The Swaim Family of Indiana and Oklahoma

Daniel Stuart Robinson (b 1892)

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Daniel Stuart Robinson (b 1892)

Daniel Stuart Robinson was the son of Lee Andrew Robinson1500 (who married Mary Elizabeth Stephens)119. Lee was the son of William Joseph Robinson and Delia Rebecca Smith. William was of “Dutch, German and English extraction” (born ~ 1835, died ~1907) and was born in “Carolina”. William descends from Richard P. and Margaret Robertson. William Joseph Robinson married Delia Rebecca Smith, the daughter of a Cherokee Chief who was half ‘English’ and half Cherokee.1501

Dan Robinson was born in Belcherville, Texas (Montague County) on December 27, 18921502. Dan grew up in Sherman, Texas. “(Dan) owned a Harley-Davidson motorcycle and was always burning his legs from an unprotected exhaust pipe.”1503

In 1917 Dan was living in Joplin, Missouri and he was working as a carpenter. Dan’s WWI registration card from June 5, 1917 reads as follows:

Daniel Robinson, Age 24, #618 Pearl, Joplin, MO, DOB = December 27, 1892, Place of Birth = Belcher, Texas, Occupation = Carpenter, Cunliff Construction Company, St. Louis, MO and Joplin, MO, Single, Caucasian, Tall height, medium build, blue eyes, dark brown hair, signature “Dan Robinson”.

Dan fought in France during WWI. “(Dan) was terribly seasick going across and almost died from seasickness.” Dan and two of his brothers, Sam and Charles, were there at the same time although they were assigned to a different unit. Sam and Charles were together throughout WWI.1504

Dan’s marriage to Mildred was his second marriage. Based on family information, Dan’s first marriage was to Lucille Smithson (b ~ 1900). In 1920 Dan and Lucille Robinson were living in Lucille’s parents’ house in Exeter, Missouri (Barry County)120. Lucille was the daughter of John L. Smithson (b ~1866) and Minnie Smithson (b ~ 1861). Living next door was John’s brother Earl L. Smithson and his wife Leland. At this time both Dan and Lucille were merchants in a grocery store. Lucille died July 19, 1922 of a tubule pregnancy1505.

In 1923 Dan married Mildred Mundy. More information on Mildred Mundy is included in the chapter describing the Flammangs.

Dan Robinson was a carpenter by trade and was involved in the construction of many buildings in Tulsa. He belonged to the union and worked for the Water Department in the late 1930’s. He was known as a hard worker and a good supervisor.1506 Dan broke his heel around 1930 and was off from work for a year or so. Ganga (Mildred’s mother) had to sell some stock to “save the house”.1507

My recollection of my Grandfather Dan Robinson is limited. I can recall him sitting in his chair watching television while rolling his own cigarettes. He also took us fishing several times including one trip to a dam near Tulsa, Oklahoma. Dan also liked to take his grandchildren to small cafes. When Dan walked into these cafes I distinctly remember that many people there seem to know who he was and Dan seemed so proud introducing his grandchildren to the clientele.

Dan Robinson died on September 25, 1966 of cancer or “generalized carcinomatosis”. His doctor attended to him from August 26, 1966 until his death. Dan was buried at Memorial Park Cemetery, Tulsa, Oklahoma (Tulsa County)1508.

“Mildred Mundy (further information in Flammang / Mundy chapter) married Dan Robinson on November 19, 1923. Mildred, with her mother, had recently moved here (Tulsa) from New York. Mildred worked in a bank in Tulsa. They were members of the Elk’s Club and VFW. Mildred was crippled from arthritis and had shoulder sockets replaced but it was not successful.“1509 Mildred Robinson died in April, 1984 in Houston, Texas.

Daniel Stuart Robinson (b 27 Dec 1892, d 25 Sep 1966) was married ~ 1922 to Mildred Mundy (b 24 Feb 1897, d 26 Apr 19841510). Dan and Mildred Robinson had two children:

  1. Juanita Jane Robinson (b 21 Jul 1925)

  2. Olly Marie Robinson (b 19 Oct 1926)

  1. Flammang (and Mundy) family ancestry (my mother’s mother)

This chapter describes the Flammang ancestry and also includes some limited information on my Grandmother Mildred Mundy’s father Frederick Mundy. Mildred (Mundy) Robinson was the daughter of Frederick H. 1511 Mundy121 and Elizabeth (“Ganga”) Marie L.1512 Flammang.122

    1. Mathias Flammang (b 1822)

Elizabeth (Ganga) M. Mundy’s father was Mathias123 Flammang1513 who was born in Europe in 1822. The 1900 and 1910 Censuses reflect that Mathias Flammang immigrated to the U.S. in 1849 and became a U.S. citizen in 1851. Jane Best recalls that the Flammang’s came from Luxembourg. Mathias Flammang was an early camera manufacturer and inventor in New York City.

Mathias had two sisters who were nuns in France.1514 Ganga’s mother was Sarah Augusta Haines124 (b ~1837) who was born in New York. Sarah Augusta’s mother was named Elizabeth [unknown] Haines born in January, 1813 based on the 1900 Census. In this census Elizabeth is listed as living with Mathias and Sarah Flammang in New Jersey. Elizabeth Haines had five children (including Sarah) and as of 1900 three were still living. 1515

Steven Stymiest family information lists Augusta’s parents as Alexander Fragie Haines and Elizabeth Terhune Earle. I have no complete independent verification of this information however I have independently confirmed that Augusta’s mother was named Elizabeth. Steven’s web site does not list Alexander’s parents but does list several generations of ancestors for Elizabeth Earle. Elizabeth Earle’s parents were listed as Morris Earle and Maria Westervelt.1516 Alexander Haines and Elizabeth Earle were married 30 Jan 1833 according to Bergen County, New Jersey Marriage Records, 1st Reformed Church.

The Flammangs had nine children1517 according to the 1900 and 1910 Censuses. In the 1900 Census it mentions that only 4 of the nine children were still living as of 1900. By the 1910 Census only three of the nine children were listed as still living. If this information is accurate then either Aglan or Louis must have passed away prior to 1910.

Mathias Flammang (b July 18221518) and Sarah Augusta Haines (b Feb 1837) were married in ~ 1853-18561519 and had at least the following children based on the 1880 and 1900 Censuses:

  1. Aglan Flammang, daughter (b ~1858). Born in New York. I was not able to identify her in the 1900 Census. By 1900 Aglan would have been 42 years old.

  2. Elizabeth Marie Flammang (Ganga) (b 25 Jul 1863, d 25 Sep 1958). Born in New York. [discussed later]

  3. Louis P. Flammang (b Feb 1872). Born in New Jersey. I believe this Louis Flammang was named Louis Pierre Flammang whose wife was Bertha May Flammang. I have a WWI registration card for Louis Pierre Flammang and a 1930 census record in Newark, NJ for Louis and Bertha Flammang. There is also a Ship record where Louis and Bertha returned from France in Aug 1933. This Louis Flammang was born in 1873 and died in 1943 and was buried alongside Bertha (b 1872 d 1947) in Evergreen Cemetry, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Due to the small number of Flammangs in Newark, NJ I believe this to be the same Louis although I have no absolute proof.

  4. Victor Haines Flammang (b 22 Jun 1878). Born in New Jersey. Victor was listed in the 1910 Census as “single” and living with Mathias and Sarah Flammang in Newark, New Jersey (Essex County). Victor’s WWI registration card from 1918 reads as follows: “Victor Haines Flammang, 42 Arlington Ave, Newark, NJ, Essex County, 40 years old, DOB June 22, 1878, native born, nearest relative Sarah Augusta Flammang, mother, 42 Arlington Ave, Newark, NJ, short height, slender build”. In 1920 Victor was still living at 42 Arlington Avenue, Newark, NJ and his mother Eliza, sisters Mildred and Leonie were living with him. Based on the 1920 census Victor was a manager of a hardware store.

I am not positive when Mathias Flammang immigrated to the United States. The 1900 Census states that Matthias immigrated to the U.S. in 1849 although we know that these entries can be inaccurate. This would be consistent with other information and censuses since Mathias must have immigrated prior to 1858 when his first child was born in New York. There is an immigration record for a M? Fleming, Age 26, for 30 Aug 1849 from Antwerp, Deutschland (Belgium) to New York, NY on the Ship Luconia. I am not able to confirm that this is my Mathias Flammang. The age should have been 27 rather than 26 since he turned 27 in July and this voyage was in August. However, I am not sure when he applied and made reservations for the voyage.

As supplemental information, there is a ship record for a “Mathias Flammang” that arrived in New York City on August 11, 1875 via the S. S. France which originated in Le Havre, France. Mathias’ age on this ship record matches perfectly with his age shown as 53125. The listing is as follows:

“Matthias Flammang, 53, merchant, Luxembourg (country to which they originally belonged), United States (country to which they intend to become inhabitants)”.1520

Mathias Flammang is listed in the 1869 New York City Directory as

“Flammang Matthias, phot. mtls. 20 Pell, h N. J.”

The 1869 New York City Directory lists a Mathias Flammang with an occupation of “photography materials”, which is consistent with later census information as well as family information. This record also indicates Mathias was living in New Jersey. Again, I am not positive this was the same Mathias Flammang.

Mathias’ wife Sarah Haines was born in the United States. Sarah had a sister named Lydia. I have a needlepoint made by Lydia Haines. This red background needlepoint depicts a small dog with a placard in front that reads “Bon Voyage”. My mother (or father) wrote the following note on the back of the framed needlepoint:

“Hand made by Lydia Haines in 1850. Sister of Augusta Haines , who was mother of Elizabeth Mundy, who was mother of Mildred Robinson, who was mother of Olly Robinson Swaim (my great-great aunt).”

Mathias and Sarah had several children born in New York and New Jersey before 1875. Census records indicate Mathias and Sarah were married in 1853 and confirm that Mathias’ wife was born in New York.

In the 1880 Federal census of Essex County, Newark, New Jersey, the Flammang’s are indexed under the misinterpreted name, “Flammaug”126 and shown as living at 154 Summer Avenue, Newark, New Jersey. The head of household is Mathias Flammang, 57, born in Belgium with his parents having been born in Belgium. His occupation is listed as “Manfg Photo goods”. This matches family information that he was in the photography field. In the 1880 census Mathias’ wife was listed as Sarah A. Flammang, 43, born in New York with her parents having been born in New York. Associating the family information with this census record (and assuming the family and/or census information is correct) would result in her full name as Sarah Augusta Hayes Flammang. In the 1880 census, Mathias and Sarah Flammaug (Flammang) are listed with four children: Aglan (22), Marie L (16), Luie P. (7), and Victor H.(2)

I believe the “Marie L.” listed in the 1880 census is Ganga because the age matches perfectly (the census was taken on June 1, 1880 and Ganga’s 17th birthday would have been in July) and this same person is listed in the 1920 census with her mother, brother Victor and daughters, Mildred and Leonie. Associating the family information with the census data would result in a derivation of Ganga’s full name as being Elizabeth Marie L. Flammang.

Mathias Flammang was a superintendent of a camera factory and later ran his own camera manufacturing company. He was also an inventor with at least 22 patents. One of the patents list his home address in Newark, New Jersey so I am sure these patents belong to my ancestor.

One patent in 1883 involved a reversible back that quickly allowed a photographer to switch between portrait and landscape settings.

Flammang's Patent Revolving Back Camera included a canvas bag and made in standard formats from 4 x 5 inches to 25 x 30 inches. Considering the large size of this whole-plate camera (15" high x 18-1/2" deep x 11-1/2" wide), I suspect that the 25 x 30 inch model must have been merely enormous -- probably the size of a small tool shed. The double swing model shown here sold for $45 in 1888. This was a very expensive camera at the equivalent of $853 in year 2000 dollars!1521

Figure 26 Photos of Mathias Flammang’s patented cameras

There is record of another patent in 1894 for the Panoramic camera manufactured by Scovill but for which Mathias Flammang retained a patent.

1895----Scovill Panoramic Camera made by Scovill & Adams Co. of New York City was equipped with a swinging lens. Up to 18" X 48" picture was available. The 10" X 30" model cost $250 while the 16" X 43" model cost $300. Was patented by Mathias Flammang in 1894”.1522

The History of Rochester NY Cameras and Lens Companies includes the following reference to Mathias Flammang:

"The Folmer and Schwing Mfg.Co. was manufacturing illuminating goods and novelties, located at 271 Canal Street, and put in a photographic trade as a side line during the summer of 1891. During the years 1895-1896 we had the Scoville and Adams Co. make a number of special cameras to order, being improvements upon their then existing model known as the Henry Clay. Mathias Flammang, being their super-intendant at the Waterbury factory knew of these special cameras....left Scovil.....solicited orders from us. .... this continued until the fall of 1897.

During the fall of 1897 we equipped our own manufacturing plant, located at 167 to 171 Elm St. New York City. (By) 1903 the factory moved to 407 Broome St where we remained until the spring of 1905 when we were acquired by the EKc.

(Signed) W. F. Folmer, Manager"

Here is a message forum post from Benjamin Ehrman at a Wood cameras site that has a passing reference to Mathias as a prolific inventor. Of course this information is hearsay but it does sound like Mathias was an active inventor.

“They (John and Jacob Stock) then regularly submitted patents until 1878. They were pretty busy inventors over a 20 year period. Certainly among the most prolific American inventors, though others were much busier - like Mathias Flammang and the William, William & William Lewis boys (must have been really comical directing a conversation when they were all in the same room).”

This is an excerpt from the Graflex Historic Quarterly, Vol 15, Issue, First Quarter 2010, Involvement of the Flammang Camera Company in the Manufacture of Cameras for Folmer & Schwing by Rodger Digilio:

“Several years later, I was scrolling through photographic listings on eBay when I happened upon one for a folding plate camera made by the Flammang Camera Company, which I purchased. I was familiar with Mathias Flammang. He worked for American Optical and had several innovative patents, including a sliding lock for camera rails and the famous Flammang revolving back. I did not realize that he had his own company. Even more intriguing was the fact that the Flammang camera bore a striking resemblance to Ken’s Folmer & Schwing camera and my Cycle Graphic Sr. Scoville and Adams had acquired American Optical, and Flammang was the superintendent at the Waterbury factory.

According to Folmer, Flammang “came to New York City in 1896 desirous of starting a camera business. He solicited orders from the Folmer & Schwing Mfg. Co. Flammang entered into an agreement to make cameras exclusively for Folmer & Schwing. They advanced Flammang money, but the arrangement broke down in 1897.

According to Folmer: “...during the summer of 1897 we were unable to secure sufficient deliveries of existing graphic models to meet demand, owing to the fact that Flammang was making hand cameras for the Scoville and Adams Co., G. Gennert, and a number of local dealers. With exclusivity breached, Folmer & Schwing refused to advance Flammang any more money. Apparently the other companies would or could not come to his rescue, and the Flammang Camera Company went out of business. The company was sold to a man named Spellman. Folmer & Schwing did not buy Flammang’s company. They did, according to William Folmer, hire some of his workers, and some who had worked for American Optical, to staff their new camera factory established in the fall of 1897 at 167-171 Elm Street. From that point on, Folmer & Schwing cameras were made by the Folmer & Schwing Company. I believe a side-by-side comparison of the cameras presents visual evidence to back up written statements in the Speth letter. Unfortunately, the letter does not deal with serialization of the cameras. We know Folmer & Schwing started making their own cameras in the fall of 1897. We know they made cameras in New York City until they were purchased by Eastman Kodak and moved to Rochester in 1905. We also know that they existed as a separate company in Rochester until 1907 when they became the Folmer & Schwing Division of Eastman Kodak.

By examining New York City-made Folmer & Schwing cameras and making some logical assumptions, we can develop a working hypothesis on serial numbers. We assume that serialization began with their own production in late 1897 and that it began at 1 or 100. The earliest known is 203 in the George Eastman House collection. We do not know how high the numbers went. I have several New York City-made cameras that have numbers in the 8,000 range but the registry maintained by the editor of the Quarterly lists a number of New York City-made cameras in the low 9,000s. Therefore, we can assume that slightly more than 9,000 cameras were made by the company in New York City. The registry also lists serial numbers of cameras made by the company when it moved to Rochester. They range from the mid 9,000s to the mid 11,000s. So perhaps another 2,000 cameras were made in Rochester before the company was absorbed as a Division of Kodak. Documentation may surface in this area as it has on Mathias Flammang. In the absence of documentation, examining serial numbers of cameras that have survived yields the best data. Collectors with cameras which have serial numbers below 13,000 should inform the editor so he can place them in the registry, and we can refine our hypothesis by having a greater universe of serial numbers of surviving cameras. ”



Patent No




Mathias Flammang

New York, NY

124, 674

19 Mar 1872

Improvement in photographic camera-boxes


Mathias Flammang

New York, NY

130, 800

27 Aug 1872

“… describing improvements in the manufacturing of camera-boxes…my invention consists of a mechanism by means of which a camera-box can be adjusted upon its platform …”


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NY (Essex county)

238, 669

8 Mar 1881

“… an improvement in plate holders for cameras … holding two dry plates in one holder and preventing the access to one plate while operating on the other …”


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ

239, 379

29 Mar 1881

“… invention relates to a camera and plate holder for dry sensitized dry plates and is adapted to the taking of landscapes and other views…”


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ

240, 016

12 Apr 1881

“… improvement in plate holders …”


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ

245, 808

16 Aug 1881

“… improvements in means of adjusting and securing ground plate glass plates and frames of …cameras …”


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ

246, 738

6 Sep 1881

“… simple and convenient means for securing the back of a photographic camera in the different positions into which it may be adjusted …”


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


16 May 1882

“…improvements in shutters for photographic cameras to adapt the camera for instantaneous photography …”


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


4 Jul 1882

“…produce a serviceable photographic camera that can be carried in the pocket of a photographer …”


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


30 Jan 1883

“…produce a photographic camera that may be packed compactly when not in use …”


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


6 Feb 1883

“…produce a photographic plate holder neat and compact and having as few projections as possible …”


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


5 Jun 1883

“…provide for readily reversing a camera so as to take pictures … either in a horizontal or vertical plane …”


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


26 Jun 1883

“…relates to plate holders … provide for fastening the septum, or stopper in place in the frame … to suit being carried in the pocket …”


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


31 Jul 1883

“…simple and inexpensive stand for photographic cameras …”


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


21 Aug 1883

“…facilitate shifting a focusing plate or a photographic plate into different positions … “
This was known as a “rotating back” design


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


20 Oct 1885

…relates to photographic cameras and the means for supporting and adjusting the same …


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


15 Feb 1887

…relates to “detective” cameras … provide for making an exposure and focusing in a detective camera without opening the box or case frequently …


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


7 Feb 1888

…relates to shutter mechanism of the kind known as a “fly shutter” and which is employed in instantaneous photographs … provide a simple, cheap, and effective means whereby a spring … may have its force varied …


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ



Photographic plate-holder


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


23 Oct 1894

…relates to panoramic cameras adapted to take either a number of views in succession by a step-by-step oscillation of a focusing chamber … thus forming a picture at each stop…


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


4 Dec 1894

…provide a plate holder … which may be employed for ordinary printing with what is known as a ray negative … a transparent plate having etched or engraved lines … …


Mathias Flammang

Newark, NJ


24 Nov 1896

…new and improved photographic screen plate holder … apparatus for producing half-tone plates …

Figure 27 Patents of Mathias Flammang

The 1891 Newark, New Jersey city directory has a listing for Mathias Flammang:

Matthias Flammang, Photographer, 154 Summer Avenue, Newark, New Jersey1523.

The 1897 Newark, New Jersey city directory includes the Flammangs as living on Garside Street in Newark, NJ:

Flammang, Louis, NY, h 189 Garside

Flammang, Matthias, NY, h 189 Garside

Flammang, Victor, NY, h 189 Garside
The 1899 Newark, New Jersey city directory also includes the Flammangs living at the same location:

Flammang, Louis, NY, h 189 Garside

Flammang, Matthias, NY, h 189 Garside

Flammang, Victor H, NY, h 189 Garside

In the 1900 Census, Mathias and Sarah Flammang are living on 154 Summer Avenue, Newark, New Jersey (Essex County). Mathias’ occupation listed was “landlord”. Living with them were Louis, age 28 and Victor, age 21, and both were listed as “single”. Louis’ occupation was “hardware wholesale” and Victor’s occupation was “photographic supplies”. In this census, it states that Sarah was the mother of nine children, with only four of them still living. Mathias Flammang’s place of birth was listed as “France”. Mathias’ father and mother’s place of birth was listed as “France”. Sarah Flammang’s father and mother’s birth location was listed as New York. Also living with them was Elizabeth ? listed as Mother-in-law, 87, born Jan 1813 in New York (parents born in New York). What is interesting is that I can barely make out the 1st letter of Elizabeth’s last name and it looks like a ‘T’ and not an ‘H’. I believe her maiden name was Terhue but was surprised that she would not be listed as Haines. (we know that census data can be inaccurate and she was 87 at the time so perhaps someone mistakenly provided her maiden name).

In the 1910 Census, Mathias and Sarah Flammang are still living on 154 Summer Avenue, Newark, New Jersey (Essex County). Also living with them, in 1910 was Victor H. Flammang listed as single. Mathias Flammang was shown as having been born in Germany in this census (his mother and father also having been born in Germany)1524. In this census, Sarah is listed as being the mother of nine children with only three of them still living. Two of those children would have certainly been Marie (Ganga) and Victor as I have records of them in 1910. Either Aglan or Louis had passed away by 1910.

In the 1920 Census, Sarah Flammang is listed as living at 322 Arlington Avenue, Newark, New Jersey (Essex County) in the household of her son, Victor. Also living in this house is Elizabeth Munday with her two children: Mildred and Leonia. Sarah is listed as an 82 year old widow with her father having been born in New York and her mother having been born in New Jersey. Apparently Mathias Flammang passed away sometime between 1910 and 1920.

Each census lists Mathias as having been born in a different country. One possible explanation is that the census taker did not know where Luxembourg was and Mathias gave them a nearby country that they were familiar with and could write down.

Elizabeth “Ganga” Flammang was born in New York1525. Her father was a photographer in New York City. Ganga also worked in New York City.

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