Wells Family Genealogy

The study of my Family Tree

12 May 2015: Erbig Bros Cigar Company in Erie PA May 12, 2015

A distant Erbig cousin of mine contacted a few weeks ago to gather info on the family and give me info on her branch.  I love it when distant cousins get in touch to trade family facts.  So while adding her some of the info she gave me on my tree on ancestry.com, I came across an interesting tidbit of information.

My great, great grandparents, Charles August Erbig and Catherine (Green) Erbig had 13 children, most of which stayed in the Jersey City, NJ area while my great grandmother (Julia) and her parents moved to Hopkinton, RI.  One of the sons that stayed behind was Robert Phillip Erbig.  Robert had two sons that I was doing a little research on Ancestry to see what happened to.  Strangely enough, it seems they moved with their wives to Erie, Pennsylvania for a while and started a Cigar company.  I know, where did that come from.  A cigar company?  Were they secretly Cuban or something?  How do I know it’s them?  Well, here’s the Erie, PA city directory for 1956:

1956 Erie PA City Directory ERBIG Robert and Herbert Cigar Co

It’s definitely them because it’s Robert “Jr” and also has the right names of their wives.

I just love finding these odd little facts about the family.  They show up in the 1957 Erie PA city directory but nothing after that.  I think they moved back to Jersey City so I’ll assume the business didn’t pan out as they’d hoped.  Still, it makes you wonder what got it in their heads to move to PA and start a cigar company???



10 May 2015: It’s been a long time … May 10, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — jgeoghan @ 8:51 am
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It’s been a long time since I last posted on this blog.  Sorry about that.  I got majorly sidetracked with a few things.  Writing my novels is a big one.  I also had surgery a few months ago and it’s taken me a while to get back into the swing of things.

So anyone from the Hopkinton RI area recognize this house??

Hopkinton Postcard on EABY 5-10-2015I don’t know anything about the house, but found this postcard for sale on EBAY this morning.  It’s dated April 26, 1906 and it looks to say “Does it look old fashioned Out in the Napthar Launch in a hale storm  E.M.H.

Unfortunately there was no photo of the back or further description on the card on EBAY, but the title of the auction listing is “Real Photo Postcard of a House postmarked Ashaway RI.”

I googled “Napthar Launch” and found this on Wikipedia: A naphtha launch, sometimes called a “vapor launch”, was a small motor launch, powered by a naphtha engine. They were a particularly American design, brought into being by a local law that made it impractical to use a steam launch for private use.

But whatever it is, it’s part of Hopkinton’s past, so I throw it out there into cyber space to see if the house looks familiar to anyone in the area.  Just trying to preserve some of the town’s history.