Let Sleeping Dogs Lie

blogrestoredALLCHALKER Hugh

Hugh Chalker was born and lived his entire life in Ferry Township, Michigan which is about 20 miles inland from the Lake Michigan shoreline. He was one of six children born to Fred and Sylvia (Bearss) Chalker.

The original small cabinet photo was in quite poor condition when I picked it up in an antique shop but I didn’t want it and therefore the memory of Hugh to be lost completely to time.  I’d like to thank Marija of My Retro Photo for her wonderful repair work on this image.

blogbefore_after
Before and after restoration

Tragically, Hugh Chalker was the victim of a freak accident.  When he was just sixteen years old a dog jumped on him causing his gun to fire a shot into his shoulder.  Hugh died from loss of blood before aid arrived.

blogCHALKER Hugh BACK
I wish I had more to write about but the only other glimpse into Hugh’s life is that his death certificate reported his occupation as a farmer.  His father was a farmer so it makes sense that Hugh, as a teenager, would have been helping out on the family homestead.  But would he have continued with this career or chosen a different path?  If Hugh’s life hadn’t been cut drastically short it’s possible that he might have become an auto mechanic like his younger brothers, Garret and Arthur.

Hugh is buried beside parents in the Ferry Township South Cemetery.

Sources:
Census records
Michigan death certificates

8 thoughts on “Let Sleeping Dogs Lie

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  1. Interesting and tragic. Oddly enough in my genealogy research, I very recently came across a death record for a young man in southern Maine, also sixteen, who accidentally shot and killed himself with his gun. There was no mention of a dog in my victim’s death record, but the scenario struck me as similar. On the death record for my victim it states: Cause of Death: Gunshot wound in abdomen (which phrase is typed out, but then in handwritten script below that is written: carelessly leaning on gun.)

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  2. Poor guy. I have a couple of photos of people who died in their teens. They were probably remembered with love after their deaths, but by how many and for how long? By one or two friends, maybe? To come so close to adulthood and not make it is very sad.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. My research has also turned up stories of vital young men having tragic accidents with their own hunting rifles. It seems that hunter safety classes perhaps have been effective in reducing these sort of incidents. I sure hope so.

    Liked by 1 person

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