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The Spiker Gazette
Oxford, WV                                                       Volume 3             Issue 10                                         October 17, 2009

Spiker Buggy Comes to Life
Written by:  Bobbi Spiker-Conley with thanks to Dean Spiker, Mike Spiker & Marilyn Spiker for their contributions to this story.

     The buzz about town has been the Spiker Buggy, restored to its former glory (perhaps even more magnificent than ever before), recently seen traveling the streets to McDonalds in Ellenboro and other locations.  The buggy will make its formal debut at the Spiker Family Reunion next May. 

     No one recalls when, where or from whom Jake and Gay Spiker purchased the buggy.  But based on stories passed down to my father, Brad had used it to fetch the doctor to the Spiker farm to attend my father's birth, affirming it is at least 85 years old. 

         That it was too small to accommodate the entire Spiker clan was least to my father.  When Daddy was a tiny tot, he approached the fully loaded vehicle with a distressed and questioning look on his face, proclaiming to his mother, "Me tinks me has to sit on somebody's lap.  There's no room left for me."

     For many years the buggy was used by the family to attend church services and to go shopping in Pullman.  Mother recalls using it on one occasion; she and Daddy did not have a car until long after they were married, so they borrowed the buggy for a grocery shopping trip to Ray and Elsie Bonnell's store (Mother's parents) in Berea.  It was a very cold day, and the trip "over the back roads" would be long and bumpy.  Gay wrapped hot bricks in cloths, placing them at Mother and Daddy's feet to help keep them warm on the journey.  Daddy took the reigns, and Mother, with eyes closed, held on for dear life.

             It is believed that the buggy has sat, unused, since around 1950.  Stored in an outbuilding on the Spiker farm, it has been abused by years of neglect, layered in dust, assaulted by two floods and ultimately forgotten until recently when Mike, Mark and Marilyn Spiker decided to bring it back to life.

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     "After the 2004 flood," Mike Spiker said, "I had pressure washed part of it since it was flooded and covered with mud, and just left it in the building. When we went to move it, the wheels turned easily as if it had been used the day before --  which it had not. We thought that we should preserve this part of family history and just now got around to it.

     "Mark and I had talked for several years about getting it rebuilt, but not until Marilyn got into the horse business and got really interested did we proceed. She and Mark found an Amish restorer, who they communicated with by mail, -- he has no phone --  to rebuild it and then they arranged a date to take it to him. I got a car hauling trailer and met them at farm.  We removed it from building, put it on the trailer, and away Mark and Marilyn went with the buggy. They kept it at their house until the man could work on it.  We now have a special enclosed trailer to haul it, and Mark and Marilyn are having their horse trained to pull it."

     Marilyn Spiker added, "The buggy was in bad shape because it had been in two floods...Mark and I took it to an Amish family for the restoration...The wheels were replaced because the bearings were bad...All the leather had rotted and needed (to be) replaced...I purchased a new harness for my horse, Beau, and he is being trained to pull it....I plan to take it to the Spiker Reunion next year."

     Let's all hope that Beau likes his new job because it appears he will be providing buggy rides at the Spiker Family Reunion.  In the meantime, scroll down to view pictures of the buggy's transformation.  (Be sure to let us know if you have any photos of the buggy "back in its day" so that we can add them to our album.)



  Submitted by Bobbi Spiker-Conley -- My sister, Melanie, recently shared some good news with me about this website.  The Spiker Family Gathering Place has been nominated for Family Tree Magazine's Top-40 Genealogy blogs.  The top 80 vote-getting sites will make it through to a final round where the editorial staff at Family Tree Magazine will select the final 40.  Voting takes place from Oct. 5 through Nov. 5.  You can vote more than once at  You'll find our site listed under Category #10 - Personal / Family.  Check the box next to the Spiker Family Gathering Place.  Vote today and vote often.

     I wish to extend a special thanks to all the contributors of our family website.  Everyone knows that my sisters, Melanie and Cathy, mother, Willa Dean, and cousin, Mike, regularly contribute feature articles, photos and memorabilia to the Gazette (considered to be our "blog"), but when "walking" through the "rooms of our house", you'll find amazing stories from others within our family and throughout our communities.  Our site's nomination, and its continued growth, are the direct result of everyone's efforts, support and their desire to record our family's history in an informative and entertaining way.  We couldn't do it without you.  Thank you!!! 

     And keep it coming.  Send your comments and ideas to me at [email protected].  I can't wait to hear more


Dates to Remember

October 7BIRTHDAY - Tyler Weidlich
October 11BIRTHDAY - Rheanna Hess
October 12BIRTHDAY - Brada Stotts
October 14BIRTHDAY - Cameron Hess
October 16BIRTHDAY - Tayler Weidlich
October 16BIRTHDAY - Robby Curry
October 20ANNIVERSARY - Delene & Conrad Larew
October 21BIRTHDAY - Carigan Hayes
October 21ANNIVERSAY - Keri & Dana Hurst
October 22BIRTHDAY - Allison Spiker
October 23BIRTHDAY - Alice Spiker
October 24BIRTHDAY - Pete Deremer
October 28BIRTHDAY - John Bob Spiker
October 28BIRTHDAY - John Jacob Hicks
November 4ANNIVERSARY - Evan & Jennifer Thrush
November 5BIRTHDAY - Liam Thrush
November 7BIRTHDAY - Helen McCumber
November 9BIRTHDAY - Cassidy Fouse
November 11BIRTHDAY - Christopher Chambers
November 15BIRTHDAY - Angie Benson
November 19BIRTHDAY - Clayton Yeager
November 25BIRTHDAY - John Spiker
November 25BIRTHDAY - Thomas Gifford
November 28BIRTHDAY - Brock Stotts



The restored Spiker Buggy.
Photo submitted by Marilyn Spiker, 2009
Marilyn Spiker trains Beau to pull the Spiker Buggy
Photo submitted by Marilyn Spiker, 2009
Family Reunion 2010
Photo submitted by Mike Spiker, 2010
Taking turns riding in the buggy at the Reunion
Photo submitted by Mike Spiker, 2010