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Hester Elizabeth HAND[1, 2]

Female 1898 - 1961  (62 years)


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  • Name Hester Elizabeth HAND 
    Born 30 December 1898  Clay Twp.,Howe,Lagrange Co.,IN Find all individuals with events at this location  [3
    Gender Female 
    Census 22 June 1900  Austin Twp.,Mecosta Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  [4
    Education 1909  Burden Lake School,Mecosta Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    Census 1910  Austin Twp,Mecosta Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  [5
    Education 1912  Prospect School,District #8,El Dorado,Butler Co., KS Find all individuals with events at this location  [2
    Census 1930  Austin Twp,Mecosta Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  [1
    Died 29 August 1961  Stanwood,Mecosta Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  [3, 6, 7
    Cause: Acute Circulatory Failure, Post Myocardial Infarction, Arteriosclerosis 
    Buried 1 September 1961  Pine Plains Cemetery,Colfax Twp.,Mecosta Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  [3, 7, 8, 9
    Notes 
    • Excerpts from daughter, Ethel (Hand) Armstrong's Story "A Family Named Hand"
      ..."Just about the turn of the century our parents left the Indiana farm where my father had been born and where their three oldest children had also been born and came to Michigan."
      ..."The third child was a red haired, green-eyed girl. She had a fragile look about her but really wasn't. She was named Hester Elizabeth. Mother's mother's name was Elizabeth but the Hester was just because it had a pretty sound to it I guess." ...
      ..."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."...
      ..."Father was what is known as a "water witch". He could take a forked twig from a willow or peach tree and walk over the ground and tell where water ran near the surface and a well could be put down. He almost never failed and people came sometimes from quite a distance to get him to witch them a well. I don't know how it works, I only know it does. I think that you have to have a special faith to do it. It never worked for mother and never worked for me. Hester could do it after she grew up."...
      ..."Hester was also growing up and she had taken a job as a sort of governess to the little son of a famous opera singer named Garoldine Ferrer. When she wasn't on a singing tour, she lived with her mother on her mother's ranch. She had been married but I don't know what happened to her husband but she and her son lived in seclusion. Very few people knew that she had a son. Of course, famous people didn't air their private lives like they do now. Hester's duties consisted mostly of playing with the boy and keeping watch of him at all times. She taught him how to catch the big fire flies and put them in a jar and turn them loose in his room at night. He got a big kick out of that. In the evening, he would watch outside until it was beginning to grow dark then he would say to her. "Hester, I 'spect' the bugs are out." My folks said that working for Mrs. Ferrer gave Hester airs and made her uppity pupity. I don't know but it might be true. Certainly their life style was a long way above ours and she was treated as one of the family. At least, they taught her a lot about clothes and they taught her that lunch was the noon meal and that dinner was the evening meal and how to use silverware. She was encouraged to read too. She was always learning. She learned to say Sylvia instead of Sylvy and Clara instead of Clary like we always did. Hester was entirely different from Sylvia. Sylvia was a down to earth person, Hester was a dreamer. She was slim and dainty and gave an impression of being fragile.
      Hester made very good grades in school and her attendance record was perfect so she had been allowed to skip a grade and had caught up with Sylvia. She wanted to go Teachers Normal too so she quit working for Mrs. Ferrer with her blessing. Bill's mother let her share Sylvia's room too and the restaurant also hired her.
      Shortly after she finished Normal, Sylvia asked for permission to marry Bill. Our parents had a few misgivings because he was older, had been married before and had two sons and his former wife had divorced him. They liked him though, so they consented. His mother had offered to let them live with her until they could make a home of their own. Hester went back to work for Mrs. Ferrer while waiting to get a school. She never got one, probably because of her youth and inexperience. Sylvia did not apply because of her marriage coming up."...
      ..."Some of our old Michigan friends had kept in touch and that summer the son of one came through Kansas and hunted us up. He had been just a boy when we left but now he had struck out on his own. He was using a different last name (Marcia's note: Lewis Henry Barnum was the name he was using, Lysher was his birth surname according to census records and information from other Lysher descendants.) and when my mother asked him about it, he said that his mother had been married to a man by that name for a short time and that the name was his legally. My parents never accepted that but I don't know. At any rate, he had an eye for Hester and started dating her."...
      ..."Early in the spring of 1916, Hester and Lewis were married with her parents blessing. (Marcia's note: They were married 9 Feb 1916.) They were still at odds with him for claiming the name of Barnum. They still were sure he was a Laser but they put up no objections to the marriage."...
      ..."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. (Marcia's notes: Hester's first child was Lucille Helen Barnum, born 7 Nov 1916.)"...
      ..."We teased Mother to give us Indian names and she finally did. Of course, in a real Indian family the mother is not the one that names the children but we were happy anyway. Sylvia was Grey Eagle, Harvey was Red Feather, Hester was Nimble Fingers, Clara was Still Water and Goldie was Silver Star. I was Lone Feather. I don't remember what she called George but she took the name of Looking Glass for herself. She sure did a good job of picking names, I think."...

      -------------------------------

      (Marcia Shears' Memories of Grandma Barnum)

      I can remember being in the car as a young child (she died when I was 5) and not knowing where we were going until I saw the stump fences. Then I was excited because I knew that we were going to grandma's house.
      Grandma's house had an outside pumb and an outhouse. It did not have electricity or indoor plumbing. I remember being afraid that I would fall into the large hole, I think that there were two holes in the wooden seat, in the outhouse and I remember getting a wooden splinter in my backside from the seat.
      I remember she had a good sense of humor and loved to tell made up stories and she very was very good at it. Sometimes we would say something like, "Tell us the story about the three little pigs" and she would tell us a wonderful story but it wasn't the traditional one we all knew.
      She made her own dresses and bib style aprons. I don't remember ever seeing her in a pair of pants. She also made patchwork quilts from the left over scraps of colorful cotton material and Debbie and I would sit for hours looking at all of the hexagonal pieces sewn together like flowers and remembering where the pieces came from, this is grandma's dress, this is grandma apron etc. These were all sewn by hand and hand tied to the batting and backing.
      She made each of us an embroidered pillowcase, which we loved because it was unique for us and she had made it, mine had pink elephants on it. Because of this memory, I embroidered a pillowcase for each of my nieces and nephews.
      She wore a back brace all of the time, even to bed. I remember her sleeping with us when she came to visit. I would tell her to take off the brace because it hurt when we hugged her but she said that she couldn't.
      The last time I saw her was at a family reunion not long before she died. She had been very ill before that time and everyone remarked on how well she looked, so it came to a great shock to everyone when she died right after that.

      --------------------------------

      DEATH: Age at time of death: 62. Funeral: Rogers Funeral Home, Big Rapids, Mecosta Co., MI.

      DEATH: She died at her sister Ethel Armstong's House, 8838 220th Ave., Stanwood, Mecosta Co, MI
    Person ID I74  Marcia Shears
    Last Modified 30 June 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 Lewis Henry LYSHER BARNUM,   b. 23 September 1893, Albion,Noble Co.,IN Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 8 July 1952, Lakeview,Moncalm Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 58 years) 
    Married 9 February 1916  El Dorado,Butler Co.,KS Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
    +1. Lucille Helen BARNUM,   b. 7 November 1916, Great Bend,Barton Co.,KS Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 24 July 2000, Grand Rapids,Kent Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 83 years)
    +2. Lawrence Gilbert BARNUM,   b. 7 August 1918, Covert,Paw Paw,VanBuren Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 27 January 2005, Grand Rapids,Kent Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 86 years)
     3. Leo Clifford BARNUM,   b. 13 May 1920, El Dorado,Butler Co.,KS Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 14 December 2001, Baldwin,Lake Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 81 years)
    +4. LIVING
    +5. Hilda Fayette BARNUM,   b. 2 October 1923, Lansing,Ingham Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 25 October 1983, Stanwood,Mecosta Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 60 years)
    +6. P. T. BARNUM,   b. 14 December 1925, Lansing,Ingham Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 7 December 1996, Morley,Mesosta Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 70 years)
    +7. Harry Lester BARNUM,   b. 3 April 1928, Lansing,Ingham Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 17 April 1997  (Age 69 years)
    +8. Luella Marie BARNUM,   b. 16 March 1931, Rodney,Mecosta Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 10 October 1961, Grand Rapids,Kent Co.,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 30 years)
    +9. LIVING
    +10. LIVING
    +11. LIVING
     12. Marshall Leroy BARNUM,   b. 2 February 1940, Paris,Mecosta Co,MI Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 2 February 1940, Paris,Mecosta Co,MI Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 0 years)
    Family ID F27  Family Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Sources 
    1. [S144] 1930 US Federal Census - BARNUM Lewis Family, (Austin, Mecosta Co, MI, ED 3, Sheet 3A, Lines 30-38, Image 5 of 10 ) (Reliability: 3).

    2. [S394] A Family Named Hand, Ethel (Hand) Armstrong.

    3. [S150] BARNUM Hester Death Certificate 1961, (Mecosta Co., MI - Local File 87, Cert. Copy of Rec of Death 1403) (Reliability: 3).

    4. [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 .

    5. [S433] 1910 US Federal Census - HAND John Family , (Austin, Mecosta Co., MI - ED 115, Lines 34, 41, Image 15 of 18 ).

    6. [S267] BARNUM Hester E. Obituary 1961, (The Big Rapids Pioneer, Published: ?, Page ?) (Reliability: 2).

    7. [S1045] BARNUM Hester Funeral Paper (Reliability: 2).

    8. [S427] BARNUM Hester E. Cemetery Marker (Reliability: 3).

    9. [S1311] Pine Plains Cemetery Mecosta Co, Location (Reliability: 3).


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