Lucy Orme Morgan Home -- Girl's Industrial School

Lucy Orme Morgan was one of the people who, in 1889, led the cause of building a home for orphaned or destitute girls who needed to have a place to live and a place to learn a valuable trade.  In its earlier history sometimes the school was a refuge for handicapped or mentally ill children.  The school was known as the Lucy Orme Morgan Home because of her involvement. The home was situated where the Children's Home is now located and took up all the area that is now occupied by the school.  There was a farm with milk cows, chickens and gardens for the support of the home. A Pantagraph news paper report in 1923  (from the Stevenson Ives  archives) praised the home and recounted the careers that girls followed after living there: "Girls from the home have gone out to such useful careers. Many are teachers, several are librarians, one is in the War Department at Washington, and a large number are wives and mothers in happy homes." In 1923 the girls attended the public schools for their education and received extra instruction at the home. That article recorded the names of the 30 original "managers" of the home, which included Louis Crothers and Sarah Aldrich of Founders' Grove.  Another newspaper report in 1925 announced the installation of a swimming pool and wading pool at the home. This was made possible by a donation from a Mrs. Harry Palmer from McLean. This was seen as a great advancement in physical health and fitness. Mr. Spencer Ewing and Mr. Walter Alexander of Founders' Grove were both on the committee responsible for overseeing the construction of the pools. I have included here the name of each girl and each woman living at the home who cared for the children. 

 

Attempts to trace the girls are difficult. For instance, Pauline Beck, the fourth girl below

was the daughter of Silas and Lilly Beck. Silas died in 1915 and after that all traces of 

his wife and children -- two sons and three daughters -- disappear. A Pauline Beck 

has a listing in the city directory in 1924, but whether this is the same girl is doubtful.

Although Narcissus Brown is an unusual name, no trace of her is found either. The 

Maurer sisters had a happier ending. A 1925 Iowa Census shows Edna and Mabel living with their 

Aunt Emma Lantz in Ottumwa, Iowa along with their older brother Elmer Ray. Their parents had died in 1912 (Abraham) and 1914 (Nannie nee Troyer) and were buried in Carlock and Danvers.

 

I found the image above of May and Lois Darsham in Ancestry.com.  About 10 years after this 

charming photo was taken they were "inmates" in the Home. The Ancestry.com entry states that May lived to be 91 years old and died in Valparaiso, IN. Pearl Darsham, their father, died in 1915. In 1920 their mother Margaret was living at Victory Hall, the orphanage for boys, as a servant. Their mother  died in 1943 in Chicago. Her death notice indicates that May O'Connell was her daughter. Lois's name was misspelled as Louis.

 

 

 

 

 

Suttle, Myrtle (57)

headmatron

 

 

Devalon, Eliza (67)

teacher

 

 

Howard, Ella (62)

seamstress

 

 

Ames, Eliza (54)

matron

 

 

Hines, Katie H. 37

laundress

 

 

Brown Narcissus 10

 

Wilson, Minnie 12

 

Beadsley Blanche 17

 

Angel, Marie 10

 

Bear, Sarah 8

 

Angel, Lora 8

 

Beck, Poline 13

 

Border, Bernice 11

 

Curtis, Mary 7

 

Border, Ada Lee 7

 

Curtin, Mary 14

 

Brookman, Ida 16

 

O'Connor ?, Florence 15

 

Brookman, Gladys 3

 

Grimm, Helen 15

 

Ellicker, Marie 9

 

Harris, Nittie 10

 

Girst, Dolly 14

 

Jones, Francis 9

 

Gill, Edna 10

 

Jones, Eva 16

 

Gill, Francis 5

 

Jones, Stella 13

 

Hamlyn, Gladys 10

 

Poe, Emma 3

 

Johnson, Fannie 14

 

Peasley, May 13

 

Johnson, Annie 13

 

Taylor, Allie 16

 

Johnson, Jeannette 6

 

Wey, Ellis 17

 

Johnson, Loretta 18

 

Winslow, Zella 15

 

Johnson, Eva 16

 

Dickerson, Bertha 17

 

Jensen, Esther 8

 

Crockett, Lelia 8

 

Maurer, Katherine 18

 

Cozart, Pearl 4

 

Maurer, Edna 16

 

Lane, Dima 16

 

Maurer, Mabel 14

 

Mulling, Visna 6

 

Lamb, Margaret 11

 

Patrick, Lona 17

 

Ross, Gretchen 14

 

Patrick, Inez 13

 

Smith, Edith 14

 

Welter, Lillian 12

 

Vance, Alma 14

 

Welter, Madge 6

 

Howard, Gertrude 19

 

Welter, Mary 4

 

Brown, Edith 4

 

Darsham, Lois 15

 

Lindell, Hilda 28

 

Darsham, May 13

 

Mullins, Edna 15