Gilbert Little Ware (1885 – 1954)

James A Ware’s remembers his Grandfather Ware

Gilbert Little Ware was my grandfather. As a young boy, under 9 years old, I recall he had no eyebrows and possibly no ear lobes, due to accidents when he was a train engineer. I did not understand this until I saw picture of him in a locomotive with steam lines behind him. When he came to visit us in San Rafael we went to the San Francisco Zoo. There were buffalo in a fence near where we parked. they were laying down so my grandfather got a stick and poked them through the fence to get them to stand up. My grandfather, and my Aunt Francis had the ability to wiggle their ears, as hard as I tried I couldn’t do this. Grandpa would get me to tie his hands as tight as I could then he would get out of my knots. I learned he would hold this hands together but keep his wrist apart to give him enough slack to get loose. Grandpa Ware and his 2nd wife Emma were on the train the City of San Francisco that was stuck near Donner Pass for 3 days in January of 1952. He had been an engineer on the train for the Ogden to Carlin part of the run and knew the porters who told him they had only a few hours of heat left wen they were rescued. His friendship with the porters had helped him when he was in a wreck and was thrown from the engine with facial burns from the steam, a porter poured olive oil on him to help with the burns. My parents said he helped my grandfather instead members of his won race (Porters were all of African ancestry, it was the only job available to them on the railroad at the time).

Source:  Family Search Memories


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