Wednesday, May 8, 2013

The Obituary of Samuel Halls Junior

Today I was treated to a random act of genealogical kindness.  I opened up my Gmail this morning and found the obituary of Samuel Halls Junior from the April 3, 1930, edition of the Crystal Lake Herald.  It was sent to me by the president of the Crystal Lake Historical Society.  I am very grateful to Diana Kenney for her thoughtfulness.

The obituary quotes the Randall family in Crystal Lake as saying of Sam that, "To know him intimately was to love him" which I find a rather curious turn of phrase.  To me it indicates that Sam had a difficult public personality (Reserved? Prickly? Arrogant?...) but it covered a heart of gold.

It also confirmed a things I had suspected, but did not answer other questions I have.  It confirmed my suspicion that Sam liked horses and states that, "He was a particularly fine judge of horses and was especially fond of thoroughbred racers and trotters."

Sadly, it make no mention of the mysterious "Becky", the woman named as his wife on his death certificate. See this post for details of Sam's shenanigans with the women.

Small Victories

Sorry for the long silence since my last post.  I started full time as a college instructor in August of 2012, and the work load was just nasty this past fall/winter.  Next fall/winter should be much better, so more frequent posts.  The post you are about to read was started back in October of 2012.

James Reginald HallsA few days ago I found a picture of James Reginald Halls.  He was the only child of Philip Thomas Halls and Agnes Wood, and a grandchild of James Halls of Merton, Devon, and latterly of Elimville, Ontario.

Reg, as he was called, worked at a factory producing war equipment for the Allies in the small town of Whitby, Ontario.  I found the picture in the factory newspaper, The Commando, which has been digitized and placed online by the Pickering Ajax Digital Archive (PADA).

In another issue of The Commando I found a note of condolence to Reg and his wife Mary on the death of their daughter, Marilyn Phyllis Halls.  She was only 17.

It seems appropriate to finish this post on VE Day, the day we remember the Allied victory over the Nazis, which Reg, along with millions of others throughout the world, helped to bring about.  Theirs was a great victory.