Monday, February 22, 2016

George Washington Allen

George Washington Allen

In an earlier blog we noted that George W. Allen of Sumner as a child remained unnamed until he  was old enough to suggest his own name and he chose George Washington Allen.  Curiously enough he died on February 22, or Washington's birthday. We now learn more about Mr. Allen.

Summarized from his obituary published March 2, 1911 in the Sumner Press:

George Washington Allen was born in Lawrence County, Illinois, on what is known as the old Indian Trail on the farm now owned by Wilbur Gray, February 20, 1842. His last sickness originated on Christmas Day and he died February 22, 1911 on the birthday of the one for whom he named himself.

He was married to Adaline Shick in the year 1878. To this union were born two sons, Marion and Ellsworth, respectively, the latter being five months old at the time of his mother's death which occurred 21 years ago.

Ellsworth was received into the home and affections of H. L. Morgan and family where he was reared to manhood. Marion the eldest, found a home with his grandparents. However, at a tender age Marion launched out into the world on his own resources, encountering many obstacles. In June of 1906  he landed in Buford, North Dakota, where he at once entered a claim of 160 acres of land. He prevailed on his father to join him there which he did, taking up the claim near his son.

Fearing the condition of his father's health, Marion persuaded him to return with him to their native home. Three short weeks after their return, George Washington was dead at age of 69 years.

***More happenings at the History Center: Saturday we asked our history detectives to identify a mystery machine. Charles S said the machine looks like an old Diagraph-Bradley embosser that made plates for addressing or labeling machines. Todd F said it was a checkwriting machine.  So take another look at it and see what you think. If you want to see it closer stop by the museum.  We are also looking for someone to help us clean some tools and other vintage machines.

Thanks to Anne U and the Garden Club for donating their scrapbooks and other club memorabilia. Several volunteers took advantage of the warm weather Saturday to move the R Palmer genealogy collection  to the new Research library.  We will now begin the task of cataloging all these items for researchers to use. David F found more research about the button and pearl industry for the Smithsonian exhibit and Don S brought in a flash drive of Agri-Gold/Akin seed photographs.  We thank each of these people for their donations, and also for the volunteers who continue to lift and carry and move and reshelve books at the library and for the volunteers who inventory and label new acquisitions at the museum.