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Clara Mae HAND[1]

Female 1900 - 1955  (54 years)


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  • Name Clara Mae HAND 
    Born 22 April 1900  Austin Twp.,Mecosta Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 2
    Gender Female 
    Census 22 June 1900  Austin Twp,Mecosta Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  [3
    Education 1909  Burden Lake School,Mecosta Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Census 1910  Austin Twp,Mecosta Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  [4
    Education 1912  Prospect School,District #8,El Dorado,Butler Co., KS Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Census 12 January 1920  El Dorado,Butler Co,KS Find all individuals with events at this location  [5
    Census 1930  El Dorado,Butler Co,KS Find all individuals with events at this location  [6
    Died ?Abt 1955  KS Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Notes 
    • Excerpts from daughter, Ethel (Hand) Armstrong's Story "A Family Named Hand"
      ... "In April of nineteen hundred, another little girl joined the Hand family. She had blue eyes, a dark complexion and lots of straight black hair. She had a personality all her own. She suffered from colic and was often in real pain so she cried a lot. Father was very disappointed because he had been hoping for another son. She was given the name of Clara May." (Marcia's Note: Her birth record says her name was Clara Mae. She was born on 22 Apr 1900.)
      "Father and mother struggled to make ends meet on the sandy, eighty acres. He planted the cleared land and worked at removing the huge pine stumps and clearing more land. He bought a team of horses and a cow for milk and butter. There was a flock of chickens for eggs and meat. A pig was raised for meat. He worked for and with other farmers. In the spring, the dandelion greens furnished a welcome addition to the diets as did the wild mushrooms, called morels that grew in the woods everywhere. Later there were the wild strawberries and juneberries. Then there were long sweet wild blackberries, wild raspberries and the hills were blue with the wild blue berries known as huckleberries. Wild cranberries could be gathered from the marshy bogs in fall and there were a variety of nuts to gather. Mother canned as much as she could get cans for. There were wild game and fish to put meat on the table. In late summer, there were bushels of the huge flat harvest mushrooms around the old stumps."
      "During the first winter (Marcia's Note: 1900-1901) of Clara's life a near tragedy happened. She had cried a lot with colic and it irritated father until he could stand no more of it. He grabbed her up in his arms, opened the door and threw her into a steep snow bank in the yard. Mother jumped up to go to her and he roughly knocked her into a chair and held her there with both hands. She struggled and screamed for him to let her go to the baby but he only held her harder and shouted, "Let the brat cry out there," with a lot of choice words mixed in. The other children were terrified. They huddled in a corner not understanding what was going on. After a time, father calmed down somewhat and released mother and she dashed outside and picked up the now silent baby. She was half-frozen but alive. Mother bathed her in lukewarm water to start her circulation going and rubbed and moved her arms and legs. She recovered with no ill effects. Mother refused to let the children mention it at any time and I heard about it years later. When I asked mother about it, she said that she didn't even want to think about it much less talk about it but I heard the older children discuss it when they were alone." ...
      ..."By fall we were well established again and it seemed like we had never been gone. The older children were in school at Burden Lake school again, after missing a year. Hester and Clara were old enough to go now too.
      There was one queer little incident connected with the school that I must tell you. All of the children carried their lunch in a dinner pail and almost every day some part of a lunch was missing. Some child would be missing a sandwich, a boiled egg, a piece of cheese or something when the noon hour came. Everyone tried to watch but no one was seen to touch the lunches. Clara's lunch seemed to be robbed more often that the others. Maybe it was handier to get to where it sat on the shelf. On one of their trips to town mother bought a really strong laxative powder. It was called epicake or some such name. She also bought some peanut butter which was a luxury. The next day she baited a peanut butter sandwich with the powder and put it in Clara's lunch. She told Clara that if there were two sandwiches at noon to eat only the bottom one and bring the other one home untouched but if only one remained she could eat it. She also told her to brag about the fact that she had peanut butter sandwiches that day. At noon she found that she had only one sandwich so she ate it. During the afternoon the teacher got up and ask one of the older girls to take charge while she went to the outside bathroom. After the second time the Hand kids looked at each other and then began to snicker. After the next time out they giggled so had that the other kids began to ask what the joke was and they told them. When the teacher came in she was greeted with so much giggling and laughing that she dismissed the school and told the kids to go home. I think that she knew that she had fallen into a trap. My parents could hardly believe that the teacher was the guilty one. She boarded at a nice place and could not have been really that hungry. At any rate, it stopped the lunch stealing for good."...
      ..."One summer day, a peddler came by with his enclosed buggy and a team of horses. Peddlers were just like a mobile department store. They carried everything from pots and pans to yard goods, harness repair to silverware and tools. Anything that a housewife might want they could dig into their stock and come up with. He stopped in front of the house and called for mother to come out to see his wares. Clara and I were playing in the back yard so we ran to the road as fast as we could go to see what the peddler had. Clara had a wart on the side of her heel and it bothered her a lot when she had to wear shoes but of course she was barefoot that day. When she reached the roadside she stopped but I didn't and I ran into her and somehow my toenail hit the wart and cut it off as cleanly as any doctor could have done it. It must have hurt a lot and she screamed and jumped around and at first mother and I didn't know what was going on until we saw the blood and then it was hard to tell because it bled heavily and must have hurt a lot too. Mother was busy for a while trying to stop the bleeding and get Clara calmed down. The peddler finally became impatient and left and mother had never gotten to look at his things. Mother told me that at least I had saved them some money because there were planning to have the wart taken off before school started because it bothered her when she wore shoes. It never did grow back either and it wasn't really painful after the first few hours."...
      ..."In order to try to keep the crow population in check, the county paid a bonus of twenty-five cents for each crow head brought in. We knew where a pair of crows was nesting and we knew there were baby crows in the nest because we could hear them. One day we went to the huge cottonwood tree where the nest was and Clara decided to get the birds for bounty. Harvey wouldn't climb up after them but Clara was somewhat of a tomboy and was not afraid of anything, so she climbed up and robbed the nest. She tied a string around the necks of all five baby birds and dropped them to the ground. If the string had not choked them the fall would have killed them and while she made her way down Harvey cut off their heads. The next trip into town Clara went along and took the crow heads into the clerk's office. He looked at them and then he said, "Young lady, I think that you have a bargain there but the law says nothing about size and they definitely are crows so here is your money." One dollar and a quarter. She was rich!"...
      ..."When Hester quit the restaurant and Sylvia was going to quit the manager asked if they had any sisters, who could be hired. Clara was only fifteen but the labor laws were very lax so she was hired to replace Hester. About the second day that she waited on tables, a man named Frank Griffith walked in and sat down and she waited on him and it was love at first sight. He ate there every day for a week and by then they were madly in love and planning to elope. Clara confided in Sylvia and asked her to tell mother after they were gone but Sylvia promptly called mother on the phone and told her they were eloping. It really shook things up at our house. Of course, Goldie and I only got it in bits and pieces that we overheard from one end of the phone conversation. Father hitched the horse to the buggy and they took off for town in a big hurry but by the time they got there Clara and Frank had been to the Justice of the Peace and were man and wife. Things were very up in the air for awhile. Father said that the marriage would be annulled because of Clara's age but she said that if it was she would run away and they would never see or hear from her again. She probably would have done it too. There were several very hectic days with tears and cussing but in the end things calmed down and they stayed married. If Clara ever regretted getting married so young, I never heard of it and they were married for over forty years and marriage only ended in her death."...
      ..."Hester, Clara and I were also left-handed. Clara's teacher had forced her to write right-handed and she had never learned to write well with either hand."...
      ..."By then Clara had given birth to two little boys both of them having lived only a few months and Hester had also given birth to a baby girl." ...
      ..."Clara was pregnant again after losing two little boys."...
      ..."Some time about then Clara gave birth to a healthy baby boy and was later told that her folks were all battling for their lives."
    Person ID I482  Marcia Shears
    Last Modified 18 April 2006 

    Father John Harvey HAND,   b. 12 March 1869, Howe,Lagrange Co.,IN Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 8 December 1922, Lansing,Ingham Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 53 years) 
    Mother Frances Grace GREEN,   b. 28 February 1878, Near Steator,LaSalle Co,IL Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 29 July 1921, El Dorado,Butler Co,KS Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 43 years) 
    Married 1 March 1894  Sturgis,St Joseph Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID F37  Family Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family/Spouse Franklin A. GRIFFITH,   b. March 1895, KS Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. KS Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Married about 1915 
    Children 
     1. Harold F. GRIFFITH,   b. 1920, KS Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. KS Find all individuals with events at this location
     2. (Male) GRIFFITH,   b. before 1921,   d. before 1921, KS Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age ~ 0 years)
     3. LIVING
     4. LIVING
     5. LIVING
     6. LIVING
    Family ID F267  Family Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Sources 
    1. [S394] A Family Named Hand, Ethel (Hand) Armstrong.

    2. [S164] HAND Clara Mae Birth Record, (MI Col., Mecosta Co.; Births 1892-1905, Vol C, Page 178, Rec 330), M/F 1004847. (Reliability: 3).

    3. [S434] 1900 US Federal Census - HAND Frances Family , also M/F 1240730 Mason & Mecosta Co. 1900 Census a., Austin, Mecosta Co., MI - ED 92, Sheet 7B Lines 99-100 & 8A Lines 1-2, Image 14 and 15 of 15 .

    4. [S440] 1920 US Federal Census - HAND John Family, (Sturgis, St. Joseph Co., MI, ED 161, Lines 51-57, Image 18 of 20).

    5. [S982] 1920 US Federal Census - GRIFFITH Franklin Family , (El Doredo, Butler Co., KS, Ed 21, Sheet 12B, Lines 98-100, Image 24 of 28 ).

    6. [S983] 1930 US Federal Census - GRIFFITH Frank E. Family , (El Dorado, Butler Co., KS, ED 20, Lines 72-77, Image 14 of 29 ).


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