The Kline [Klein/Cline/Clyne] family has roots stretching back over 200 years in Frederick County, Virginia. My fifth-great-grandfather, John Jacob Klein (b. 23 Aug 1736 in Germany, d. 27 Aug 1816) came to Philadelphia in 1735. He married Anna Eva Dusong (b. 6 Oct 1739 d. 15 May 1814). In 1764 they migrated with several other families to Frederick County, Virignia and built a flax-seed mill. In 1794, John Jacob and his son Anthony converted the mill from flax-seed to flour by adding the additional floors and using the Oliver Evans plan for an automated flour mill. The mill still operated till the 1950’s.
Here are some pictures I took of the mill when I visited in 1998 with my grandmother, Mildred DeHaven Kline.
A website created by historian Jim Miller also has several pictures of the mill and its history: Kline’s Mill : MillPictures.com.
I am sure you must be wondering how eBay fits into this story. I have several ongoing searches set up on eBay and a few weeks ago I got an email alert for Kline. I opened the alert and there was a postcard featuring Kline’s Mill! I used the “Buy It Now” feature and a few days later this piece of family history arrived in the mail.
The card itself does not have a date but the caption on the front reads ” Kline’s Mill, Vaucluse, VA. Built in 1794.” The post card was stamped from Middletown, VA, a town just southwest of the mill, on 5 September 1908. I had “seen” this postcard before because an image of it is on Jim Miller’s website mentioned above. But I was excited to own a copy of it myself.
Once I looked closely at the postcard I noticed two items that I had not seen from the image on Mr. Miller’s website. The first is that in the lower left corner it says “Pub. By R.A. Kline.” I did not know there were any photographers/publishers in the family so that is a person I will be very interested in trying to identify. Also on the right side of the photo is the image of a boy. I wonder if it could be a relative and if so … who?
Never know what you might find on eBay to add to your family’s history!
Thomas Kemp Cartmell, Shenandoah Valley Pioneers and Their Descendants: A History of Frederick County, Virginia (Winchester: The Eddy Press Corporation, 1909), 485-86. Jim Miller, “Kline’s Mill,” images and narrative, MillPictures.com: Mills and covered bridges from all over the world (http://millpictures.com/mills.php?millid=2533 : accessed 30 October 2013).