Apparently, not only was John Kelly Stevens in the Fort Wayne newspapers of the early 1900s because of his activities at work. On August 13, 1907, he merited a mention in the Society section of the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette on behalf of his daughter:
Mr. and Mrs. John K. Stevens, of Summit street, announce the approaching marriage of their daughter, Katherine, to Mr. Fred Stahl. The wedding will take place Wednesday, August 21, the banns to be called the last time next Sunday. The young people will be at home at the corner of Jefferson and Fairfield. Miss Stevens is a young girl of unusual beauty, with hosts of friends whom she has attached to her by her great charm of manner. Mr. Stahl is much liked in the city, where he is well known, aside from his connection with the Pennsylvania shops.
John Kelly Stevens’ daughter—spelled here as Katherine, though I have records with every variation from Kathryn to Catherine—was his oldest child, born to his first wife, Mary Clara Miller. If you remember, Catherine lost her mother at a young age, and was then raised for a short while by her younger brother William’s mother—also a Catherine—until that woman’s passing a few years later. For all intents and purposes, the woman who served as surrogate mom for Catherine was John Kelly Stevens’ third wife, Theresa Blaising—although from what I gather from family, that step-mother relationship was a rocky one.
In August, 1907, Catherine Stevens was nearing twenty seven years of age—not exactly what one would consider marriageable age in that era. The newspaper’s Society editor was perhaps being kind or employing the typical euphemisms of the day. Whether that was so or not, Catherine’s wedding announcement certainly provided a flattering description of the couple-to-be. And that style didn’t end with just the one mention, as we’ll see tomorrow with the continuance of the newspaper coverage of this “quiet” event.
However, if she was indeed a “girl of unusual beauty,” I wish someone had thought to pass along at least one photograph of the woman.