Attached as part of this document is an old photograph. It is now believed to have been taken on August 14, 1907 at the time of the wedding of my distant relatives...Claude Alvin Bruner and his spouse Emma Leota Eddingfield. The wedding was held in Concord Township, Champaign County, Ohio. It is not known if the wedding took place at the Methodist Church located there -- the Bruners were participants there -- or if the wedding was held at the Daniel and Margaret Peneton Bruner family home, which had been in the family for approximately a half-century.
Surely, someone...sometime...somewhere had a copy of this photo and painstakingly wrote down the names of all of the folks whose images are recorded here. Alas, that list has been lost over the years. As the old photo slowly fades and curls, so to do the memories of the people who shared this split-second in time.
The images in the attached photograph have been numbered. Some of the participants have been painstakingly identified by matching up other existing photos in which they are known with an enlargement of this photo. There are still many people in this photograph who are yet to be identified.
Here's a breakdown of who we think we can recognize:
1. This is known to be a photo of John Pearl Coleman, who was born in Ohio on 20 Dec 1883, a son of James William and Ida Catherine Bruner Coleman. He married Myrtle Agnes Ward, daughter of Franklin Pierce and Susan Clark Ward on 3 Feb 1905 in Mad River Township, Champaign County, Ohio. John Pearl and Myrtle were the parents of ten children: Frances Lillian, born 6 Jun 1906; Beulah Marie, born 7 Apr 1908; Earl Leonard, 13 Sep 1909; Gilbert Lowell, 5 Mar 1912; Mildred Louise, 29 Mar 1915; infant daughter, born 11 Feb 1914; Franklin Paul, born 4 Apr 1917; Margaret Susan, born 19 Jun 1920; Ida Mae, born 29 Jun 1922; and Sylvan Pearl, born 1 Mar 1925. John Pearl Coleman died at the age of 95 on 13 Apr 1979 in Middleburg, Logan County, Ohio._ (Thanks to Gary Thompson, Chuck Monk, et.al. for this positive identification)._
2. This child is known to be Frances Lillian Coleman, daughter of John Pearl and Myrtle Ward Coleman. She was born on 6 Jun 1906 and died on 23 Apr 1930. (Thanks to Gary Thompson, Chuck Monk, et.al. for this positive identification).
3. This is known to be Myrtle Agnes Ward Coleman, daughter of Franklin Pierce and Susan Clark Ward, born on 15 Jan 1887. She died on 8 Jun 1961 in Logan County, Ohio. (Thanks to Gary Thompson, Chuck Monk, et.al. for this positive identification).
5. This is believed to be a photo of Leedom Kenton Botkin, who was born in Ohio, on October 19, 1864, a son of Amos Botkin and Elizabeth Voorhees Botkin. He married Sara Adeline Bruner, a daughter of Daniel and Margaret Peneton Bruner, on 24 Sep 1887, in Champaign County, Ohio. He died at the age of 79 on 7 Jan 1944 in North Hampton, Ohio.
6. This is known to be Sara Adeline Bruner Botkin, based upon comparison with other existing photos of her. As indicated above, she was the fifth child (and third daughter) of Daniel and Margaret Bruner. She was born 14 June 1867 in Concord Township, Champaign County, Ohio. She died 7 August 1952. She and her husband Leedom Kenton Botkin were the parents of eight children...three daughters and five sons: Eva, born 20 Aug 1862; Ralph Otto, born 20 Sep 1888; Paul Elwood, born 1 Mar 1892; Homer Middleton, born 15 Jan 1895; Wendell Holmes, born 2 Apr 1897; Eldon Amos, born 19 Jun 1910; Gladys, born 22 Oct 1902; and Maye F., born 2 May 1890.
7. This is known to be Claude Alvin Bruner, based upon comparison with his other existing photos. He was the ninth child (and third son) of Daniel and Margaret Bruner. This photo was apparently taken the day of his wedding...he and his new spouse (number "8" in the photo) are prominently seated at the front of the party, with other members of the Bruner clan seated and standing behind. Emma Leota Eddingfield Bruner died on 20 Nov 1953. Claude then married Nona Margaret Feagans on 16 Dec 1968. She died 29 Jul 1974 in Washington Courthouse, Fayette County, Ohio.
Claude Alvin Bruner was born 3 Aug 1879 in Champaign County, Ohio. He spent his adult life as an educator, serving for a number of years in the Washington Courthouse, Ohio, schools. He died on 16 Mar 1972.
8. This is believed to be Emma Leota Eddingfield Bruner, bride of Claude Alvin Bruner.
12. This is known to be Amanda Augusta Bruner Abbott, born 11 Aug 1877, in Champaign County, Ohio. She was the eighth child, and sixth daughter, of Daniel and Margaret Peneton Bruner. She married John Loudenbach Abbott on 2 Oct 1895, in Champaign County, Ohio. They were the parents of nine children ( four daughters and five sons): Phyllis Marie; Margaret Lucille; Harold Otto, born 14 Mar 1897; Glendon Claude, born 22 Sep 1901; Leota Pauline, born 7 Dec 1904; John Bruner, born 10 Aug 1908; Catherine May; Eugene Herbert, born 5 May 1915; and Daniel David, born 28 Aug 1916. Amanda died on 15 Jan 1946 in Champaign County, Ohio.
15. This is believed to be Emma Rhoda Bruner, seventh child and fifth daughter of Daniel and Margaret Peneton Bruner. She was born 7 Apr 1872. She married Samuel Eugene Lipse (25 Aug 1870-8 Apr 1942) on 18 Jan 1894, in Champaign County, Ohio. Samuel may be one of the males (number 14 or 16) adjacent to her. Emma died on 30 Mar 1947, in Champaign County, Ohio.
24. This is believed to be Ida Catherine Bruner Coleman, third child and second daughter of Daniel and Margaret Peneton Bruner. Ida was born on 11 Dec 1860 in Concord Township, Champaign County, Ohio. She married James William Coleman (1860-3 Aug 1893), son of John L. and Mary Bane Harper Coleman, on 15 Mar 1881 in Concord Township, Champaign County, Ohio. They were the parents of six children...three boys and three girls: Zola Mae, born 3 June 1882; John Pearl, born 20 Dec 1883; William Smith, born 22 Oct 1885; Mary Margaret, born 12 Aug 1887; Viola Augusta, born 2 Sep 1888; and Claude Alvin Coleman, born 28 Nov 1891. Ida's husband moved the family from Ohio throughout the mid-west in the period 1882-1893. He suddenly became ill in late July or early August 1893, and died. (The location of his gravesite is unknown). Ida, widowed at the age of 33, moved her young family back to the Bruner homestead in Champaign County, Ohio. She died on 19 Apr 1943.
31. This is known to be William Smith Coleman, third child and second son of James William and Ida Catherine Bruner Coleman. William...or Bill as he was known throughout his life...was born on 22 Oct 1885 in Concord Township, Champaign County, Ohio. His middle name was in honor of his uncle, Smith Weaver Bruner. He worked with horses throughout his life as a farm laborer, and also at area race tracks. He was also an accomplished carpenter. He married Eva Marie Shafer (1892-1944) on 23 Jan 1909 in Concord Township, Champaign County, Ohio. They were the parents of ten children (four daughters and six sons): Evelyn Elizabeth, born 17 Jun 1911; Ralph Lowell, born 8 Aug 1913; Lillian Catherine, born 16 Jan 1915; James William, born 15 Jan 1917; Robert Wallace, born 29 Oct 1919; Edwin Eugene, born 9 May 1920; Kenneth Dale, born 4 Jun 1923; two daughters who are still living, born in 1925 and 1926 respectively; and Paul, born 1 May 1929. William Smith Coleman died on 20 Mar 1968.
33. This is known to be Smith Weaver Bruner, fourth child and second son of Daniel and Margaret Peneton Bruner. He was born in Concord Township, Champaign County, Ohio, on 21 Apr 1865. He married Carrie May Warner (6 Oct 1869-10 Nov 1954) on 5 Mar 1890 in Champaign County, Ohio. They were the parents of four children: twin daughters, and sons Lloyd Edwin Bruner, and Forrest Warner Bruner (21 Jun 1910-14 Jul 1963). Smith Weaver Bruner died on 10 Nov 1949.
35. This is known to be John William Bruner, first-born child and first-born son of Daniel and Margaret Peneton Bruner. John was born on 18 Jan 1857 in Champaign County, Ohio. He married Matilda Jane Ervin (3 Apr 1860-12 May 1937) on 31 May 1881 in Champaign County, Ohio. He died on 10 Mar 1917.
40. This teenage boy is believed to be Claude Alvin Coleman, sixth child and third son of James William and Ida Catherine Bruner Coleman. Claude was born on 28 Nov 1891 in Champaign County, Ohio. He served in the United States Navy during World War I. He married Lula Boyd (8 Aug 1888-1964), on 27 Dec 1917, in Urbana, Champaign County, Ohio. They had no children. Claude Alvin died on 1 July 1979 in Urbana, Champaign County, Ohio.
**As is obvious, there are still a great many people to be identified in this old photo. If the reader is a member of the Bruner family or one of its branches, your help is solicited in this great effort. **
One of the older women in this photo could be Anna Elizabeth Coleman, a daughter of John L. and Mary Bane Harper Coleman. She would have been a sister-in-law to Ida Catherine Bruner Coleman. Anna Elizabeth was born about 1855, in present-day West Virginia. She moved with her family to Ohio in the years between 1860-1870, residing for awhile in Greene County and Crawford County before settling in Champaign County. At the time of this photograph, she would have been 52 years old. She was listed as 23 years of age in the 1880 Federal Census for Concord Township, Champaign County, Ohio, living in the household of her widowed mother, Mary (who died in 1889). Interestingly, she is listed as a school teacher. She undoubtedly worked in an area school. Which one? What did she teach? For how long? Did she remain single, or did she eventually marry? If so, who was her husband and was she a mother? When did she die? Where is she buried? See all of the challenges we face as researchers? Are you excited enough to want to help?
Please feel free to contact the author of this StoryPage if you have information which can help us! We would greatly appreciate any additional photos of any of the folks who appear on this site. Your support is appreciated!