Tuesday, November 11, 2008

H. E. Hartman's Childhood Books

I wonder how Holliday Ellwood Hartman would have described his childhood. His father Henry Waters Hartman led an exciting and unstable life. H. W. Hartman moved around a lot - operating a steel mill in Beaver Falls, PA, then founding Ellwood City, PA, then starting a streetcar between Denver and Littleton, CO, and at some point visiting Paris. He also took some major financial risks. In the late 1880s, at the beginning of his son's life (see photo of Baby Holliday), he was especially successful and sold his 900-employee steel mill to Andrew Carnegie (see The Rise Of Henry Waters Hartman). Later he found himself at the opposite end of the wheel of fortune when his Colorado streetcar business went bankrupt.

Judging by his books, my great-grandfather H. E. Hartman spent a lot of time during these tumultuous years reading and receiving an excellent education (see The Education of H. E. Hartman). His parents, his aunts and uncles, his friends, and his little brother all gave him books (see photo). In high school, he read a huge number of classics and recorded them in his journal "Books I Have Read." This is what I've pieced together concerning H. E. Hartman's formative years:

  • 1883 (-1) His father opens the successful Beaver Falls steel mill
  • 1884 (0) He is born on the 15th of December
  • 1887 (2) His little brother 'Waters' is born
  • 1890 (5) His father gives him the book "The Birds' Xmas Carol"; Helen (?) gives the dear boys Holliday and Waters "Sarah Crewe"
  • 1892 (7) His father founds Ellwood City, PA; His mother gives him 2 books in the "Five Little Peppers" series
  • 1894 (9) Receives "Santa Claus' Christmas Book" from Walton (?) and "The Century Book for Young Americans" from his mother
  • 1898 (13) Receives "Great Words From Great Americans" from H. P. Richardson (?)
  • 1899 (14) Receives "Man in the Iron Mask" by Dumas from his brother and "Books I Have Read" journal from Aunt Blanche; Records reading "The Twin Lieutenants" by Alexander Dumas and "A Princetonian" by James Barnes, among others
  • 1900 (15) Records reading "The White Company" by Arthur Conan Doyle, "The Last of The Mohicans" by James Fenimore Cooper, and "Richard Carvel" by Winston Churchill, among others
  • 1902 (17) Receives "The Eternal City" by Hall Caine from his mother and "The Virginian" by Owen Wister from his brother
  • 1903 (18) At Betts Academy
  • 1907 (22) Graduates from Yale
  • 1907 (22) Reads "Thirty One Years On The Plains And In The Mountains" while traveling 65 miles along the "Switzerland Trail of America" in Colorado (see photo)

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