This post is part of #52Ancestorsin52Weeks – Week 2 – Favorite Photo
Gosh this one was hard! I have so many favorite photos!!
Although I could go back and find one of my favorites, I will say that my favorite photo is usually the last one I have received. Getting photos unexpectedly from a family member is so awesome. And it’s so much fun for me to connect faces to names, and learn more about the members of my family.
My cousin recently gifted me with some photos and I looked back at them and this was the last one I scanned.
This is my 2nd Great Grandfather, Ira Franklin Turner. He was born May 16, 1867 to Charles A and Mary Mae (Gokey) Turner in Milton VT.*
Milton VT was a small town (about 61 square miles in area) located in the Northwestern part of the state on the eastern shore of Lake Champlain. By the end of the 1700’s, there were ~300 settlers. During the early years, most of the income in the town came from lumber and potash. After 1840 butter, cheese and milk became popular exports.
The Lamoille River flows from northeast to southwest across the town, entering Lake Champlain at the town’s southwest corner. There were originally seven waterfalls on the Lamoille River within the Town of Milton. The falls supplied the needed power for the saw, grist and other mills that grew up along the river. A 325 foot long covered bridge built in 1835 was the third bridge built to cross the Lamoille River in West Milton. It must have been quite a sight to see when circuses came to town and the elephants had to swim the Lamoille River because the authorities were afraid they would wreck the old covered bridge. This covered bridge was eventually destroyed in 1902. However, it was high water and ice that caused the destruction, not elephants.
By 1880 Milton had three meeting houses, nine stores, a paper mill, two gristmills, three fulling mills, three tanneries, a weekly newspaper, and numerous shops and hotels. By the turn of the century, with a population of about 1,800, many more changes would occur.
On October 22, 1887, Ira married Ellen Loveley, also a native of Milton. Ellen was 18 years old, Ira was 20. The following year, on November 29, 1888 they welcomed their only child, George Charles Turner.
Ira had lived in Milton all of his life, and by the age of 33 was a blacksmith. According 1900 to the census he was a blacksmith for horses, so perhaps a farrier.
By 1920, Ira was employed as a repair man at the International Paper Company’s pulp mill at the Great Falls on the Lamoille River. When the mill was under construction, about 250 men were employed. Once the mill was operating, it employed about 100 men during its winter rush season.
During the period of November 2-4, 1927 Milton received between 4-9″ of rain. During the month of October they had experienced 150% more rain than normal. The water ran into the already high rivers, causing the Lemoille River to flood. Homes and businesses were lost, the water washed out bridges and changed the landscape of the town forever.
Ira and Ellen stayed in Milton and by 1930 they had purchased their own home and Ira was a repairman at a saw mill. Ellen’s parents had both passed away by then and her brother Fred, who was about 50 years old, also lived with them.
In 1940, Ira was 73 and Ellen was 71. Ira had retired and Fred also lived with them. The continued to live in Milton until they passed away, Ellen on February 14, 1948 and Ira, just seven months later, on October 18, 1948.
*I do have not confidence in my records of his siblings, so I won’t include them here.
Featured Image courtesy of http://www.uvm.edu/landscape/menu.php