Thursday, October 22, 2020

Seavers in the News -- Howell A. Seaver of Williamstown, Vt. Dies in 1943

 It's time for another edition of "Seavers in the News" - a weekly feature from the historical newspapers about persons with the surname Seaver that are interesting, useful, mysterious, fun, macabre, or add information to my family tree database.

This week's entry is from the Barre [Vt.] Daily Times newspaper dated 11 March 1943:

The transcription of the article is:

"Funeral Service of Howell A. Seaver

"Last tributes of love and respect for the memory of Howell A. Seaver, prominent business man of this town, whose death occurred suddenly on Sunday, March 7, were paid at services held in the Congregational church on Tuesday, March 9, at 2 o'clock, the many relatives and friends present filling the church to capacity.

"The entire front of the church was banked with beautiful sprays and wreaths of flowers, symbolizing the esteem in which the deceased was held by his many friends and townspeople.

"Rev. Arthur M. Gillespie opened the funeral service after which Rev. David L. Evans of Vergennes, a former pastor, using Scripture readings, prayer and poems, very fittingly dwelt upon the frailty of life and the earlier call of some to their Maker, and the hope and faith of the Christian for a happy reunion in time that is to come.

"After the church service the Masonic ritual of farewell to a deceased brother was given by Warren H. Covell, past master of Summit lodge, No. 104, F. & A.M., who had been employed by Mr. Seaver for many years and who was assisted in the rituals by brothers, Rev. O.B. Wells, Charles Riddel and Americo Gloria, officers of the local lodge.

"Besides the members of the Masonic order, there were present the faculty and a large delegation of high school and grade pupils of the village schools, members of the local fire department and of his associates in the defense plant at Websterville.

"Among those coming from out of town were Mr. and Mrs. Hugh L. Seaver, Lillian and Edward Seaver of Randolph, Mrs. Ray Potter, his aunt, of Granville, N.Y., Mrs. Charles E. Barber of Arlington, Mass., Mr. and Mrs. Everett H. Waldo and son, Robert, of Burlington, Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Carpenter of South Royalton, Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Seaver of Washington, Mr. and Mrs. Lester O. Morgan of Montpelier and Roxbury, Warren H. Covell of Hartford, Conn., Mrs. F.A. George, Mrs. Lena Seaver Fish, Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Smith, Mr. and Mrs. Robert Smith, W. Mayo Lynde, all of Barre, Stanley Smith and John MacKenzie of Portland, Me., R.V. Ebbett of Montpelier, Mr. and Mrs. B.C. Coburn of Chelsea, Edson E. Gifford of East Randolph, Americo Gloria of Websterville and many others.

"Besides his wife, nee Rhoda Bruce, he leaves four daughters, Eleanor, Priscilla, Rebecca and Nancy, his father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Carl W. Seaver of this town, and an older brother, Hugh L. Seaver, and family of Randolph, as well as several cousins and more distant relatives.

"The remains were entombed at Wilson cemetery, Barre, to await burial in the spring.  The bearers were Warren H. Covell, Ora E. Whitney, Everett H. Waldo, Robert Bruce, Rollin Bruce, and Raymond Bruce.

"Born in town on Sept. 4, 1901, called home in his 42nd year, his loss will long be keenly felt.  In his home life, a loving and kind husband and father; not seeking office or honor, he was upright in his dealings; his passing regretted by all his relatives, friends and townspeople; faithful in the performance of duty, in church, in lodge, in the community; accepting responsibility when it came to him, and carrying it out to the best of his ability in all the varied activities of life, his memory will long be cherished by all who knew him.

The source citation is:

"Funeral Service of Howell A. Seaver," Barre [Vt.] Daily Times newspaper, obituary, Thursday, 11 March 1943, page 5, column 5, Howell A. Seaver obituary;   ( : accessed 22 October 2020).

This obituary provides a name, a death date, a death place, a birth date and place, an age, names of his spouse, children, parents and brother, and other relatives.  I did not have his birth date and place.  There is information about his Masocic activities, his character, and his friends from out of town, but no cause of death is mentioned and there is nothing about his education or business activities. 

Howell Ashton Seaver was born 4 September 1901 in Williamstown, Vermont, the son of Carl Weston and Marie (Roberts) Seaver of Williamstown.   Howell had a brother, Hugh Leland Seaver (1897-1979).

Howell married Rhoda Mae Bruce (1900-1993) on 6 January 1924 in Williamstown.  They had four daughters:

*  Eleanor Rachel Seaver (1924-2014), married 1946 Harlan Edgerton Storrs (1926-2002).
*  Priscilla Mae Seaver (1926-2004), married 1948 Irvin Martin Stephenson (1927-2017).
*  Rebecca Jane Seaver (1930-2020), married 1947 George Gomez (1928-2010).
*  Nancy Ann Seaver (1934-2015), married 1956 Merlyn Harold Griffin (1928-2009).

Howell Ashton Seaver (1901-1943) is my 8th cousin 2 times removed, with common Seaver ancestors of my 9th great-grandparents Robert and Elizabeth (Ballard) Seaver. 

There are over 9,500 Seaver "stories" in my family tree - and this was one of them.   Life happens, accidentally and intentionally, and sometimes a person has many family members and friends, and has a long flowery obituary.  I am glad that I can honor Howell Ashton Seaver today.  

You never know when a descendant or relative will find this blog post and learn something about their ancestors or relatives, or will provide more information about them to me.


Disclosure:  I have a complimentary subscription to and have used it extensively to find articles about my ancestral and one-name families.

Copyright (c) 2020, Randall J. Seaver

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