One way to kill time is to browse the census records for oddities. While looking at occupations in the 1880 census, I found something definitely out of the ordinary. It was on the page that covers the Village of Stockton, which was still a part of Delaware Township at the time. There, among the farmers, farm laborers, and craftspeople of all sorts, were brothers John and Uriah Larue, whose occupation was listed as “never knew how to do anything.” Really–that’s what it says. It was also noted that they had not been employed for the past 12 months, and were boarding with Isaac and Sarah Larue. Isaac, who worked as a laborer, and Sarah were both 29, and had three daughters. Uriah and John were 37 and 40 years old, respectively.

The brothers could have been paupers, but paupers were poor people who had no family to take care of them. I believe that John, Uriah and Isaac were the sons of Asa Larue and wife Rachel, who appeared in the 1870 census, Asa being a 51-year-old wheelwright with only $300 of property. He must have died before 1880. His sons John, Uriah, Isaac and Wilson were all working on his farm. But apparently John and Uriah (who were 25 and 24 in the 1870 census) did not learn anything from it.