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Daughters of the American Revolution

DAR & E-Bay

A Tale Told by our Chapter Regent...

The National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution has members who monitor EBay for DAR pins.  We received a message last week of a pin that was for sale that belonged to a former member of the Canton Chapter.  This is the second time, in my years as regent, that we have had this happen.  My feeling is that if at all possible, these pins should return to the chapter.  And so began my experience with bidding on EBay.
In August of 2005 I was able to purchase two pins on a ribbon.  I learned the hard way to wait until near to the close of the allotted bidding time to place a bid.  However, in my opinion my first purchase was still a bargain.  I was the high bidder for the Past Regent Canton Chapter bar which is 14K gold and was the property of Miss Marguerite Vicary, regent of Canton Chapter from 1931-1933.  The 14K gold Insignia on the end of the ribbon had belonged to her mother, so you can imagine how old that pin is, and as I have been told the Vicary family owned a department store in downtown Canton.  I was informed by the seller that her brother had bought the pins at a yard sale in Lakewood, OH and she was selling them for him on EBay.  Wonder how they ended up there?  The seller apparently had no connection to the Vicary family.  When these pins arrived, I sent them to Caldwell Jewelers who cleaned them up and inscribed my name and national number on them.  When I am a past regent, I will proudly wear this bar pin and Insignia.
Last week, following the information about another pin on EBay, I went on the web site and was the opening bid for this pin. I queried the seller to ask how he came to have this pin.  His reply was that he deals in fraternal pins and covers the east coast and Midwest through antique dealers, flea markets, estate sales, etc.  I learned through DAR records that the pin had belonged to Susan Theobald Miller, who died in 1968.  I emailed Kay Upole, to ask if she remembered the name from any of the old records she has been researching in regard to the 100 anniversary of our chapter.  Although this isn’t a name she had come across in old chapter records, small world that it is Kay has a family connection to Susan Miller and wanted to own this pin.  Kay had never dealt on EBay and I volunteered to do the bidding for her.  The bidding ended today and no one else ever bid. Another previously owned NSDAR Insignia that had belonged to a Canton Chapter member is now coming home.
As Paul Harvey would say, “and now for the rest of the story…”
Kay’s great grandparents were the gardener and housekeeper for Susan and George Miller.  The Millers had no children.  Kay’s grandparents moved from the city to the country (East Canton) when they purchased a farm.  Their son stayed in the city to attend Timken High School and lived with the Millers during those four years.  This son is Kay’s father.  Susan and George Miller were rather prominent people in Canton and George worked for the Timken Company.  He was instrumental in the design of the Timken Roller Bearing.
Audrey Morrison, Regent

Kay Upole & her dad, Robert Aukerman

[Note:  Kay's dad recently passed away - making this story even more poignant and her procurement of the pin even more important to her.]

And Kay Upole adds:
My father, Robert Aukerman, lived with Mr. and Mrs. Miller during his High School years at Timken H.S.
My grandparents decided to move to East Canton the year that dad was accepted at Timken.  My great grandparents, Sam and Dora Slabaugh, were employed by the Millers, as gardener/security guard and housekeeper.  One day my dad went to work with his grandfather Sam.  Mrs. Miller saw him in the yard and called him to the house.  She asked who he was and what was he doing there. Dad told her he was Sam's grandson and he was helping his grandfather with his work.  Mrs. Miller asked how much he was paying him, Dad said nothing, he was just helping.  She then said that no one worked at their home without being paid.  She told him if Grandfather didn't pay him, she would at $.35 an hour. That same year, about 1945 or so, she learned the family was moving to East Canton.  She questioned Dora and Sam about the plans for Bobby, as she called Dad.  She made all the arrangements for Dad to stay with her and attend Timken. There was a tuition at the time.  We are not sure if she paid that or if it was dropped as he was living in the city with the Millers  Their home still stands at the corner of 38th St and N. Market Ave. The pretext was that Mr. Miller traveled a lot and she needed someone to stay with her at night.  She paid Dad $2 a night.  He stayed there from Sunday night through Friday afternoon every week even through the summer months while Mr. Miller traveled. Dad would go home on the farm in East Canton on the weekends. Dad said many times he was taken to school by the chauffeur, Pete, and then picked up after school. Mrs. Miller had wanted to adopt Dad, but that was not going to happen.  They had no children of their own.  When I was born, I was named after my great-great-grandmother Catherine Brown and Mrs. Sue Miller:  Kathryn Sue.  When the pin showed up on e-bay, I could not believe it.  I was pretty sure Mrs. Miller had been a DAR.  I do have her DAR application papers and information. I had to have that pin and thank goodness I did get it. 

Canton Chapter, National Society Daughters of the American Revolution