Tag Archives: Lillian Catherine Montgomery

Dear Aunt Lil

Goodrich Nursing Home in Lexington, Kentucky. My Aunt Lil’s nursing home, run about 1940-1960? Not sure about the dates. Aunt Lil is in the dark dress at the bottom of the photo.

This is a great photo of my Aunt Lil and her nursing staff at the Goodrich Nursing Home in Lexington, Kentucky.  Aunt Lil, actually my great-aunt, was born Lillian Catherine Montgomery, March 11, 1900 – always easy to remember old she was – in Washington County, the daughter of Robert E. Lee Montgomery and Frances Barber Linton.  She married Guy Goodrich in 1933.  They had no children, but Aunt Lil devoted her time as a registered nurse, a graduate of St. Joseph Hospital School of Nursing in Lexington.  She began Goodrich Nursing Home and ran it with an iron fist.  Patients always came first.  She was a stickler for cleanliness and demanded superior work from her staff.  She was well known in this field, and well loved by those who worked for her.

I have very vague memories of visiting Aunt Lil and Uncle Guy’s home in Lexington – I always thought it very fancy!  I particularly remember her plates with pink flowers and green leaves in her china hutch.  In later years, after Uncle Guy passed on and she sold the nursing home, she returned to Springfield, in Washington County, and lived near her sister – my grandmother.  It was at this point our relationship grew, since the genealogy bug had been handed down to her, from her mother – and also handed down to me from the same, my great-grandmother.  As far as I know, we were the only two in the family so obsessed!  I would visit her for lunch and we would pore over all the delicate pieces of paper of our ancestors, handed down through the years, and look at those faces in photographs of so long ago.  Sometimes I miss her so!

Aunt Lil was rather a roving senior citizen.  She would move to Springfield, be there several years; miss Lexington; move there for several years, miss Springfield, and move back.  Torn between two worlds.  In her last years she lived in a nursing home in Springfield, but acted like she was the one taking care of things.  I suppose once a nurse, always a nurse!

Do you recognize any of the nurses in the photo?

Robert E. Lee Montgomery

Scan163 1The above photo is of my great-grandfather, Robert E. Lee Montgomery, sitting in his favorite rocking chair at the age of 86.  Beside him is Mary Alice Carrico, shown in her cap and gown, ready for graduation (or perhaps just afterwards!).  Mary Alice is my mother’s youngest sister, my aunt.  Robert’s oldest child, Mary Alice Montgomery, married Joseph Reuben Carrico.  My mother and Mary Alice are the two youngest children of the family.

Robert was born just after the Civil War, September 15, 1865, to William Peter Montgomery and Martha Ann Carrico.  He came from a long line of Peter Montgomery’s – from the first who traveled from France to Maryland about 1720 – to his father who was born a few months after his father died during the cholera outbreak of 1833.  The first in the family to come to Washington County, Kentucky was Charles Montgomery – Robert’s great-grandfather, son of Peter Montgomery, who was naturalized a citizen in 1740 in Maryland.

Mom told stories of her grandfather, saying he was a rather stern man, and expected everyone to do as he said, but he also had a soft spot.  He didn’t like to be kissed, but they would pat him on the cheek, and she said he always smiled at that.  When they were visiting, after dinner, he would say, ‘Girls, let’s go out on the porch and watch the cars go by.’  Since they lived out in the county on a rural lane I’m not sure how many cars they would see in one sitting!

Robert ran a dairy farm and milked cows morning and evening.  The home was a large farmhouse with large rooms and a wide staircase leading to upstairs – with a second, smaller staircase going upstairs from the kitchen.  The boys slept in the back bedrooms and the girls in the front.  Mom said the upstairs was usually divided like that during those days.

In the photo my great-grandfather is wearing a long-sleeved white shirt – with cufflinks – you can see them in the photo – a tie and a handkerchief in his pocket.  There is not a picture in which he is not dressed in a suit and tie.  In one he wears a white coat and pants – and always reminded me of Colonel Sanders (of Kentucky Fried Chicken fame).  In my mind he is the ultimate country gentleman!  How I would love to have met him, but he died four years before I was born.

Robert E. Lee Montgomery married Frances Barber Linton February 7, 1893.  They had seven children – Mary Alice Montgomery, my grandmother, born December 8, 1893, and with her husband Joseph Reuben Carrico had seven children; Anna Margaret Montgomery, born September 18, 1895, who never married; Laura Frances Montgomery, born December 4, 1897, and died at the age of 15 of tuberculosis; Lillian Catherine Montgomery, born March 11, 1900, who married Guy Goodrich, but had no children; Robert Lee Montgomery, born August 17, 1903, who remained a bachelor; Edward Linton Montgomery, born May 17, 1905, who married Louise Parrott and had two children; and Benjamin Montgomery, born October 21, 1908, and died November 7 of the same year.

Scan165Robert E. Lee Montgomery, with his daughter, my grandmother, at his right, Mary Alice Montgomery Carrico.  I believe two sisters are on his left, and am not sure about the younger women, but sure they must be relatives!

Frances died August 2, 1945.  Robert carried on until July 14, 1953.  There was a huge birthday celebration the year before – for his 87th birthday!  Mom made the cake – two layers with lots of candles and yellow roses with little ribbons!

1923 Photo – Grandmother and Granddaddy

Scan159Today I have one of my personal photos to share with you – Grandmother and Granddaddy holding their first two children!  These are my maternal grandparents.

Mary Alice Montgomery married Joseph Reuben Carrico, November 24, 1920, in Washington County, Kentucky.  Alice was the daughter of Robert E. Lee Montgomery and Frances Barber Linton.  Rue was the son of Joseph Benedict Napoleon Carrico and Melvina Ann Smith.

Son Joseph Robert Carrico, held by granddaddy, was born September 18, 1921, and Francis Reuben Carrico, held by grandmother, was born November 5, 1922.  Unfortunately both these lives would be cut short.  Reuben died just before his tenth birthday of appendicitis.  Robert fought in World War II and was killed while manning the guns in Sicily, Italy, September 14, 1943, just four days before his 22nd birthday.

The two young women standing on the sides are my great-aunts – Lillian Catherine Montgomery, on the left, and Anna Margaret Montgomery, on the right, grandmother’s sisters.  Aunt Lil married Guy Goodrich, but they had no children.  Aunt Maggie, who supposedly fell in love with a man who her daddy thought was not worthy, remained unmarried.

What puzzles me are the boy and girl in the seat of the old car!  Grandmother had two brothers at that time – Robert and Edward Montgomery (Benjamin, the youngest, died as an infant).  At this time Robert would have been 20 and Edward 18.  Since my grandmother is 30 – and looks much younger in this photo – this may be one of her brothers.  The young lady in the front seat is a mystery.  It could be a young cousin of granddaddy’s – since he was a younger child in his family.  Or it could be a Montgomery relative.  Unfortunately this is a copy of the original photo – with no names written on back!  And why I didn’t ask my mom about this before she died – how many times I’ve thought that in the last two years!

Granddaddy died at the age of 76, when I was four years old.  I honestly have no memory of him.  But I must have loved him dearly.  Mom said that when we visited grandmother and I heard a noise in the house, I would ask if that was granddaddy coming home – which, of course, brought about much weeping.

Grandmother lived another 25 years.  I have many happy memories of visiting, climbing the trees in her yard – especially the cherry tree when the fruit hung thick on the branches!  Grandmother loved to play cards, and when I was old enough I joined in the fun.  We would sit on the front porch and watch the cars go by!  And on the Fourth of July we sat on her front porch and watched the huge fire works sent up to the sky from across the street at the drive-in theater!  And we would eat!  I remember her as a wonderful cook – she made the best baked chicken and dressing (in a cast iron skillet)!  I’m sure I got my love for cooking and baking from her!  Grandmother died in February, 1986, at the lovely age of 92.  All her children were born at home.  She had one brief stint in the hospital around age 80 due to a slight case of pneumonia.  In 1986, in the hospital, she still had her sharp mind and wits around her.  My mother saw her the day before she died and complained that grandmother had taken the oxygen from her nose.  True to form my grandmother said, “Now, Catherine, I can’t enjoy my breakfast with it!”  I hope to have her spunk and determination and longevity!

In any event this is a wonderful moment frozen in time – a young couple with two little babes, surrounded by happy, loving family members!

1899 Check for Peoples Deposit Bank

Scan_Pic1685This is a check from my great-grandfather’s account at Peoples Deposit Bank in Springfield, Washington County, Kentucky, dated July 24, 1899.  It is made out to Cunningham and Duncan in the amount of $1.82 for merchandise.  Now what could great-grandmother Frances have purchased?

Scan_Pic1686From the July 28, 1898, issue of the News-Leader Cunningham and Duncan claim to have the largest stock of dry goods, clothing, etc., and selling at lower prices than any house in town!  And they give inducements to cash buyers – rather those who charge!  No credit cards then, just a charge account at the store.

Scan_Pic1687And their Christmas sale ad from December 22, 1898, will ‘enable you to make very handsome presents for little money!’  They have something for everyone.  ‘For the mother or wife, can sell you handsome blankets, table linens and napkins, rugs, etc.  For the daughter, a handsome wrap, fine shoes, hosiery, handkerchiefs and gloves.  For the boys a nice shirt, suit or overcoat, tie, hat or shoes, handkerchiefs and mufflers.’

Scan_Pic0026This photo of Robert E. Lee Montgomery and wife, Frances Barber Linton, was taken about 1899.  My grandmother, Alice, the oldest daughter would have been six, Margaret, sitting in her father’s lap, would have been four, and baby Laura, in her mother’s lap, was about two.  Another daughter, Lillian Catherine, was born in March of 1900.  Robert was the son of William Peter Montgomery and Martha Ann Carrico, born at the end of the Civil War in 1865.  Frances was the daughter of Edward Edwards Linton and Catherine Elizabeth Taylor, born in 1867.

Small Town Life Is Okay!

Small Town Life Is Okay!

Springfield, Washington County, Kentucky

The other day I happened upon a list of historical populations for Washington County, Kentucky. Since more of my family is from Washington County than any other county in Kentucky, it has always been of great interest to me. This list included the populations of Washington County from 1800 to 2010. In 1800 there were 9,050 individuals living in the county. Hm, how many of those am I related to? Quite a few I would venture to guess! By that time my Carrico, Spalding, Edwards, O’Bryan, Smith, Cusick, Moran, Lyons, and Montgomery ancestors – with their huge families – had been in Washington County for several years, most arriving about 1795 from St. Mary’s County and Charles County, Maryland, a few from Loudoun County, Virginia.

In ten years, 1810, the population had grown by half again, to 13,248. Although Captain John Linton was not in Kentucky at this time, a few of his sons and many of his wife’s sisters and brothers had made the journey to this new land.

By 1820 there were an additional 2700 souls in Washington County. This now included the captain and wife, Ann Mason Linton, all their children and numerous grandchildren. Also by this time my Coulter, Crow and White families were part of the 15,947 in the county.

By 1830 the county’s population had doubled to 19,017. This was the ‘red letter’ year for Washington County. With people arriving from Virginia, Maryland, the Carolina’s and other places Springfield was a booming town! This was the pinnacle.

In 1834 Marion County was formed from Washington County and a little over half of the inhabitants were in that portion of the county, becoming Marion County citizens. Strange as it may seem, all my families were still in Washington County! The 1840 census shows 10,596.

After a surge of 1600 in 1850 to 12,194, the population keeps steady for the next 20+ years. There were many who ventured on to Missouri during the 1850 to 1870 time period. My 3rd great-grandfather, John Cotton Taylor, was one of those. He moved his family to Cape Girardeau County in Missouri, leaving only his eldest daughter (and my great-great-grandmother) in Kentucky. Life was not as easy as they thought, most of the family dying until one son and his three young children, a daughter and the widow came back to Washington County about 1870. Many others found the move to Missouri to their liking, others continued the westward movement every further from their old Kentucky home. My Hill family moved from Garrard County to Washington County during the late 1850’s, rounding out the full frame of both my paternal and maternal lines – all in one county!

After a stagnant two decades the population of Washington County increased by 2,000 by 1880. For the next 40 years it varied very little. The 1930 census shows a decline of 2,100 – with 12,623 living in the county. And a steady decline over the next 70 years, until the turn of the 21st century, gives a total of 10,916 for the county.

What can be reason for this decline? Springfield and Washington County have remained the same small town and rural outlying area for at least 150 years. When visiting my grandmother, Mary Alice Montgomery Carrico, in Springfield in the 1960’s, I remember the small, home-town appeal Springfield held for those who visited as well as those who lived there. Robertson’s and The Louisville Store on Main Street were where locals shopped for clothing. Restaurants were small establishments with names such as The Snappy Grill and Cecconi’s. I remember my aunt talking about men putting a nickel tip under their ten cent coffee cup! Ritchey and I ate at Cecconi’s a few years ago – it’s a small ‘hole in wall’ restaurant, but the food is still marvelous! The Snappy Grill is long gone, but in the back room there was more enjoyed than the food – the local poker games were well known for their $20 antes!

My mother’s uncle, Edward Montgomery, ran a movie theater. She helped make popcorn and sell tickets on the weekends. This was in her younger days in the 1940’s. By the 1950’s everyone went to the drive-in on Friday and Saturday nights – which happened to be just across the street from where my grandmother lived. On the Fourth of July they always had fireworks, and we sat on grandmother’s front porch and oohed and aahed at the beautiful colors and sparkles! We were so close to where they shot them off that we heard the great boom and whoosh rushing into the sky – then the boom of explosion!

There were two grocery stores, my grandmother using the one who delivered – I can’t remember the name but I believe it was Joe something – named after the proprietor! She called in her order and it was delivered within a couple of hours. It was safe enough that we were sent to the small market about a mile down the road for cookies or ice cream for dessert – which my grandmother had to have! She used saccharin tablets religiously in her coffee, but there was always room for dessert!

In addition to my grandmother, and sometimes my Great-Aunt Lil who moved between Lexington and Springfield for her last twenty years, the attraction to me was the Washington County Court House! After getting my license at 16 year of age, many summer afternoons were spent there – down into the dungeon as I affectionately call it – the smell of old ledgers and books, shelves filled to the brim (and sometimes overflowing), filing cabinets about to burst and Miss Olive Walker sitting at a small desk, with sunshine coming in the two small, rather dusty windows at the very top of the wall – just a hint that there was an outside world! But why go outside when everything I was interested in was within those four walls! Marriages, deeds, wills, lifetimes of many Washington countians who were long gone, but never forgotten! It was there I honed my genealogy skills under the tutelage of Miss Walker – and will always be grateful that she helped turn a passion into a life-long glorious experience! So perhaps a small town is not bad after all!

Today In Genealogy History – December 11

Laura Frances Montgomery died 101 years ago – December 11, 1912 – in Washington County, Kentucky.  She was the daughter of Robert E. Lee Montgomery and Frances Barber Linton.  Born December 4, 1897, she died at the age of 15 of tuberculosis.  Laura’s siblings were Mary Alice, Anna Margaret, Lillian Catherine, Robert Lee, Edward Linton and Benjamin Montgomery.

Today In Genealogy History – November 7

Benjamin Montgomery died 105 years ago – November 7, 1908 – in Washington County, Kentucky.  Benjamin was the son of Robert E. Lee Montgomery and Frances Barber Linton, born October 21, 1908 – having lived only 17 days.  He was buried in St. Dominic Cemetery.  Benjamin’s siblings were Mary Alice, Anna Margaret, Laura Frances, Lillian Frances, Robert Lee and Edward Linton Montgomery.