Brothers: Goodenow and Ellsworth

In 1904, America had just re-elected Theodore Roosevelt as President and commenced building the Panama Canal.  In 1906 the World’s Fair opened in America’s Gateway-To-The-West City, St. Louis, and the great Earthquake wiped out San Francisco, California.  In between those two years, Einstein introduced his theory of Relativity.  It was a world full of change and development, and that was the world into which brothers Goodenow and Ellsworth were born.


Goodenow and Ellsworth with Grandpa Michael Kowalski

Their great grandfather on their mother’s side was a man named Michael Kowalske, who had come to America from Germany during the Civil War, bringing with him his wife and five children, one of whom was Emma, the grandmother of Goodenow and Ellsworth.

G&E Goodenow infant1

Goodenow Thompson

G&E Goodenow infant2

Goodenow Thompson

Goodenow, born in 1904, carried the Goodenow name of his father’s mother, Ida Mae Goodenow Thompson.  The Goodenow’s are truly an American blue-blood line.  Edmond Goodenow and his family arrived in Boston in 1638 on the good ship Confidence.  Later one of Edmond’s daughter’s, Mary, married a surgeon named Comfort Starr, who had arrived a few years before on the good ship Hercules. Comfort Starr later donated his home and land to the medical school in Cambridge, Mass. –  Harvard Medical College.

G&E Ellsworth infant1

Ellsworth Thompson

G&E Ellsworth infant2

Ellsworth Thompson

Born in 1906, Ellsworth was named for the doctor who attended his mother and him, Ellsworth M. Ellis M.D.,  who practiced medicine in Manistee, Michigan.

G&E at 3

Ellsworth and Goodenow in Manistee, Mi.

G&E at 4

Ellsworth and Goodenow in front of their home in Manistee, Mi.

They were good looking little boys.  Even when they were not all dressed up.

G&E grandpa Bucher

Goodenow, Hazel and Ellsworth with Grandpa Ludwig Bucher

Their grandfather on their mother’s side was named Ludwig Bucher. The little girl in this photo is their sister, Hazel.

G&E main street

Shelby, Michigan in 1911 (A short distance from Manistee)

G&E Parkdale home

Thompson home in Parkdale as the road turns to go to Orchard Beach

They lived in a small home in Parkdale, Michigan, just outside Manistee, “where the trolley turned to go to Orchard Beach Park.”

G&E school

Goodenow and Ellswworth’s first school


Goodenow’s class photo

G&E Goodenow closeup in school

Closeup of Goodenow

G&E Ellsworth school closeup

Closeup of Ellsworth


Ellsworth’s class photo

They loved to ski in the Manistee hills.

G&E skiing

Ellsworth and Goodenow skiing in Manistee, Mi

G&E skiing with Ruth

Cousin Ruth Porter skiing in Manistee, MI

The second photo is a shot of Goodenow above and their cousin, Ruth Porter, in the foreground.

G&E in front of Stacy's house

The Thompson’s outside Satcy C. Thompson’s home shortly before they left for Detroit, Mi

They often visited their grandfather’s home. Ellsworth is on the left, Goodenow on the right.  Taken in front of their Grandfather Stacy’s home, in August, 1919, shortly before they moved to Detroit.

My guess is that Stacy took this photo, as Mary, Stacy’s second wife, and two of their children, Ida Mae with the basket in her hand and infant Stacy Jr. are a part of the photo.

G&E Detroit family

The Thompsons in Detroit, MI

Their family moved to Detroit where Walter was able to find work at Morgan-Wright Tire Company, soon to become U.S. Rubber Company. This is a photo taken at their new residence in Detroit, Michigan. The back of the photo has their residence written: 1068 Sheridan.

Detroit was quite a jolt to both Goodenow and Ellsworth.  My Dad, Ellsworth, missed Manistee a lot.  He told me of the train trip from Manistee to Detroit with his mother and sister.  His mother carried a bird cage with the pet Canary in it, and as he gazed out the train’s window he said that all he could see were stumps of trees. By that time the forests of Michigan had all been cut down for timber.

Ellsworth and Goodenow went to public schools in Detroit, both attending Cass Technical High School in downtown Detroit.  Entry into that high school necessitated passing an academic test.

Neither continued their education after high school.  I don’t know why and have wondered a lot about it. Their father attended Michigan State University, although he dropped out to join the Army to fight in the Spanish American War.  Their grandfather, Stacy, and their grandmother, Ida Mae, both attended Albion College  before coming to Manistee, Michigan.

G&E beach

Walter and Ellsworth at Belle Isle in Detroit, Mi

Ellsworth loved to swim. This shot was taken on a beach near Detroit.  Ellsworth is the youth with the navy hat. His dad, Walter, is the older man in the front row.

They travelled back to Manistee often, sometimes visiting with the “old folks.”

G&E Goodenow with Gpa Kowalske

Thompsons in East Jordan with Grandpa Michael Kowalske

Here is a shot with Goodenow and a child in his lap.  Behind him is Grandma Blanche and Grandpa Walter along with great grandpa Michael Kowalske.  By this time great grandpa  has lost his right leg and is sporting a wooden one fashioned by grandpa Walter.

G&E family in boat

Thompsons on Lake Michigan

G&E family at lake

Thompsons o the shore of Lake Michigan

G&E E&G as young men

Ellsworth and Goodenow

The 1920’s became the 1930’s and Ellsworth and Goodenow each met their partner’s.

Goodenow married first in 1933 and Ellsworth followed in 1935.  I don’t have photos of Goodenow and his bride, Ruth, but when I get them they will be included here. Until that time I will conclude this part of the family story. First, with shots of my dad, Ellsworth, and his bride, my mother, Mabel, taken in the back yard of my grandparents home on Piper Blvd. in Detroit. Michigan. Next will be photos of the whole family together at some vacation spot somewhere in Michigan.

G&E E and G wedding

Ellsworth, Walter and Goodenow at Ellsworth’s wedding

G&E wedding Mabel&Hazel

Hazel and Mabel

G&E wedding Ells


G&E wedding Ells&Mabel

Mabel and Ellsworth

G&E vacation together

Thompsons on vacation 1935. Walter, Blanche Mabel & Ellsworth, Ruth & Goodenow, and Hazel


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