The Saum Tree


Gerald Saum

August 13, 1986



        The name Saum is from the Germanic language and means seam in English.  If you consult a large dictionary under the word seam you will find it shown as derived from the German word saum.

        There is a village of Saumsville in Virginia near the town of Strasburg, Virginia.  There is also a town in the state of Minnesota named Saum.  There is a Saum Street in Enon, Ohio, which is just south of Springfield, Ohio.  There is a Saum Hall on the Otterbein College Campus in Westerville, Ohio.  There is a large Saum Hotel in downtown St. Louis, Missouri.

        My great grandfather, Jacob Saum, was born on June 6, 1794 in the state of Virginia and presumably at or near Saumsville, Virginia.  He moved from Virginia at an unknown date and came to Ohio, settling on a farm in Reading Township, Perry County, Ohio.  The farm was on what is now state route 13 a couple of miles northwest of Somerset, Ohio.  The name of his wife unknown to me and I know nothing as to when or where she was born, when or where she died or was buried.  Jacob Saum had four sons to the best of my knowledge.  They were Simon Saum, Solomon Saum, Henry Saum, and John Jefferson Saum.  This John J. Saum was my grandfather.  This Henry Saum was the father of John Saum who lived in Richland Township, Fairfield County, Ohio just west of Marsha Chapel Church and just east of where I was born.  John married Maude Turner and they had two sons, Ora Saum and Bert Saum.  More about them later.  My great grandfather Jacob, of Somerset, Ohio, died on June 26, 1849 at the age of 55 years and 20 days and was buried in the rear of the Old Lutheran Cemetery in Somerset, Ohio.

        I have no knowledge as to what happened to Simon or Solomon Saum except that both served in the Union Army in the Civil War.  It is believed that one or perhaps both of them settled in or near Springfield or Dayton, Ohio, as there were a Charlie Saum and an Elmer Saum from that area who were cousins of my father and thought to be sons of Simon or Solomon Saum.

        As noted above, John Jefferson Saum, who was my grandfather, was born in 1828 and died in 1901.  He is buried in Drumms Lutheran Church Cemetery just south of Thornville, Ohio.  My Grandmother Sarah Saum was born in 1834 and died in 1901.  Both my grandfather and grandmother died from tuberculosis and were living with my parents at the time of their death, my parents just having been married the previous year.  Grandmother Sarah Saum was buried in Drumms Cemetery.

        John Jefferson Saum and Sarah Saum, my grandparents, had the following children:

                Jacob J. Saum, born 1852-died 1913 aged 61

                Henry Saum, born 1865-died June 17, 1939 aged 83

                Mary Saum

                Samantha Saum, born 1864-died 1956 aged 92

                Rebecca Saum, born 1862-died 1949 aged 87

                Rachal Saum, born 1870-died 1916 aged 46

                Martha Saum, dates unknown

                Anthony Lewis Saum, born 1874-died 1955

                John Allen Saum, my father, born 1872-died 1938

        All the above except Mary Saum Perry Westsall and Martha Saum Connor are buried in Drumms Cemetery.  There was another child, Elizabeth Saum, born to John J. and Sarah Saum but she died May 9, 1855 at the age of 9 months and 1 day.  The 1880 census shows another child, Sarah B. Saum age 17 as a daughter of John J. and Sarah Saum but I have no further knowledge of this child.


        Following is a run down of the above descendants of John J. and Sarah Saum to the best of my knowledge of them.


        Jacob J. Saum, 1852-1913, married Isabelle (maiden name unknown), 1853-1929, and they lived in an area called Avalon, which is south of Rt. 22 about half way between Somerset and Rushville, Ohio.  To this union were born the following children:

        Abel Saum, George Saum, Minnie Saum, and Sarah Saum.

        Abel Saum married a woman by the name of Anna and as a kid we referred to them as “Abe-an-Anna”. Get it?  Abe lived in the Linden area of Columbus, Ohio.  He was a railroad engineer.  His first wife died some years ago and he again married another Anna.  Both are now deceased and had no children.

        George Saum left Ohio prior to World War #1 and settled in Denver, Colorado where he married a Catholic girl and had a large family.  I do not know the identity of any of George’s children but my directory of Saums shows several Saums in the Denver area.  George was my first cousin but a lot older than myself so I do not know too much about him.

        Minnie Saum married but I do not know whom she married.  The only time I recall having seen her she was living in Jacksontown, Ohio in Licking County.  She had a daughter named Laura Belle who married Houston Forsyth and they lived between Bruno and Thornville, Ohio.

        Sarah Saum married Nat Rinehart and they lived in a coal camp named Rendville near Corning in Perry County, Ohio.  I know nothing further on the Rineharts.  This concludes the family of Jacob and Isabelle Saum.


        Henry Saum, 1856-1939, had the nickname of “Tucker”.  He was a farmer and threshing machine operator.  He married Sarah Eliza Saum who died December 22, 1899 and was buried in Drumms Cemetery.  They had one son, William (Willie) Saum.  Willie Saum married a girl named Anna and they also had one son named Burl Saum.  Burl Saum drowned as a child in a flooded creek around 1910.  Willie, Anna, and Burl are all buried in Drumms Cemetery.  I knew Henry Saum better than any other uncles or aunts as he and my father did a lot of work together and I, of course, was their helper.  After Sarah Eliza Saum died, in 1899, Henry then married again to a woman named Jane.  Jane went insane and spent many years in an institution and I do not know when or where she died.  Henry and Jane had no children.


        Mary Saum married a man named Perry and they had four children that I know of.  A son named Elmer Perry was in World War 1 and I do not know what ever happened to him.  One daughter, Fay Perry, married a man whose last name was Mathias and they lived in Whitehall, suburb of Columbus.  There were two other girls but I do not know their names or much about them.  Mary Saum Perry’s husband died and she then married Joshua Westsall and they lived in Whitehall.  Both are long deceased and left no children.


        Samantha E. Saum, 1864-1956, married Jacob Crist, 1864-1914, and they lived across one field to the southwest of Drumms Lutheran Church and Cemetery.  They are both buried in the rear of the church.  They had one son, Chester Crist, who married Ocie Foster.  Chester and Ocie had two children.  A boy named Atlee Pomerene Crist and a girl named Ione Crist.  I have no knowledge as to the current status of either of them.


        Martha Saum, married a man named Connor and they lived in Green County, Ohio around Jeffersonville and Yellow Springs, Ohio.  They had four daughters, Sarah Connor, Ocie  Connor, Sylvia Connor, and Letha Connor.  Sarah and Ocie both men named Leming.  Sylvia married a man named Fawcett.  Sylvia Fawcett lived at Goes Station, which is probably in Green County somewhere.  As to Letha Connor, I have no further information.


        Rachel Saum, 1870-1915, had a son out of wedlock by a man known only as Horsehead Whitmer of Rushville, Ohio.  The son was named Odney Whitmer and he married a woman named Ollie.  Rachel then married Clell Perry, 1862-1941.  Both are buried in Drumms Cemetery.  Clell and Rachel Perry had no children.


        Anthony Lewis Saum, 1874-1955, was the youngest of my father’s brothers.  He married a woman named Myrta who died and was buried in Drumms Cemetery.  They were only married a short time and had no children.  Lewis Saum then married Ada Hodges and they had six children.  Names of the children were Irene, Chester, Leona, Olive, Ralph, and Helen.  Chester Saum has chicken farm at Amanda, Ohio.  Olive married a Hager and they have a chicken farm on Rt. 13, just south of Thornville, Ohio.  Ralph Saum has a refrigeration business on Rt. 13 just south of Thornville, Ohio.  I have no information on the others.


        Rebecca Saum, 1862-1949, married Wiliam Drum 1859-1951.  (They dropped the last m off of Drumm.  They had two children, Burr Drum and Ethel Drum.  William Drum was caretaker at Capital University in Bexley, Ohio for years and lived on the southwest corner of Sheridan Ave. and E. Main Street, Bexley, Ohio.  William Drum then moved to Somerset, Ohio and was janitor of their local public school for years.


        Burr Drum, 1895-1975 attended Capital University and Seminary and became a Lutheran minister.  He had a church in Wooster, Ohio and taught at Wooster College.  He married Martha W. Barnstorff, 1896-1964, of Columbus and they had a couple of children of whom I know nothing.  Bur spent some years around New Orleans, Louisana and in Virginia.  Martha died in 1964 and is buried in Drumms Cemetery.  Burr returned to Somerset, Ohio and later remarried to a woman named Beyer.  He died in 1976 and is buried in Drumms Cemetery.


        Ethel Drum, 1887-1954, married Allen T. Kuhn, 1881-1973, and they lived on a farm just north of Rushville, Ohio.  They had three children, Forrest, Clarita, and Annabel.  Forrest worked at the army depot (DCSC) in Columbus all his life and retired from there.  He is now deceased.  Annabel married but I do not know her married name.  She is now deceased.  Clarita married a man named Rhodes and had no children to my knowledge.  Rhodes is dead and buried in Drumms Cemetery.  Clarita is still living as far as I know.  She lives in Lancaster, Ohio.


        John Allen Saum, 1872 or 1873-1938 was born December 20, 1872 according to his tombstone but to my calculations he was born December 20, 1973.  I do not know which is correct.  At the age of 27 in 1900 he married Cora viola Powell, aged 16.  They lived in Richland Township, Fairfield County, Ohio.  They had the following children:

                Mary Myrtle Saum------------1901-1921

            Elmer Lee Saum--------------1903-1961         

            Hazel Marie Saum------------1907-1952

            Gerald Ellsworth Saum----1910-

            Marshall Woodrow Saum--1913-


        In the spring of 1918 the family moved to a farm 1-½ miles north of Somerset, Ohio, in Hopewell Township, Perry County, Ohio.  Mary Myrtle Saum Died there in 1921 from tuberculosis and was buried in Drumms Cemetery.

        About 1922 Elmer Lee Saum left the family farm and went to Columbus, Ohio where he worked as an automobile mechanic in various garages until about 1935 when he opened Saum Auto Service at 66 Parsons Ave., Columbus, Ohio.  Then about 1946 he opened Saum Ford Sales Agency in Thornville, Ohio, which he operated until his death at age 57 in 1961.  About 1823 he married Miriam Waugh and they had one daughter, Eleanor Lee Saum.  Lee was buried in the Lutheran-Reformed Cemetery in Thornville, Ohio.  Thy grave is in the extreme northern section of the cemetery.

        Eleanor Lee Saum married Paul Richards at Columbus, Ohio.  They had two children, Lora Lee Richards and Jeffrey Richards.  After Lee Saum died in 1861, his wife, Miriam, and the Richards family moved to Tombstone, Arizona where Paul Richards opened a hardware store.  He also had a hardware store in Pearce, Arizona.  He is now retired and lives at 9315 E. Deer Trail, Tucson, Arizona with Eleanor Lee and Miriam.

        John Allen Saum died in Columbus in 1938 and was buried in Drumms Cemetery.  Cora Viola Powell died in Rushville, Ohio at age 86 and was buried in Drumms Cemetery.        

        Hazel Marie Saum was married to a man whose name I do not recall as it ended in divorce in a short time.  Later she married Paul Lambert about 1940 and this ended in divorce a few years later.  They had no children.  Hazel had tuberculosis and died in 1962 and was buried in Drumms Cemetery.

        Gerald Ellsworth Saum was born October 5, 1910 about 1-½ miles north of Rushville, Ohio and in 1918 moved to near Somerset in Perry County.  In 1928 he went to Columbus to work for the Columbus Railway, Power & Light Co. operating the McMillen Avenue power plant for six years while attending Ohio State University.  After graduating from O.S.U. in 1933 he worked for S.S. Kresge Co. for about a year and then worked with R.L. Kale Advertising Agency for about a year.  In November 1935 he became a claims adjuster for General Exchange Insurance Corp., a division of General Motors, in Charleston, West Virginia.

        On March 1, 1937 he married Louise Messmore in Akron, Ohio and they lived in Charleston, W. V. A. where on June 20, 1938 a son, Robert Ellsworth Saum, was born.  In August 1938 they moved to Huntington, W. V. A. where G. E. Saum still worked for General Exchange Ins. Corp.  In 1942 they moved to Cleveland, Ohio where G.E. employed by the Fisher Body Division of General Motors as a forman building B-29 bombers.  In 1944 the family moved to Columbus, Ohio where G.E. Saum operated a used car lot.  On November 17, 1944 a son, Gary Eugene Saum was born at Grant Hospital, Columbus, Ohio.

        On August 1, 1946 Gerald E. Saum went to work as a claims adjuster for the Buckeye Union Casualty Co. in Columbus, Ohio.  In August of 1949 the family moved from 85 Mitoff St., Columbus, Ohio to 2164 Ontario St., Columbus, Ohio.  There they lived for 18 years during which time Robert Saum married Marilyn Findley and Gary Saum married Linda Green.

        In 1967 Louise and Gerald Saum moved to 292 Cadbury Drive, Gahanna, Ohio.  On ___ 10, 1974 Louise Saum died of cancer in Mt. Carmel Hospital East in Columbus, Ohio and was buried in the Centerburg Cemetery on the south side of Hartford Street in Centerburg, Ohio.

        On January 4, 1975 Gerald Saum married Dorothy Evelyn Heinman and they resided at 292 Cadbury Dr., Gahanna, Ohio.  On November 1, 1975 Gerald Saum retired from Buckeye Union Ins. Co., which by that time was a subsidiary of Continental Insurance Co. of New York.  We are still living at 292 Cadbury as of August 13, 1986.

        Marshall Woodrow Saum was born in 1913 about 1-½ miles north of Rushville, Ohio.  He moved with the family in the spring of 1918 to a farm north of Somerset, Ohio.  He moved with his parents in 1929 to 132 N. Burgess Ave., Columbus, Ohio.  He married Helen DeLauder about 1940 and they have three children, Diane, John, and David.  He is now retired after many years with The Buckeye Steel Castings Co.  In Columbus, Marshall and Helen Saum were divorced several years ago and Helen died of cancer a few years ago.  Marshall now lives alone on Paradise Road near Sugar Grove, Ohio, which is south of Lancaster.

        Diane Saum married a boy named Shoemaker and they several children but I do not know their names.  The Shoemakers live near Sugar Grove, Ohio.

        John Saum is married and lives in Columbus, Ohio.  He is a plumber.  I do not know the status of David Saum but understand that he lives in Lancaster, Ohio.



        Well----if you have read this far you are entitled to a few additions and corrections.  First of all, let me say that I was told that my uncle Gerald wasn’t much into family history.  But, wow, he sat down in 1986 and put so much on paper!  Even though I am not sure of the accuracy of some of his facts, I am grateful that he did this and grateful to his son for sharing.


        The first fact I can supply that he didn’t know is the name of his great grandmother.  She was Elizabeth Winegardner and I will tell more about her and Jacob in another section just on them.

        The second thing I can supply is my correct married name.  The boy I married was James Erwin Downard, not Shoemaker.  I don’t know where that name came from, as I do not even know anyone named Shoemaker.  The next thing I want to correct is that Marshall, my dad, did not exactly live alone after his retirement.  He lived next to my family and me on Paradise Road.  Eventually, David, his youngest son, lived on the same road just down a bit from us with his wife and son.  We all were very close and David and I looked after our dad when his health began to decline.    Uncle Gerald died before my dad and did not know these facts before his death.  I think he did a superb job in telling his family’s story, as he knew it.