August 31, 2006

Househunting in Basye

deer in woodsWe saw these deer on Tuesday here in Bryce. It is common to see deer here but uncommon to get a series of pictures, because they are shy. ("No pictures please," say the little celebri-deer.)

We were on Hampton Drive, I believe, in the Confederate Generals section. I call it that because of the street names: Stonewall, Beauregard, Lee, etc. We were there to look at a house for sale on Stuart Drive. It was nice enough but there was one in another section that we liked better so we made an offer on it. I'll take some photos of it next week, probably at the time of the home inspection.

We like Bryce Resort a lot but our little chalet is just a bit cramped for all our stuff. So we are buying a slightly larger house that also has a bigger yard. I think the location is better, close to Supinlick Ridge Road, but still in the resort where we can enjoy the restaurants and beautiful scenery.
whitetail deer

More on Jacob Suiter

When I checked a map for the town of Chesapeake, Ohio, I discovered that it is on the Ohio River across from Huntington, WV. I was amazed because I was in Huntington in May and had no idea that I was practically gazing at the site of an ancestral home.

Here's a picture of the Ohio River taken from the West Virginia side at Point Pleasant.

I found a historical article at rootsweb lawrence county which mentions my ancestors Jacob and Margaret Suiter. I don't know how accurate it was; obviously, some spellings are wrong. Is Jeremiah another name for my ggg-grandfather Israel Suiter?

Next below, about 1798 settled Jacob SUITER (*). His wife's maiden name was Margaret MASTERS. Their children were Hiram, William, Phillip, Jeremiah and Mordecai. Hiram was killed by the falling of a scaffold in middle age. Phillip has been married four times, is now living some fifteen miles from me, and is a respectable man. One of his sons went into the army in our late war, a sergeant, came out a captain, and is now the Recorder of Scott Co., Iowa. William is dead and Mordecai lives in Kansas and is a preacher.

SUITER for some time lived with his brother-in-law Joseph CRANK (*), a quiet and peaceable man. He was celebrated for making the finest canoes that run this part of the river. CRANK was a religious man. He conducted the first funeral I was ever at...

Comment: Peggy writes: This is the other side of the family, however, from the underground railroad story. That story comes from Mom's Grandma Lila -- Elida Belle Harper (don't know her maiden name offhand). The story goes that her father (our GGGrandfather) was the pastor of the First Presbyterian church of Philadelphia. When Elida was a little girl, she woke up extra early one morning, went downstairs and was astonished to find a strange man, a black man, eating breakfast at the kitchen table. Her father sternly admonished her never to tell anyone about it.

No idea if it's true, but I prefer to believe it is.... "

August 30, 2006

Condo For Sale, one stop from NYC

Marie is offering her cute condo in Jersey City for sale. She's done a lot or work to it, restoring it's historical charm.

Squirrel Sequence


August 28, 2006

Lawrence County Suiters

I posted some Suiter and Hammer family history in January. Recently someone wrote who is also a descendant of the Lawrence County Ohio Suiters. So here's a little more genealogy as written in a letter by my father's sister, Clarice Suiter Rose and edited by me to include some data she wrote elsewhere.
We are descended from one Jacob Augustine Suiter and Margaret McMasters. Jacob's ancestors are said to be from Saxony, Germany, coming to the United States via Switzerland and Holland about 1702 and settling in Western Pennsylvania. By 1765 they were living near Pittsburgh at a place near Brownsville.
Jacob was born in 1770. The family lost their property in Pennsylvania at the time of the Whiskey Rebellion and migrated to the Ohio Valley in 1796 or 1800. They settled near the juncture of the Ohio River and Symmes Creek, where the village of Chesapeake, Ohio is now located. This is in Lawrence County. Jacob A. Suiter died about 1840 and his wife Margaret in 1854.
The children of Jacob Augustine Suiter and his wife Margaret were:
Sons: Mordecai, Philip, William, Israel Luke (my ancestor)
Daughters: Bethena and Mary.

Jacob A. Suiter Sr. may also have had a son Hiram whose descendants were Alex, John, Francis, and Harriet.
My ancestor Israel Luke Suiter was born in 1810 and died in 1857. He descendants by his marriage to Catherine Smith (b.1817, d.1885) were:
  • Jacob Augustine Suiter (3rd?) b. 1838 who married Diana Forgey
  • James P. Suiter b. 1840 (my ancestor) who married Susan Davenport
  • Sanders Suiter b. 1847 who married Susan Hoskins
  • Mary Suiter (dates unknown) married George Bay [this Mary is not to be confused with her aunt Mary who married a man named Crawford]
  • Tennessee Suiter married Willam Hannack
  • Alex T. Suiter married Savina Beale
  • Nancy Suiter married Clinton Gillett

Picture: List of Births From Dr. James Suiter's Bible

[See my June blog for notes on James P. Suiter. I have additional information on Dr. Suiter but it would take some time to type it up. Briefly, he attended Marshall College in WV, taught school, served in the Civil War with the 84th Illinois Vol. Infantry, went to Detroit College of medicine, married schoolteacher Susan Davenport in 1877, and had one son, Charles Leslie Suiter - my grandfather.]

Links regarding James Suiter's Civil War regiment:
84th Illinois History
Roster of 84th Illinois, Co. B

Another Suiter descendant name Linda wrote: " Jacob Suiter died June 23, 1832. He is buried in the Suiter Cemetery, Bradrick, Lawrence County, Ohio. Margaret was born in 1773 and died October 19, 1855 in Kentucky and she too is buried in the Suiter Cemetery in Bradrick.

There is a house located in Chesapeake (Chesapeake and Bradrick are located side by side) which was built by Jacob Suiter. This is listed on the National Registry of Historic Places (I think). It was built back in 1824. It was told to me that the house's chimney's - one on each end of the house - were built first and then the rest of the house was built. It was rumored that there were places in the fireplace where people could be hidden from view and would not be bothered by the flames and that this house was used as part of the Underground Railway.

Don't know if you are familiar with Joann Loete who has the Suiter family newsletter. Has information from Suiters from all over."

FaceTweet it!

August 27, 2006

Just a few more pics of Glebe Harbor

We're back in Basye but I wanted to post these pictures of our last morning in the Northern Neck. We treated the dogs to one last walk to the beach.

Then we went back to the house and cleaned and cleaned. We packed the car and had no room for the trash so I had to hold a big garbage bag on my lap for the 15 minute ride to the dump. After that we drove home: US 3 to 522 to 211 and across the Blue Ridge to 1-81. I was so delighted to see the Shenandoah Valley again that I clapped my hands.
walking dog

Books I read in Montross

Since we didn't have high-speed internet in Glebe Harbor, I caught up on some reading. In addition to bits and pieces of books and magazines that I read while waiting for web pages to load, I read these books (links take you to their pages on Amazon):cannon
  • Lee and Grant: A Dual Biography by Gene Smith - This double biography flows easily and is interesting to read.

  • Nop's Trials by Donald McCaig, a story about a border collie who was dognapped and eventually found by his owner who went to great lengths to find him. There's some disturbing animal cruelty as the dog suffers misguided caretakers, but the wild-chase-type ending is fun to read.

  • Gods and Generals by Jeff Shaara. I listened to this book on audio cassette. It's a fictionalized account of the Civil War (mostly in Virginia) leading up to Gettysburg. Not much new but it is well-written and entertaining.

  • Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser, a look at the history of fast food restaurants and some of the problems in our food chain. This updated edition has an afterword that tells how fast food restaurants have actually helped the meat industry clean up their act.

August 26, 2006

Marie's Book is here!

I received my copy of Stalking the Wild Dik-Dik - One Woman's Solo Misadventures Across Africa by my daughter Marie. It looks really good, nice cover with a dik-dik (little antelope) peaking out. She thoughtfully dedicated the book to her mom.

Those who followed her online blog of her travels in Africa in 2001 will have already read many of her adventures. The photo here is from that site which covered her exciting trip around-the-world via surface travel.

Moving Along

Moving always takes longer than you think it will. Even when you are just leaving a summer home! We have so much STUFF! We gave away a carload of it, mostly to Goodwill Industries and Computer Recycling in Tappahannock. We also dropped off a large box of books at the library in Hague. And of course we took a carload of junk to the dump.

But we are done. And the new tenant can move in tomorrow and enjoy the view.

August 22, 2006

Plan B: Rent it out

We have taken our waterfront house off the market. A nice woman has signed a lease and will rent it from us until next summer, at least.

It's kind of nice to know that someday we will come back here and see the herons again.
birds flying

Port Republic Field Trip

Today I posted some pictures from a Civil War tour of several years ago, Cross Keys and Port Republic.

These battlefields are in the Shenandoah Valley southeast of Harrisonburg. Port Republic is a quaint village where the North River and South River come together, forming the South Fork of the Shenandoah River.

The rivers sometimes rise up and flood the village. However, this disadvantage has discouraged development and kept the town small and historic-looking.

August 21, 2006

Two more swan photos

swan The swans that come to visit us are so graceful. They glide across the water making only the gentlest ripples.

I've heard that swans can become a nuisance and can even be aggressive like geese.

Still, I'll miss the swans and herons when we return to the mountains later this week.

August 20, 2006

Swans looking for a home

Check this out! Hutt Realty has this property listed for sale!

Swans Seeking Snacks

I took both these pictures from our back yard in Glebe Harbor. That's our neighbor Harlan with Frank on the dock in the picture below.

The swans seemed to be expecting some food. Later they crossed the cove and a man tossed them some snacks.

Last Chance Open House

We will hold "Open House" at the waterfront house in Glebe Harbor one more time. If no one writes a contract, we will probably rent it out. We already have a prospective tenant who works for the school system in Montross.

The house next door is still for sale. (It is on the right in the picture above.) They have reduced the price to $399K. It has a nice dock with boat lift. They are also selling their boat and trailer. They have moved to Richmond to be closer to family members.

August 18, 2006

Trip to Tredegar

Yesterday we drove to Richmond to visit the Civil War Visitor Center at Tredegar Iron Works. It's a National Park Service museum, interesting enough, not very large. The setting is fascinating: an old industrial site with ruins of huge masonry buildings, outdoor exhibits interpreting the site, and huge mill wheels. It is close to the canal and Belle Isle.

Richmond is about an hour and a half from Mt. Holly. We also stopped in Mechanicsville to shop at Office Max and Ukrop's.

August 17, 2006

Where's Waldo?

Can you find the bird in this photo?
creek with bird on branch
I was walking my dog when I saw the reflection of a large bird in the water. It took a few minutes to spot the actual bird. He looked like a kingfisher but he may have been a great blue heron -- there are a pair of herons who fish in our cove all the time.

I took several pictures but most were hopelessly blurred due to camera movement which in turn was due to my dog dashing around me in circles on the leash, making it hard to hold my hand still. It as no use telling him to stop because he cannot hear. I imagine the bird would have heard and flown away.

If you didn't spot him, he's on a branch on the downed tree at the left.

Mt. Holly, Virginia

August 16, 2006

Still trying to sell the Waterfront House

We held Open House at the House we are selling at Glebe Harbor over the weekend and feedback was positive - but no one wrote a contract. We will hold another Open House this weekend Aug. 19-20 (that's 2006, for those who find this in the archives next year).

August 15, 2006

Dogs at the river

dog standing in river
Yes, I've posted photos of our dogs at the beach before. But I get such a charge from seeing old Guppy having fun in the water.

On the other hand, Benny refuses to get in the water at all.

Yesterday when we were walking the dogs, we saw a bald eagle fly overhead. The Northern Neck of Virginia is known as a home of eagles, and we have seen them before, especially at Westmoreland State Park.

August 14, 2006

Small improvements with impact

Since our Glebe Harbor House is for sale, we have been sprucing it up a little. For instance, one of the sliding doors had fogged glass (due to a leak in the weather-seal). We had it replaced and now you have a clear view of the cove.

Also, Frank has been trimming shrubs and trees all over the yard. It makes a big difference down by the water because now you can easily see the creek from the street.

August 13, 2006

Eclectic not electric Skillet

An old friend has opened a personal chef business called The Eclectic Skillet in Shepherdstown, WV. Sally Mckee will come to your home and cook a special meal for you.

August 12, 2006

Guppy likes the beach house

dog on ramp
My dog Guppy, who is 14, has difficulty with stairs. He really likes the ramp at our house in the Northern Neck because it's easy to climb. I imagine he really doesn't want us to sell this house!

August 10, 2006

New Market Battlefield

I came across some digital photos that I took on a tour of New Market Battlefield in 1996. Note the split rail fence. This year I helped rebuild this fence!


August 9, 2006

Benevolink for Shopping and Giving

I signed up for Benevolink because of a notice at Ukrop's (a great grocery store in Fredericksburg). Now my shopping trips there generate a donation to charity. I see on the Benevolink Shopping Site that many stores participate, including a huge variety of online stores. I shop online frequently so I'll bookmark their page.

Beach View in Westmoreland County

beach grass

Community Beach, Glebe Harbor

Near Mt. Holly, Virginia

August 8, 2006

Two More Reunion Pictures

Right: Another picture of Linda, Kurt, and Peg.
Click on it to see a larger version.

Below is one of those photos where something close to the lens is distorted but even so, Marie looks cute.

August 7, 2006

Hammer Descendants and Friends

groupOn Saturday, Peggy hosted a reunion of Hammer family descendants and friends. We enjoyed a nice meal together and caught up on family news.

Here I have circled the people who are actually descended from D. Harry Hammer: Meadow, Linda, Kurt, Peggy, Marie, and Doats.

people singing
trioBill, who took the group photos above, played the guitar accompanied by Simone and Peggy.

It had been a long time since I last saw my cousin Kurt and it was great to meet his wife.

We missed those who were not able to come this time: Rick and family, Larry, Dora, Elias and family, and Lynn.

August 6, 2006


Linda, Kurt, Peggy

Meadow and Marie, members of the younger generation of cousins

August 4, 2006

My little garden

Most of our ridge is shady but we have a sunny spot in front of the house so we are growing a small garden there. The hot weather has not bothered it much although we've had to water it a few times.

August 3, 2006

Western State: from Mental Hospital to Fancy Community

I saw this on a Shenandoah Valley television program and looked it up on the web: Western State Hospital in Staunton has been sold to a developer who turn it into a planned community of office, retail, residential and meeting space. The 75-acre site has some surprisingly historic buildings. See the site for a look at the proposed plans and the history which includes a connection to Thomas Jefferson.

August 2, 2006

Bad News and Good News

You may have heard the chilling story that China has massacred 50,000 dogs in response to a rabies outbreak. PETA says that even dogs that were immunized against rabies were killed. One story said that PETA is calling for a boycott of Chinese goods but their website is encouraging Americans to complain to China's Ambassador Zhou Wenzhong in Washington: 202-328-2574 (phone) and 202-328-2582 (fax).

ModestNeeds.Org - Small Change. A World Of Difference. On the other hand, I read a sweet story at Modest Needs about a woman who needed a bed for her son who was recovering from surgery. It turned out that she and her three children had no beds, almost no furniture at all. Donors responded by buying her four beds and a dining room set.

August 1, 2006

Ben and I have something in common

dogI have something in common with our cocker spaniel. We are both allergic to wheat. Our symptoms are different though... he gets diarrhea but I get sleepy. To be more specific, my blood pressure drops, my pulse goes up, my thinking slows down, and my eyes get heavy.

Some time ago I realized that Ben got itchy paws whenever he ate Beneful. Now I buy him Natural Balance or Joy Dog Food - the latter is much cheaper but I can't find it in our area.