Catherine Bessie Michael (born 1875-died 1956) married Thomas W. Cole (bom February 17,
1871-died December 2, 1949) March 12, 1895. Catherine was the daughter of Andrew J. Michael
who was bom in this county December 30, 1834, his father being Robert J. Michael. Her maternal
grandmother was Catherine L. Rutledge who had married Robert J. Michael. She was the daughter
of a veiy early settler near Oakwood, Abraham Rutledge.
Catherine and Thomas had six children: (1) Dewitt D. Cole who married Isa Woodin from St.
Joseph, Illinois; (2) Harriet who married Nealy Hoyt; (3) Ida who married Henry Goldenstein; (4)
Bertha who married Alvin Rausch; (5) Johann who married Harry Stricklin and Paul Anderson;
and (6) Jeanne who married Walter Rusk. At this time three of these children are still living,
Harriet who is 96 years old, Johann Anderson of Danville, and Jeanne Rusk.
Thomas Cole was a farmer and for several years lived east of Newtown below Johnson Hill. The
older children went to Lone Oak and the younger ones went to Newtown Grade School, and then on
to Oakwood High School. They lived on a farm that once was owned by Robert J. Michael. To the
best of my knowledge the Michael Cemetery land was donated by Robert J. Michael.
Submitted by Iona D. Loro
DeWitt D. Cole was born April 20, 1896, the son of Thomas W. Cole and Catherine Bessie
Michael, and married Isa O. Woodin on January 1, 1918. Isa was bom December 15, 1890 and died
November 3, 1954. When first married they bought a farm just one mile east of Newtown and lived
there several years. They then moved on to the bottom of Johnson Hill where the family had owned
land and Mr. Cole had farmed for many years. He then bought 50 acres just above the hill. In 1940
he moved to Lafayette, Indiana. DeWitt Sr., died in 1978 in Lafayette, Indiana He is buried in
Dayton Cemetery in Dayton, Indiana.
DeWitt and Isa had seven children, (1) David DeWitt who married Estelle McReynolds, (2)
Warren who married Bessie Tatman, (3) Thelma who married Elmer Biggs and then Donald Sheets,
(4) Iona who married Walter Wulff and the Albert Loro, (5) Thomas William who married Beulah
Sheets, (6) Lucille who married William Summers, and (7) Barbara who married Joseph Filczer.
DeWitt David Cole was bom December 1, 1918, the son of DeWitt D. and Isa Woodin Cole. He
graduated in 1936 from Oakwood High School. He married Estelle P. McReynolds in Marseille,
France, in 1945 during World War II while serving as a 1st. Lt. in the 3rd Armored Infantry and she
as a registered nurse.
DeWitt and Estella have four sons and three daughters, Daniel T., Donald D., David E., Dennis
E., Deanne, Deborah, Dorthea. DeWitt had two brothers, Warren, of Lafayette, Indiana, and
Thomas W., of Montmorenci, Indiana. His four sisters are: Mrs. Elmer Biggs of West Lafayette,
Mrs. Walter Wulff of Lafayette, Mrs. Wm. Summers of Munster, Indiana, and Barbara Cole of
Elgin, Illinois.
DeWitt died May 15,1971. He was a science teacher at Jefferson High School in Lafayette.
Warren Cole was born March 24, 1921, and died August 1973. He had married Bessie Tatman
of Brookston, Indiana. They had four children, Catherine, John, Nathan, and Larry.
All of the children attended Newtown Grade School and the older ones Oakwood High School.
David DeWitt Cole graduated from Oakwood High School in 1936 and Thelma graduated in 1940.
Newtown Grade School was a one room school and while we were going there the largest
number of children at one time was thirty-six. Some of our teachers were Zola Dye, Arizona
Montgomery, Mrs. Felix Fourez, and Charles “Pete” Redman. The Superintendent of Schools was L.
A. Tuggle. Our bus driver was Layton Liggett when we attended Oakwood High School. We went to
Hebron Church at Newtown and the Bible School was held at the Methodist Church in Oakwood.
There were two grocery stores at Newtown, Neff s and Montgomery’s. There was a barber shop
and we believe that it was run by Ben Cox. While we were going to grade school we walked the two
miles to school. The names of families that come in mind are; Poynter, Dolbee, Shackman, Allison,
Famum, Hilleary, Doney, Eldon Irvin, Sibyl Anderson, Liggett, O’Banion, Creamer, Craigmile,
Burton, Cades, and Michaels.
Our recreation was attending the free shows at Oakwood and Crystal Springs Park which was
located just west of Oakwood High School. There was a restaurant in Oakwood called the Blue
Room Cafe.
In the summer we would go swimming in the Middlefork River. Our neighbors children would
also come to our house, the Poynter’s, or the Shackman’s. We always played a lot of games, often
times our parents would come out and join the fun.
While attending Newtown Grade School when “Pete” Redman was our teacher, before school and
at our lunch hour we would have a ball game on the play grounds. We would have tournaments
with the other schools. Even the girls got to play, anyone that could. Many happy hours have been
spent in this area.
Submitted by Thelma Sheets and Iona Loro

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