Our Family Genealogy Pages

Discovering our American, Canadian and European Ancestors

Myrtis O. Sperling

Myrtis O. Sperling

Female 1902 - 1918  (16 years)


 Set As Default Person    

Personal Information    |    Notes    |    Sources    |    All

  • Name Myrtis O. Sperling  [1, 2
    Born 1902  United States Find all individuals with events at this location  [1, 2
    Gender Female 
    Died 24 Jul 1918  Orwell, New York Find all individuals with events at this location 
    • Killed By Lightning
    Age 16 years 
    Person ID I19843  stewartsny.com
    Last Modified 15 Sep 2021 

    Father Ancestors George Lewis Sperling,   b. 22 Jun 1867, Parish, New York Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 16 Feb 1933  (Age 65 years) 
    Relationship natural 
    Mother Ancestors Sarah Antoinette Dale,   b. 18 Jan 1869, United States Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 21 Jan 1923  (Age 54 years) 
    Relationship natural 
    Married 29 May 1893  Orwell, New York, USA Find all individuals with events at this location  [3
    Family ID F60454  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family ID F64388  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 
    • Myrtis Sperling - 1902 - July 24, 1918. Daughter of George Lewis and Sarah Antoinette “Nettie” Dale Sperling.
      Newspaper Obituary - Thursday, July 25, 1918 Sandy Creek News - Sandy Creek, New York - Felled By Lightning - One of Orwell’s Daughters Killed by Bolt From Clear Sky - The Orwell correspondent of the News furnishes the particulars of a sad accident that befell one of its homes yesterday afternoon. The town of Orwell was shocked to learn of the accidental death of Miss Myrtis O. Sperling, who was killed by lightning during the storm of Wednesday afternoon. Myrtis was 16, the youngest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. George Sperling who reside in the Potter neighborhood in the southwestern part of the town. The accident occurred at 3:30 o'clock. Owing to the scarcity of help Miss Sperling was in the field on a load of hay driving the team. At one time, the sun was shining brightly, though the storm was rapidly approaching when the bolt followed by a severe clap of thunder fell, striking the girl, passing down the entire left side burning it badly. The toes on the right foot were torn away. The clothing on the left side was also slightly burned. A valuable team of horses attached to the load was killed and the hay set on fire though the blaze was quickly extinguished. The father stood on the ground and was blinded by the bolt but not otherwise injured. Dr. James L. More of Pulaski and Coroner Hollis of Lacona were summoned. Miss Sperling was a student in the Pulaski High school where she would have graduated the coming year. Besides the parents, one sister, Miss Dorothy Sperling is in the home. The funeral will be held Saturday at 2 p.m.
      Newspaper Obituary - Wednesday, July 31, 1918 Pulaski Democrat - Pulaski, New York - Lightning Kills Myrtis Sperling - A Beautiful Life Ends Suddenly - “Death loves a shining mark” is made very evident so often, we find it hard to deny its truthfulness. We are called upon so frequently to witness the departure from this life of the young, the fewer in the innocent we are amazed at the facts. Death came in a most shocking chariot, last Wednesday afternoon, to Miss Myrtis O. Sperling, the sixteen-year-old daughter of Mr. and Mrs. George Sperling who resides six miles east of Pulaski on a farm. The story of the girl’s death is one that has in it a most tragic coloring. Mr. Sperling with his daughters, Dorothy and Myrtis, were gathering hay from a field a half mile from their home. They had no other help and the daughters were doing their best to help father in his work. They were raking and loading the hay when a dark cloud came up from the east. It did not even cover the sun. Dorothy was on the wheel rake a little way from where her father was pitching hay on the load while Myrtis was arranging it and driving the team. A roar of thunder was heard over their heads, a flash of lightning came from the sky and the bolt struck Myrtis on the head, passed through her body, burned her badly across the breast and passed into the hay tearing off and shattering one of the girl’s shoes. The bolt went to the horses killing them instantly and also back, shattering the hay rack and off into the ground. Myrtis was dead when her father reached her. His escape from such a death as overtook his daughter was only due to the fact that he was not in touch with the load. A telephone message was sent from the home of George Mattison, a half mile from where the accident took place and in twenty minutes Dr. J. L. More, of Pulaski, was in the field, but nothing could be done, he finding that Myrtis was killed instantly. Dr. Hollis, the coroner, was called but there was no need of inquiry. Myrtis was born a few months over sixteen years ago. She had spent her life helping make her parents and sister happy. She has been her father's companion, as he had no son. She was gifted in many ways that gave promise of a life of more than ordinary usefulness. She was always ready to do her bit and more. She was a student in Pulaski High School last year, leaving before the close of the school year to help on the farm at home. Her schoolwork betrayed such a high degree of success as to cause favorable comment from her teachers and schoolmates. In her home life and in her social and school life Myrtis always stood 100%. On Saturday afternoon there was an assemblage of relatives and friends at the Sperling home that was so large that the home and yard could scarcely contain them. The dead girl loved flowers as she had lived among them all her life, so she was literally buried in sweet peas and other blossoms of beauty and fragrance. A beautiful service was conducted by Rev. C. A. Robinson, who spoke appropriate and impressive words. He spoke of the communion service in his church, at Orwell, the Sunday before and Myrtis was among those who partook of the sacred elements and he gave assurance to her friends, as clear as a pastor could, that Myrtis needed not to ask for time to prepare for even so sudden a call as came to her. She was ready for the summons of her Heavenly Father. Mrs. Rozell Pennock, of Orwell, sang most impressively “Crossing the Bar”, Mrs. H. L. Davis presiding at the piano. Burial was made in Evergreen Cemetery, at Orwell. Many friends from away were present at the funeral among whom were a large number of Pulaski High School classmates of Myrtis. She was a member of the 1919 class. There are no service flags in the home, church or the school for such as Myrtis but she was as truly a brave little patriot as any of our girls and hospitals or our boys in training camps or at the front, for she was taking the place of someone who has been called to the colors. We should honor her patriotism with the same honor we give the patriotism of the boys who meet death by shot or shall. Safe in the Home of Peace and Rest, We think of her, work well done here, Calmly, with her head on Jesus's breast, The shafts of death she need not fear. It was God's way to take her Home; We know He doeth what is right, While we while in darkness roam, Myrtis has gone to the land of light. Not now, but in the coming years, It may be in the Better Land, We’ll know the meaning of our tears, Sometime, these things, will understand.

  • Sources 
    1. [S859] New York, State Census, 1915, Ancestry.com, (Name: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc.; Location: Provo, UT, USA; Date: 2012;), New York State Archives; Albany, New York; State Population Census Schedules, 1915; Election District: 01; Assembly District: 01; City: Orwell; County: Oswego; Page: 05.

    2. [S2367] 1910 United States Federal Census, Ancestry.com, (Name: Ancestry.com Operations Inc; Location: Provo, UT, USA; Date: 2006;), Year: 1910; Census Place: Orwell, Oswego, New York; Roll: T624_1063; Page: 5A; Enumeration District: 0126; FHL microfilm: 1375076.

    3. [S2526] New York State, Marriage Index, 1881-1967, Ancestry.com, (Name: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc.; Location: Lehi, UT, USA; Date: 2017;), New York State Department of Health; Albany, NY, USA; New York State Marriage Index.