in 52 Weeks
Quite the Character
I did not personally know my great aunt Grace, but those who did often described her as being fun, and full of life. My father said his aunt Grace was “a character,” my aunt Lois would say Grace was “lots of fun,” and my grandmother said her sister “liked to laugh.” Grace’s husband, my uncle Frank, would say “Grace loved her flowers and her family.” From records and family photos, I think Aunt Grace looked for the positive even when life was a challenge. Aunt Grace was a character with character.
Grace Osborne, 1887-1954
Grace was born when her mother, Jennie, was 29 and her father, David, was 39. They had been married not quite 10 months when Grace was born. I wrote about the marriage of Grace’s parents a few years ago, read about it here.  Grace was a middle child, she had two younger sisters and two older brothers from her father’s first marriage. Grace’s father was a Civil War veteran, he did interior finishing work for a home builder and he was active in several clubs and associations. The Osborne’s did not have extended family living nearby and the family changed address nearly every year.  These are just a few of the family dynamics that may have contributed to Grace being a “character”.
Family and Friends
Grace married in 1903, at age 16, to Gurdon Fithian, he was 12 years her senior. She and Gurdon had one son, Glenn, born a year after the couple wed. By the end of 1910, Grace and Gurdon divorced. Grace and her son Glenn lived with her parents and Grace did a variety of jobs, including as a bookkeeper and as a landscaper. [3, 4] She met her second husband, Frank Takeo Flucawa, through the ME Deaconess Mission and they married in 1912.  Grace and Frank did not have children of their own, but they often entertained those of their friends, neighbors and relatives.
Plants and Poultry
Grace took a great interest in growing flowers and raising poultry. She won recognition for both at local flower and poultry shows. [6, 7] She and Frank operated a commercial poultry business in Warren Park on Indianapolis’ east-side for many years.  Later they had a commercial flower business on the south-side of New Castle, Indiana, “The Flowerteria” and “Flucawa’s Flower Gardens.” 
The photos I have of Aunt Grace, her chickens and gardens are in black and white. But, a few years ago I came across several color slides of the hothouse and flowers. The one’s that are acetate have faded badly and I have attempted to colorize them. But three are glass slides and scanned fairly well.
Grace also was keen for hats, as you can see in the photos above. I have found several photo-booth type images of her wearing various hats. Although she is not smiling in some of these, I think she was trying for drama as she modeled the hats.
I wish I had known my great aunt Grace. She passed away in 1954, a few years before I was born. [10, 11] Although, I did get to enjoy her flower garden when I was a child. The stories told by family, and the photographs I have, lead me to believe she was indeed a character in the best way.
I wish this photo were in color to show the flowers. That’s a 1933 Auburn in the background, it may have belonged to her son Glenn.
- Blog post, Family Finds: The Marriage of David and Jennie Osborne; https://barblafara.com/the-marriage-of-david-and-jennie-osborne/
- Blog post, Family Finds: David L. Osborne: His Indianapolis Homes; https://barblafara.com/indianapolis-addresses-for-david-l-osborne/
- Entry for Martha G[race] Fithian, U.S, Federal Census: Year: 1910; Census Place: Indianapolis Ward 1, Marion, Indiana; Roll:T624_366; Page: 7A ; FHL microfilm: 1374379;
- Entry for M Grace Osborne, “Indianapolis, Indiana, City Directory”, Page: 968, Online at Ancestry.com. U.S., City Directories, 1822-1995.
- Entry for Martha Grace Fithian, Marion County, Indiana; Index to Marriage Record 1911 – 1915 Inclusive Vol, Original Record Located: County Clerk’s Office Ind; Book: 69; Page: 393; Online at Ancestry.com. Indiana, U.S., Marriage Index, 1800-1941
- Profile of Martha Grace Osborne, ‘Osborn‘ tree, Ancestry.com; https://www.ancestry.com/family-tree/person/tree/13493206/person/-60123978/facts
- Article, “Lewisville Home Demonstration Club,” National Road Traveler, 26 Aug 1954, page 9, col 7.
- Entry for Takeo Flucawa,U.S. Federal Census; Year: 1930; Census Place: Warren, Marion, Indiana; Page: 1B; Enumeration District: 0252; FHL microfilm: 2340351,
- Entry for Grace Martha Flucawa, Indiana Archives and Records Administration; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Death Certificates; Year: 1954; Roll: 12; Online at Ancestry.com. Indiana, U.S., Death Certificates, 1899-2011
- Online memorial for Grace Flucawa at Find a Grave, Access Online: https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/71868064/
Born Takeo Furukawa on 15 March 1883 in Tottori-Ken, Tokyo, Japan, little is documented of his early childhood. Family oral history stories say that the young Takeo experienced hunger, poverty and the loss of his family. Additionally, the stories tell of friendship, spiritual learning and scholarship.
My great grandfather, David Louis Osborne, lived at over 20 addresses around Indianapolis between 1876 and 1942. I thought it would be interesting to see all the old buildings and homes where he lived in my hometown of Indianapolis.
My great grandfather, David Louis Osborne (1848-1942), was a widower with two young sons in 1886 when he married Jennie Warbington (1857-1918) in Minneapolis on the 27th of May. I decided it was time to put sources to the story.
While working on a family photo project I decided it would be fun to compare side-by-side my father and his parents, at similar ages, to try and discover a family resemblance.
Jesse King was born in Ohio (probably in the vicinity of Chillicothe) in 1805, he was a son of Philip King and Mary Leah Wright, both of Pennsylvania. Philip King was a farmer, he married Leah Wright in 1801 in Somerset, PA, they had six children, of whom Jesse was the third.
A handwritten letter from Sarah Tucker Lafary to the then president of the United States, Grover Cleveland. It was her last appeal for a War of 1812 pension, sadly the pension was denied. The letter gives a glimpse of a woman who had no formal education, a poor farmers wife, then widow, mother of nine, she probably just wanted some independence through an income of her own.
52 Ancestors, in 52 Weeks – Week 2: Challenge
So much about genealogy research is a challenge, perhaps the most common challenge is the ‘brick wall,’ meet Sarah Smith. 18?? – 1846
52 Ancestors, in 52 Weeks – Week 3: Unusual Name
The surnames in my tree are typical of common western European names. However, the name that is unusual among these names is MY surname: LaFara.
52 Ancestors, in 52 Weeks – Week 6: Surprise!
Just when you think you know everything about an ancestor, surprise! I thought I knew most everything about my paternal great grandfather David L. Osborne, 1848-1942.
For all of us who are procrastinating about labeling photos I have one thing to say, “Be considerate of the genealogist of the future!” My maternal grandmother was very good about labeling old family photos, and there is one, in particular, I found very informative.
52 Ancestors, in 52 Weeks – Week 10: Bachelor Uncle
My uncles are the marrying kind, sometimes more than once!
I had to go back four generations for a bachelor uncle, my great-great-great uncle Conrad Rumple, 1833-1911.
Conrad was an older brother to my great-great grandfather on my matrilineal line, William Rumple, 1839-1912.
My great-great grandparents, George Lafary and Catherine Landon, had a relatively small family, three of their six children survived to adulthood. However, they both came from large families of nine siblings and nearly all survived to marry and have children.
52 Ancestors, in 52 Weeks – Week 13: In The Paper
It’s fun to find articles in the paper mentioning one of my relatives. Mostly they are birth, marriage, divorce and death events. But, it’s the oddball articles in the papers I like the most.
52 Ancestors, in 52 Weeks – Week 14: Brick Wall
We all have a brick wall, that one ancestor who defies all research. I decided I would work at my brick walls by generation, I broke through the last of my 3rd great grandparent brick walls, now I am working on 4th great grandparents.
I realized I did not have a date of death for my great, great grandmother, Catherine Landon Lafary. A fresh search uncovered the date and much more. Out of place, but once discovered, everything fell into place.
I have many favorite photos among my collection of family artifacts. Currently, my favorite photo is of two little children from 1916 who were a complete mystery to me until last spring.