Friday, April 3, 2015

A to Z April Challenge: C is for Clyde


“We need to get together more often and not at a funeral.” How many times have you and a cousin said that? Funerals are much like a family reunion. You can learn a lot about a family just by looking at who showed up. Using my grandparents’ guest books and sympathy cards, I’ll be exploring “Who came to the funeral?

is for Clyde Hisey.  And Clyde Griffith.  And Clyde Knight, for that matter. 

The three Clydes all attended the funeral of my maternal grandfather Orvin Davis on that October day in 1963. Only Clyde Knight was related. He and my grandfather were first cousins, their mothers being sisters. The other Clydes were life-long friends of the family. 

The signatures of Clyde Hisey and Clyde Griffith are together on the guest book. It is no surprise that they arrived together to the funeral because they were brothers-in-law having married sisters. Today I want to concentrate on Clyde Hisey since Clyde Griffith was the focus of an entry during last year’s challenge.
Guest Book at funeral of Orvin Davis 1963 http://jollettetc.blogspot.com
Guest Book
for Orvin Davis 1963

Clyde Hisey was one of six children born to Robert and Emma Hisey in Shenandoah, Virginia. None of the three who survived childhood went into railroading like their father. Instead the oldest brother Ben became a successful barber, and William and Clyde became pharmacists. 

H. Clyde Hisey graduate of Medical College of Virginia 1915  http://jollettetc.blogspot.com
Henry Clyde Hisey 1915

Clyde graduated in 1915 from the Medical College of Virginia in Richmond. When he registered for the draft in 1917, he was working for Frederick Nelligar, proprietor of Nelligar’s and Redgate Pharmacy in Norfolk, Virginia. There Clyde joined the Navy as a First Class Pharmacist’s mate on a transport and in the ship’s hospital. He was discharged in 1919.
Draft registration H. Clyde Hisey 1917 http://jollettetc.blogspot.com
WWI draft registration

Announcing opening of Hisey's Pharmacy 1919 Shenandoah, VA  http://jollettetc.blogspot.com
from Shenandoah: A History of Our Town and its People



Clyde and his brother William wasted no time returning home to Shenandoah to open a drug store. Even though there were several drug stores in the small town, the Hiseys developed a reputation for skill and thoroughness. The store provided more than prescription medicines; it offered toilet articles, candies, sundries, and a complete line of drugs. There was even a refrigerated fountain.

Two years after opening the drugstore, Clyde married Clarice Baker. They had twin boys and a daughter.  Clyde and his brother William bought neighboring homes on Fourth Street right across from my grandmother’s childhood home. In a town where everyone knew everyone, and everyone conducted business with their neighbors and friends, it’s no wonder friendships were established that lasted despite families relocating for better job opportunities during the Depression.

Clyde Hisey and William Hisey in front of Hisey Pharmacy in Shenandoah, VA 1948  http://jollettetc.blogspot.com
Clyde and William Hisey in front of their store 1948
from 
Shenandoah: A History of Our Town and its People



The Shenandoah Magazine published in 1927 featured brief articles about the various business men of the town. The Hisey brothers were described as “men of public spirit, forward-looking, and identified with all movements of development and civic progress.”

One of their ads reprinted in
Shenandoah: A History of Our Town and Its People

Clyde Hisey died in 1965, two years after my grandfather. Clyde and Clarice are buried in the Methodist Church Cemetery in Shenandoah, Virginia.

from Findagrave.com
photo courtesy Jan Hensley

Sources:
Census records for Shenandoah, Page, VA 1900-1940
Find A Grave
Shenandoah:  A History of Our Town and Its People. Shenandoah Centennial Association History Committee, 1985.
U.S. School Yearbooks, 1880-2012 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010.
U.S., World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations Inc, 2005.
Virginia, Select Marriages, 1785-1940 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc, 2014.


Count on my comrades at the A to Z April Challenge for clever and creative contrivances.



© 2015, Wendy Mathias. All rights reserved.

20 comments:

  1. Wendy, there must have been a time when Clyde was a popular name. I love the photo of the pharmacy with the delivery truck in front!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, I don't think Clyde is on the list of popular baby names right now.

      Delete
  2. Fascinating research and photos. I can imagine Clyde making drinks and chatting with his customers from behind the soda fountain.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I bet he did that too after he filled prescriptions. Thanks for visiting!

      Delete
  3. Great research and I, too, like that old photo with the delivery truck!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Interesting with so many Clydes; must have been a common name back then. I honestly can't say I have ever known a Clyde. This Clyde seemed to have lived a honorable good life. I always thought it would be interesting to be a pharmacist and count pills all day (I know they do a lot more than count pills).

    betty

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I knew ONE Clyde and it was a WOMAN.

      Delete
  5. Fascinating blog, Wendy! It must be so interesting to learn about your roots! I wonder if it's easier for some families than others: I come from a long line of military ancestors, which means dad, grandpa, uncles all moved pretty much every three years throughout their lives. I think it makes it harder to track than a family that settles in one region!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Some military records make it easy, but often if families moved between censuses, you might not know everywhere they went. Thanks for visiting!

      Delete
  6. When I first saw the title with the name Clyde, I immediately thought of the Scottish river on the west of Scotland - once the heart of shipbuilding and shipping from Glasgow. So I was wondering if there was a Scottish dimension to the name. Do you know anything of its origin in America?.

    .(ScotSue of Family History Fun at http://scotsue-familyhistoryfun.blogspot.co.uk)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't know the origins of the name in America, but a large number of Scotch-Irish helped settle the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, so your instincts might be on point.

      Delete
  7. Brand new follower here, dropping by from A to Z.

    Nice to meet you!

    2015 A to Z Challenge Co-Host
    Matthew MacNish from The QQQE

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aw shucks, Matthew -- thanks and nice to meet you too!

      Delete
  8. What a clever theme and way to present genealogical research

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much. And thanks for the visit.

      Delete
  9. Brothers, business partners and best friends ... as well as next door neighbors. I wish that I could have gone to their drugstore and met them. I can't notice that there are twins in this post too!

    Hugs,
    Kathy M.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hadn't noticed the number of twins until you pointed it out. Funny!!

      Delete
  10. Love the pictures and the history :)
    Couldn't miss out on A-Z even though I am not participating for the first time in 3 years....or is it 4?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's 4! I almost didn't do it this year until I was cleaning out stuff and came across the funeral books and cards. Then I got the idea.

      Delete