Easter Sunday plays a special role in the lives of the Glaze family.
The day represents both a holy day in their religious faith and the time when their homestead in rural Wayne Twp. returned to the family. Travis and Anne Glaze's home radiates a family's love and strong religious faith that has kept them strong through bad times.
The house was built by Anne's great-great-great-great-grandfather, Moses McKay, in 1818. McKay was a Quaker from Virginia and a strong abolitionist.
Just before McKay left Virginia, he freed the slaves he had purchased. Twenty-two of the freedmen followed him to Ohio to help build a brick transitional Greek Revival farmhouse.
An 1836 addition included a two-story porch and a fireplace with a false hearth, which concealed a room large enough to hide eight people. The house became a station on the Underground Railroad.
In 1900, the McKay family lost control of the house when the Gons family bought it. It was later purchased by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and slated for demolition to make way for Caesar Creek Park.
Through the efforts of several people, including McKay relatives, the house was placed on the National Register of Historic Places. The corps was persuaded to spare the house, which was sold via sealed bids.
After several more owners, the house was bought back in 1996 by Howard Doster, the great-great-great-grandson of Moses McKay and the father of Anne Glaze.
"I first heard about the house about 20 years ago when it was owned by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. I visited the house and entered through a hole in the basement wall," Doster said.
"Four years ago I revisited the house and found that the owner was the manager of a Cincinnati auto factory.'
Knowing that plant managers were frequently transferred, Doster kept an eye on the house for two years "watching for the inevitable `For Sale' sign to appear," he said.
"I saw it on Easter Sunday afternoon, April 7, 1996. The next day I made an offer and bought the Moses McKay house without even getting inside to see it again."
The Glaze family moved in in mid-May 1996, and celebrated the wonder of two triumphs: the return of the McKay house to family ownership and the survival of their first-born son, Nathaniel.
Nathaniel had been born on Jan. 28, 1996, just 5 1/2 months into the pregnancy. He weighed 1 pound, 13 ounces.
"When his weight dropped to a mere 1 pound and 6 ounces during his first week, we prayed hard," Anne Glaze said. "It took him 31 days to get back to his birth weight."
They turned to others for help.
"We were used to helping other people. This time we had to ask for help. It was hard to do," Travis Glaze said. "Our (South Dayton Church of Christ) family was extremely helpful."
During the health struggle, the family obtained a large wooden stick that they notched for each day that Anne and then Nathaniel were in the hospital.
The heavily-notched stick is proudly displayed in their home "to remind us to trust in God," Travis Glaze said. "It is so easy to forget when you get back into a normal routine."
Nathaniel went home from Miami Valley Hospital on May 9, just 2 1/2 weeks before the family moved into the ancestral home and 101 days after he was born.
On Jan. 10, the family was blessed with a second son, Eric Joshua. But this pregnancy also developed complications.
Anne Glaze went into preterm labor midway through the pregnancy. A premature birth was averted through the use of bed rest, prayer, and anti-contraction drugs. Eric Joshua arrived months later weighing 8 pounds.
The family realizes the magnitude of their blessings.
"We've seen God work miracles," Travis Glaze said.