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Treasure Chest Thursday: Anna May (Beerbower) Helbling

Anna May (Beerbower) Helbling, circa 1950s?

Beerbower Family, Helbling Family (Click for Family Tree)

Today, 9 November, is the 63rd anniversary of the death of Anna May (BEERBOWER) HELBLING, daughter of Edgar Peter BEERBOWER (1849-1916) and Anna Missouri (SPRINGSTEEN) BEERBOWER. She was married to Gerard William (“G.W.”) HELBLING (1882-1971) for just 15 days shy of 50 years- their wedding anniversary was the 24th of November.

“May” as she was called by family, was an incredibly loving and giving person. Despite them having very little to support themselves, she always provided for hobos and others who came to their door, asking for food. (Family stories say their house was marked by hobos as the home of a kind woman.)

May was a very religious person, and a good Catholic. Her rosary, cross used for the Last Rites, and her religious necklaces are treasured by her descendants.

May was often sick- she likely had diabetes, as her loving husband gave her shots, and she was confined to bed after years of legs ulcers and other health issues. (We are so lucky today to have better treatments for diabetes!) She was 73 when she passed away on 9 November 1954, so thankfully what was done to manage her health back then did give her many more years than might be expected with diabetes. Her husband’s great love and attention,  plus his intelligence would have helped as well- he invented a bed for her that changed the pressure on various parts of her body so that she would not get bedsores. (He did try to patent it or interest a company in the bed, however was unsuccessful; it was a forerunner of those that are used in hospitals today!) This ingenious bed he built for her likely added many years to her life, as sepsis from bedsores can be fatal, and there weren’t that many effective antibiotics available in the late 1940s and early 1950s.

The picture above was originally thought to be from the 1950s, but she would have been in her 70s then. With the dark hair color and ‘bob’ hairstyle, it is more likely from the 1930s or early 1940s.

The story of the painting behind her is unknown to me. It was probably painted by GW Helbling, and the woman in it almost looks like May. There was a famous actress seen in a similar pose from that era, though her name escapes me. If any family out there knows the history of this painting or its whereabouts, please share!

 

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. Family treasure chest of photos and family oral history told over the years.

 

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We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post (see form below), and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.
 

Original content copyright 2013-2017 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted. 
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Treasure Chest Thursday: G.W. Helbling and Anna May Beerbower Art

Drawings done by Gerard William “G.W.” Helbling as frames for pictures of himself and the love of his life, Anna May (Beerbower) Helbling.

Helbling Family, Beerbower Family (Click for Family Tree)

This has been a challenging year and sadly the blog has been one of the (many) things pushed to the bottom of the list- so sorry. Hopefully now there will be some time for writing and posting, as there are so many stories and wonderful artifacts to share!

The above images are on dark gray cardstock, likely ink and paint for the backgrounds and the images cut from photographs. Gerard William, or “G.W.” Helbling, was an accomplished artist, silk screen sign painter, and even an undertaker (that takes artistic and esthetic skills).

G.W. was born in 1882 in St. Louis, Missouri, most likely, and Ann May Beerbower, the love of his life, was born in 1881 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Since we do not have the 1890 census, it is more challenging to determine when GW and May might have met. Anna’s mother (Anna Missouri (Springsteen) Beerbower) was listed in the 1897 Indianapolis City Directory with her sons Edgar and Robert, and possibly daughter Anna May lived there as well- she likely would not have been listed, as she was only 16 at the time. Anna Missouri was listed as a widow, however she was actually divorced from her husband Edgar Peter Beerbower. (They would later remarry.) By 1900 Anna (Missouri) was living in St. Louis, where she was enumerated as living with her 23 year-old son Edgar S., and 18 year-old daughter “May.”

G.W. Helbling was born in St. Louis, Missouri, and his parents resided there between 1890-1900 per city directories and censuses. It is likely that the two met in St. Louis, after Anna moved there sometime between 1897 and 1900. They married on 24 November 1904, when Anna was 23, G.W. 22.

Their daughter, Mary Theresa (Helbling) McMurray, thought that he had created this art sometime in their early years together. Using pictures from when they were young teens- or maybe younger?- he painted the backgrounds first, then cut out the photos and glued them on. He was the “wild man” and she his “queen.”

The couple had almost fifty years together of their love story, but Anna died on November 9, 1954; their 50th anniversary would have been on the 24th. Their love story lives on in the sweet artifacts they left behind, and in the legacy of their children.

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. Family treasure chest of photos and artifacts.
  2. City directories and censuses.

 

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We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post (see form below), and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.
 

Original content copyright 2013-2017 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted. 
Descendants and researchers MAY download images and posts to share with their families, and use the information on their family trees or in family history books with a small number of reprints. Please make sure to credit and cite the information properly.
 Please contact us if you have any questions about copyright or use of our blog material.

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Thriller Thursday: Elsie Janis and “That Fascinating Baseball Slide”

Elsie Janis (Beerbower) in the April, 1913 magazine, "Theatre"- 'At Home' section. There, Vol. 17, No. 146, Page 225, via Archive.org.
Elsie Janis (Beerbower) in the April, 1913 magazine, “Theatre”- ‘At Home’ section. “Theatre,” Vol. 17, No. 146, Page 225, via Archive.org.

Helbling Family, Beerbower Family (Click for Family Tree)

While some of our dear readers may not actually consider this to be a real thriller like some of the wild movies or tv shows that are out there today,  today’s post does at least have a “whodunnit?” component. And then there is the thrill of research, though sometimes gone too far… (maybe).

As has been mentioned previously on the blog, Elsie Bierbower (1889-1956) was the cousin of Anna May Beerbower (1881-1954), who married William Gerard Helbling. Anna May was the daughter of Edgar Peter Beerbower (1849-1916), while Elsie was the daughter of John Eleazer Bierbower (1858-1929). Elsie went by “Little Elsie” in her child-star years, and then used “Elsie Janis” as her stage name.

Elsie started her career in vaudeville and on the stage, but eventually added audio recordings and later movies. “That Fascinating Baseball Slide”- AKA just “Fascinating Baseball Slide,” was her first recording, in 1912.

Add for new Elsie Janis records in 1912, published in The Gazette Times (Pittsburgh, PA), page 7, column 6, via Google Newspapers.
Ad for new Elsie Janis records in 1912, published in The Gazette Times (Pittsburgh, PA), 28 December 1912, page 7, column 6, via Google Newspapers.

Those of us who grew up with piles of records alongside our turnables- actually called ‘record players’  at the time, ‘turntables’  probably later in the 70s- know that the name in parentheses under the title is the name of the songwriter. This record shows that Elsie wrote the song, as well as sang it with an orchestra.

Label from "Fascinating Baseball Slide" by Elsie Janis, 1912, via Library of Congress.
Label from “Fascinating Baseball Slide” a 10″ record by Elsie Janis, 1912, via Library of Congress. (Click to enlarge.)

A number of websites and other resources state that Elsie wrote the song.

Imagine the surprise when this result popped up in a search:

Copyright record for "That Fascinating Baseball Slide," in Catalog of Copyright Entries, Part 3, Volume 7, Number 1, Page 484, via GoogleBooks.
Copyright record for “That Fascinating Baseball Slide,” in Catalog of Copyright Entries, Part 3, Volume 7, Number 1, Page 484, via GoogleBooks.

I have been unable to find this song with Elsie as author, with or without the word “That” in the title, listed in the official copyright books printed by the government. (There were, however, many other entires of Elsie’s songs and screenplays in various government volumes.) The copyright of 20 April 1912 fits well with when the record was released, but finding a copy of the ‘Crescent music co.’ sheet music has been challenging. Additionally, finding H. S. Wittmaak in more than the copyright entry books has been unsuccessful. (Wittmaak did write other songs that were listed in the copyright books.)

Elsie was just 23 when this song came out, but she had been a huge star for many years. Did she really write “Fascinating Baseball Slide”? Or possibly she purchased the song from H.S. Wittmaak and paid for the right to list it as her own? Maybe she rewrote the song to some extent?

One more interesting tidbit- our leading picture shows Elsie sitting at the piano, reading sheet music. Surprisingly, in an article published in Liberty magazine later in her life, she stated that she did not know how to play the piano! She likely did know how to read and write music, however, if she was a songwriter and singer.

So that’s our “whodunnit”- hope you found it thrilling for this Thursday.

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. Hear the song “That Fascinating Baseball Slide” at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=84aPkozicqk
  2. Library of Congress version of song– https://www.loc.gov/item/jukebox.2903?#
  3. The song is also on a 2009 CD of Elsie’s music, called, “Sweetheart of the A.E.F.” by Archaeophone. It has 24 songs, including this one. Eight songs are also available on iTunes, as is one of her books and a movie that she helped write. The CD used to be on iTunes, but is no longer; I was surprised when the lyrics were noted as ‘explicit’- turns out some are racist, sadly- just FYI.
  4. Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. “Victor matrix B-12527. Fascinating base-ball slide / Elsie Janis,” accessed July 20, 2016, http://adp.library.ucsb.edu/index.php/matrix/detail/200012723/B-12527-Fascinating_base-ball_slide.
  5. “McCreery and Company- New Victor Records for January- Elsie Janis Records” in The Gazette Times (Pittsburgh, PA), 28 Dec 1912, page 7, via Google Newspapers–  https://news.google.com/newspapers?id=JBZRAAAAIBAJ&sjid=F2YDAAAAIBAJ&pg=5333%2C742293
  6. “Is Elsie Janis Guided by Her Dead Mother’s Voice?” Liberty Magazine, 28 November 1936, https://archive.org/stream/Liberty_v13n48_-_1936_-_MacFadden/Liberty%20v13n48%20-%201936%20-%20MacFadden#page/n13/mode/2up

 

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We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post (see form below), and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.
 

Original content copyright 2013-2016 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted. 
Descendants and researchers MAY download images and posts to share with their families, and use the information on their family trees or in family history books with a small number of reprints. Please make sure to credit and cite the information properly.
 Please contact us if you have any questions about copyright or use of our blog material.

Wedding Wednesday: Anna M. Beerbower and Edgar Peter Beerbower in the Springsteen Family Bible

This entry is part 8 of 8 in the series The Springsteen Family Bible
"Memoranda," page 6 of the Springsteen Family Bible record pages. (Click to enlarge.)
“Memoranda,” page 6 of the Springsteen Family Bible record pages. (Click to enlarge.)

Helbling Family, Beerbower Family, Springsteen Family (Click for Family Tree)

We complete our series on the Springsteen Family Bible records with a sad and sweet piece of “Memoranda.”

Transcription:

Inds 9-12-1891

Anna M. Beerbower

Divorced from E. P. Beerbower

Sept. 12-1891 by Judge Harks

================================

Anna M. Beerbower & E. P. Beerbower

Remarried Dec. 26-1908, St. Charles, Mo.

 

These entries reference Anna Missouri (Springsteen) Beerbower, daughter of Jefferson and Anna (Conner) Springsteen, and her husband Edgar Peter Beerbower.

The family story is that “E.P.” Beerbower worked for the railroad, and would be gone for long stretches of time because of his job on the train. The story is that he also came home frequently without a paycheck- possibly due to a drinking or gambling problem or ?? per their granddaughter, Mary Theresa (Helbling) McMurray. Anna would have been left alone frequently, and would have needed to find a way to feed her 3 children. (Anna had 2 other children, one who only lived one day after birth, the other only about two months.) She had family nearby when they were living in Indiana, but after they moved to Illinois- they were in Urbana, Champaign, Illinois before November of 1885, and Cairo, Alexander, Illinois by 17 April 1887- she would have had to care for the family herself.

Less than three years after the death of their last son on the day after his birth, Anna was granted a divorce on 12 September 1891 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Son Robert W. was about 17, Edgar S. about 15, and Anna May just 10 years old. Anna Missouri moved to Indianapolis- probably to be near family- and was living with her sons Robert Warson Beerbower and Edgar Springsteen Beerbower in 1897, when she was listed as a widow in the Indianapolis City Directory. (Anna May was probably there too, but daughters would not have been listed i the city directory.)

By 1900 Anna and her three children had moved to St. Louis, Missouri. Could the move have been to be closer to E.P.? We do not know, and know of no other family in St. Louis but it was a railroad hub. As per the entry above, the two were remarried in 1908. A marriage record has possibly been found for the couple, although it is a hard to read. A marriage record for 28 December 1908 (2 days later than the bible entry) with the husband as “E P Beerbower” and the wife’s name “Mrs. Mae Clore” is in Ancestry’s Missouri Marriage Records 1805-2002 database. Interestingly, the record states that EP Beerbower was from Indianapolis, and “Mrs. Mae Clore” from St. Louis. The wife’s name on this record my have been copied incorrectly, as their granddaughter, who was very close to her grandmother who lived with them, did state that they had remarried, and lived together until EP’s death in 1916.

Don’t you just love happy endings?

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. Family treasure chest.
  2. Missouri Marriage Record for EP Beerbowere and Mrs. Mae Clore: http://search.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/sse.dll?indiv=1&db=MOmarriages&h=100516

 

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We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post (see form below), and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.
 

Original content copyright 2013-2016 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted. 
Descendants and researchers MAY download images and posts to share with their families, and use the information on their family trees or in family history books with a small number of reprints. Please make sure to credit and cite the information properly.
 Please contact us if you have any questions about copyright or use of our blog material.

Funeral Card Friday: Deaths from the Springsteen Family Bible

This entry is part 5 of 8 in the series The Springsteen Family Bible
Page4 of Springsteen Bible Family Records- Deaths. (Click to enlarge.)
Page 4 of Springsteen Bible Family Records- Deaths. (Click to enlarge.)

Helbling Family, Springsteen (Click for Family Tree)

Although this page is technically not a funeral card, it does give more information about the deaths of our ancestors than a funeral card might. Since the Springsteens were Catholic, they would have had funeral cards made up if they could afford it. (It was surprising that none were found in the bible.) Unfortunately none have survived to this author’s knowledge.

[Left Column]

Joseph Springsteen

Died Tues May 20th 1862 Indianapolis

[Ed. Note: Last child of Jefferson and Anna (Conner) Springsteen; died before his second birthday.]

==================================

John Springsteen Sr.

Died March 19th 72 Indianapolis

[Ed. Note: The year was 1872. The father of Jefferson Springsteen, John Springsteen born 1782, died 19 March 1867 per his death notice in the “Indianapolis Herald.” Was the year of 1872 an error in the bible record, since the bible copyright was 1876 and thus the entry was written after the fact? Or could this be John’s father? Or was he called “John Sr.” because he was the grandfather of John William Springsteen?]

==================================

Laura May Springsteen

Died April 13th 73 at 359 E. Market St.

Indianapolis

[Ed. Note: The year was 1873. Laura May (Longfellow) Springsteen, born 1853, was the wife of Abram Furman Springsteen, and the mother of his first child, Laura G. Springsteen. She died just 24 days after giving birth to their daughter.]

==================================

Laura May G. Springsteen

Died Sunday Mar. 29th 1885 at the

Residence of her Grand parents

208 Daugherty St.    5-30 P.M.

Indianapolis Ind.

[Ed. Note: Laura Grace Alien Longfellow Springsteen, whose mother died less than a month after giving birth to her, was at the home of Jefferson and Anna M. (Conner) Springsteen when she herself died. She most likely was being raised by her grandparents, although her father is listed in their household in the 1880 US Federal Census but she is not. He remarried, to Ida Belle Dumont- probably a sister to his brother Robert’s wife Anna Dumont- in 1881. Abram married again in July of 1885 to Emma Isola Coombs, after young Laura’s death in March. (We don’t know if Ida bell died or they divorced.)]

==================================

John W. Springsteen

Died May 2[?- scratched through] 1906.

Indianapolis Ind.

[Ed. Note: Oldest son of Jefferson and Anna (Conner) Springsteen. Death date was 2 May 1906. His wife predeceased him in 1887.]

==================================

[Right Column]

Anna M. Springsteen

Died April 17 1878 1887 Cairo

Sunday 5 P.M.

[Ed. Note: This is Anna M. (Conner) Springsteen, probably the original bible owner. At her death, she most likely was visiting her daughter Anna Missouri (Springsteen) Beerbower in Cairo, Illinois.]

==================================

Robert Warson Beerbower

Died Sept 12th-1900, Denver Colo

Wednesday, 2 A. M.

[Ed. Note: Robert was the oldest child of Anna Missouri (Springsteen) Beerbower and her husband Edgar Peter Beerbower. His only child, Roberta Pearl Beerbower, was born the month after he died, so he never saw his daughter. Colorado death records are closed to family historians unless immediate family, so we cannot know Robert’s cause of death. Around the turn of that century, many of those with tuberculosis went to Colorado for treatment and recuperation- could that have been the case with Robert, even though his first child was to be born soon? Or was he just there for railroad business?]

==================================

Jefferson Springsteen Jr.

Died Apr 14-1905 Indianapolis

Buried Crown Hill Apr 17- 2 P.[or A.?]M.

Age 56 years.

[Ed. Note: This is Thomas Jefferson Springsteen, born in 1848, son of Jefferson and Anna M. (Conner) Springsteen.]

==================================

Jefferson Springsteen Sr.

Died Sept 15-1909 Indianapolis Ind

Buried Crown Hill Cemetary

Age 89 years_

[Ed. Note: Son of John Springsteen and Mary Logan, and husband to Anna M. (Conner) Springsteen.]

 

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. Family treasure chest.

 

Please contact us if you would like higher resolution images. Click to enlarge images.

We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post (see form below), and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.
 

Original content copyright 2013-2016 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted. 
Descendants and researchers MAY download images and posts to share with their families, and use the information on their family trees or in family history books with a small number of reprints. Please make sure to credit and cite the information properly.
 Please contact us if you have any questions about copyright or use of our blog material.