Friday, February 5, 2016

Family History Writing Challenge Day 5

Fountain Square Cincinnati !876
After Michael and Catherine got married in 1887, they continued to reside at 57 Mill Street. Michael's mother Mary lived there as well, perhaps in the same apartment, as did Catherine's father Edward. Unfortunately, Catherine's mother Bridget had died in 1886 at the age of 42. How sad she must have been not to have her mother at her wedding!

Central Union Station
As mentioned earlier, Michael worked for the Cincinnati Southern Railroad as a freight truckman. His responsibilities would have included loading and unloading cars in the rail yard, and shifting freight in the freight-houses. The Cincinnati Southern Railroad is owned by the City of Cincinnati, the only municipality in the country to own an interstate railroad. Running from Cincinnati to Chattanooga, the first freight train completed the route on 21 February 1880, with the first passenger train following on 8 March. With the addition of rail routes into the city, a new train station was completed in 1883. The three story head house was on the corner of Third and Central, and the train shed was wide enough for eight tracks and five platforms. The station was called Central Union or Grand Central Depot.

The railroad yard was an easy walking distance from the Crusham's home on Mill Street, as can be seen on the map below. The approximate location of the home is illustrated by the black star, with the station indicated as Grand Central Depot on this particular map.
Cincinnati, Ohio
It must have been of great comfort to Catherine to have the extended family so close when her first child was born later in 1887. Michael Aloysius Crusham entered the world on 8 November 1887. He was at a minimum the fourth first born son to be named Michael in the Crusham family. Two years later the family expanded with the addition of Edward in 1889, and then Mary in 1892, Clara in 1894, Charles in 1896, Agnes in 1899, Thomas in 1902, John in 1906, and Dorothy in 1908. The children were all most likely born at home with the assistance of a midwife or a female neighbor.

Perhaps the size of the family is why they finally left Mill Street around 1906 and moved five blocks north to Hathaway Street. Also, Michael no longer had to take his mother into consideration. Mary had died of heart disease in 1902. She was 80 years old.

Michael and the ten other members of his family stayed at the home on Hathaway Street until 1913, the last year the Crushams lived in the City of Cincinnati. What made him leave the only area he had ever known in the United States?

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