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                        Walter and Anna Van Dyke

Grandpa was a Dutchman
Grandpa Walter Joseph Van Dyke was a Dutchman.  He was born in The Hague, 
Southern Holland, in the Netherlands on December 29, 1835 when the 
average male life expectancy was thirty-six.  Not an average guy, Grandpa 
lived to ninety, he was healthy, active, working and driving his Ford 
Model T up to time he died.  

Emigration, Marriage and Family
Walter Joseph's grandsons said he spoke seven languages, among them Dutch, 
German and English, which came in handy when he immigrated to the U.S. in 
1872.  Walter married Anna M Thomas in Philadelphia.  Their son Martin was 
born on Oct 30, 1873.  Walter filed his Declaration of Intention to become 
a citizen of the United States on Oct 3, 1874.  Their daughter Anna was 
born in 1877.  

The Move to Ohio
The family moved to Cleveland Ohio, where their daughter Elizabeth, 
nicknamed Lizzie, was born in March 1880.  The 1880 census listed Walter's 
occupation as an Engineer, Anna's occupation as Keeping House.  On June 5, 
1880, Walter was 43, Anna was 38, Martin was 6, their daughter Anna was 3 
and baby Elizabeth was 3 months old.  Walter became a naturalized citizen 
on October 13, 1884.  His citizenship petition stated he was still working 
as an Engineer. 

Tragedy Strikes
Daughter Lizzie died on November 24, 1880 from Diphtheria of the Larynx.  
Lizze was only 8 months old.  Daughter Anna died on January 5,1881 from 
Paralysis. Anna was three years old. 

Happier Times
On March 8, 1882, another daughter was born.  They named her Anna.  On 
December 25, 1884, their son Walter was born.  

More Sorrow 
On March 29, 1886, when he was 15 months old, baby Walter died from Lung 
Fever.  On June 12, 1893, Anna, age 50, died of cancer.  When Anna died, 
Walter bought a plot at Monroe Street Cemetery for Anna and himself.  
Three of their five children were already buried at Monroe.  Their graves 
a short walk from where Anna would be buried.

A New Occupation 
After wife Anna died, Walter changed occupations.  The 1900 Cleveland 
City Directory and the 1900 Census listed Walter's occupation as a Fish 
Peddler.  In the early 1900's, the meat man, the bread man, the iceman, 
milkman and fishman, all made their rounds in horse drawn delivery wagons.  
Their wagons would come down the street and the peddlers would sell their 
wares from house to house. 

A Second Marriage
On December 26, 1893, Walter married his second wife, Alberta Bom.  Abbie 
had two sons from her first marriage, John, age 21 and Cornelius, age 12.  

Son Martin 
Walter's son Martin married Daisy on June 10, 1895.   On August 4, 1896, 
daughter-in-law Daisy gave birth to a baby girl.  The baby was premature 
and too young to survive, she died that same day.  On April 19, 1897, 
Daisy gave birth to a second premature baby girl.  Martin made a modest 
living then and money was tight.  Walter arranged to have both babies 
interred with their Grandmother Anna.  The next years were happier years 
as Daisy gave birth to four healthy sons.  Then on Feb 23, 1904, tragedy 
stuck again when Daisy gave birth to a stillborn baby boy.  Walter again 
arranged for this baby to be buried with his Grandmother Anna.  During 
the years, 1905 to 1909, Daisy had four more healthy sons.  

Daughter Anna
On March 8, 1900, when she was eighteen years old, Daughter Anna M. 
married John R. Hawk.  They moved to Seneca County, Oh where they raised 
their three children, two boys and a girl.  

Walter's Second Marriage Ends
Walter and Abbie were married for seventeen years when their marriage 
ended in divorce on June 1, 1911.  Abbie's two sons lived with Walter and 
Abbie during those seventeen years. 

Walter's Third Marriage Begins
When Walter was 65 years old he married a 53-year-old widow named Mary 
Jane Mathys.  Mary Jane was widowed in May 1910.  Walter and Mary Jane 
were married on June 30, 1911. 

Walter's Grandchildren
Daisy had three more boys between 1911 and 1915.   With 11 boys at home 
their home was a happy and active one.   

His grandsons remember a salve their Grandfather made and sold to his 
neighbors.  Whenever one of his 11 Grandsons had a cut, Grandfather Walter 
would apply this homemade salve.  It was great for healing cuts.  
Grandfather Walter left no record of what went into this salve or how he 
made it.      

Walter's Last Years
Walter's daughter-in-law, Daisy died on Aug. 16, 1916.  Daisy's youngest 
child William, then age 2 went to live with Walter and Mary Jane.  The 
1920 census shows William was still living with his Grandfather Walter 
and Walter's third wife Mary Jane by January 3, 1920.  By then Walter was 
85, Mary Jane was 62 and William was 6 years old.  Walter was still 
working as a Fish Peddler in 1920.  

In December 1925, Walter and several of his friends drove to Sandusky 
Ohio.  On the way home Walter's Model T got a flat tire.  Walter, being the 
fittest of the bunch, got out of the car and changed the tire.  With 
rain soaked clothes, ninety-year-old Walter drove home in that open car.  
The next day he took sick.  On January 2, 1926, Walter died, of Lobar 
Pneumonia.  

Walter and Mary Jane had been married 14 years.  He was buried in Monroe 
Street Cemetery in the plot with his first wife Anna and their three 
grandchildren.

Walter's Third Wife
Mary Jane died in 1938.  She was buried with her first husband, John 
Mathys in Brooklyn Heights Cemetery.