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Darlene E. Kelley
donkeyskid@webtv.net                              
May 23, 1999
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Historical Collections of Ohio
The Kelley Family Book compiled by Hermon Alfred Kelley   1897   
And Then They Went West
by Darlene E. Kelley    1998   
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     The Island has long been famous for its grapes and lime stone, two
products that brought it wealth, but we venture the assertion that no
other community in America of equal size has produced so many talented
and exceptional people in the same length of time as Kelley's Island.
These people, we are extremely proud of. and boast of their exceptional
abilities as well as their intelligence and dedication for their
humanitarian devotion.  In addition to such men as Horace Kelley whose
interest in art and whose name is perpetuated in the Kelley Art Gallery
at Cleveland, Ohio, to which he bequeathed a large sum of money, the
Island has produced several artists of exceptional ability, among them
are: Miss Nellie Elfers. daughter of Mr. Fredrick Elfers. Miss Elfers
was Director of Art in the Public Schools of Riverside, California.  She
was a graduate of the New York Art Institute.  Mr. Arnold Scheely,who
also studied at the New York Art Institute and was a graduate of
Columbia College, New York, and the Northwestern University of Chicago,
was a landscape painter of great ability.  The Kelley's Island Music
Union organized in 1885 is the beginning of the Choral Union which is
one of he oldest organizations of the Island.  The first officers of the
Musical Union were: Erastus Huntington, First Chorister; E.J.
Goodsell,Second Chorister; D.K. Huntington, First Organist;  William
Moysey, Second Organist; Miss Mary B. Rush, Secretary and Treasurer.
This organization embraced among its members a remarkably large number
of singers of exceptional ability. Perhaps the most remarkable singer of
them all was Hattie, the daughter of George Kelley.  She left the Island
at the time of her marriage to Mr. Stewart Chisholm of Cleveland, Ohio
and resided in Cleveland where she sang for many years in the choir of
the Second Baptist Church of Cleveland.  This is the Church to which Mr.
John D. Rockfeller belonged.  Mrs. Chisholm had a soprano voice of such
sweetness, power and range that some of the best musical authorities in
Cleveland agreed that it was almost if not fully equal to that of the
celebrated Adelini Pattie, who was acknowledged to be the most wonderful
singer of her day in the world.
Anna Quinn ( Mrs. Chalmers ) had a voice of wonderful beauty.  She was a
musician of great talent and taught both vocal and instrumental (piano)
music in many cities.
Miss Emma Burger was a pianist of rare skill whose accomplishments were
preferred to all others by Mr. Henry Kelley.  Mr. Henry C. Kelley, a
brother of Mrs. Chisholm, was as great an artist on the violin, as she
was a singer. Only his extreme modesty prevented him from becoming
famous.  He was the organizer in 1874 of the Kelley's Island Quadrille
Band, an organization that furnished music for the Island entertainments
for many years. Its original members were:
Henry C. Kelley, First Violin; Will Harvey, Second Violin; John Moysey,
Flute; Ed ward, Cornet; G.A. Kelley, Bass Vial. G.A. Kelley was a
brother of Mr. Henry C.Kelley.  Another brother, Charles Kelley sang
bautifully and their sister Laura, Mrs Elbert Hamilton, was a brilliant
pianist.  These are the children of George W. Kelley, a son of Irad
Kelley. The Quadrille Band was a pioneer organization of its kind and
others joined it from time to time. Hugh Cattanch, Cornet; Otto Dodge,
Clarinet; Charles Seeholzer,Jr.,Violin. The latter suceeding Mr. Will
Harvey.  Mr. Seeholzer was a musician of high order who, in addition to
playing te violin, sang delightfully and played the organ at St.
Michael's Church. There were many other musicians on the Island and in
time a brass band was organized and Professor Reisinger of Sandusky was
employed to give it instructions once a week. A second brass band was
formed by Simon Huntington, a son of Eratus Huntington and a little
later, Frank and Henry Reidy and Fred Elfers organized what was known as
the Little German Band.  Erastus Huntington possessed a fair singing
voice and was a musician of ability.  He played the organ for the
Congressional Church for many years.  In 1924, a new band was organized
by Mr. Arnold Elfers, son of Fred Elfers.  Under Mr. Elfers' able
leadership and direction, this band make remarkable progress and did
much to make the 1925 Memorial Day exercises a sucess by rendtion of a
large number of pieces appropriate to the occasion.  Thus it was seen
that the Island was and is rich in Musical talent. But we have not
completed our task.  There are still others who are deserving of more
than passing mention.  William Moysey another Island boy besides being
an organist possessed a tenior voice of remarkable quality.  He was a
musician of high order and gave instrumental as well as vocal lessons to
many of the island's boys and girls. Miss Mary Rush was a singer of
great ability and had a voice of sweetness and power.  Mr. Frank
Woodford, son of Jessie E. Woodford of Kelley's Island, had two
daughters whose voices are of such splendid quality tat thy were
selected to sing for the Radio Studios of Cleveland and Pittsburgh.
>From time to time the whole world has heard by voices of Bessie, Mrs.
E.L.Walker of Lakewood, Cleveland, Ohio, and Cathryne, Mrs R.D. Wible of
Pittsburgh, Pa.  And last but not least among the musicians is Professor
Gehrkens of Oberlin Musical Conservatory, an organist, and his daughter
a violinist who also is heard over the radio from time to time.  Edward
Gehrkens, a brother of Professor Gehrkens achieved fame by his
inventions in the electrical field.  Three Island boys have found
employment in high postion with General Electric Corporation.  They were
Edward Ghirkins, John Upp and Ernest Holbrook.  The latter was
accidentally killed at the Niagara River Plant of the Company.  John
Himmelein an island boy, moved to Sandusky where he was eventually
elected President of the City Commission.  Herman A. Kelley, son of A.S.
Kelley was a prominent admiralty lawyer of Cleveland, Ohio.  He was a
graduate of Buchtel College and Harvard Law School. He took post
graduate work at Goettingen University, Germany.  He was admitted to the
Bar at Cleveland in 1883.  He was the director of the Kelley Art Museum
of Cleveland and a trustee of the Horace Kelley Art Bequest.  He died in
Cleveland, O., February 2, 1925, aged 65 years. Mr. W.D. Kelley ll, son
of W.D. Kelley was an engineer who was engaged on some of the most
notable engineering projects ever undertaken.  He was one of the
engineers engaged in the construction of the acqeduct that conveys water
to New York City from Ashoken reservoir at the Catskill Mountans. He was
for eight years at the head of a surveying party of seventy men that ran
the line of the Inter-
continental railways in South America.  His account or report of this
great work was published in two large volumes by the United States
Government and attracted the attention of the world. He as well as his
brother, Irving, was a graduate of Cornell College.  Mr. Irving Kelley
was an architect of note who lived in Chicago. The Island has also
produced many sailors.  Some have risin to the highest rank in the
calling.  They are as follows in alphabetical order: Captains; Alonzo
Dwelle, Frank Hamilton, A.T May, O.E.Moore, Ed. Ohlemacher, C.H.
Woodford. The Island has also sent five sons into the highest calling of
all, the ministry.  Rev. Douglas Kelley, Rev. M.K. Holbrook, Rev. A.M.
Seeholzer, Rev. C. Schesserman, and Rev. Joseph Myers.  The very fact
that the inhabitants of Kelley's Island have been isolated has helped to
develop them.  Every one was called upon to contribute some of his time
and talent for the benefit of the Community with the results that a
surprisingly large number of people have been found to possess unusual
talents.  Musicians, artists, poets, editors, actors, debators,
engineers, inventors, writers, politicians, Merchants, captains,State
Legislatures, Judges, professors,Lawyers, Doctors, Nurses, Teachers,
Singers, Bandleaders, Historians, and etc have all been raised on this
wonderful Island.  Literature has always had a strong appeal and they of
Kelley's Island, have always been great readers.  The general
intelligence and erudition of the people has been remarkable. As has ben
said elsewhere, the island people for many years took a large number of
periodicals and newspapers than other communities of its size in the
United States.  It is safe to say therefore, in the whole world.
Lecturers have always found a hearty welcome and good financial returns
when they visited the island.
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(Con't in part 2)


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