Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee

He'd Give Me Nightmares, Too

While trying to search who was in the 1911 photograph, we were able to trace enough of Lisa's ancestry to the point of people whom she remembered, which allowed us to make a connection and thus put names to a couple of faces, including one that traumatized Lisa as a child.

Although Lisa's home town is Los Alamos, she spent some periods of time living in the old house in Mehama. This pencil portrait hung in the room in which she lived, staring down at her at night.

This (as far as we can determine) is Lewis A. Stout, Lisa's mother's mother's mother's father. (The core of the clan's holdings appears to have passed primarily down the female line. Most of the old family names for which the roads, streams, and other landmarks are named have died out as other people married in to the family.) The Centennial History of Oregon, 1811-1912, Volume 3 (published only a year after the 1911 photo in my previous entry) has an entry on him that reads, in part: of the most prominent citizens of Mehama, Marion County.... The parents, Ephraim and Sarah Stout, ... crossed the plains [in 1852] with ox teams being en route six months during which time they had some trouble with the Indians. They settled three miles west of Mehama on a donation land claim which they improved and resided on the remainder of their lives.... He spent a great deal of time in the sawmill business erecting one of the earliest sawmills in this section and building the first ferry boat at Mehama....

In politics Mr Stout is a prohibitionist and he is proud to say of both the sons and sons in law in his large family that none ever used strong intoxicants. He takes an active interest in all party issues and has held some minor offices. Although Mr Stout was raised a Quaker he is now a member of the Dunker church and he is a worthy representative of the class of citizens whose industrious and useful lives constitute the true wealth of the state.

The first time Lisa took me upstairs in the old house I nearly had a heart attack when I came around a corner and confronted this portrait. Yes, we know there's a dead spider stuck inside the portrait. The portrait is in such fragile condition that we are very leery of dismounting it to clear it out.

Some of the information in this biography is at odds with other bits of family history, including the actual piece of homestead land. It's possible that there was confusion about who had what, since it appears from above that Lewis came to Oregon with his father, Ephraim Stout Jr., and lived on his father's land until acquiring land of his own closer to town. Also, Lisa's father's current land holding is larger than the holding mentioned in the Oregon history item, so there must have been some changes in the intervening century about which nobody today remembers.

If RootsWeb's data is correct, this man's grandfather (Lisa's great-great-great-great grandfather, Ephrahim Sr.) was born in 1774 in North Carolina, and his father, Samuel, was born in 1740 in Pennsylvania, and through him Lisa's ancestry on what would later be US soil traces back to 1654, and before that to Richard Stout, born 1615 in Nottinghamshire, England.

Slightly less creepy is this portrait of Lewis's wife (Lisa's great-great-grandmother), Elizabeth Stout (née Byers).

I'm not that surprised that during the periods when nobody was looking after the old house, neighborhood kids are thought to have dared each other to break in and go see the ghosts.

Update, 22:50: Minor correction of "photo" to "portrait" prompted (eventually) by kalimac's comment below.
Tags: geneology, history, lisa, mehama

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