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Merrillsville Brevities

Ruth Stoddard Lawrie made a scrapbook of the Brevities from the The Oneida Union for the period 26 Dec 1887 to 8 Aug 1905.

Bernice Costen made several copies of the approximately 200 pages of the 8 1/2 x 11 text of newsprint. One of the copies is at the Madison County Historical Society.

For anyone whose family lived in the area, the Merrillsville Brevities (as they are known) are a treasure trove of community history. There are good times--I found that my family had their reunion at Xmas--and sorrowful times--a lengthy note chronicles the funeral of Mrs. Henry Eisaman on Dec. 22, 1890.

They form the only recorded history for my family as well as other families in the Town of Lincoln. Rather than cut and paste them into my history, I decided to type the whole series as a legacy to the those pioneer families that formed the backbone of the Town of Lincoln. Each area had its own reporter. Unfortunately some of the reporters were not regular. The newspaper did not print them in the same place which makes it difficult to track them down as you must look at each page.

They are an interesting piece of history. They are the births, deaths and weddings of the era. In some cases you will see an individual sicken and recover or sicken and die. Births were reported but not frequently. Weddings were community affairs. Sunnyside was the cemetery of choice for Merrillsville and community affairs were organized to support it. A visit to Little Falls might indicate that is where to look for earlier ancestors. Many of the early settlers in Clockville came from Manheim in the County of Herkimer.

I am grateful that Mrs. Stoddard kept the newspaper clippings and to Bernice Coston for recognizing their value. When time is available I will return to the originals and supply the missing parts. Old newspaper are fragile.

Douglas J. Ingalls
6 Jun 1998

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