking miserly but I do keep the thermostat set to around 68 degrees when we are here during the evenings and around 60 degrees while we are out during the weekdays and at night. It easy to stay comfortable by throwing on an old sweater and besides, it gets you in the spirit of winter. Your mind is thinking cold so you might as well get the body thinking the same thing. Plus, after a few days your body acclimates to the temperature.

So on Saturday as I was upstairs making the beds for my wife who was laid up with a sore back, I suddenly realized that I seemed really hot. Being well read and never having heard of male menopause, I figured it was just one of the joys of living in a split level home. The upstairs is always a warmer than the downstairs. However when I made it back downstairs a little while later, I noticed that the thermostat said 79 degrees! What the heck?

It wasn't calling for heat but the fan was still running in high gear. I made sure all the settings looked correct and just turned it off for awhile thinking that it must have just missed a signal or something. (As you can tell, I am good at procrastination when I want too.) A little while later when the temperature had subsided, I turned it on again and all seemed well. But a couple hours later I was again feel rather warm and once again the temperature was climbing towards 80 degrees. This time I knew something was up so I decided to do the next logical thing. Even though it didn't tell me the batteries were low, I decided to replace them anyway. I popped off the cover and removed the batteries but when I went to put in the fresh ones, the metal tab on the positive side of the batteries was looking like it was just hanging there. I probed it a bit with a screwdriver and it fell inside the case and disappeared. Not good.

I took the whole thing apart and saw that it had broken off of the circuit board and that there wasn't going to be anyway I was going to get it fixed. Evidently the last time I had replaced the batteries, it had broken or almost broken but had hung off long enough to mysteriously finish breaking on a Saturday many months later. Funny how things work like that.

Since it was almost noon and things like local shops (not large box stores selling cheap crap) sometimes close early when business is not hopping. If I didn't count the large box store, I figured I had only two places in town that might have a programmable thermostat and I wasn't entirely sure either of them were open after noon. So I hopped in the car and made tracks uptown and snuck in just under the wire. The good news was that they indeed have a programmable thermostat but the bad news was that it was almost identical to the one I had. It has some very minor differences but it was the same manufacturer and I wasn't sure I wanted to buy another one from the same place that might contain the same design flaw. But with limited options besides driving to a big box store in a neighboring town or ordering a quality one online and being without heat or living in a sauna for a week or more while I wait for it to be delivered, I opted to buy it. Within minutes upon getting home, it was installed and everything was back up and running. But I did notice that it still had the same design flaw the last one had so I was extra careful in how I put the batteries back in and took care to not put too much pressure on the battery contacts.

I feel bad about buying another programmable thermostat especially since the last one I bought was only seven years old and the non-programmable one that it replaced had probably been over 40 years old and still worked. Had I been thinking, I would have saved it for a spare but alas, I wasn't and I didn't. So now I have bought another cheap programmable thermostat which won't last for much more than seven years if the last one breaking wasn't a fluke. The plus side is that I don't expect to be in this house for seven years so it gives me time to research a better thermostat for when we move, if we can get our house sold. The downside is that it seems when it comes to electronics, there really isn't such a thing as quality made stuff anymore. It all comes from the same big factory over in China. My only hope is that a different manufacturer didn't use the same method for attaching the battery contacts to the circuit board.

Friday, March 2, 2012

A Death In the Family

I recently discovered a letter online written by my 2nd great grandmother Jane Elizabeth Cowles or Jennie as she was known. In her letter she writes about the pioneering days of her grandparents (my 4th great grandparents) Polly Miner and Salmon Cowles. I have written about Salmon previously but will have to revisit that post with some of the new information in this letter in some future post. But for now, here is an excerpt from Jennie's letter about Salmon and Polly's time in Ohio before they moved to Iowa in 1840 and became my first of many ancestors to set foot in the future state of Iowa. For some context, keep in mind that Polly was 14 years old at the time of the story and her mother Lorain Royce Miner (my 5th great grandmother) had died three years earlier of consumption.

Jane (Jennie) Elizabeth Cowles Grim
the author of the following letter

I am not able to find out certainly, but I always got the understanding that her father moved to a new place still deeper in the wilderness after her mother’s death and her sisters’ marriages.  However that may be, he lived a mile and a half or two miles form his brother, who was his nearest neighbor, and the roads were only blazed trails through the forest, made by frontiersman as he walked along with his ax, striking the bark from the trees along the path.  If one strayed form this trail, he was likely to get lost, for the forest was thick and dark, and if he could not see the sun, nor tell the directions, especially if the sun was not shining brightly.  Such were the conditions on that 29th day of July, 1804, which Polly never forgot, telling of it often to children and grandchildren long years after.

The day had been excessively hot and oppressive, and about the middle of the afternoon signs of an approaching storm became manifest.  Gradually, these signs increased, and Polly brought the children indoors from their play, and soon, John Miner, himself, leaving his work in the clearing and looking about to see that everything was safe, came in and put up the clapboards that served as shutters instead of windows and shut the door as the storm broke.  It proved to be the most horrible tornado that part of Ohio had ever seen.  Now, of course, with window shutters up and door shut, no one could see out of the little cabin; so after awhile, the storm not seeming to abate its fury, John Miner, anxious and curious to see what was going on, unbarred the door and holding it against his body as he stood in the opening, leaned out to look around.

Just at this moment, a great tree limb hurtled through the air by the wind, struck him on the back of the head, knocking him forward on his face and killing him instantly.  Polly ran to him instantly, but could do nothing.  Tug and work as she might, that giant limb defied her every effort and mocked her agonizing fears.  Finding she could do nothing, and that her strength was giving out and evening coming apace, she decided what to do.

Seating the little brother and sister side by side in their chairs, she made herself ready, and pulled her father’s feet outside the door, shut it tightly, and started on her perilous mission.  The storm had abated by this time, but it could not be very long until the evening shadows would make her progress through the forest impossible.  She soon found that it was well-nigh impossible already.  Giant trees lay uprooted across the path and she could hardly make out where the trail was, as they lay in inextricable confusion, and she must not lose the trail.

It was nearly dark when she came out where she could see the light in her uncle’s cabin, but the clearing reached, it was not long until she was telling them her sorrowful story.  Her uncle at once started on to the next neighbor’s a half mile or so away to get help, and her aunt took care of the plucky little girl.  Soon several men were gathered with pine torches and axes to go back and do what could be done, and bring the little ones.  Uncle Justus had no idea of taking Polly back with them, but she insisted on going, saying that she had promised the children that if they would sit still and be quiet while sister went for someone to take the big tree off Father, she would surely come back to them, and so she must go.  Seeing the reasonableness of her wish, she was allowed to accompany the men.

There was much use for the axes and it was nearly midnight when the rescue party reached the little cabin.  But God had kept watch, and all was as Polly had left it.  The men soon had the tree chopped and lifted off the father, and laying him out on his bed and covering his form with a sheet, they took the children, now fatherless and desolate, and began the homeward journey; first seeing that everything at the cabin was shut tightly so that no marauding wild animal could gain entrance to disturb the remains.  It was nearly, or altogether, a week before roads could be cleared and word got to daughters and friends, so that they could bury John Miner.  Then the cabin was deserted, and kind friends took the now doubly orphaned children.

Polly was in her 14th year, and she did not propose to be long a burden on her sisters and friends, no matter how kind they were.  She had improved her father’s instruction, and so was fairly well along with her studies.  A little more schooling in a more settled part of the country, and she was prepared to teach.  There was no public school system in the Northwest Territory then, and all the schools were subscription schools.  Likewise, there were no standards of qualifications for teachers and no age limits.  One who aspired to teach school must satisfy those she desired as patrons, and this Polly was able to do, and began her career as a schoolteacher when she was scarce fifteen years old, which occupation she continued until her marriage.