Clarke Historical Library
Central Michigan University

Finding aid for
Velma L. Ross Damoth Photographic collection

Finding aid created by
J. Trainor, Marian Matyn

Summary Information
Title: Velma L. Ross Damoth Photographic collection,
Creator: Damoth, Velma L. Ross.
Inclusive dates: 1889, 1927, and undated
Extent: 1 cubic feet (in 2 boxes)
Collection includes various sizes and types of photographic materials of people, buildings, and logging and lumbering in Beaverton, Michigan.

Call number: MSS.
Language: The material is in English
Repository: Clarke Historical Library, Central Michigan University
250 East Preston Street
Mount Pleasant, MI 48859
Phone: 989-774-3352
Fax: 989-774-2160

Access and Use
Acquisition Information:


Access Restrictions:

Velma L. Ross Damoth Photographic collection is open for research.


Copyright is unknown.

Preferred Citation:

Velma L. Ross Damoth Photographic collection, 1889, 1927, and undated, Folder # , Box #, Clarke Historical Library, Central Michigan University


Arrangement is People, Not People, then alphabetical by topics.



Velma L. Ross was the daughter of Ronald and Leoneal “Leo” (Campbell) Ross. Velma was born on November 9, 1895 and was an only child. Ronald Ross was one of the founding lumbermen of the Beaverton, Michigan, and owned and operated the first mercantile store, grain elevator, and the electric power plant. Ron and his brother, William Ross, came to Beaverton in 1892, to operate the only major lumber operation on the Cedar and Tobacco rivers. They were also major stockholders in LaClede Lumber Company of LaClede, Idaho. Their brothers, George and Don Ross, operated a lumber company in the Upper Peninsula. Their father, Donald Gunn Ross, was the founder of Beaverton. The water tower corner in Beaverton is named in honor of Leo Ross.

Velma lived in Gladwin and Clare counties, Michigan, all her life. She graduated from Beaverton High School in 1913 and worked at the Art Damoth Insurance Agency in Clare from 1936 to 1954. At some point she married Mr. Damoth. As a child, Velma was wounded during a wild shooting match in Beaverton in 1901. On June 5, 1901, a drunk and mean Will Arnell, Jr. got into a gun fight on Brown Street with Sam Dopp. Dopp shot Arnell twice in the stomach. Dopp and others then entered the Commercial House Hotel, which Arnell managed. There they found Arnell’s five-year-old daughter, Reah, dead, Arnell’s wife, May, dying, and Arnell’s invalid mother and brother, Frank, both wounded, all from gunshot wounds. Arnell had also shot his sister, Mable, who was uninjured. Velma had been wounded by shattered glass. Will Arnell, Jr. was sentenced to fifteen years in Jackson Prison for manslaughter.

Velma Ross Damoth died on Monday, March 26, 1979, in the Midland Hospital Center following a long illness. She was survived by several nieces and nephews. Rites were held on Wednesday, March 28, at 2 p.m. at the the Hall Funeral Home, Beaverton Chapel. The Rev. Gilbert Miller officiated and burial was in Cherry Grove Cemetery, Clare. (This information is from her obituary in the Gladwin County Record, March 28, 1979, Beaverton : a century in the making, the Beaverton, Michigan, entry in Wikipedia,, and the federal censuses for Michigan, 1910-1930, via, both viewed on December 16, 2008.)

Collection Scope and Content Note

The collection consists of various size and types of photographic materials of people, logging and lumbering, the Ross Bros.’ store and mill, school children, dams, water scenes, and buildings of Beaverton, Michigan. Tintypes, postcards, Kodak prints, and cabinet card style photographs are included in the collection. The collection is in very good condition. Some of the people and buildings are identified. Mrs. Velma Ross Damoth collected the materials that comprise this collection.

A number of loose scraps of paper with identification information have become detached from the photographs and were found in the bottom of box during processing. These have been copied and put in the front of the first folder of Box 1. Many of the photographs in the collection were reproduced in the book Beaverton: a century in the making (2003), copies of which are available both in the Park and the Clarke.

Subject Terms

    • Ladies of the Maccabees. Beaverton Hive, no. 793 (Beaverton, Mich.)
    • Beaverton Rural Schools (Beaverton, Mich.)
    • Damoth, Velma, L. Ross, Mrs.
    • Ross family.
    • Baseball teams--Michigan--Beaverton.
    • Lumbering--Michigan--Beaverton.
    • Lumbering--Michigan--Gladwin County.
    • Lumbering--Michigan--History.
    • Logging--Michigan--Beaverton.
    • Logging--Michigan--Gladwin County.
    • Logging--Michigan--History.
    • Beaverton (Mich.)--History.
    Contents List
       Container / Location    Title
    Velma L. Ross Damoth Photographic collection [series]:
    Box   1 F   1
    Photographs of People: Children, Groups (11 images), undated
    Box   1 F   2
    Photographs of People: Children, Portraits (18), undated
    Box   1 F   3
    Photographs of People: Couples (3, a man and a woman), undated
    Box   1 F   4
    Photographs of People: Families (12, 1 with Victrola), undated
    Box   1 F   5
    Photographs of People: Men, Groups (2, 1 is a baseball team), undated
    Box   1 F   6
    Photographs of People: Men, Portraits (24, includes Wm. Ross, first mayor in 1903, and Post Master of Beaverton), undated
    Box   1 F   7
    Photographs of People: People, Miscellaneous (3, includes a Rememberance card of Angus Campbell, d. 1889, age 44, and two parade entries, 1899, 1910, and undated
    Box   2 F   1
    Photographs of People: School chidlren (6), 1902, 1904-1905, 1910, and undated
    Box   2 F   2
    Photographs of People: Tintypes (2, a girl, a man), undated
    Box   2 F   3
    Photographs of People: Women, Groups (3, includes Ladies of the Maccabess, Beaverton Hive, no. 793), undated
    Box   2 F   4
    Photographs of People: Women, Portraits (16), undated
    Box   2 F   5
    Photographs, not People: Buildings (4, includes first Post Office, first frame building, interior of Ross Bros. Store, and unidentified buildings), 1893, 1904, and undated
    Box   2 F   6
    Photographs, not People: Lumbering and logging (15), undated
    Box   2 F   7
    Photographs, not People: Ross Bros. Mill (11), circa 1895, 1902
    Box   2 F   8
    Photographs, not People: Water, Dam scenes (7) 1924, 1927
    Box   2 F   8
    Postcards (includes buildings and scenic views of Beaverton) (14), 1894-1904