Work and Family…

Luther is the youngest son of Samuel M. and Hetty.  He had just turned 12 years old about a month before his mother passed away.  She was fairly young–56 years old.  That was 1897.

Three years later, at 15 years old, Luther is learning at school.  He very likely had summer jobs before then.  Children were commonly, at one time in our nation, expected to work and earn money to contribute to the family income.  As mentioned in another post, being hired out at a young age was common at the time.  In fact, the 1900 census asks for the “occupation, trade, or profession of each person 10 years of age and over.”  For Luther, who would have been almost 15 when the 1900 census was taken, his occupation was “At School” and, according to the census, he had been out of work for 8 months, which would be about the period of school.

Another three years later–Luther is 18 years old.  He’s no longer “at school”, but working as a cork maker.  Quite possibly, he worked for Armstrong Cork Company, which was in operation at the time.  The link below has a brief history and some photos of the cork factory in Lancaster.  The building is still there today, but it’s now a mixed use property, with apartments, commercial space, a hotel, restaurant, etc.  In 1907, Luther still works at a cork factory, according to the city directory.

1895: Armstrong Cork Company begins production at Place with the purchase of Lancaster Cork Company and other local cork companies.

via About – Cork Factory Hotel – History and Honor

also via Urban Place – About

Wedding bells ring in 1909.  Luther and Mary Edna Jury get married on February 24.  Maybe Cupid’s arrows got them on Valentine’s Day!

Luther and Mary Edna

Photo taken February 6, 1953.  Luther, age 67.  Mary Edna, age 61.  Photo compliments of Ronald P. Scott.

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