Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day 2012

This one was in the possession of Julian & Francis Steunenberg, my grandparents. Uncle Cal and Uncle Jule served during WWII. Each star represents a family member serving in the war. Uncle Frank (Bud), the third son, served in the Marines prior to WWII.

A few related blog posts:

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Friday, May 23, 2008

Monday, May 25, 2009

Monday, Nov. 10, 2008

Sunday, May 29, 2011
In Memoriam: Private Lewis Simpson

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Did Steunenberg neighbor William 'Bill' Williams know about the bomb?

Here is a great story from Carlin Otto (great-grand-daughter of William Williams, grand-daughter of M. Ned Williams) as told to her by M. Ned Williams. Carlin provided permission to share it here on the blog.

"In December of 1905, William Williams, his wife Mimsy Crosser Williams, and their 4 school-aged children (Perdix, Ky, Ned, and Clyde) lived in Caldwell across the street from Governor Steunenberg. William Williams was a very active member of the WFM. He had served as one of the original officers (along with Bill Haywood) for Local 66, Silver City, Idaho during a time when the Williams family lived full time in Silver City.
John Richards Collection
On the night of the assassination, Mimsey and the boys (but not William Williams) ate dinner, as usual, before 5pm and then they all passed out. They did not awaken until many hours later in the dead of night or wee hours of the next morning. None of them had been able to even dress for bed or go to their bedrooms. They just "fell asleep" in the living room. When they awoke, they felt drugged.  They dragged themselves off to their beds and did not find out about the assassination by "bomb" that occurred just across the street until the next morning. M. Ned Williams always suspected that his father had known about the plans for the assassination and had drugged his family in order to protect them from harm and perhaps had even allowed the assassins to use the Williams house for something related to the placing of the bomb."

Below from Big Trouble by J. Anthony Lukas, page 407.

ISHS Digital Collections
Big Bill Haywood
Bill Williams upper right corner
"In the weeks after Steunenberg's assassination, the search for conspirators was so thorough that even labor sympathizers in town for years found themselves under suspicion.  Bill Williams had been a close friend and union colleague of Haywood's while both were miners in Silver City. About 1900, with his wife and son, Williams moved to Caldwell, buying a home on Dearborn Street, catty-corner from the Steunenbergs. For five years, the Williamses lived in amicable concert with their neighbors. But once the bomb blew up the governor barely a 100 feet away, Williams found himself on a list of suspicious characters, although never formally a suspect. He reacted, his son recalled, by withdrawing from all organized activity—including the union—shunning intercourse with his neighbors for fear it would be hostile."  Big Trouble by J. Anthony Lukas

I attached the photograph above from the ISHS showing Bill Haywood in his usual pose shielding his bad right eye from the camera. Bill Williams is listed in the description as being in the same photo. Perhaps Carlin can help us confirm which of these fellows is her great-grandfather. Click on ISHS Digital Collections to see the full version.

I know Carlin and I would sure be happy to hear from anyone that may know more about Bill Williams and his connection to Bill Haywood, Silver City, WFM's Local 66 and as a neighbor of Governor Steunenberg. We are looking for any documents that have been signed by William Williams as an officer of the WFM/Local 66 in Silver City. 

And about that bad eye of Haywood's

As we know, Bill Haywood lost his right eye as a youth while whittling. From Big Trouble, page 205:
John Richards Collection
"But the bloodiest encounter of his youth came at his own careless hand. At age nine, he was whittling the stock of a slingshot when his knife slipped and punctured his right eye, blinding him for life. Other children mocked him with epithets like Squint Eye and Deadeye Dick. Henceforth, in posing for photographs he always turned his head to offer the unimpaired left profile. But he never had a glass eye installed in place of that dead eye with it's milky glaze. Did he somehow enjoy the lopsided, even sinister cast it gave his face?" 

The information below comes once again from Carlin Otto as told to her by her grand-father M. Ned Williams:
"When my grandfather, M. Ned Williams, was about 6 or 7, he used to sit around Silver City, Idaho whittling with his knife. Whenever he saw Big Bill Haywood approaching he would switch the direction of his whittling so as to pull the knife towards himself instead of pushing it away. Big Bill would stop and pay him a nickel to change the direction of his whittling. The reason for this is that Big Bill lost the sight in one of his eyes when he was a boy due to an accident that involved unsafe use of a knife."

Thank you again Carlin for sharing these great stories from your grandfather and great-grandfather. 

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day mom. We love you. Brenda Steunenberg Richards 8/26/1918 -  3/21/2010. Photo circa 1998 on or around mom's 80th birthday.

Caldwell, ID circa 1921
More Memories...
Saturday, March 22, 2008
The Graduate-Class of 1936-Honorary Diploma September 2004 

Saturday, August 30, 2008
Four Score Ten Years and Counting...

Thursday, August 26, 2010 
Brenda Steunenberg Richards

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Memories of Texas from Songs of a Soldier by George Steunenberg

"I remember, I remember it used to knock us flat
To think that Davey Crockett died for such a land as that;
And how one night we grabbed our guns and hit the southern track
To go to war with Mexico to make 'em take it back."


Previous blog entries of verse from Songs of a Soldier by George Steunenberg:

Sunday, April 15, 2012
The Riddle of the Sphinx

Monday, March 26, 2012
An Army Invitation

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Saturday, March 10, 2012
The Feline Curse at Leavenworth

Saturday, March 3, 2012
Songs of a Soldier - The Canine Curse at Snelling