Saturday, July 13, 2013

There's always something new to be discovered

After posting the timeline for my great-grandpa Milton Richard Likins, I was doing some "web surfing" in one of the digital newspaper sites and found some very interesting notes about him--a couple of them rather dramatic incidents, neither of which I knew anything about. Here they are:

27 Oct 1891 Jeffersonville News, Jeffersonville, IN:  Broad Ripple, Ind. Oct. 27—Milton Likens, of this place, took his five-year-old boy quail hunting with him. He left him by a stump, while he circled around a covey of birds, but when the time came to shoot, he forgot his bearings, and thirty shot took effect in the boy. The lad was badly hurt, but he will recover.

15 Nov 1892 Connersville Daily News, Connersville, IN.  “Broad Ripple, Ind., Nov. 15—Milton R. Likens, the village baker, was terribly burned by an explosion of natural gas. The pressure increased, extinguishing the fire and filling the oven with gas. Mr. Likens opened the door and the explosion followed. He was thrown across the room, his beard and hair was burned off his face and head, and he was frightfully burned and bruised about the body.”

10 Aug 1894 Milton R. Likins, Broad Ripple post office, commissioned Justice of the Peace for Marion co. IN. Annual Reports of the Officers of State of the State of Indiana . . . for the fiscal year ending October 31, 1894. [Similar listing in 1898]

This one about the explosion is particularly interesting, and helpful for a rather odd reason. I have an old photo which was in my grandmother's effects, but had come from her mother. It is a picture of a couple, the man with a rather generous beard. My grandmother said she didn't know who they were. I thought it was her parents--and I've continued to think so, in studying the photo carefully and comparing features with photos of her parents.; but she told me one time that it couldn't be her parents because she was sure her father had never worn a beard. But here, in this account of this gas explosion, is evidence that in fact he did have a beard at the time of the accident--four years before my grandmother's birth, so she may have never known him with a beard. 

Here's the photo that I think is Milton Richard and Nettie Belle (Hastings) Likins:

And here's one that I know is Milton Richard and Nettie Belle (Hastings) Likins, with eldest son Ford Likins (b. 1885, so this photo ca. 1889 or so):

Sure looks like the same couple to me; what do you think?


  1. First off, Milton was not a very lucky fellow! I think it is the same couple as well. He parts his hair in the same exact spot and her hair seems to come away from her forehead the same way in both photos. I'm convinced!

  2. Also, check out her crooked mouth--lower on her left side.