Thursday, July 2, 2009

SKELETONS and SCOUNDRELS in the closet

This post is being entered by Bruce. Tuesday was a day of discovery in a lot of ways. We took the information that we got from the Genealogy Center to the Allen County Courthouse to find two documents or at least to find details and truth about two things...There was a William Mencer who was arrested and charged back in 1901 with embezzlement. I needed to know if there was any chance this could have been my great grandfather. There were a couple of William Mencers in the area during that time although they had different spellings of their surname. Secondly I had just found out the day before the date on which my great grandparents were divorced and I wanted to get a chance to see the case information to find out why.

Well, there is a song by Chris Daughtry that has a line that says, "be careful what you wish for...because you just might get it, you just might get it all." I felt I had to know the answers and I got them all.

Without going into all the ugly details, suffice to say that my great grandfather was at least for the 10 years or so prior to 1910 a very rude, selfish, uncaring and abusive man to his wife. He took to calling her the most foul names you can imagine, would often leave for weeks at a time without saying when he would return and accused his wife of running around on him. The fact is that he was "chasing everything in a skirt" and according to the case records did little or nothing to try and hide it. In the testimonial part of the case the plaintiff, my great grandmother, said that about 10 years prior to this her husband had spent about six months in the Allen County Jail after being found guilty of embezzlement.

As Paul Harvey would say, "and now you know...the rest of the story." It happened so far back in the past that I am not troubled or changed by it, but it certainly does add to the experiences in the family tree.

Another interesting tale was found in the Fort Wayne News back in 1906. Seems as though the younger sister of my great grandmother, Carrie Redding was the proprietor of the Riverside Hotel in Fort Wayne and due to recent activities, "the police are preparing to prosecute the case against the hotel vigorously".

Verrry INTERESTING. All in the family. This has been a most interesting trip to this point with documentation, meeting new family and discovery...lots of discovery.

The trip next winds its way to the Wheeling, West Virginia/Steubenville, OH area to take a look into the goings ons of some of the other side of the family, the Nickersons. I am hoping to find a lot of information, some good documentation and perhaps a story or two more.

All for now.

1 comment:

  1. He may say that he is not troubled or changed by what he learned, but the truth is, the scoundrel syndrome is a part of the Mencer psyche -- it is in the blood!!