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September 13, 1984


PIX #1 - Ethel (Reese) Ash, photographed with the picture of her deceased husband, Earl.

PIX #2 - The remodeled house, in which Earl Ash was born, and where Ethel lives.

PIX #3 - Fred Thompson, one-time postmater at Amsden, looks on, as Clinton Kunkleman, once a rural mail carrier out of the Amsden post office, starts on his route many years ago.

Ninety-two year old Mrs. Earl Ash, a resident of Amsden for nearly 50 years, has many good memories of that whole rural area. She should since she was born and lived her early life in Kansas, the neigboring village. She later taught school at Burgoon, Kansas and Bettsville.

Many residents of Fostoria will remember her as Ethel Reese, and as a seventh grade mathematics teacher in Fostoria prior to her marriage to Earl Ash in 1937. In fact, it was that marriage that cuased Ethel to resign from her teaching position. She oversaw the remodeling of the old Ash home into a very nice modern home.

I found myself sitting in the same chari in that beautiful living room where I had sat once many years ago. Ethel occupied the chair opposite me, the one that Earl sat in when my mission was a different one. The day of this interview she still eulogized her deceased husband as a "wonderful man"

Earl Ash was killed in a car accident in the Bowling Green area on Sept. 16, 1969. Mrs. Ash recalls that many prominent people attended Earl's funeral service including Gov. James Rhodes.

The very close relationship between Ethel and Earl prompted the picture for today's article showing Earl in the background.

Earl's voluminous library remains at home just as he left it. He was an avid reader on many subjects but primarily about history, government, wars and politics.


I asked Ethel how she became a teacher. This is her story.

"Geraldine Ralston, a friend took the teacher's examination in Tiffin and told me about it. I decided to go over and take the exam too. Geraldine didn't pass but I did".

In 1911 a college diploma wasn't required to become a teacher.

Geraldine Ralston was a member of the family of Mayor Ralston of Fostoria, a socialist candidate. The family members were neighbors when I was young. Geraldine went on to become a nurse.

Ethel's first teaching assignment was at the Flack Country School in Jackson Township.

This article about the Ashes wouldn't be complete without telling two romantic stories.


The first story tells how the romance between Earl and Ethel blossomed. It started back in the days when the Fostoria & Fremont electric cars ran between those towns.

Ethel would board the car at Kansas for the trip to Fostoria and sometimes Earl would be riding the same car from Amsden. Often when Earl got on he would sit with Ethel if the seat was vacant next to her. Ethel was an attractive young lady, and as she still says, "Earl was a wonderful man". She must have thought the same back then.

The second story was told to me on the day of the interview. Most retired teachers get invited to high school class reunions. Ethel was invited and attended one about a year ago.


"You know how at class reunions the members like to reminisce and tell things they recall from school days. After a number of them had recited their recollections, one of the male classmated stood up and said "This is something I have never told anyone. When we were in seventh grade and Mrs. Ash was one of our teachers, I was madly in love with her and wanted to marry her".

I can imagine the roar of laughter that followed and the applause the storyteller received for his contribution. He came from the far west to tell that story. Of course, he got over that first love and married.

Mrs. Ash was the only girl in a family of five boys. She and her brother Walter, "Sam" as he was known, are the only living members.

Since Ethel was well known throughout the Fostoria area, I hope her friends and readers in general will enjoy these personal glimpses of her life and wish her many more happy years.



In the Aug. 30, Potluck, one paragraph mentioned Dr. Miles, Amsden's doctor many years ago. Zenith Hanover, a resident of rural Amsden as a young person, telephoned to say the doctor's name was Nile. She is absolutely correct. I knew it having discovered it in my research. Evidently it was an error in my typing. Sorry!

Mrs. Hanover was a Nederhouser before marriage to Don Hanover. The Nederhousers lived south of Amsden on what is now Ohio 12. In later years the farm became known as the Hanover farm.

Mrs. Hanover's father was Daniel Webster Nederhouser of Geman descent. His parents were Jacob and Elizabeth (Kinsley) Nederhouser, farmers in Jackson Township too. Mrs. Hanover's mother was a descendant of Stockwells, (English descent) who came to Ohio from Connecticut.

I had intended to have the above genealogy record with the others of pioneers in Jackson Township but my notes got mislaid until now.


Mrs. Hollinger, an Amsden resident, and regular Potluck reader, telephoned to say she liked the Amsden articles. She has in her possession a quantity of postcards, showing old scenes in Fostoria, and invited me to see them, when next in Amsden.


...that includes Carmen (Ash) Lyons, the Trumplers, the Watsons, Mrs. Earl Ash and Charles Ash. It is a close-knit family having Mr. and Mrs. William Ash as ancestors. Currently, as in the past, all of them have expressed appreciation for the articles. It is the words of appreciation from the scores of readers which spurs this author to do his best.


Alberta Babione, 7595 W. Ohio 12, an employee at Sack -n- Save hailed me at the store and said she was enjoying the Amsden series of articles. She said she was glad to learn that the highway in front of the house where they live was once the old Plank Road. She never knew it.

I asked her where she lived and she said "on the old Hanover farm"...the farm where the house is on one side of the road and the farm across the road. I told her I knew the location and had known the family way back.


Marshall Copsey, 1302 S. Main St. telephoned me elated about the series of his birthplace. He told me he was going out to Amsden soon to see the interior of the old store in the post office building and take pictures.

Copsey's grandfather, William, as well as his father, also by the same name, lived in Amsden which makes three generations with roots in the village. He said Nelson Grimes and Gilbert Rouser, both his cousins are still residents of Amsden.

I will be visiting Marshall at my first opportunity to see his collection of memorabilia and hear him play the harminica...another of his hobbies and talents.


Wilmer dug into his photo file and found a picture of his father, Clinton, on the motorcycle which he used at one period of time when he was a rural mail carrier out of the Amsden post office.

Clinton Kunkelman started out as a rural carrier in 1907 and continued until 1937. Thirteen of those years he worked out of the Alvada post office.

In the first of the series about Amsden there was a photo of the rural mail vehicle, horse-drawn, which Kunkleman used before he acquired the motorcycle, shown in the accompanying photo. at one time he also used a model T Ford.

Back then the rural mail carriers experienced not only bad roads but much snow and cold in the winter, according to Wilmer. He recalls that his father heated bricks to keep his feet warm during extreme cold. When there was deep snow a horse-drawn sleigh was used.

Fred Thompson was the postmater when Kunkleman was a carrier. The Amsden rural route was 26 miles long. Wilmer said. I was never able to find a list of other rural carriers out of Amsden. The post office in Amsden has no record of them.

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