His-Story comes alive – Findlay
Family genealogy merged with American history at the February 2nd meeting of the John Hancock Chapter. Compatriot Greg Jewett presented an overview of the amazing discoveries he has made in his search to locate the final resting place of Patriot Ancestor Elam Jewett, a story that would lead from Ohio to Vermont to Massachusetts to Grandview, Tennessee and that touches upon some of the most extraordinary people, places and events in American history.
Beginning with Dr. Frank Fanning Jewett, a chemistry professor at Oberlin College, Greg told how Professor Jewett challenged each year’s incoming students to be the first to discover an efficient and affordable way to smelt aluminum ore. One of those students, Martin Hall, would eventually succeed and, as Professor Jewett had promised, become wealthy and famous.
Compatriot Jewett also related the chain of connections he discovered between ancestors who fought in the Civil War and Temperance leader Dr. Charles Jewett, whose book on the subject was published by a relative, John P. Jewett. This same relative was the first edition book printer of Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin.
Compatriot Jewett reminded the audience that their own family stories probably contain similar amazing connections to history, and expressed delight in the many surprising twists and turns that his own family story has taken.
Compatriot Jewett’s work has been warmly received by Oberlin College, and is helping scholars under-stand more completely the connection between the Gospel movement, emancipation, and the Jewett family’s contributions. Oberlin will host Jewett Day at Jewett House on Saturday, August 3. – Reported in the Signature Newsletter of the John Hancock Chapter.