Memorandum of J B Lightcap.
1854 Sept 7
Left home and went to Williams County Ohio. With A & J Oberlins (1) Age 19 years 7 months and 26 days. It took us 7 days to move there a distance of 180 miles.
14 We found everything in tolerable order. Hired with them at the rate of $12.00 per month. Worked about 3 months made about 3,000 rails for which I got 25 cts per hundred.(2) When I left home I had in money $13.50. And when I returned I had $31.50 I think.
Taught school out there in District No 12. Commenced on the 4 of Dec 1853 at the rate of twenty dollars per month. Boarded at Adam Oberlins all winter had a very pleasant time of it all winter. Had 2 3/4 miles to go to school. Allways on hand at the usual hour of taking up school. Had 41 enrolled average in daily attendance.
23 Feb Taught 66 days for a quarter. My school terminated on 23 of Feb. 1854. Weather very cold.
March 7 Left for home on the 7 of March. A Oberlin took me as far as Striker (3). Stayed there till morning.
Attend a show sleigh of hand that night was more entertained at the concert admission fee 15 cts.
Fare at the Hotel at Striker .50.
(1) A&J Oberlin could have been brothers Adam Oberlin 1813 – 1888 b: December 05, 1813 in Ohio d: October 20, 1888 and Jacob Oberlin 1816 – 1895 b: March 26, 1816 in Ohio d: January 15, 1895 in Williams County, Ohio.
It looks like the Oberlins were related to the Lightcaps through his mother, Elizabeth Gilbert Lightcap (b: February 07, 1813 in Cumberland County, Pennsylvania d: July 29, 1893 in Holmes County, Ohio), based on this information.
(2) Could Lightcap have been making rails for Michigan Southern Railroad Company? This entry about Stryker, Ohio says that “the first timetable for the railroad took effect on Monday June 8, 1857. The route ran from Toledo to Elkhart, stopping at 17 villages along the way. Stryker’s first railroad depot was a freight depot on the south side of the tracks.”
The folks from the Holmes County Genealogical Society say it’s likely that Lightcap was making fence rails, not steel rails, based on his pay.
(3) This would likely be Stryker, Ohio. I’m currently attempting to get in touch with the Stryker Area Heritage Council to see if they have any information about the hotel there or the place where Lightcap would have taken in a “sleigh” (sleight?) of hand show and a concert.