MS 394 - Charles C. Starr Collection
|Title||MS 394 - Charles C. Starr Collection|
The Charles C. Starr papers includes seventy-nine personal letters, dating from June 2, 1855 to July 1909. Most of the letters written in the 1870s were addressed to Charles C. Starr from his relatives who lived in Ohio and throughout the Midwest. Also included in the collection is a series of legal papers documenting Elizabeth Starr's efforts to obtain a pension after the death of her husband.
The collection was donated by Betty Neidecker, who also made available many family documents which further enhanced the comprehensive nature of this register. Other sources consulted included the Toledo Blade; The History of Ottawa County and Its Families; and The Starr Family History. Under the supervision of Ann Bowers, Assistant Director of the Center for Archival Collections, this finding aid was prepared by Allen Patrick Shepherd, undergraduate student of History and Poltical Science at Bowling Green State University in Spring 1991. The finding aid was edited and prepared for the World Wide Web by Lee McLaird, Curator of Rare Books and Special Collections, in April 1997.
Daniel L. Starr, father of Charles C. Starr, lived the early part of his life in the New York cities of Lansing, Enfield, and Greenwood. While beginning as a farmer, he soon moved on to work in the harness and saddling business. In January 1855, he migrated to Perkins, Ohio (in Margaretta Township of Erie County). Daniel was elected to various county and township offices before his death in Perkins, Ohio on December 29, 1867, age 61. He was a Baptist. Bathsheba Starr was born to Charles and Betsey (Smith) Chadwick in Genoa, New York. She married Daniel Starr on August 15, 1831. After Daniel's death, she married John Gillette, who died March 9, 1879. Bathsheba passed away only nine days later at the age of 63; she was buried in Castalia, Ohio.
Charles Chadwick Starr was the oldest child of Daniel and Bathsheba Starr, born in Lansing, Tompkins County, New York on January 2, 1833. Six other children were born to the couple: Thirza Elizabeth, June 23, 1835; Rachel Earle, May 1, 1838; Guernzy, August 15, 1840; Merrill Leroy, February 10, 1842; Lewis Alphonso, December 23, 1847; and Ella, June 22, 1850. After Charles became twnety-one, he moved to Ohio, dividing the next two years between Sandusky and Fremont. In 1856, he located in Toledo and entered the law offices of William Baker. Subsequently, he became a student in the office of Hill & Pratt and was admitted to the Bar in October 1858. Shortly thereafter, he became a partner in the firm, Hill, Pratt & Starr. The business again changed to Pratt, Starr Wilson when Hill was succeeded by a newcomer. After establishing himself as an attorney, he married Elizabeth Wilson Fetter on April 18, 1861.
When the Civil War erupted, Charles Starr was put to duty as a veteran member of the local militia. When Cincinnati was threatened, he was stationed there to defend it from attack. He soon enlisted in the Army and engaged in action with the 128th Ohio Volunteer Infantry, seeing a great deal of combat. He was honorably discharged as a First Lieutenant on July 17, 1865. Charles and Elizabeth's two children were born during this time period: Kate Chloe was born February 10, 1862 and Elizabeth was born May 4, 1868. Early in the 1870s, Starr moved his family to Port Clinton, Ohio, where he lived for the rest of his life. The results of a disease contracted in the army caused him to be certified as an invalid in 1875. By the mid-1890s he was confined to his bed. He was officially certified insane by the United States Bureau of Pensions on May 3, 1898. The paper certified that the pension was granted to his wife since he had contracted a "disease of the bowels from typhoid fever and resulting disease of brain and spinal cord." Four months before his death, he entered a Toledo hospital for treatment. An obituary in the Toledo Daily Blade stated that "he had suffered from nervous trouble which the doctors diagnosed as neurasthenia." According to the article, Starr's health had been strengthening before he "suffered from an attack of the grip which aggravated his complaint" only three weeks before his death. Charles Chadwick Starr finally died on May 4, 1899 at the age of sixty-six.
Starr's widow Elizabeth Wilson (Fetter) Starr, was the daughter of Philip and Catharine Elizabeth (Bower) Fetter. She was born December 16, 1836 in Hesse Darmstadt, Germany. The Fetter family came to the United States in 1844. She survived her husband by more than a decade, but was diagnosed with an unspecified illness on July 25, 1908. She died of cardiac dropsy on July 22, 1909, aged seventy-two.
Charles C. Starr's oldest daughter Kate Chloe, was unmarried at the time of his death. Her younger sister Elizabeth married John Adam Neidecker II (1859-1936) on December 31, 1890. John Adam was the son of Peter Neidecker, a funeral and furniture businessman from Port Clinton. Elizabeth Starr Neidecker was John Adam's second wife; he had married first to Anna Foote, and after Elizabeth's death, he wed Julia Perrin. Through his three wives, he had the following children: Mina McDonald (1882-1937); Elsa Shugars Pregrave (1883-1955); Frederick Starr (1892-1945); Madeline Ella (1895-1924); Philip Stuve (1893-1931); and Elizabeth Jean Ingwersen (1898-1984).
The donor of this collection is Elizabeth Neidecker. She is the daughter of John Adam Neidecker II's oldest son Frederick. Alpha (Hennesy) Starr (1895-1965) bore Frederick three children, including Elizabeth (b. 1920), John Frederick (1923-1975), and Nancy Starr (1929-1933).
|Scope and Content|
The Charles C. Starr papers are a collection of eighty-nine documents dating between June 2, 1855 and July 1909. A majority of the collection is the correspondence between various members of the Starr family during the 1850s, 1860s and 1870s. While most of the letters are the incoming correspondence of Charles C. Starr, there are several other members of the family whose letters are included in this collection. A series of papers documents Elizabeth Starr's attempt to obtain an appeal for a pension through her invalid husband Charles.
The collection is of interest to researchers in a variety of disciplines, including women's studies, social and economic history, Civil War, treatment of minorities, life on the frontier, and agriculture.
A series of documents (1897-1909) details Elizabeth Starr's efforts to obtain a pension from the government, through her invalid/insane husband Civil War veteran Charles C. Starr.
Originating from many different members of the Starr family and its acquaintances, these letters provide details about each writer's daily life and activities.
Index of Names