Dekalb County Indiana Genealogy Society - Prior Meetings
DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society P.O. Box 6085, Auburn, IN 46706

Prior Meeting Details

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Trash or Treasure
Roger Lash

6:00 Social Time 6:15 meeting time
At the Upstairs Meeting Room at the Eckhart Library

No one is an expert in everything and Roger would have been able to do research or ask knowledgeable friends/experts to help him come to a more accurate appraisal if you already sent a picture or description. If you didn’t send a picture to us, please bring your item(s) to the meeting anyway! At the beginning you can put 2 items (or groupings) on the table and if we have time, we can appraise more items. We suggest you put the “extra” items under your chair or beside your chair until we know if there is time to cover more. Come and check this “Antique Roadshow” type of a program out. Even if you don’t have anything old or collectible to bring, it is so much fun to watch! Bring something to share for refreshments. Plates, napkins, drinks will be furnished. If you need forks or spoons with your dish, please bring.

DCIGS - Trash or Treasure - 12-13-2016

The Underground Railroad

The DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society will meet at the Waterloo Public Library on Tuesday, November 15, 2016, 6:00 social time, 6:15 meeting time. The program will be "The Underground Railroad" by Jeannie Regan-Dinius.

Jeannie has a lifelong interest in history, family history and research. She was the executive director of a historic park in Huntington, IN. She came to the DNR-DHPA in 2000 to help work on the Underground Railroad research initiative. She was also given the additional responsibility of the Cemetery Registry, the Historic Theater Initiative and public outreach.

Slavery in the U.S. was abolished December 1865. The Underground Railroad refers to a widespread network of diverse people in the nineteenth century who aided slaves escaping to freedom from the southern U.S. You do not have to be a member to attend.

Jeannie Regan-Dinius

DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society

TUESDAY (notice change….)
October 11, 2016
6:00 social time 6:15 meeting time

Close Room
(Upstairs at the Eckhart Public Library)

The Pilgrims and The First Thanksgiving
Facts & Myths

William Carey

Fact or Myth? Bill will present a power point presentation covering Thanksgiving. You do not have to be a member to come to our meetings.

DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society

Indiana State & DeKalb History Jeopardy
Amanda Blackman

August 20 Saturday @ 5:45 Dinner at 6:00 (Program after dinner)
At the Masonic Lodge

223 W. Hobart St. Ashley, IN (Across from the smiley face water tower)


Picture of Amanda Blackman in front of the DeKalb County "Waterloo" Mastodon. When was it found and where is it now? This may be one of the questions.
In celebration of 200 years of Indiana History, Amanda will be making up a Jeopardy-Like game. Come join the fun and if you don’t know the answers have a great time learning. Prizes will be given to the winners. We will also have door prizes. How well do you know Indiana or DeKalb History? Some questions will be easy and some will be hard. One of the prizes will be a new compilation of 200 plus stories of the cemetery talks we have been doing for the last 16 years. This will also be in honor of the 200th birthday of Indiana.

Menu: Pecan chicken, baked steak, mashed potatoes & gravy,
Almond green beans, tossed salad, rolls, homemade pie & drinks.

Members, guests and the public are welcome.

For more information: DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society,
PO Box 6085, Auburn, IN 46706
or Roselyn Wells, 925-0384 &

Meal reservations are $12.00 per person and are due on or before August 16

Mail your check (and who will be attending) to: DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society
P.O. Box 6085, Auburn, IN 46706

Name of guests attending: _________________________________________________________________________

$12.00 per person—please make checks out to: D.C.I.G.S. and mail to D.C.I.G.S. P. O. Box 6085 Auburn, IN 46706
ATTENTION: Rather than raise the cost of the meal, please come prepared to leave a gratuity...thanks!

DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society

Monday, July 11, 2016
6:00 p.m.
White City Cemetery Walk
At White City, Spencerville, Indiana

Interesting stories about the residents of the cemetery will be portrayed by DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society members and friends. Names included on this walk will be Allen, Kimes, Emanuel, Farver, Rhodes, Barney, Bishop, Boots, Erick, Kirst, Shutt, Rhodes, Van Zile and others.

If there are thunderstorms or heavy rain, please call to see if we are still having the walk. Before 4:30, call Roselyn Wells at 925-0384 or after 4:30 call 235-0953. Parking will be at the southwest part of the cemetery. Please do not go into small narrow drives. We will have some mosquito spray but you might want to bring your own and bring a lawn chair to sit on at the beginning when we gather.

Below is a picture of David Allen. Born in 1850, he grew up in Fairfield Township and was born after his father, Miles Allen died. The beginning of his life will be portrayed by Rory, great grandson of Sue Kratzman. The end of his life, will be picked up and told by David’s mother, Mary Jane Beggs Allen Shatto. He moved to Spencerville and is buried there. Picture is from the photo albums, collected by Laura Farrington, and now owned by Cindy Rottger. Miles and Mary Jane Allen were ancestors of members, Roselyn Wells and Amanda Blackman.

David Allen

One of our talks will presented by Bill Carey. This is a tidbit from him.

Azriah Vanzile: Hello everyone, I’m Azriah and Monday, June 11, I hope to meet you at my new home in White City. I’ll get to tell you about my family, ancestors and descendants as well as other tidbits. What do the Vanziles and General Meade of Civil War fame have in common? How are the Vanziles connected to DCIGS? What strange thing did my family, ancestors and descendants do almost every time they got a new home? Did anyone see that strange bird in the barnyard? So much to tell, so little time. Jump on your buckboards or in your buggy’s and come for a visit to White City. I can’t wait to have visitors!

Researched by Roselyn Wells
June 13, 2016
6:00 p.m. Refreshments 6:15 p.m. cemetery walk located at Woodlawn Cemetery

We will start the walk close to the entrance that you enter on the 1st road south of the Big Mausoleum. If it is raining heavily or if it is thunder storming, we will have a power point presentation at the Willennar Genealogy Center, a service of the Eckhart Public Library. Call 925-0384 before 5:00….after 5:00 you may call 235-0953 if you are not sure where to go.

To many the end of the Civil War was April 9, 1865 when Gen. Robert E. Lee, the Confederacy’s most respected commander, surrendered. But it was ONLY his army of Northern Virginia, other large and small units had yet to surrender. Sixteen months after Appomattox, on August 20, 1866, the President formally declared an end to the war. We will be honoring some of our Woodlawn Civil War Heroes in our walk, along with Dr. Timothy Matheny.

In 1862 Dr. Timothy Matheny was appointed by Gov. Morton as enrolling officer for Adams County. He enrolled the county during the summer, made the draft in October that year, and his men were mustered in the United States service in November at Camp Sullivan, Ind. He also enlisted in a company, and was about to be commissioned as its Captain, when he was attacked with typhoid fever, which so prostrated him that for about one year he was unable to do manual labor. He and some of his family are located toward the back of Woodlawn, in a small mausoleum located across from Eckhart Park.

Dr. Timothy Matheny mausoleum

Other stories will be about David & Vesta Swartz, Joseph Williamson, Moses Masters, Joseph Rainier, Charles Eckhart, Thomas Hallam, David Swarts, George W. Gordon, William and Anna McIntosh among others. Some of the pictures shown on the walk will be pictures shared with us by Kenneth Warstler.

George W. Gordon, an early Auburn photographer and postcard of the William H. McIntosh home

Nik Blackman is a student at IPFW majoring in Computer Science. He completed his first two years at Ball State. Josh is a student at IUPUI majoring in Communications. Both young men are known for their East Noble theater and musical accomplishments. They have a love of history and Nik has participated in past cemetery walks. Josh Ogle is an award winning soloist and has gone on many cemetery walks in Kendallville.

This program is a combined meeting of the DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society and the Eckhart Public Library.

Roselyn Wells

Wednesday, May 11, 2016
6:00 social time 6:15 meeting time
At the Willennar Genealogy Center (A service of the Auburn Eckhart Public Library)

Roselyn Wells is the President of the DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society and has had a fascination with history and genealogy since she was about 11 years old.

Roselyn Wells

The first documented murder in DeKalb was in 1859! How did they handle murder cases back in the day? Roselyn will cover many early murders from 1859 to 1937. The power point presentation on these tragic murders will tell how it affected the whole family. Murders sometimes happened in the best of families. Murdered and murderer names include Farver, Sheffer, Latta, Knapp, Houlton, Zonker, Bemenderfer, Webb, Ensley, Cox, Black, Cannon, Kuckuck, McInturf, Parks and many others.

Murders happened all over the county: Butler, Waterloo, Fairfield, Auburn, Garrett, etc. There was even a case where the person was about to die from a gunshot wound in Garrett and he apologized to the man who shot him.

Waterloo Cemetery

Come early as there is limited seating to this program. You do not have to be a member of the society to come to the meeting or have a library card from the Eckhart Library. All are welcome.

April 11, 2016, Julie Reese DuVall will be presenting a presentation titled, “Morgan’s Raid: The Battles of Corydon, Indiana and Buffington Island, Ohio for the DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society.” The meeting will be held at the Willennar Genealogy Center (a service of the Eckhart Public Library.) The Society will have a social time at 6:00 and at 6:15 their regular meeting will be held. You do not have to be a member to attend.

Julie shares that a last minute decision to attend the 130th Antietam re-enactment included spending most of her time in the special impressions camp. This fascination had Julie dressed and ready to go by the end of the weekend and well on her way to deciding that the United States Sanitary Commission was the savior of the war’s sick and wounded.

Since 1995 she has participated in the lecture circuit and has been published in several periodicals including the Society of Civil War Surgeon’s magazine. She has spoken to local, state, and regional groups including numerous schools and libraries in Indiana and Ohio, the Huntington, Kosciusko, and Dekalb Co IN Genealogy Societies, The Lincoln Museum guest speaker, Gettysburg National Military Park medical weekends, The Midwest Civil War Civilian Conference guest speaker, The Fort Wayne IN Civil War Days Re-enactments, The Ohio State House Living History programs and the Ohio Village Living History Programs. She has also been a guest lecturer at Ivy Tech College; Fort Wayne, IN for their History Department.

Her presentation “The United States Sanitary Commission”, So Many Wanted to Help” was a featured lecture at the 2009 Midwest Civil War Civilian Conference and the 2012 Society of Civil War Surgeon’s annual conference.

Her other presentations include: The United States Sanitary Commission, Mary Ann Bickerdyke, Mary Edwards Walker, the National Cemeteries, Civil War medicine, The Civil War: Real to Reel and several others.

Julie is a founding member of the 44th IN Civil War Historical Association, in which she also served as president and oversaw the purchase, installation, and re-dedication of several headstones in a local cemetery to those who served during the Civil War as well as the restoration and re-dedication of a local Civil War monument.

Julie, who lives in Fort Wayne, IN, is married to David, a civil war re-enactor and musician, has one re-enactor son, Michael, and two non-re-enactor step-daughters, Margot and Carmen.

The Battle of Buffington Island was an American Civil War engagement in Meigs County, Ohio and Jackson County, West Virginia on July 19, 1863 during Morgan’s Raid. The largest battle in Ohio during the war, it contributed to the capture of the famed Confederate cavalry raider, Brig. Gen. John Hunt Morgan, who was seeking to escape Union army pursuers across the Ohio River.

Jon Blackman will be a speaker for The DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society

 Monday, March 14
It will be held at the Willennar Genealogy Center, a service of the Eckhart Public library
6:00 (social time) 6:15 (meeting time).

The program, “Burial Practices, The History of Death” will start just after a short business meeting. This powerpoint presentation will give us a look at the history and traditions of European and American burial practices. Jon, owner of Computer Oasis in Kendallville keeps busy with his small business and the technical side of computers. Jon Blackman is a small business owner and computer technician who has had an interest in cemetery history and preservation ever since childhood. He has researched comparative religions and religious art and the presentation on cemeteries is an outgrowth of that.

He is a Kendallville native and can be found at Computer Oasis and investigating burial places all over Northeastern Indiana with his wife Amanda Wells Blackman.

February 8, 2016
Tell Us Special Stories of Your Parents or Ancestors!
6:00 Social Time 6:15 meeting time
At the Willennar Genealogy Center

How did they meet? Anything unusual in their courtship or early married life? Come and share in a round table discussion. Pictures are a plus but not necessary! We are planning on having Chili, Hot Chocolate and cookies!

January 11, 2016, Amanda Wells Blackman will be presenting a power point presentation titled, "Gravestone Art" for the DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society. It will be held at the Willennar Genealogy Center (a service of the Eckhart Public Library.) The Society will have a social time at 6:00 and 6:15 will be their regular meeting. You do not have to be a member to attend.

Amanda is a teacher in the Fort Wayne Community School system and lives in Kendallville. She is a DeKalb County native and has done many programs for the local Genealogy Society and has taken her programs to other counties and states. She credits her love of Gravestone Art from studying art and then becoming an art teacher. She goes on, laughingly saying, another inspiration was having a genealogy crazed mother (Roselyn Wells) that brought forth her interest in cemeteries. Also, her father, Jim Wells, works with the Genealogy Society on repairing cemetery stones when he has an opportunity.

This particular program, she will be showing some of her favorite stones that are interesting, beautiful, unique and are good examples of common symbolism found on the stones around DeKalb County.


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