Monthly Archives: March 2016

Grover Cleveland Ream 1885-1931 – my Grandfather

I believe this photo of Grover was taken on his honeymoon in Sept. 1912
Photo of Grover as a child. He is standing on the far left of the photo

When Grover Cleveland Ream was born on 16 September 1885, in Miami County, Indiana, his father, Benjamin Ream, was 31 and his mother, Harriet Fike, was 21.

Grover  went by the name “Clevie” which was an abbreviation of his middle name.  He was one of 9 children.  In the 1900 census,  his father Benjamin is listed as head of household and states that his occupation is a carpenter.  This would also become Grover’s occupation.  His mother, Harriet, listed her occupation as “laundry business.” In the 1900 census, Grover was 14 years old and was in school.  By that time, the family lived in Ann Arbor, MI on Wells Street.

The link  below takes you to a catalog of Ann Arbor High School for the academic year of 1900-1901 and shows that Grover attended classes there.

Grover’s siblings were Winfield Emery Ream (1883-1940), Lucy Katherine Ream (1887-1976), John B. Ream (1891-1967), Harriet Isobel Ream (1894-1969), William B. Ream (1897-1982), Josephine Marie Ream (1901-1957), and baby Ream (1903-1903).

Grover married Amelia Grayer on 26 September 1912, in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He died on 26 March 1931 in Ann Arbor, MI, at the age of 45, and was buried there.  Sadly, my mother was only 5 years old at the time her father Grover died and my Uncle Bob was only 13 years old.  My mother had very few memories of her father but continued to express her love and longing for him during her entire life.  My grandmother, Amelia (a.k.a. “Grandma Pet”), would remain a widow for the next 34 years until her death in 1965.  Grover’s death had happened during the time of the Great Depression.  My grandmother’s income would be made by running a tourist house on North Main Street.  My Uncle Bob, was a young teen when his father died, and he assumed an adult role of helping to care for his mother, his grandmother who lived with them, and his younger sister (my mother).

Both Grover and Amelia were 27 at the time they were married.  Amelia’s family home had been on North Ashley Street, in Ann Arbor, MI.  In the records of their marriage, Grover lists his employment as a carpenter.  The best man was John Ream and the maid of honor was Julia Reichenecker ( a life-long friend of my grandmother).


Grover and Amelia were 32 years old when they had my Uncle, Robert Emerson Ream.  They were 40 years old, when they had my mother, Gretchen Lois Ream.  I was also told that they had twin boys who both perished as infants.  I believe the twins may have been born and buried in California and would have been the oldest children.  I believe that the twins were named Richard and Robert.  There was another son, named Richard Philip who was born on January 18, 1918 and died two days later on January 20, 1918.

In Grover’s WWI draft registration, he states that he is tall and slender with blue eyes and brown hair.


Grover was in the Carpenter’s Union #512 and served as their treasurer and seems to have been greatly involved with the social life of his union friends.  I have included a link to an interesting article about Carpenters during this time of history in Ann Arbor.


It was only recently, that I began to understand that my Grandfather may have known that he had a serious health issue.  He had made such an effort to enlarge the home at 520 N. Main Street into a 3 story multi-bedroom home that served my Grandmother well as a source of income while she used it for a tourist house with “rooms for rent.”  This all happened fairly close to the time of his decease.  My mother was proud of the work her father had done as a carpenter and would often point out buildings on the U of M campus in Ann Arbor that her father had helped to complete.  It appears that Grover died of cancer.  At the time of his death, this diagnosis was not generally discussed and so I do not have full details.  My grandmother, Amelia, became very unstable for a period of time shortly after his death.  It was ALWAYS my understanding that the whole family continued to miss his presence for all of their lives.


The Washtenaw Tribune 27 Mar 1931

Joyce Lucille Shaw Wiesner

When Joyce Lucille Shaw was born on June 25, 1922, her father, Zebina “Eugene” Shaw, was 34 and her mother, Martha Rockwell, was 32.  Both of Joyce’s parents had been born in Wisconsin, but they went on to  have all of their children in Ohio.

Joyce’s mother, Martha, was one of 16 children!  Joyce’s father, Z. Eugene, was one of 7 children!  So, Joyce had MANY aunts,uncles, and cousins!

In the 1930 census, Joyce is 7 years old.  Z. Eugene (Joyce’s father) lists his occupation as an engineer working for the city.  This census also shows Joyce had an older brother, Robert (born in 1916) and an older sister, Colleen (born in 1920.)  In this census, the family address is 415 Water Street, Bucyrus, Ohio. (In 1930, Beth, the youngest child of Martha and Eugene had not yet been born.)  Joyce’s sister Beth was 10 years her junior and was not born until August 17, 1932.

Joyce was only 17 years old when her father Eugene died.

Joyce married Norbert “Nick” Donald Wiesner on June 25, 1943 when she was 20 years old. She had three children by the time she was 25.  All of Joyce and Nick’s children were born in Wisconsin. Joyce and Nick’s  son  was EJ’s direct ancestor and EJ’s Grandfather, Eugene “Gene” Norbert Wiesner.  Gene  Wiesner was born  on 26 March 1944 in Wisconsin.  Joyce and Nick also had 2 daughters, Emogene  and Sandra Ann.

Joyce died on June 28, 1990, in Waukesha, Wisconsin, at the age of 68.  Her husband, Nick, remained a widower until his death at the age of 78 in 1999.

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Norbert, Joyce and Eugene Wiesner

Joyce, Norbert “Nick” and Eugene “Gene” Wiesner

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Maude Lillian Meador Groshans

When Maude Lillian Meador was born on April 16, 1887, in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, her father, Robert, was 25 and her mother, Charlotte Lucinda “Lottie” Shipman, was 22. In the 1900 census’ Lottie (Maude’s mother)  was already widowed and states that she is the head of the family working in a dry goods store.  Maude’s father died in 1895 when Maude was a mere 8 years old.

Maude was one of 4 children.  Her siblings were Jasper Calvin Meador (1884-1934), Louis Riley Meador (1889-1985) and Rita May Meador (1891-1976.)

Maude married Gottlieb Jack Groshans on June 12, 1912 when she was 25 years old. In the 1920 census, G.Jack states that his mother tongue is French having come from Alsace Lorraine, France. G. Jack lists his occupation as farmer.

They had two children during their marriage. Her daughter, Rita Elizabeth, was born on January 16, 1920, in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. And EJ’s direct ancestor and Great Grandfather, Robert Jack Groshans, was born on April 14, 1926, in Eureka Springs, Arkansas.

By 1935, records indicate that Maude and her husband “G. Jack”  were residing in Bruce, Illinois.  Maude’s husband died there in Illinois at the age of 63.  They had been married 29 years.

Maude Lillian Meador Groshans died on January 17, 1971, in Ypsilanti, Michigan, when she was 83 years old.

Maude Lillian Meador Groshans

Elbert Emil Schmiling- EJ’s great Grandfather

When Elbert Emil Schmiling was born on January 29, 1912, in Algoma, Wisconsin, his father, Carl Schmiling, was 36 and his mother, Alma Runke, was 30.

He married Olive Viste on August 22, 1936. They had three children during their marriage.

His wife Olive passed away on January 1, 2002, in Algoma, Wisconsin, at the age of 86. They had been married 65 years. He died just a little more than a month later, on February 5, 2002, in his hometown, at the age of 90, and was buried there.

The following is written my Joann Schmiling Wiesner:

“My father, Elbert Schmiling, for a very short time, managed a hardware store in Forestville. Primarily he was a teacher in Rio Creek and middle school principal in Kewaunee, and he could be called a ‘gentleman farmer’ as he lived on 40 acres and harvested some crops, sometimes raised pigs, chickens and sheep. He often rented pasture to other farmers who needed pastureland for their heifers.And when the young cows broke through the fence, Dad was never home; therefore, my Mom, brothers and I chased them back to the pasture….just an aside!!

ElbertSchmiling 2a.jpgElbertSchmiling 2ElbertSchmilingFamily 1bElbert Schmiling and Olive Viste.jpgElbert Schmiling home - Algoma WI 1.jpgElbert Emil Schmiling from 22 Oct 1973 Manitowoc Herald Times.pngElbert GravestoneElbertSchmilingElbertSchmilingNews.jpg.jpg


Alma Runke Schmiling 1881-1962

Over the course of 21 years, Alma Runke and her husband Carl Schmiling, had 10 children.  Alma and Carl were direct ancestors of my son-in-law and were his Great Grandparents.  The photo of Carl below is from a family collection of my son-in-law.

Carl Schmiling

Alma was born in Wisconsin in 1881 to Heinrich “Henry” Runke, Sr. (sometimes spelled Ruhnke) who was of Prussian birth and Wilhelmina “Minnie” Bruemmer.  Alma’s father is recorded as being a pioneer in the raising of alfalfa crops and helped to develop agriculture in Northeast Wisconsin.

Henry and Wilhelmina Minnie Bruemmer

Alma’s birth and death dates are available from several sources including this “Find a Grave” website link:   She was born on 20 July 1881 and died at the age of 81 on 13 December 1962. She is buried at Evergreen Cemetery in Algoma, Kewaunee County, Wisconsin.

Alma was only 18 years old at the time of her marriage to 24 year old Carl Schmiling on 20 February 1900.  They were married at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church. Their first child, Beatrice Schmiling, was born only 7 months after the marriage when Alma was a mere 19 years old. In the 1900 census (the year of the marriage and Beatrice’s birth) Carl and Alma were living with Carl’s parents and family.  In this census, Alma is listed as daughter-in-law to the head of the household, Albert Schmiling.  At that same time, 4 of Carl’s siblings were also a part of the household. Carl was employed as a farm laborer on his parent’s farm.

Alma had three sons and seven daughters with her husband, Carl Schmiling between 1900 and 1922. Yes, a span of 22 years from the oldest to the youngest of the children.

By the time of the 1910 census, Alma was 28 years old and Carl was 34 and they now lived in their own household (Although, I do not know at what point during those 10 years that the move to their own household had occurred).  Now, they had their own home to live in and in the 10 years of marriage they already had 5 children.

It was interesting to me that even though Alma’s marriage to Carl Schmiling would eventually end in divorce, they are still laid to rest together under a single headstone at Evergreen Cemetery in Algoma, Kewaunee County, Wisconsin. Alma was 45 years old at the time of the divorce in 1926.

divorce granted

The next photograph shows a later property dispute in 9 Nov. 1939:

Alma and Carl Schmiling court hearing from 9 Nov. 1939 Green Bay Press.JPG

As a young girl, Alma was one of 16 children in the Runke family!  I have been able to do hours of research into the lives of each of her siblings and have collected various family photographs and life stories.

In the 1920 and 1930 census the name Schmiling has now become Schmeling without explanation. I do not know the reason for this spelling change, but it is interesting to note that Carl’s obituary states his name as Carl Schmeling.  In the 1940 census (after the divorce) Alma is now living with son Gordon and also lists her name as Alma Schmeling.

death of Carl Schmiling 18 Jan 1969 Green Bay Press

One of the “finds” I made on Ancestry was this message board It describes Alma’s father’s relationship to his daughters, “The Ruhnke daughters were quite outspoken. They resented that their father only sent sons to college, and they bristled under his very strict discipline.”  Make sure to visit the message thread!

The photographs below are from the family collections of my son-in-law.

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Milton W. Wiesner 1917-2007 (E.J.’s great great uncle)

Milton was the older brother of E.J.’s direct ancestor Norbert “Nick” Wiesner.  This means that Milton Wiesner was the great great uncle of E.J. Wiesner.  The featured image above shows from left to right: Milt Wiesner, his sister Ella Wiesner, and his brother Nick Wiesner.

The 1920’s census shows that Milton’s father had been born in Wisconsin, while his mother had been born in Germany.

Milton was one of the youngest of 7 children.  His oldest sister, Ella Wiesner, was 14 years his senior having been born in 1903!  The twins, Clarence and Florence were born in 1906. Sister Anita had been born in 1910 and sister Adeline was born in 1912.  Milton then arrived in 1917 and E.J.’s direct ancestor Nick was born in 1920.

Milton’s Obit:

Milton W. Wiesner, 90, of Bellingham, Wash., formerly of Elroy, died on Sunday, Sept. 9, 2007, at his residence. He was born on May 27, 1917, in Door County, to Jacob and Emma (Bork) Wiesner. Milt served in the United States Navy from 1942 – 1945 serving on the USS LST 197 as a Lieutenant. ( On April 8, 1943, Milton was united in marriage to Dorothy Ogilvie in New York City at the Riverside Church. Milt has lived in numerous destinations before settling in Elroy in 1975 where he was President of Midor, Ltd, Ridge Road Farms, Elroy Community Dairy, member of the Elroy United Methodist Church and the Elroy Rotary Club and very supportive of numerous civic projects. He is survived by his wife, Dorothy; daughters, Cheryl (Ronald) Wright of Bellingham, Wash., Susan (Steven) Schweikhardt of Ridgefield, Wash., and Pamela (Larry) Olbrich of Vancouver, Wash; seven grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren. Besides his parents, he was preceded in death by four sisters and two brothers. Memorial services will be held on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2007, at 11 a.m. at the Elroy United Methodist Church with Reverend Steve Ward officiating. Burial with military rites will follow at the Elroy City Cemetery. The Picha Funeral Home, Elroy is assisting the family. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Elroy United Methodist Church. Picha Funeral Home – Elroy, WI,

Midor Ltd.: This is taken from on 8/26/2013

Midor was established in 1976 by Milt and Dorothy Wiesner. Midor began as a brokerage firm for milk commodities used in the feed industry. A significant part of Midor’s customers were veal growers which led to Midor becoming a manufacturer of milk replacers for the veal industry. In 1993 the veal milk replacer and liquid veal feed business was sold to Alto Dairy Cooperative Today Midor is currently owned by Debra Parrish, and Judy Green. Midor has grown into a blending facility with two bagging lines, warehouses, bulk loading capacity, and an in house laboratory. Our products are shipped from coast to coast and our exports are growing each year. The customers we serve are some of the largest feed and pet food manufacturers in the world. Our ingredients or blends are sold to companies that make food for dogs, cats, pigs, cattle, fish, horses, sheep, and calves. Midor also adds value to products that are in distressed. We do this by sorting, grading, and grinding. We may be able to improve the texture, flowablity, and grade of distressed products. We are rapidly growing in our custom blending services. Repackaging in bags, tote, or bulk.

LST 197LST-197-Omaha

Milton Wiesner 3 Dec 1951 Post Crescent Appeton, WI

Rosemary Baur Bull 1911-2006

Rosemary Baur was born on May 13, 1911, in Chicago, Illinois, and was the only child of Jacob Baur (the founder and president of liquid carbonics) and Bertha Duppler.

As noted in the attached articles, Rosemary was an heiress to a fortune as a young girl.  Her father died when she was a mere 15 months old.  Her father was 54 years old at the time of his death.  He had surprised everyone when at age 51 he married Bertha Duppler who was said to be the highest salaried woman working for the government as a secretary to the postmaster. Bertha was 29 years old when she married Jacob who was 51 years old.

Jacob was 53 years old at the time of Rosemary’s birth.  Her mother, Bertha, was 32 years old.

In the 1920 census, Rosemary was 8 years old and lived on East Cedar Street in Chicago.  In addition to her mother (head of household), there are also listed a cook, butler, 2 maids, and a governess. At some point the address became 1511 Astor St.

Rosemary’s mother, Bertha, was for 24 years,  the Republican National Committeewoman for Illinois and was twice a candidate for Congress

Rosemary was the “wealthiest girl in Chicago.” She married a young English barrister who was Canadian born, Brennan “Bartle” Bull, on November 2, 1931. They had two children during their marriage. She died on May 17, 2006, in her hometown, at the age of 95.

Rosemary and her husband Bartle had 2 children.  They were Romia Bull and Bartle Bull.

Why is Rosemary Baur Bull a part of my family history?  When I was growing up, my father, would tell stories of a part of his family that were not just rich…but “stinking rich.” He told of how they lived in buildings that spanned city blocks with servants to care for their needs. He always told me it was “the other side of our family.”  I did not really question what all that meant until my interest in ancestry grew.

Rosemary Baur is a part of our family history but is NOT a direct descendant.  My great grandmother Carrie Baur was a sister to Rosemary’s father, Jacob Baur.  This means Rosemary’s father was my one of my Grandmother’s uncles.

So, why am I including this blog?  Well, it makes quite a story and completes for me those stories my father used to tell of this family.

There were literally too many articles from the past to include in this blog, but ironically, there seems to be almost no information about her later years, nor could I find an obituary for her.  In an article about her husbands’ death it is noted that she was separated from him at the time of his decease.

Rosemary Baur March 29, 1920 Seattle Times
July 28, 1922 The Denver post Rosemary Baur
Rosemary Baur to Wed Bartle Bull from Arkasas Gazette May 14, 1931
Rosemary Baur from San Francisco Chronicle May 14, 1931.png
Arkansas Gazette May 14, 1929 Rosemary Baur

Here are some articles regarding Rosemary’s husband:

18 October 1950 Chicago Tribune (part 1)
18 October 1950 Chicago Tribune (part 2)
18 October 1950 Chicago Tribune (part 3)

Garrett Denny Spruhan

When Garrett Denny Spruhan was born on February 10, 1891, in Terre Haute, Indiana, his father, Henry Joseph Spruhan, was 33 and his mother, Caroline “Carrie” Baur, was 27. Garrett was 2nd in the birth order.  Our direct ancestor (and my grandmother), Henrietta Spruhan, was 3rd in the birth order making her Garrett’s younger sister.

Garrett went to prep school at Stevens Industrial Tech in New Jersey.  He lived in Hoboken on campus.  He graduated from Rose Polytechnic.  Married Marion (Parks) Spruhan on August 16, 1916, in Indiana. They had one child during their marriage, a girl named Martha Ellen Spruhan.

Garrett died on October 14, 1918, in Jefferson, Kentucky where he was stationed at Camp Taylor, at the age of 27, and was buried in Terre Haute, Indiana.  He died from the flu during the great flu pandemic of 1918.  His daughter was a toddler when he died.

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Death notice

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Marriage certificate

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certificate of death

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WWI draft registration