Cauli Le Chat

Cauli Le Chat
Cauli Le Chat, MPL Roving Reporter

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Still More of My Feline Genealogy

Click Genealogy Chart to Bigify

Sorting through more of my local family history, there is, along the "Sweet Pea Kitty" lineage, my great-grammy, Tweetie Pie.  Let's extend that genealogical thread as far back as we can, shall we?

Tweetie Pie's parents were Belcher (male) and Two-Step (female).  Why my great-great-grammy was called Two-Step is anyone's guess.  (I can imagine why her hubby was called Belcher.)  Moving back through many (sadly) nameless generations (but cats whose whereabouts and residences can be verified from the historical record), we come upon one of my ancestors, a kitty named Victor Hugo, who was more commonly known as "Jap Miller's cat."  (Miller's "other cat" was Victor's sibling named Charles Dickens.  This fella liked his literature.  And kitties.)

Jap Miller with Victor Hugo (ca. 1900)
(from the Mooresville (Ind.) Times, April 30, 1981)
(Click to Bigify)

Jap Miller standing in front of "The Jap Miller Famous Store"
in Brooklyn, Indiana (opened in 1897) (photo ca. 1900)
(from the Mooresville (Ind.) Times, April 30, 1981)

His cats, Victor Hugo & Charles Dickens, may be sitting
in the window to the right of the store entrance

Those could be cans of something (probably not tuna-in-oil) in the window of Jap Miller's Famous Store, but they look like kitties to moi.

Enlarged portion of Jap Miller store photo shows two possible felines
in the window to the right of the entrance

Jap Miller was born before the Civil War in Shelby County, Indiana, and subsequently moved to Martinsville (Morgan County) in 1876.  In 1889, the famous Hoosier poet, James Whitcomb Riley, immortalized Miller in verse.  He (Miller, not Riley) became mayor of Brooklyn, Indiana, in 1899, about the time that this photo (above) was taken with Victor Hugo.  Miller had a store (and, purportedly, a residence) in Brooklyn, but he also (perhaps simultaneously) lived in Martinsville.  Busy dude.

Jap Miller was quite a character, by all accounts.  His cats, however, were typical felines:  independent, self-sufficient, hard-working, and massively cute.

Regretably, I am unable to trace this feline lineage beyond Jap Miller's cats.  Their birth and death dates are uncertain, too.  This is the frustrating part of genealogical research.  Only further investigation will determine if we may identify these missing details.

In yesterday's blog posting, we talked about my personal stomping grounds around West Harrison Street in Mooresville, Indiana.  Want to see some photos?  Sure you do.

West Harrison Street (looking west) (June 2012)
between my Library and Miller's Senior Care Community
(click to bigify)

 West Harrison Street (looking east) (June 2012)
near the intersection with South Monroe Street

My Library.  Pretty Much.  (June 2012)

MPL Kinder Garden, or MY Outdoor Hangout (June 2012)

I could tell you all about this end of Mooresville, across which I and some of my ancestors have been dumpster-diving for generations.  Maybe I will in a future blog post.  Local history is Scowl-Face's department, so perhaps I'll order him to make it so by writing some long-winded historical sketch.  I'll warn you first, though.

Why Alienate My Loyal Followers With Scowl-Face's Dronings?
Just Asking,

Cauli Le Chat
MPL Roving Reporter
Genealogy News Beat

P.S.  Thinking of Jap Miller's adopted town of Brooklyn, Indiana made moi think of the Library's book trailer for A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, by Betty Smith.  She was writing about that other Brooklyn someplace out east.  This is Broadway Gal's favorite book, I think.

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