It was 131 years ago (August 9, 1885) that my great grandparents, Casmear P. Koontz – call me C.P. – and Phebie Ann Gardner were married in Noble, Indiana. The photo above was taken with the all five of their children: Essie (1887-1953), Ethel Jeannette (1889-1969), Florence Marie [holding the doll] (1895 – 1981), William Peter (1898-1974), and Henry Allen (1900-1970). Grandfather Koontz insisted he be called C.P., not Cas, not Casmear. He claimed his middle name was Pulaski after the Revolutionary War General. It was probably Peter since everyone in the Koontz family seemed to have the name somewhere attached. Anyway, Grandfather Koontz was born 5 October 1857 in Navarre, Ohio, and died 12 December 1914 in Columbus, Ohio. Grandmother Koontz was born 19 October 1862 in Falls Village, Connecticut and died 5 February 1935 in Columbus, Ohio. She also has the distinction of appearing twice in the 1930 U.S. Federal Population Census – once in Detroit, Michigan with her daughter, Florence, and once back home in Columbus.
This day was extra special for my grandmother, Florence Koontz Weaver, since in 1948, 70 years ago today, her first grandchild, Roland Craig Strachan, was born.
There is a rumor in the family that Grandma was not happy with her elder daugher’s choice in names for this child. She sent flowers to the hospital signed “Craig’s Grandma”. He was called Craig his entire life.