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"ONE TOWNSHIP'S YESTERDAYS"
By Edwin Corwin
BY WAY OF CONCLUSION
The history of Union Township reveals a truly remarkable progress onward and upward, with setbacks of course from time to time, but never any serious interruption of the advance. The trend across all the span of one hundred years has been a happy one. Beginning with the valiant efforts of hardy, God-fearing pioneer stock, the foundations were laid upon which a strong and age-enduring superstructure has been reared. So secure has been this construction that, no matter how severely the storms of time have battered it, nor how ravaging have been the lean years, taking their miserable toll here in a peaceful countryside just as in the uttermost corners of the earth, this edifice of community life and spirit has remained. unshaken, sound, and whole.
Those of today have much for which to be grateful. Their thanks must surely go to the sturdy and enduring ones who have preceded them in the hundred years since the coming of the first white settlers to this region. Theirs shall be an honest pride in a noble heritage.
The written history of Union Township can never be complete, neither can that of any other region. The writer of these few humble chapters feels that he has merely "scratched the surface," and much finer things, the richest nuggets, remain hidden there, deeper down than his feeble efforts possibly could reach. Unavoidable circumstances terminated the research, leaving the writer in possession of a fund of material an many subjects, several of which have not been touched upon in the published chapters. But this material, despite its bulk, is insufficient, in the writer's opinion, to do full justice to the subjects concerned. It is too fragmentary, There are too many gaps to be filled--mostly skeleton and not a great deal of meat to cover the bones. So, the writer prefers to leave unwritten and unpublished, far the present, these other chapters, in the hope and expectation that the day will come that will enable him to complete the uncompleted units, though the whole be impossible of completion.
Among those themes, each of which could have filled a chapter, planned for incorporation in this history, might be mentioned these few: Pioneer Log Cabins; Mills, Grist, Saw, and Cane; Schools and Schooling; Sports and Sporting; Organizations; Culver Military Academy; Highways and Byways; Railways; Telegraph and Telephone; Post and Post Office; Tragic Events; Early Methods; Hunting and Fishing; Temperance; Boats and Boating; Inns and their Hosts; More Memories; and Further Recollections.
These subjects may some day be included in a separate and no doubt smaller volume of "One Township's Yesterdays."
A WORD OF GRATITUDE To those who so willingly and obligingly gave information and assistance in compiling this little historical review of Union Township, the writer expresses his thanks and appreciation. This list of "helpers" is far from complete, and whatever omissions there may be, are not intentional. Credit should go where credit is due. Throughout the work, the writer has tried to give full and accurate acknowledgment, quoting and naming the sources wherever possible. So, to those persons whose names may not appear, but who contributed their bit, a word also of gratitude now goes out at the close. No attempt has been made to arrange the names in any order as to the value of the service given; they appear simply as they came to mind, as follows:
Mrs. Ada B. Butler, "Neighbor". J. F. Cromley, Harold Robinson, W. S. Easterday, W. T. Parish, W. O. Osborn, M. R. Robinson, Carl M, Adams, John Osborn, Deane E. Walker, Miss Edna Stahl, Ralph Houghton, D. H. Smith, Rev. Richard Pengilly, George Nearpass Jr., Ralph Thornburg, N. W. Rector, Charles E. Hayes, W. C. Routh, G. W. Green, Clarence D. Behmer, Mrs. Gertrude A. Behmer, S. C. Shilling, L. C. Wiseman, Arthur Simpson, John C. Butler, Clark I. Ferrier, George M. Spangler, Rev. Harvey E. Harsh, Melvin J. Osborn, Mrs. Jennie A. Mattix, J. E. Young, Otto Stabenow, Arthur Morris, J. W. Riggens, Elza H. Hawkins, Colonel Ellsworth Wells, Mrs. Rebecca Robinson, Mrs. Augusta Warner, M. T. Louden, H. M. Speyer, the late A. A. Keen, Dan Marks, Rev. J. H. Rilling, Ezra Hibray, Ezra Hawkins, Frank Brooke, Lester Young, Mrs. Mabel White, Harvey Warner, Ed Hawk, Forrest Geiselman, Bill Farrell, P. A. Wickizer, the late Mrs. Marion Augusta Swigart, Albert F. Stahl, Miss Eve York, Tim Wolfe, Claude Newman, Lewis Zechiel, and Henry Zechiel.
A PICTURE OF YESTERDAY Five generations in the Spangler and Babcock families, ranging from 90 years to six weeks, are pictured here when a get-together was held several years ago. The ages are as of the time the picture was taken.
Sitting are Peter Spangler, age 90, a Civil War veteran, formerly of Culver and Rochester; his daughter, Mrs. Laura E. Babcock, of Rochester, age 68, who is holding Patsy Gail Henderson, age six weeks, of Culver. Standing are R. L. Babcock, age 50, and his daughter, Mrs. Gail Henderson, age 23, both of Culver.