Friday, February 3, 2012

Digging up the past

Today was a historic day at Toad House. Up on a ladder with his head in the rafters, Tony found an original beam in the original house with four signatures. I took a photo of the signatures before they will get tucked into the new dry wall. 

I am able to  make out the first name, Harry Ballon. 
The second one appears to be Bessie ____. 
The third appears to be Jr. H.___. 
The fourth looks like Bud ___.

Wouldn't it be fun to learn more about these people! I went to city hall to see if I could find out when the house was built. Kurt Gorsegner found records to show it was built in 1905 and the garage in 1920. How fun it is to imagine these people signing their names up in the rafters of the house. 

Are they your relatives?? The toads would love to know more.


  1. Hi Eileen! I haven't had a chance to call you but wanted you to know that Marshfield Clinic - Ladysmith Center would be VERY open to displaying local art work. You might want to talk with Jennifer Lechleitner (Clinic Manager) for details.
    Don Bartig

  2. Eileen, I did a quick census search for Ladysmith, WI. The June, 1905 census lists a Harry Ballon, single, aged about 21. He was a lodger in the John and Emma Pederson household. (John Pederson was listed as a merchant.)

    The second name looks like Bessie Manley to me - the same census lists a Bessie Manley, aged 21, single, day laborer. She was living with her parents, George and Lillian Manley. George Manley is listed as hotel keeper, and there are a lot of other names in that household.

    Wish I could figure out the other names - I could look them up, as well.