The Aylesworth family reunion had its origin Saturday, October 11, 1902,
at a gathering of relatives at the home of Joe Ludington to celebrate the
birthday of Rilla Jones; Aurilla or Orrilla (7). Those present, having expressed
their enjoyment in renewing old acquaintances, unanimously decided to hold
a similar gathering a year later.
On Saturday, September 5, 1903, approximately 150 descendants of Arthur
Aylworth met to spend the day in a social way. After dinner a meeting was
called for the purpose of the election of officers. The first officers
elected were William Sawyer, President; Charles F. Leeka, Secretary; Porter
A constitution and by-laws were then presented for approval. It was
decided that the Aylesworth family reunion should become an annual affair.
The reunions were held at the homes of various members until 1931. At that
time it was voted that the reunion should be held at the Aylesworth community
house at which place it has been held up to the present time.
The constitution sets forth as one of the purposes of the Aylesworth
reunion the assembling of information regarding the genealogy of the branches
of the Aylesworth family who have at some time lived in Porter County,
Indiana. To compile this information Ruth and Carrol Aylesworth were elected
Historians at the 1935 reunion. The publication of this book in a large
measure is the result of their efforts.
A committee was appointed at the 1944 reunion to gather data to complete
the history and to carry on the business necessary to the printing of this
book. The committee appointed included Howard Aylesworth, Chairman; Ruth
and Carrol Aylesworth, Historians; Florence Leeka, Sadie Aylesworth, Ray
Aylesworth and Floyd Aylesworth.
The book by Homer Elhanan Aylsworth, "Arthur Aylsworth and His Descendants
in America," referred to in our bibliography has been the most valuable
source of information concerning the earlier generations. His book attempts
to include all the descendants of Arthur Aylworth, not just one small group.
All the branches could be traced throughout the first seven generations,
but it was impossible to include every one through the generations that
followed without going into several volumes. It is for that reason that
our book refers to none but those branches of the family who have at some
time resided in Porter County, Indiana. Some of the descendants of Arthur
Aylworth, whom we have been unable to include, have gained national importance,
two of them having been mentioned in "Who's Who in America."
MERLIN HALL AYLESWORTH -- lawyer, corp. exec.; b. Cedar Rapids Ia.,
July 18, 1886; s. Barton Orville and Georgia (Shores) A.; student Colo.
Agricultural Coll., U. of Colo., U. Of Wis., Denver U., Columbia U.; LL.B.,
U. of Denver, 1908; LL.D., Drake U., 1932; m. Blanche Parrett, Oct. 19,
1909; children: Barton Jerome, Dorothy. Practiced law at Ft. Collins, Colo.,
1908-14; chman. Colo. Pub. Utilities Comm., 1914-18; exec. Utah Power &
Light Co., Salt Lake City, 1918-19; mng. dir. Nat. Electric Light Assn.,
1919-26; pres. Nat. Broadcasting Co., 1926-36, vice-chman. of bd., 1936;
also chman. bd. Radio-Keith-Orpheum Corp., RKO Radio Pictures, Pathe News, Inc.,
dir. Keith Albee Orpheum Corp., B. F. Keith Corp., until Mar. 1, 1937,
mem. Scripps-Howard Management, Mar.,1937-Apr.,1938; pub. New York World-Telegram,
1938-40; chman. bd. Radio City Music Hall. Consultant, Office of Coordinator
of Inter-Am. Affairs; mem. Appeal Bd., Selective Service. Trustee Drake
U., Mem. Sigma Chi. Republican. Mem. Christian (Disciples) Ch. Clubs: Rockefeller
Center (New York), Deepdale, Home: 812 Park Av. Office: RCA Bldg., New
York, N. Y.
LEON EMMONS AYLSWORTH -- college prof.; b. New Berlin, N. Y., Oct. 26,
1869; s. Nelson Olin and Mary (Demine.) A.; student S. D. Agrl. Coll.,
1890-93; A.B., U. of Neb., 1900; A.M., U. of Wis., 1908; m. Bertha May
Fraser of Raymond, S. D., Sept. 21, 1895; children: Carol, Donald Fraser,
Lloyd Deming. Asst. and fellow in Am. history and politics, U. of Neb.,
1900Ä04: mem. faculty same univ. since 1904, prof. polit. science
since 1915, mem. Am. Polit. Science Assn., Nebraska Historical Society,
American Assn. univ. profs., Nat. Municipal League, Neb. Public Efficiency
Economy Association ( sec. ), Phi Beta Kappa. Republican. Unitarian. Clubs:
Open Forum, Social Service. contbr. Am. Polit. Science Rev., Nat. Municipal
Rev. Home: 1840 S. 23rd St., Lincoln. Neb.
The committee has been fortunate in purchasing a copy of the original
book which is now out of print and upon the publication of our new book
the two will be placed in the Hebron Public Library for reference purposes.
The committee gratefully acknowledges its indebtedness to Mr. Edward
Lewis of the Lewis and Lewis Publishing Company of New York, for much of
the information set forth in the earlier chapters of this book.
Those members of the committee who have given so unselfishly of their
time will have felt that their efforts have been appreciated only if future
generations complete the information that is missing in this book and carry
on the genealogy thus started.