33. Gladwin4 Chaffin, M.D. (Simon3, Robert2, Robert1)(359) was born in Union, Lincoln Co., ME 10 Oct 1804.(360) Gladwin died 13 Mar 1890 in Hutchinson, Reno Co., KS, at age 85.(361) His body was interred Aft 13 Mar 1890 in Hutchinson, Reno Co., KS.(362)
He married Diadamia Elgin Pancoast 27 May 1830 in Wayne Co., OH.(363) Diadamia was born 1 Aug 1809 in Buffalo Valley, Union Co., PA.(364) Diadamia(365) was the daughter of William Pancoast and Vashti Cooper. Diadamia died 26 Apr 1875 in Napoleon, Henry Co., OH, at age 65.(366) Her body was interred Aft 26 Apr 1875 in Napoleon, Henry Co., OH.(367) (368) A real attempt has been made in my research to locate information on Dr. Gladwin Chaffin's family further to that reported in William Chaffin's book.(369) I found many gleanings in the records of Hancock and Van Wert Counties which have enhanced and/or confirmed information given me by the children of members of the bridging generation. Following is a report based on these findings.
During the first seven or eight years of their marriage, Gladwin and Diadamia lived in Wayne County, Ohio,(370) where the couple had grown up; Gladwin, in the town of East Union, where his father, Simon, was a town founder (371) and Diadamia probably in Dover, which was the death place of her parents. (372) Sometime between the birth of their third daughter on 12 Jul 1837 and the birth of their only son on 22 May 1839, the Chaffins moved to Hancock County, Ohio.(373) This coincides with the death of Gladwin's father in Wayne County on 8 Aug 1837.(374) The Chaffins remained in Hancock County in the vicinity of Van Buren township for almost twenty years.(375) On 28 Mar 1857, Gladwin Chaffin was principal on a Guardian's Bond in Hancock co., Ohio for Mary Diadamia Harper, b. ca 27 Nov 1845 and John William Harper, b. ca 9 Jan 1848, children of Emily Snodgrass [Emily Pancoast Harper] "late of Stark Co., OH, deceased". Documents of expense, rendered annually to Hancock County in the following years to 1864, indicate these two children to be wards of the Chaffin family.(376) However, they don't show up as household members in the 1860 Van Wert, Ohio County U. S. Census.(377) The move to Van Wert took place between March 1857 and April 17, 1858.(378) The chief focus of Gladwin and Diadamia's lives appears to have been their family unit. In addition to raising their six children and possibly the Harper orphans, they apparently had parental custody of Charles Ernest Hall, son of their daughter, Emily, prior to her death when "Charley" was seventeen months old. (379) * Emily's obituary does not mention her son as a member of the Hall household or as a survivor. The Civil War period brought more than its share of woes to the Chaffins. In 1861, Emily married George A. Hall, (380) a German immigrant, (381) who failed to meet the family's expectations. One week later, daughter, Mercy Lurissa (Massa) died (382) and three months later, son, Gladwin Boone volunteered for the War, which eventually led to an almost fatal disease.(383) Between early 1862 and early 1863, Emily gave birth to a son, William, who failed to survive.(384) In 1863, daughter Amanda, in Iowa, gave birth to her first son who died in early 1864.(385) In January, 1865, the Chaffin's property in Van Wert was sold publicly for delinquent taxes.(386) Perhaps they had already moved back to Hancock County, where they were reported to be living in Emily's June, 1865 obituary. (387) Mystery surrounds the whereabouts of the Chaffin family from 1865 until the early 1870s. Supposedly, they were in Decatur, Illinois(388) during that time, but a thorough check of Macon County fails to turn up any record of the doctor's family. According to descendants of Gladwin Boone, Dr. Chaffin traveled to his son to administer medical treatment following his discharge from the Union Army. Other indications are that the family was in flight with their grandson, Charley, in an attept to keep him from his father.** Although their daughter, Sophronia is shown on the 1870 U.S. Census with her husband in Napoleon, Ohio, the Chaffins are not. After the 1865 death of Emily, the next record to be found on the family, so far, is 24 Dec 1874, when daughter, Mary Irene married Leander Bigger at her parents' home in Napoleon.(389) Four months after the marriage, Diadamia was dead(390) and except for Sophronia, who had married the son of an eminent Napoleon family, the Chaffins left the area.(391) 1875 was the year Charley Hall moved in with Aunt Irene and Uncle Leander and Gladwin Boone also moved to Hutchinson, Kansas. Deeply affected by his wife's death, Dr. Gladwin followed. Sometime after 1880, Dr. Chaffin moved in with his daughter, Irene Bigger, (392) where he settled into contentment to live out his last years. Dr. Chaffin practiced medicine for fifty-five years with real success, was frequently consulted by other physicians, was equally attentive to poor and rich, and was most highly esteemed by all who knew him.(393) Stated by his granddaughter, Diadamia Bigger Lewis, in whose mother's home he passed his last years, "He compounded his own medicines and my sister and I used to watch him weigh out his Dover's powders and quinine on his tiny brass scales. He was famous locally for two or three remedies of his own compounding. One was his green salve and another was his liniment. He had much mechanical skill and could turn his hand to any sort of work. He made a wonderfully substantial wooden trunk of huge size, a good-looking corner cupboard, and a really beautiful hatbox, all made in thoroughly workmanlike fashion, nicely joined and skilfully finished...I would say he is the most thoroughly old-fashioned figure in my memory, and he was so regarded in our little western town. Grandfather was extremely fond of poetry and copied in full his favorite poems. He was fond of reading the Psalms and had a beautiful copy in large type.(394) Dr. Chaffin collapsed suddenly and died in the arms of his daughter, Amanda, who was visiting in the Bigger home on 13 Mar 1890.(395) He is buried in the Bigger Family Plot at Eastside Cemetery in Hutchinson.(396)
* a thorough check of records on George A. Hall has confirmed this rumor that has passed along in our family as "family tradition".
* More on this subject will be covered in the sketches on Emily and Charles Ernest Hall.
Gladwin Chaffin, M.D. and Diadamia Elgin Pancoast had the following children:
36 i. Amanda Alice5 Chaffin(397) was born in Wayne Co., OH 15 Oct 1833.(398) Amanda died 1917 Seymour, Wayne Co., IA, at age 83.(399) She married Sampson Howell Albertson 4 Oct 1855 Van Buren, Hancock Co., OH.(400) Sampson was born 27 Dec 1825 Hancock Co., OH.(401) Sampson(402) was the son of Rev. Garrett Albertson and Mary Strickland. Sampson died 24 Oct 1884 at age 58.(403) (See Sampson Howell Albertson for the continuation of this line.)
Speaking of her family, Amanda said her children were all members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, as were her sons-in-law and many of her twenty grandchildren. Mr. and Mrs. Albertson went to Seymour, Iowa, 7 Aug 1856, to a farm of 360 acres, bought at $4.25 per acre, and worth over $100 per acre in 1912. A thirty inch vein of coal was on their land. They had a church on the farm, "with a fine piano and good singing."(404)
37 ii. Emily Pancoast Chaffin(405) was born in Wayne Co., OH 30 Aug 1836.(406) Emily died 23 Jun 1865 in Van Wert, Van Wert Co., OH, at age 28.(407) Her body was interred Aft 23 June 1865 in Van Wert, Van Wert Co., OH.(408) Volume 1, Pg 210. Inspection of the Hall family plot in June, 1991 confirmed that the grave does exist, though it is not marked. Emily was originally buried at another cemetery and when it was reclaimed by the city, the remains were moved to Woodlawn. Helen Prill, who lives next to Woodlawn states that most of the old stones are piled along the outer perimeter fence and have been covered over by construction debris from an adjoining concrete company.
She married George A. Hall 2 May 1861 in Van Wert, Van Wert Co., OH.(409)
George was born 17 Sep 1836 in Hesse-Darmstadt, Germany.(410) George(411) was the son of Johannes Hall and Barbara Rohrer. George died 20 Feb 1906 in Van Wert, Van Wert Co., OH, at age 69.(412) His body was interred Aft. 20 Feb 1906 in Van Wert, Van Wert Co., OH.(413) George immigrated to New York 2 Apr 1853.(414) (See George A. Hall for the continuation of this line.) Emily spent the first two to three years of her life in Wayne Co., OH where she was born. The rest of her childhood was spent in Hancock Co., OH.(415) When she was twenty-one, the family moved to Van Wert, OH,(416) where she was apparently a school teacher. (417) George A. Hall immigrated from Germany, arriving at New York on 19 Jun 1853. After various stops to recuperate from illness and learn the English language, he arrived in Van Wert in 1856, where he clerked for T. S. McKim Dry Goods Store. In 1858, the year the Chaffin family moved to Van Wert, George was sent to New York to buy a stock of merchandise, and was given a half-interest in the store, which was renamed McKim & Hall.(418) This was his occupation at the time he married Emily Chaffin in 1861. (419) Sometime between the marriage and April, 1863, a son named William was born. This child apparently failed to survive, as no record is found of his birth or death and no other reference to him has been made. (420) In late 1863, the dry goods partnership ended(421) and George was unemployed at the time his son, (422) Charles Ernest Hall was born 29 Jan 1864 in Van Wert. (423) Unemployment ended when George volunteered in Co. H, 139 Regt, O.N.G. on 2 May 1864 for a 100 day tour,(424) leaving his wife and infant son behind. It is suspected that Emily and "Charley" lived with her parents during George's absence, since George was a poor, unemployed immigrant.* After mustering out on 26 Aug, 1864, George returned to Van Wert and finally found employment as a clerk for T. S. McKim in early 1865.(425) Emily Pancoast Chaffin Hall, whom George called "Emma" died on 23 Jun 1865.(426) It appears their son was living with Emily's parents, Dr. Gladwin and Diadamia Chaffin, at the time, as her obituary does not mention "Charley" as a member of the household or as a survivor.(427) Although George Hall's life and the lives of his other five children in Van Wert can be documented through records and their presence in labeled family or individual photos, there is no record of "Charley" with the Hall family from the time of his birth.**(428)
*Evidence of the Gladwin Chaffin family shows them to be very close and tight-knit. On the other hand, the documented history of George A. Hall's life reflects one of constant financial struggle, resulting in his filing insolvency on 25 Dec, 1897, while married into one of Van Wert's prominent families.
** I have in my possession, the family photo album of George A. Hall's family in Van Wert, passed to his daughter, Harriett Hall Crouse, Charley's half-sister. This album contains family and childhood pictures of George's other five children, but the only picture of Charley is in his middle-age years. I consider this strong evidence he was never present with George or his family. MHM
38 iii. Mercy Lurissa Chaffin(429) was born in Wayne Co., OH 12 Jul 1837.(430) Mercy died 9 May 1861 in Van Wert, Van Wert Co., OH, at age 23.(431) Her body was interred Aft 9 May 1861 in Van Wert, Van Wert Co., OH.(432) Mercy Lurissa Chaffin died unmarried, without issue.
+ 39 iv. Gladwin Boone Chaffin was born 22 May 1839.
40 v. Sophronia Harriett Chaffin(433) was born Van Buren, Hancock Co., OH 18 Apr 1843.(434) Sophronia died 1924 in Napoleon, Henry Co., OH, at age 81.(435) Her body was interred 1924 in Napoleon, Henry Co., OH.(436) She married Russell Bigalo Heller Abt 1867 in Napoleon, Henry Co., OH.(437) Russell was born 1844.(438) Russell(439) was the son of W. L. Heller. Russell died 1915 in Napoleon, Henry Co., OH, at age 71.(440) His body was interred 1915 in Napoleon, Henry Co., OH.(441) (See Russell Bigalo Heller for the continuation of this line.)
They lived in Napoleon, Henry co., OH, where he was a man of influence and character, a merchant and a mayor.(442) * Russell served as a Corporal in Co. G, 133 Reg., OVI from 1861 to 1865. (443) Sophronia, with the endorsement of her niece, Lurissa Myers Chaffin Hamma, joined DAR in 1921 at the age of 81. (444)
*We saw old buildings with the Heller name on them while in Napoleon in June, 1992. MHM
41 vi. Mary Irene Chaffin(445) was born Van Buren, Hancock Co., OH 10 Mar 1851.(446) Mary died 7 May 1896 in Hutchinson, Reno Co., KS, at age 45.(447) Her body was interred 10 May 1896 in Hutchinson, Reno Co., KS. She married Leander Adams Bigger 24 Dec 1874 in Napoleon, Henry Co., OH.(448) Leander was born 1 Oct 1844 in Henry Co., OH.(449) Leander(450) was the son of Matthew Bigger and Elizabeth S. Adams. Leander died 3 Aug 1913 in Del Monte, CA, at age 68.(451) His body was interred Abt 10 Aug 1913 in Hutchinson, Reno Co., KS. (See Leander Adams Bigger for the continuation of this line.)
William Chaffin's book, (452) which contains direct information on this family, provided by Leander and Irene's daughter, Diadamia Bigger Lewis, dwells on the eminence of Leander Adams Bigger, rather than the Chaffin descendant, Mary Irene. Likewise, Reno County histories emphasize the importance of Mr. Bigger, who was one of the founding fathers, but no mention is made of the accomplishments of the woman behind the man. Tucked into the personal belongings of Lurissa Myers Chaffin Hamma was a memorial book published by the Bigger family on the occasion of Irene's death. Dee Hamma Babson has generously shared this momento from her mother's records with me, which enables the writing of a biography on Mary Irene Chaffin...a gentile woman.
Mary Irene Chaffin graduated from the Female Seminary at Washington, Pennsylvania in 1870, and later taught school in Napoleon, Ohio, where her parents then lived. Some of the boys, who were under her instruction and reached positions of eminence and influence, remembered her so kindly that they kept in correspondence with her, and spoke enthusiastically of the impress made upon them by their teacher, and of what they owed to her for the inspiration she awakened in them, to make the most of themselves. On December 24, 1874, at six o'clock P.M., she was married at the home of her parents to Leander Adams Bigger: Rev. J. P. Lloyd, of the Presbyterian church, performed the ceremony. To preserve her family name she always signed herself "Irene Chaffin Bigger." She and her husband began housekeeping in February, 1875, and to the date of her death, lived in the same house. She traveled in many parts of the United States, Canada and Mexico, and there was no spot she loved more than her summer home in the mountains of Colorado. She was very fond of home; most of the pictures in the house were sketched and painted by her hand. In literature she preferred history. Whittier was her favorite poet, and she loved the works of Hans Christian Anderson, Thoreau and Hawthorne. She comprehended all she read and saw; knew men and women with unerring certainty, and despised wrong doing. The sick and distressed always found a friend in her. Her real worth and strength as a woman were known best by the inner circle of her friends, for she was naturally reserved in manner, quiet and retiring in disposition. She was, in a marked degree, literary and domestic in her tastes, religious in her nature, and kind and generous in her plans for others, and in her deeds. She was devoted as a wife, and was a beloved companion to her daughters. As a mother she succeeded in so winning their confidence, that they confided in her, and she was to them their most intimate friend. On the twenty-first anniversary of her marriage, on Christmas eve., 1895, she was suddenly attacked with the illness that finally proved fatal. She left a husband, two daughters, a nephew [Charles Ernest Hall] whom she tenderly reared with all the devotion of a mother, two sisters and an only brother, besides a host of friends(453). She was a member of the Ladies' Sewing Society of the First Presbyterian church, of the Hutchinson Women's Club and of Acacia Chapter, No. 37, O.E.S.
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