Volume Five

No. 2  

                                                                                                             

May, 1964

Published by the BATAVIA HISTORICAL SOCIETY

 


The nation is beset with difficulties and confusions, many of us have doubt and grave concern for the future. But no one who reviews the past and realizes the vast strength of our people can doubt that this, like a score of similar experiences in our history, is a passing trial. From this ledge must come the courage and wisdom to improve and strengthen us for the future. -

Herbert Hoover

 

NEXT MEETING

SUNDAY, MAY 3, 1964 at 3:00 P. M

IN THE BARTHOLOMEW CIVIC CENTER

 

PROGRAM


Round table discussion on the needs of the Society for a museum and storeroom for the increasing number of our memorabilia, led by Mrs. Ben Limbaugh.

 

If time permits, the meeting will be thrown open to members to discuss the history of their own home or some historic home in Batavia.  

 

Please come prepared to give of your knowledge.  

 

A constant question is “What do you know about my house?" So many times we have to answer, "Nothing.” Here is a chance for you to help break this veil of ignorance.We thank both Mrs. Don Johnsen and Mrs. Ben Limbaugh for appearing before both the Town Meeting on April 7th and the Council Meeting on April 8th to ask the cooperation of both bodies in moving the C&NW Ry. Depot to city owned property at the corner of First and Water Streets. This building, on its new site, to be used by both the Batavia Township Board and the Historical Society. The appropriation requested for the moving and rehabilitation failed to pass at the Town Meeting. However, the issue is not dead.  

 

We understand that several people, not society members, at the Town Meeting, said that they would contribute to a museum fund.  To put the question bluntly – do we want a museum?  Should we have a fund drive for one now?  What will you do to help?  

 


Come to the meeting on May 3rd and express your views. We have received gifts from the following donors since our last report.

 

1.      Mrs. Wm. H. Warford of Geneva, two white petticoats, one white gown and one steeple clock owned by Mrs. Brooks, the mother of Mrs. George K. Pierce.

 

2.      John Samuelson, the banner of Batavia Lodge, Sons of the North.

 

3.      Mrs. David T. Olson, an old Swedish trunk dated 1871.

 

4.      Mrs. Ruth Shaw Logan, a framed photo of the John Davis house on N. Van Buren Street. We are grateful for these gifts. Our Society is saddened by the passing of Mr. Wm. C. Spencer and the former Batavians, Mrs. H. L. Hunter, Mr. Glen Crane and Miss Peckham.

 

Mrs. Harry (Katherine Wolcott) Hunter, 91, was the daughter of Mr. H. K. Wolcott and was the aunt of Malcolm and Wolcott Derby.  She left Batavia in the 1910's to make her home in California. Some time ago she sent us her scrapbook on loan to copy any information we might wish for our files.  She was intensely interested in our Society and wrote us several times. In one of her letters, she said, "I remember well the stairs going up the west side of the Newton Wagon Co. building and how, as a little girl, I used to climb them to go up to see my father sometimes." Don't forget to view the dresses given to us by Mrs. Platt, the daughter of Mrs. Martha Van Nortwick Holbrook.

 

They have been most tastefully arranged by Mrs. Elaine Cannon and Mrs. Claire Kruger. We thank the Furnas Electric Co. and all others concerned with getting out these newsletters. They do a fine job and we appreciate it. We thank the Batavia Township Library Staff and Board for inviting us to their public meeting in Library Hall, Sunday, April 12th, the beginning of Library Week.  The program was an illustrated talk given by Mr. and Mrs. Franklin Elwood of their recent trip around the world.  

 

Both of the Elwoods are photographers par excellence.  It was a most enjoyable afternoon. We have an opportunity to see some of our historic homes by taking advantage of the House Walk offered by the women of the Calvary Episcopal Church on April 29th. The walk includes the following historic homes: the Stacey Nelson home on Main Street; the Mrs. Mary Simpson home on S. Batavia Avenue and the Rodney Brandon home, known as Lockwood Hall, also on S. Batavia Avenue. The following may be a thing of the past by the time you get this newsletter.  

 

We hope that many of you, old and young, could attend the Northeast Region Student Historian Meeting at the Jefferson Junior High School, Aurora, all day Saturday, April 25th. We are grateful to the Herald for mentioning it in "The Spectator" in the April 15th issue. Mr. Albert J. Smith of Elgin of the Dept. of Biological Science at N.I.U. asked us when the floor of the old quarry on the east side of Route 25 just south of Batavia, was last worked. He is carrying out an ecological study in this quarry.  We told him it was last worked about the turn of the century.  

 

Do you have a more specific date? Have you paid your dues? They are so small, but we do need every cent. One of our problems is - shall we continue to send these newsletters to all on our membership list whether they are paid up or not. We believe that most of you who are remiss just don't know it. So our good treasurer, Ray Patzer, is taking the trouble to fill out the following statement of your account. ----

 

 

Mrs. Harry (Katherine Wolcott) Hunter, 91, was the daughter of Mr. H. K. Wolcott and was the aunt of Malcom and Wolcott Derby. Sht left Batavia in the 1910s to make her home in California. Some time ago she sent us her scrapbook on loan to copy any information we might wish for our files. She was intensely interested in our Society and wrote us several times. In one of her letters, she said, "I remember well the stairs going up the west side of the Newton Wagon Co. building and how, as a little girl, I used to climb them to go up to see my father sometimes."

 

Don't forget to view the dresses given to us by Mrs. Platt, the daughter of Mrs. Martha Van Nortwick Holbrook. They have been most tastefully arranged by Mrs. Elaine Cannon and Mrs. Claire Kruger.

 

We thank the Furnas Electric Co. and all others concerned with getting out these newsletters. They do a fine fob and we appreciate it.

 

We thank the Batavia Township Library Staff and Board for inviting us to their public meeting in Library Hall, Sunday, April 12th, the beginning of Liberary Week. The program was an illustrated talk given by Mr. and Mrs. Franklin Elwood of their recent trip around the world. Both of the Elwoods are photographers par excellence. It was a most enjoyable afternoon.

 

We have an opportunity to see some of our historic homes by taking advantage of the House Walk offered by the women of the Calvary Episcopal Church on April 29th. The walk includes the following historic homes:

the Stacey Nelson home on Main Street

the Mrs. Mary Simpson home on S. Batavia Avenue

and the Rodney Brandon home, known as Lockwood Hall, also on S. Batavia Avenue.

The following may be a thing of the past by the time you get this newsletter. We hope that many of you, old and young, could attend the Northeast Region Student Historian Meeting at teh Jefferson Junior High School, Aurora, all day Saturday, April 25th. We are grateful fo the Herald for mentioning it in "The Spectator" in the April 15th issue.

 

Mr. Albert J. Smith of Elgin of the Dept. of Biological Science at N.I.U. asked us when the floor of the old quarry on the east side of Route 25 just south of Batavia was last worked. He is carrying out an ecological study in this quarry. We told him it was last worked about the turn of the cntury. Do you have a more specific date/
Have you paid your dues? They are so small, but we do need every cent. One of our problems is - shall we continue to send these newsletters to all on our membership list whether they are paid up or not. We believe that most of you who are remiss just don't know it. So our good treasurer, Ray Patzer, is taking the trouble to fill out the following statement of your account.

 

Dues for 1964 are now due. You have paid ____________ Yes ______________ No

You are in arrears for the year(s)  _______________________________________

Dues are $1.00 per year. Life membership, $25.00

 

                                                                                      Raymond J. Patzer, Treasurer

                                                                                      237 Republic Road, Batavia

 



We had a most interesting four day vacation recently through the Lincoln Heritage Country of Illinois, Kentucky and Indiana. This Lincoln Trail is so accessible and so close-by that it makes a very inexpensive short vacation of great historical value. There are so many "blanks" in our knowledge of Batavia affairs.

 

So frequently people ask us about the history of a house, a store or a person and we have to tell them we just don't know. We are learning more and more about Batavia from old newspapers, books, etc. that YOU good people are sending to the Society from time to time.  

 

Some time I hope to list some of my questions in the Newsletter, maybe you know the answers.  

 

At present I have a full page of inquiries and the list is growing all the time.