We have our lineage to credit for our successes and blame for our failures. Mine goes back in two directions, one through by father to the Franklins and the other, through my mother, to the Quicks.
My father, Harland James Franklin, was born in Bloomingdale, Pennsylvania (Luzerne County) on December 11, 1904. He was born at the homestead of Wilbur Franklin, his grandfather, and with whom he would later live. The homestead was 75 or 80 acres of land with 14 outbuildings on the farm, including a blacksmith shop, a shingle mill, corn crib, assorted wagon sheds and a barn. There were two main houses, the “old house” and a five-gable farm house that was meant to be a seven-gable one, but was never quite completed.
Dad married Jenny Viola Quick (born December 4, 1901 in Mossville, PA) on July 15, 1930 in Honesdale, PA in the Methodist Episcopal parsonage with Robert S. Boyce as the clergyman. Their one recorded wedding gift was a luncheon set. They had four children: Charles, born in 1932, I was born in 1933, my sister Claire in 1934 and my sister Jolene in 1935. Jolene was killed in a tragic car accident when by dad, backing down the driveway to change a tire, ran over her. I still have mental images of the screams and blood.
Mother and dad had met at the Methodist Camp Meeting Ground in Patterson Grove, PA, a favorite haunt for the young people with its board walk, boarding house, tabernacle and dozens of summer cabins. My mother’s father, Lloyd Marshall Quick (born Jan 1, 1863), had a cabin there, some 4 miles or so from his farm in Mossville. Mother was the 5th of seven children and her mother was Alice Recelia Keller Quick (born August 4, 1862), who married Lloyd on July 5, 1885. Alice died October 5, 1938 and Lloyd a couple of years later when he was living with us.
In addition to his farm, grandpa Quick also operated a sawmill in Mossville. Their adopted son, an illegitimate offspring of Alice prior to her marriage to Lloyd, was killed in a tragic accident at the sawmill and I knew or heard very little of him over the years.
Bloomingdale and Mossville are about six or seven miles apart, with Broadway and Patterson Grove (the site of the camp meeting grounds) in between and Redrock mountain on beyond. The whole area is hilly, was once wooded, covered with small farms and was also primarily populated by Methodists, Methodist-Episcopal to be exact. Later the ME, as it was called, split and the splinter group became the MP (Methodist Protestant), so there were two churches in Bloomingdale when I was a youngster (there are presently three).
Three of mother’s siblings married three siblings of the Wolfe family: Aunt Annie Quick married Roy, Aunt Grace married Corey and Uncle John married Bertha. From those unions I had five first cousins and from mother’s other siblings (Emma, Pearl, and Gertrude) I had an additional 6 cousins. (The cousins names were Ruth, who married George Culver, Albert, who married a Farver, Almond, Arnold, Edward, Margaret, Mary Ellen, Anna Mae, Alice, Marjorie, Junior and Nancy—the last two being offspring of Gertrude and her second husband, Otis Farver.)
One Uncle (Stanley) was nicknamed Stub perhaps because of his stubby beard and short stature. He had piercing blue eyes and I can’t recall more than a few sentences that he said without him swearing. All of my uncles liked to hunt and had stories of their past successes. My aunts quilted, worked in their gardens, canned vegetables and fruit and were always at the church socials. My Uncle Corey attended the local ME church and loved to holler “amen” to back up the preacher, who was quite mild-mannered. Each church was adjoined by a “hall”, once the parking place for horses and buggies underneath, but later used for ice-cream “socials” and other activities on the top floor. Uncle Otis had a high-pitched voice and some of the other uncles would make fun of him.
We had family reunions (rebellions, my dad called them) when most of the aunts and uncles would get together for feasts of meat, potatoes, coleslaw and all kinds of pies. While the meal was prepared and after, the cousins would go outside to throw rotten apples, green apples, corn cobs, snow balls, or whatever was in season, at each other. We were not model kids.
Although I knew most of my aunts well, I never knew aunt Pearl (who was married to Jim Benscoter) but her daughter Ann Mae later lived in Houston so we made contact with here and she visited us several times before she died a few years ago.
Lloyd Quick’s father was Barnard Quick, born July 21, 1814 and died November 16, 1867. He was married to Angeline Marshall, born June 17, 1822 and died September 18, 1879. Barnard was a blacksmith. Barnard was the son of John M. Quick, who married Sally Preston (born October 15, 1794 and died August 15, 1873). John’s father was Jacobus (James) Quick, who was born January 5, 1753 and died June 27, 1847. John was a soldier in either the Mexican War or the War of 1812. He was married to Johanna Pelton on August 31, 1775. Johanna was born May 6, 1756 and died December 26, 1851. James served with the Northampton Rangers against the Indians and Tories during the Revolutionary War.
Jacobus’ father was (again) Jacobus, born about 1697 in New Amsterdam. Nothing else is known about him except that his father was probably Direk Theuniszen Quick, born July 36, 1648 in New Amsterdam. The furthest back I can trace is to Theunis Thomaszen Quick and Belijtgen Jaconus, who were married in Naarden, Holland, March 1652.
Turning now to the parents of my father: His dad was Charles Franklin, who was born August 16, 1883 and died March 15, 1919. He married Grace Rood on August 20, 1902 but she died just over two years later in the childbirth of my dad. My father’s brother, Owen, was born on November 27, 1902 and died on March 6, 1907 at 5 years of age. Subsequently Charles remarried, this time to Estella Benscoter, on August 16, 1906. She was a diabetic with, as I remember, both legs amputated but she lived until the mid- or late 1930’s. Charles had a brother Willie, born August 11, 1887, who was married to Maud Meller. They had three children: Harry, Paul and Mary, dad’s cousins and Harry was a close friend.
The grandfather of my dad was Wilbur Franklin, born March 31, 1856, married to Della Harrison, born May 31, 1861. Wilbur was one of the first men in the area to own a car, but he was also a mean man by all accounts. It was he and Della who raised dad until he was high school age. He then went to Benton and boarded with some friends or relatives until he finished high school. My father and Wilbur shared one trait—a violent temper (my dad’s nickname was Temp) although Charles Franklin, son of Wilbur was a Christian and an optician and watchmaker. Wilbur died October 24, 1933.
Other Franklin ancestors were Samuel Franklin, born May 10, 1759 and married to Polly Ransom. Samuel’s father was Colonel John Franklin, born in 1716 and married to Kegia Pierce. A number of the Franklins came to Pennsylvania from Connecticut and some went on to Kentucky as well.
As far as I can determine my family background is therefore English, Welsh and Dutch (on my mother’s side).
My father was an equipment operator, coal miner, shear operator at the American Car & Foundry, peddler (green groceries and rabbits), electrician and magician. He was musical, loved languages, philosophy, the history of Egypt and was for many years a Rosicrucian. He also smoked and drank far too much, although he lived until he was 70 and died in February, 1976. My mother was a primary school teacher in a one-room school for many years and later the administrator in a consolidated school. She died in a car accident in May, 1972. We received word when we were working in the village of Usa in the Southern Highlands of Papua New Guinea through a close Lutheran missionary friend, Norman Imbrock. He had been informed by a pilot who had flown into their mission strip that I needed to contact our center by radio. Norm came on his motor bike the 8 miles to our village and stayed with us while I made contact and learned of the accident. Later that summer I was able to visit my dad and, with my brother and sister, bury the ashes of my mother.
Some of this information turns up in the family Bible, a large 10 pound edifice passed on to me as the designated religious member of the family. Other details come from my sister Claire Honeywell, and from my niece, Wanda Haggerty; still other details can be found in Beyond Control, a book written by my dad. It is a humorous account of country life in and around Bloomingdale, published in 1982 and still available in some closets of some people somewhere (and also elsewhere on this website).