Gold King

I’d like to see a great-grandparents day.  I learned a lot more about my great-grandparents after my mom died, unfortunately, she would have been able to tell me a lot more.

My Great-Grandpa was slightly famous in our town. I found out they called him “Gold King” – so my dad told me, and then his brother came to dinner that day, and dad mentioned Henry C. and bro said “Oh, you mean Gold King!”

Why did they call him that?  Evidently, there was a coal mine under his property and the mine was close to shutting down and needed to go under his land, but he wouldn’t sell the rights.   It was said that before the agreement there was talk of tar and feathering him – but Grandma didn’t like people to talk about that.  That’s why I didn’t find out till after she died. They finally offered him double what other people got – he agreed, hence the name.  However, it’s rumored that because of the price they paid, the miners didn’t leave as many pillars, and there is certainly mine subsidence on one part of the property over where the mine used to be.

Other then that, though, my aunt remembers him buying her ice cream cones,  and he just looks like the kind of guy you would want to know.  Here he is with my great-grandma.

1900s gpa niemann

I wish I had a better pictures.  There is something about his eyes that draws me in.

He started his own park, built his own pavilion, and many townspeople had family picnics out there all the time.  After he died in 1951, the place was not kept up.

He is also the nephew of our town founder.  I don’t know if that means much, and although I should have felt special in some way about being an ancestor to the town founder, I really never did.

But, next  year, the town celebrates 150  years, and I think I might actually get a t-shirt made – saying something along the lines of –


If my great, great, great uncle hadn’t settled here, and brought his brothers with him, this town might not be.

The phrase needs work, but I wonder if I should do it.  I mean, really, how many people can say that?

Daily Prompt


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